Victoria is a terrifically chatty tweeter and a delight to know. She’s a raving Potterhead too, so that makes her extremely cool in my book! She only stared blogging very recently but reads like lightning and is currently averaging something like a book a minute (not even joking) in a variety of genres (ok, possibly I’m exaggerating). This is what she had to say in response to my questions about blogging and reviewing:
Hello, my name is Victoria Stone, I’m 26, married and have two children. My biggest passion in life other than my family is reading and baking 🙂
I am fairly new to blogging (started on May 1st 2013) and have found a real passion for it. I will read anything, I think everything deserves a go. Have found some real gems by breaking away from what I would normally read, crime/horror.
Name your top 5 peeves from author review requests
Being new to blogging I haven’t had many review requests from authors, but the ones I have received I haven’t really been to unhappy with. As any requests they have I’ve just been too ecstatic that I have even been asked to review their book.
The same genre can encompass many different types of story – for example, fantasy ranges from Terry Pratchett to Twilight and everything in between. How hard is it to remain objective in your review if a feature of a book doesn’t float your boat? Say you get a fantasy about unicorns and unicorns are just not your bag, how does that influence your opinion?
I like to give anything a go. I used to instantly dismiss books if it was something I had no interest in or wasn’t “real” to life, for example Harry Potter, I refused for years because magic wasn’t real and childish. After giving in I fell completely and utterly in love with the whole story, so now I at least try anything. If I really don’t get on with something because it isn’t really “my thing” I like to think I would still give a good review. I would try to give positive feedback for the people that do enjoy the things I personally don’t, whilst still being honest that it didn’t suit my tastes.
What are your feelings on the growing army of indie authors? How does the quality of their work hold up against traditionally published? Do you accept reviews from both and what would it take to change your mind on your current policy?
I never really read self-published work until Christmas (when I got my kindle) and even now that’s very limited, as I really do love to hold a real book, (I don’t get on with my kindle).
But after reading some recent self-published books I can honestly say I have fallen in love with the world my kindle has opened up! I have found some fantastic stories that I think are just as good if not better than some traditionally published books. I think it is all down to personal opinion really. I would happily accept book reviews for either, even more so since discovering some very good books.
Describe your reviewing schedule. How many hours do you put in a week/ day? How does this impact on other aspects of your life?
Being a very new blog, I’m not posting everyday, especially juggling my two young babies. They take priority over everything else. But as soon as I finish a book I will review it while it is fresh in my head. I also get sent or find pictures about books that I like to share on there too, just for fun 🙂
I’m hoping to get a review up everyday or other day in the future though as I can get through a book rather quickly.
What started you book blogging? What makes you continue to do it?
I set up a twitter account in February and met other bloggers through it. After spending a lot of my time tweeting about books and recommending books I enjoyed, someone noticed just how fast I was reading. They then suggested I start a blog. I didn’t take it too seriously at first thinking only my husband would read it out of duty. Then someone else mentioned it so I looked into it and decided on a whim to give it a try. And the reason I still do it is because I absolutely love it, I love it when someone tells me they ordered a book through a review I did. It makes me proud and very excited that I’ve found something that I truly love doing.