Can I just say that the one of my greatest life decisions was to start a Bookstagram account?
It’s something I debated for quite some time. As an adult it can be…strange… to have such a strong relationship with books.
It’s almost like you are meant to outgrow books unless it is directly related to a career that makes you money. Other than that, it’s a waste of time, you need to get out more, you need to get a life.
So, yes, it took me a great deal of effort to get the nerve up. It was intimidating and kind of scary. But I’m so glad I did it. And I hope this post can encourage other readers to jump into the community. So here are my top five reasons you should join Bookstagram.
I don’t think it needs to be said, but I will: followers are not the important part of starting an Instagram for books. But still, the point of a Bookstagram is to share with other readers, and its scary thinking you won’t get that. You want to be seen and develop relationships, and looking at accounts with tens of thousands of followers is intimidating.
But what I noticed when starting, was the immediate reaction to me being new. People were always friendly. My first posts were flooded with welcome and followers just sort of happened.
I was new to taking pictures, I didn’t understand having great lighting, and the lingo was all new to me. But that didn’t matter.
Because book lovers love book lovers. Bibliophiles seek out Bibliophiles. Our blood calls for each other and it’s kind and open and warm.
Bookstagrammers don’t judge you for the books you’ve read or haven’t read, the length of your TBR list, or the size of your book shelf. If you read, if you love what books offer the world, then you are one of us.
The most trouble you find there doesn’t come in hurtful words, bullies, or hate. I’ve had my pictures stolen twice and the immediate response was a flood of people just asking for recognition of their own work. It’s never bullying, just a correction of what is wrong.
I’ve had a spoiler posted on my account just once, when I first began. I won’t understand it, because it was a major spoiler, but you move on and it hasn’t happened again.
If those are the small negative things that can happen, its so much less scary. Just know we really are a kind and understanding group of people. And I think we have books to thank for that. They make us smarter, wiser, and more conscious of the people around us.
As you continue to grow your account there are certain other accounts you get close with. They are the people who will always comment on your pictures, and you on theirs. They are the ones that read with you, even from a distance.
I personally have a bookish friendship circle of zero IRL. But once I get online, it’s an out pouring. I have two amazing book clubs that I run with wonderful women. I don’t have that in real life.
I have a group of people that like me for the book lover I am, not mock me for being an adult who loves Young Adult and magic and faeries. I don’t feel weird because I have friends that just get it. That’s a huge reason I recommend joining this community, there are people just like you that are ready to get to know you and share with you.
3. SELF DISCOVERY
You can go into starting a Bookstagram account with just the books you have read and loved. Give it six months and you have two over flowing bookshelves.
It’s like a chain reaction. For me, it started with a cover buy book. I saw a beautiful picture of a book, bought it, loved it, and basically obsessed over the account who originally posted the picture.
I found out that what I love is Young Adult fantasy, mostly. I learned that from Bookstagram. I learned that I don’t like romance, and contemporary is okay. Magic is the best and if there are Fae then I am so in. I learned that all from Bookstagram.
Starting this account made me the reader I am. It gave me the courage to try new books, the recommendations that helped me learn about myself, and the knowledge of the wonderful world of Goodreads.
I struggle with being a Young Adult reader who isn’t a teen. It’s hard being the only Young Adult loving adult around. It’s hard having a million opinions about Will and Tessa and Jem, not understanding the ending of The Spectacular Now, hating Paper Towns, and not being able to say it!
I have thoughts and opinions that go to a world far away from Ashland, Kentucky and working in a restaurant and going to school and paying bills. I have imaginary worlds, and fictional boyfriends, and deaths to mourn that never actually happened. And Bookstagram understands that!
I’m so entirely sure that I am not the only person surrounded by people who don’t know this bookish side of me. I read more books last year than most people read in their life time, and that’s not me bragging, that’s me stating a fact. And these books weren’t biographies and texts on history. They were magical and made up and never going to happen in real life. They did nothing to grow my mind scientifically or mathematically, but expanded my world completely.
And there are so many people who will never get that. But you know what? I don’t need them to. Because I have my own little world that sits on an app in my phone, I have Instagram and Goodreads and this blog and BookTube, and they are the ones I need to understand me. Because our minds have gone to the same beautiful places.
More than anything, Bookstagram is going to grow you creatively. Not only is it going to teach you about the books you love, but it will teach you photography and writing and might even encourage you to start an Etsy shop or Society 6 shop. There is so much creativity in this world we have created, and I whole heartedly believe that a lot of passions were discovered by witnessing others with the same passions.
I’ve learned so much about myself as a writer. I’ve watched teens and young adults become writers and publish books. I’ve met authors and shared short stories with other writers. I’ve made myself believe how possible it is for me to become a published Young Adult author. I’ve gotten courage to actually say that out loud from this amazing group of people.
Okay, I believe I have gushed enough. My love for Bookstagram has made this post so much longer than I intended. But the love is real, I assure you.
If you have a Bookstagram, comment below and I will follow you. Or just tell me some reasons you love Bookstagram.