I’ve recently come back from a wonderful holiday in Sorrento, Italy. I had an amazing time, most of which was spent taking in the beautiful scenery, lounging by the pool with a cocktail and eating so much pizza it’s a wonder I don’t look like one. I read 17.5 books while I was there and to be completely honest it was pure bliss just to kick back and relax without having to worry about any of my roles. Whether that be my normal 9-5 job or my role as a vlogger. I still kept up with reviewing on here and enjoyed the writing process as always. But the realisation came to me that Booktube was taking up far too much of my time. Time that I’m afraid I’ve decided could be spent better elsewhere.
I started Life Has a Funny Way in 2013 and I’ve seen it go from strength to strength. My passion for writing combined with my passion for reading and it all came together to make this blog. A blog that I am proud to say now has over 100 followers. That’s 100 people who actually care what I have to say and it feels amazing!! Writing is such a simple pastime for me, it’s something I can do while I’m watching tv, waiting for a meal to cook, or even when I’m laid in bed suffering insomnia like right now. Plus the bonus is that I get to write about the things I love most. Books!
Booktube was not exactly a natural progression for me. Me and my partner had discussed it more for him, because he’s heavily into PC gaming we discussed the option of him having a channel and around that time we came up with the idea of me having one to talk about books. I had no idea that there was a community already out there, rather stupidly I thought I was coming up with a niche idea that would bring in the masses of people out there who wanted to bring reading into the 21st century as much as I did. I didn’t realise naively that they were all already out there. There’s some amazing Booktubers out there and they are doing such a good job of it already, I really didn’t see what I could bring to the table that wasn’t already sitting on it!
One of the questions on the Booktube newbie tag is ‘what can you bring to Booktube which is new/original’ (I’m paraphrasing here). I honestly couldn’t think of anything I could bring. I later realised that the one niche I have over other people is how much I read in a month. Every month I generally read at least 20 books. But all this results in is veryyy long videos. The one thing that every advice page suggests you never do. People’s attention spans are short and running through a wrap up that’s pushing 20 minutes long just isn’t going to hold people’s attention!
That became all too clear when people who joined Booktube at the same time as me were surpassing 100 followers while mine sat squarely at 46 a number which has now decreased to 42. Rather than gaining followers I’m losing them!
Despite that though, I persevered. I’d invested money, not tons but enough to make it worth staying, and more specifically time in trying to get it right. Filming 2 videos every Saturday takes around an hour including set up, outfit changes, preparing for the video I.e doing my hair and makeup when usually I’d be slobbing around in my pjs all day. Then the editing process for 2 videos takes about another 90 minutes to 2 hours. Then there’s designing the thumbnail, uploading the video to YouTube, working out scheduling, tidying up after I’ve taken all my books off the shelves etc. It was just starting to get too much.
One thing that the book community probably don’t know about me is that I suffer from anxiety really badly. While I had no anxiety about filming etc I found that the drag booktubing was having on my personal time was taking its toll. I became obsessive with it, needing to read more and more to keep beating my own exaggerated targets and finding I didn’t have time left over to spend with friends and family. When confirmation of my enrolment on my 4th year of uni came through I just realised that enough was enough. Once I got back at uni in September, along with my full time job, reading for pleasure, watching tv, looking after my dog and gardening there was going to be no time left for anything else.
On top of that, since starting Booktube I haven’t worked on my own novel once! And it’s really about time I got that finished. It’s been a work in progress for 4 years now and I need to pull myself together some.
I’m really grateful however that I got the chance to have a go at Booktube. I enjoyed talking about books with fellow book lovers and I met some great people on there who share my love of reading a dead tree and hallucinating! I want to say a special thank you to Anni, Jayesh and Georgina who have been my best bookish friends and so supportive of my Booktube journey. I hope that we’ll keep in touch, I’ll definitely still be checking out their Booktube channels and supporting them through their Booktube journey. Plus I still owe Jayesh some cheesecake and Millie’s cookies!
I’ll be leaving my channel open so people can still check out my previous videos and it’s not to say that I might not return one day when I have more free time on my hands! I’ll still be doing my monthly wrap ups and book hauls and joining in with the brilliant book tags that go around. It’s just that I’ll be doing them from my blog now rather than on my channel. It’s time to get back to what I’m best at, reading and then writing about it.
Thank you to all that have shown support for my channel and an especially big thank you to all the followers of my blog who have supported Life Has a Funny Way and helped to develop it to what it is today. You’re the reason I keep believing that I can do this and that people actually care about what I have to say. You’re all awesome!