It’s my 9th Blog-Birthday!

Nine in Elvish

Dear Readers, 

Today I have been blogging for 9 whole years!  

Nine McKellen Elvish '9' Tattoo
Sir Ian McKellens Elvish ‘9’ Tattoo

When I was searching for a picture to illustrate the nine years – I found the number Nine written in Elvish (see above), as devised by Tolkien. In the Lord of the Rings films, the nine members of the cast who formed the ‘Fellowship’ had this word/symbol tattooed onto their body as a celebration of that fellowship – See Gandalf’s to your right.

It’s that aspect of FELLOWSHIP that I wanted to highlight in this post.

The years go by so fast and the world of book-blogging has changed, exploded and evolved so much during that time.  Back when I started in 2008, there weren’t so many book blogs and it was easy to get around the most popular ones to read and comment on posts, and discover new ones through their blogrolls and comment streams. I’m delighted that many of the blogs I followed back then are still going  – and I read every post – Kim, Simon, Victoria, Harriet, Jane, Teresa & Jenny, HayleyElaine, Phil, Lizzy and Simon S amongst them, (apologies if I’ve forgotten to mention you, but you all know I still visit). I feel lucky to have met most of these lovely people in person too. All of of blogs have undergone changes, moves, improvements and more but we too have a fellowship if you will.  The following years have gradually extended this fellowship – David, Susan, Karen, Rebecca, Ali, StuEleanor – and again many more (see my blogroll down on the right).

Since I started, the number of bookish blogs has increased exponentially and it’s no longer possible to keep an eye on the whole lit-blogosphere.  We link to other streams of social media and as a result, direct blog readership and commenting goes down – social media picks up the indirect readers – but it can be hard not to feel disheartened when these visitors aren’t reflected in your blog stats. There are more pressures on bloggers  too – but the ubiquitous blog tour etc are topics for another day.

There are hugely successful groups like Book Connectors on Facebook/Twitter which can feel overwhelming, but have a different sense/level of community – and once you get past the blog tour posts etc, also show strong fellowship between its members, albeit a virtual one.

I am delighted that my other joint project, Shiny New Books, thrives and has/is building a reputation for considered and intelligent reviews by our wonderful fellowship of reviewers. Thank you to all of you.

Shiny’s success means that at times, I have less time for this blog – but you can be assured that as I move into my tenth year of blogging mainly about books…

I will continue to:

  • Read the widest variety of books I can and (eventually) write about all of them HERE (or on Shiny).
  • Try not to care about blog stats (but secretly keep monitoring them of course!)
  • Not start vlogging – I am in awe of those who do this, and there are some very good ones indeed. Vlogging is not for me though!
  • Visit as many of your blogs as I can and comment whenever I have the time.
  • Quietly update this blog to include all the posts that didn’t export from my old one so I can delete it – but I’ll try not to overflow your readers and inboxes
  • I started blogging for me, I still do – but I’d be disengenuous if I didn’t say I love doing it as part of a wider community, so…

I will do my bit to keep the bookblogging fellowship going.

Thank you for reading, visiting, commenting – I always appreciate it.

33 thoughts on “It’s my 9th Blog-Birthday!

  1. Margaret @ BooksPlease says:

    Many congratulations Annabel! I may not comment very much but I always read your posts.Like you I started blogging just for myself but soon found like-minded people and although I belong to a face-to-face book group it only meets once a month – not like daily blogging!

    Love the Elvish nine! Here’s to many more years of blogging! 🙂

    • AnnaBookBel says:

      And you’ve been going at least as long as me, haven’t you! How do we all keep it up – we just love talking about books.

  2. litlove says:

    Happy happy blog birthday, dear Annabel. Nine years is huge in blogging terms – must equate to about 75 years in the so-called real world! And if you add Shiny into that…. well, you are a blogging powerhouse. 🙂 xx

  3. kaggsysbookishramblings says:

    Big congratulations Annabel! That’s such an achievement! I always love to see what books you’ve been reading – even if they’re not ones I would read myself, your take on them is always interesting and entertaining. And Shiny is a great achievement too – keep up the good work! :))))

    • AnnaBookBel says:

      Reading other blogger’s reviews of books you’re unlikely to read yourself is a vicarious pleasure that I love too.

    • AnnaBookBel says:

      You’ve been going for ages too – I love your blog, although I don’t comment as often as I’d like. There are more of us old-timers in the book-blogging world that you’d first think I’m sure.

  4. BookerTalk says:

    Well done on the anniversary and I shall raise a glass to the next 9 years for a site I admire hugely even if I’m not that good about commenting frequently!

  5. A Life in Books says:

    Many congratulations, Annabel. A true book blogger pioneer! Thanks for mentioning me. I hadn’t realised until I stuck my toe in the book blogging pool what a very welcoming place it is. Fellowship indeed, although having spent most of my working life in the book world I already knew that readers are a lovely bunch. Here’s to the next nine years!

  6. Teresa says:

    Congratulations on nine years! It’s so wonderful that so many of us who started out around the same time are still at it and with no interest in stopping anytime soon 🙂

    • AnnaBookBel says:

      Thanks Jenny – you’ve been going a long time too, I’m sure your blog was one of the first I found. When I found the Elvish 9 and the story about the 9 actors in the Fellowship all getting tatts, I had to write about fellowship in lit-blogging! Long may it continue.

  7. crimeworm says:

    Huge congratulations – what an achievement! I don’t know how you find the time to do everything – work, family, your own blog, Shiny…and of course all that reading! You’re an inspiration to us all – and here’s to many more years!

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