So, I’m pretty horrible at networking. I think it comes from being an introvert, as I usually tend to cringe at walking into large events full of people by myself (and I usually can’t get anyone to go with me). When I attend author events and book signings I’m usually near the back by myself, fumbling around with my phone in an attempt to look like I’m busy instead of it being obvious how incredibly awkward I feel.
As a result it made my first year of blogging rather lonely as I’ve hung out on the fringes. HOWEVER! I have promised to get better about this and I’m really truly working on it. I’ve been reaching out to fellow bloggers and getting more active on memes and Twitter. If anyone has any tips for me on this I’m definitely open to them!
So, my most recent step towards becoming more active in the book community, this past week I joined a local book club :-). The Not-So YA book club is hosted by The Little Shop of Stories and it’s for those of us over the age of 21 who still enjoy reading YA books. I’ll admit I was super nervous to walk into the bookstore and walk up to the counter to ask “Is there, where, um, the book club meets?”, I found myself wandering around looking at books for about five minutes before getting up the courage to do just that. But both women hanging out at the front were super nice and excited to meet a new member and welcomed me immediately!
My first meeting was fantastic and I was able to meet six awesome people who enjoyed Graceling (and Po, of course!) as much as I did! We sat around a local restaurant for about four hours discussing the book, then wandering pretty far off topic for a while, and then trying to rein in back in to finish up the discussion questions. Apparently book club is not just talking about books, it’s for all kinds of interesting discussions!
I’m certainly looking forward to the next meeting (we’re reading Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo!!) and there was even talk about getting a writing group together. (Oh! If you’re a local Atlanta blogger/bookish person check out and join the group on Facebook, we’d love to have you!)
I’m definitely looking for more ways to get involved in the blogging community both locally and online, so if anyone has any ideas or things they need help with, let me know! I’m hoping that reading some other posts from today will give me some good ideas on things I can do to improve my “voice” in the community.
I can’t begin to say how grateful I am to be a part of a community full of amazing and awesome people. 🙂 Ya’ll rock!