Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Seven Years Blogging and No Itch

Seven years ago today, Estella's Revenge was coughed into digital existence after I deleted my first blog, The Waste Land. I was sitting in a run-down faculty workroom at my first (adjunct!) college teaching job with several hours to kill until the next class I had to teach.

It's something to sit back and think over seven years of blogging. While I always blogged about books because I was ALWAYS reading for school, it wasn't until 2007 that I really took a hard turn toward book blogging and let some of the miscellaneous fall away.  I went back through my archives today and looked over some of my posts and year-end favorites from those years. Many of the comments are from bloggers who still comment here now. The majority of those folks are still cruising by this site on a regular basis.

While there is occasional drama in the blogosphere I suppose what I want newer bloggers, or even just disillusioned bloggers, to focus on is the very real relationships that come about because of blogging. All of the swirling angst is irrelevant. It doesn't matter what authors and publishers say or what they want. It doesn't matter if you write "reviews" or "reactions." It doesn't matter what anyone's opinion of blogging may be. It doesn't matter if you're getting paid or not. We do this for us and we do this for each other. We blog because we love books and we love sharing what we read.

Estella's Revenge has been through some distinct phases. Including a name change. While the address was always Estella's Revenge, the original blog title was Tripping Toward Lucidity. As I was working my way through my Masters degree I felt as if I was just stumbling along trying to accomplish whatever was right for me. I was saucy then, bordering on angry, and just finding myself in the world.

I've been through successful and failed relationships on this blog. I've had a baby. I've accomplished many of the things I wanted to do professionally like being an English professor. And I even went one step further to be a Program Chair--something I love but I never foresaw being an administrator.

And many of you have been with me the whole time. Reading, offering support by way of comments and e-mails, gifts and tokens of friendship. Kind words, most of all.

The next time you feel pressured to blog or beaten down by the number of review books on your shelves or pressured to do this or that: just stop. While I get caught up in those feelings from time to time, taking a moment to reflect on the last seven years has reminded me that all that stuff is just extra baggage. I blog for me. I blog because of you. And I thank you so much for being with me whether it's been seven years or seven minutes. Any time you spend reading and becoming a part of my life is appreciated.

Now, let's get on to the really good stuff: the "Spread the Love" giveaway results!!!!

The winner of La Perdida by Jessica Abel is Emily O from Reading While Female!!!

The winner of The Housekeeper and the Professor by Yoko Agawa is Alley from What Red Read!

Last but certainly not least, The Sisters Brothers by Patrick deWitt goes to...Brooke from The Blog of Litwits!!!

Thanks to all who entered the giveaway. It's my pleasure to pass along some books I enjoyed and I hope you enjoy them, too.

Now, let's all drink champagne and eat cake. 

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