Imaginative Discussions: Making Friends

Posted October 23, 2013 by Kara in Imaginative Discussions, Kara / 39 Comments

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I’m not. And I had planned to talk about book covers this week. I really wanted to discuss the types of covers that make me pick a book off a shelf or add it to my TBR. That post will come later, but I felt there was a more pressing issue to discuss this week. 
 
I read a post and a couple of comments that made me think. They didn’t make me angry or anything, but they did make me ponder what that blogger was saying and how it affected me as a member of this community. That post is here from Renae at Respiring Thoughts, and you can read it if you want to understand what exactly inspired this post. 

So what upset me? That she feels this way, basically. And that a couple of my good friends in the comments feel similarly. Feeling alienated and not a part of the community you once felt you belonged to has to be disappointing. I will admit that I’ve felt this before towards the beginning year of this blog. But since I found Lyn and made some other great friends in this community, I do feel like a part of it. 

Making friends has always been a difficult undertaking for me. And I don’t want the people that I consider good friends to feel that I am not giving them enough attention. I am socially awkward and I have anxiety and sometimes I need to take a break and get my sanity back, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t love this community as much as I did the day I started blogging. Actually, I love it more. But that doesn’t change the fact that at times I feel insecure. And after seeing that post, I did. Because I feel like I’ve tried so hard to make people like me. And I don’t want anyone to feel unwelcome in this community we have built. 

 

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And I’m not saying that people DON’T like me. And I know that post was not about me personally. But I will admit I am now wondering if I have done something wrong, because as a member of this community, I have made friends and it is my JOB as a friend to make people feel loved and accepted. There are days I am barely on Twitter because I have to edit. Or I have a migraine. Or there is drama and my anxiety just can’t handle it. And I do feel like lately I have been spending more time away, so in a sense, I can relate to Renae and the people in the comments. But I still love this place here and what we have all built together.  
 
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So basically, what I want to know is how you feel. I know that most of my readers are other bloggers, but I know I have authors and readers that don’t blog reading this as well. Do you have trouble making friends? As an introvert, making friends can be tough. I do not stand out at parties. In fact, I really HATE parties. I feel like I never know the right thing to say, and I KNOW I suck at small talk. I don’t know the right questions to ask people about their lives, and I always feel like I am being too nosy or overstepping my boundaries. But I also know that’s the only way to really get to know someone.
And also, if you are a blogger, how do you feel? Do you feel left out? Do you feel the community is too cliquey? What do you think other bloggers can do to be more welcoming? 

I really value all the blogs I read. But, I have a hell of a time keeping up with commenting and I know I suck at it. I am lucky if I can make my way around to the blogs I read once a week. And when I am editing, like I am now, I have even less time. I still have to read and clean house and spend time with my husband. Oh, and blog. Which is the most important part, right? I am SO not good at time management. And I procrastinate a lot. 

 

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So it may seem like I’m standoffish, but I always want people to know they can talk to me about anything. I am great at keeping secrets. I try to be a good listener. I love helping people. But I generally let people come to me, and so it’s not easy for me to be chatty. It’s just not my thing. And part of knowing who you are as a person and growing is knowing what you can and can’t do. Posting this discussion was a huge thing for me to do because I am REALLY going out of my comfort zone here. I don’t like to let my weaknesses show. 

But I love this community and I want to do what I can to keep it together. And this is why I want to hear from you.

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kara

39 responses to “Imaginative Discussions: Making Friends

  1. I’ve read Renae’s post, and I can say that I also feel the same sometimes. OK, who am I kidding, I quite often feel that I’m not as connected to this community as I would like to be. And that’s probably a whole bunch of things, right? I’m remote physically (and don’t speak the native language of the country I live in, which makes it worse again), my tastes tend to be different to other readers and I review far more ‘older’ books than I do ARCs. I am also HORRENDOUS at fan girling and that probably comes across as a lack of passion to some people.

    Connected to that, and in answer to your question, I am pretty much the ultimate introvert 🙂 – I hate parties, meeting new people (because they could be totally scary and eat me…totally illogical) and asking personal questions about other peoples lives is something I struggle with because I worry I look nosy 😐

    When it comes to the clique-iness, I do have to say that sometimes book bloggers can be that way, BUT I don’t think it’s necessarily intentional – people find groups they connect with and that seems to be the way it stays, but it’s also normal in a way, because we do it in real life too….

    And finally, Kara, I just wanted to say that I find you incredibly approachable, friendly and you have a fantastic sense of humour – keep it up 😀

    • I am super happy you mentioned fangirling because I do not fangirl at ALL. It is just not in my personality. I feel weird about it sometimes. I also do not get the book boyfriend thing, and I do not think it is due to age, because even when I was of age, I didn’t get it either. 😀

      I am also the ultimate introvert. At least until I have a few drinks. I used to be a major class clown and put myself out there a lot. I was called loud in high school. I guess I still can be, but it is more due to insecurity than confidence. Trust me on that. I hate parties too. I do struggle with the personal questions because I always feel like I am going too far and it makes me uncomfortable.

      The cliqueishness is DEFINITELY not intentional. I have a core group of friends but I welcome new people into it all the time and I try to be as approachable as I can be.

      Thank you for the kind words, Kat. I love your blog and I love how different it is. That’s why I follow, and that is a good thing so please don’t change it! 😀

  2. Great post, doll! I think all of us feel left one every so often especially in this community where people can sort of clique together and drama happens on a regular basis. Plus sometimes I can’t be on Twitter or FB for days at a time due to being too busy with things and it always worries me to think people will think I’m being antisocial or whatever. I think we all worry too much what people think sometimes. Which is normal I guess. I mean we all want to fit in.

    I agree with Kat about the clique thing. There are gangs of friends who regularly chat on Twitter like me, you, Christine,Jenni etc so do some people think that’s a clique? It’s just friends chatting up to me but it may seem clique-ish to others maybe. But I don’t think people do it intentionally and it’s just a part of life and friend circles IMO. I love when new people jump into our convos though that’s how I met a lot of my friends actually.

    I feel like this comment is all over the place lol. But I love this post! I think both of us have been pretty busy lately so we’ve maybe been less social and we’re feeling less.. out there? I wouldn’t worry about not commenting as much as you would like, we all have lives and jobs we can’t do everything!

    Love you! <3

    • I know what you mean about taking social media breaks. I am always worried people are going to forget that I exist. How stupid is that? It’s my own insecurity talking there, most definitely. I actually don’t mind if people think I am antisocial because I HOPE I Have made it clear from the beginning that I need to take breaks for my sanity. LOL. The good thing about Twitter is that you can choose when you want to chat, or not. Though I do feel bad when someone Tweets me directly and I cannot respond immediately.

      I do think some people think it’s a clique. But even though they do, I try to be as welcoming as I can be. I can’t help chatting with people I know and feel comfortable with.If you are a new person and you come onto Twitter judging people and being standoffish, that is just not going to work. It’s all in the attitude, ya know?

      Your comment is not all over the place. I totally understand all of your points. And yeah, we have both been busy but I never considered you not my friend anymore because life has gotten in the way. I am super happy you are busy. I am trying to stay out of the drama a bit. Glad I deleted my Goodreads account, actually. I’ve gotten a lot more reading and other life things done. It’s NICEEEE.

      Love you too!

  3. I’m not part of the blogger community, and I even feel left out, I do have number of friends that are blggers and I feel that I’m looked dow at for not being a “true blogger”. I have tried to “fit in” but it seems that it’s not good enough at times, and I just want to walk away and cry. In fact I have gone home and cried after events that are out there for the public, because I’ve been excluded from chats.

    Dealing with depression at times like this just makes it worse for me, and I do wonder why I put myself through things like this when I know that 9 out of 10 times I will go home feeling worse then when I go to said event, This is also why I avoid Twitter at times, because I don’t want to be on the outside looking in all the time. I do try to add comments to things that are going on, but then I feel like I’m left out since I wasn’t there at the start of the conversation.

    I’m glad that there are a few posts out there about this, and maybe it will open some eyes and have people take a look at what’s going on.

    Sorry for the ramble

    • I am so sorry that you feel you have been looked down on! That’s not good! All readers are equal.What types of chats have you been excluded from? Like public book signings? ALA? That type of thing? Please don’t cry! If it’s stressing you out that much, take breaks!

      With Twitter, you just have to put yourself out there. Twitter is a public place and people know that others will butt into their conversations. That’s how Twitter works. SO definitely take a leap and put yourself out there if you can, but try not to be so sensitive about it. It’s definitely all in your attitude so try to be positive on days you will be on Twitter. It helps a lot. I’ve noticed that when I am in a shitty mood I generally have a shitty day. So it’s all about controlling your emotions and not letting your insecurities affect your daily life. It’s hard but you CAN train yourself over time.

      I do hope it gets better for you, Danielle! You can do it.

  4. I’ve been thinking about this too. I’m highly introverted, so even just reaching out online is difficult for me, though I’ve gotten pretty comfortable with it to a certain degree–I’m not “shy” in real life, necessarily, so it’s not so much fear of reaching out to because of THEM and more of anxiety that I have nothing to contribute. And I do get anxious and uncomfortable easily(which I guess is sort of a shyness, but it’s different from the way I was SOOO shy as a kid). And it translates to blogging. I haven’t been blogging nearly as long as a lot of people, about ten months, and I really only got comfortable in the community this summer. For at least the first six months of blogging, I felt very on the outskirts. I’d see chats taking place on twitter and was too afraid to jump in.

    So on some level, I do think it can feel very clique-ish. But I think the difference is, at least as far as I discovered, is that to me, the term clique connotates a group that’s unwilling to be welcoming to outsiders. I think bloggers have friend groups, and that’s fine. There are always going to be people you click with more than others. No one feels they need to be FRIENDS with everyone, just friendly is more than enough. At least in my experience, the friend-group bloggers have been opening to newbies and outsiders, so I wouldn’t say necessarily I see a lot of cliques, just groups. And groups aren’t bad, they can just be intimidating to new people.

    • I know what you mean. I’m not shy either, I’m just awkward and I feel weird about it. But I do it anyway and figure that I will just deal with the aftermath if it doesn’t work out. But it usually does. When I started blogging, I definitely felt like an outside. I think I felt it off and on for the first year so you are not alone there. I think almost everyone goes through that unless you are the extreme confident type and I don’t think there are a lot of those people in book blogging. We are mostly all introverts.

      I agree that it can feel cliquie-ish but it’s really not. Almost everyone I have talked to has been more than welcoming. It’s just all about getting over your awkwardness and putting yourself out there. It’s hard, but once you do it, things will change. Some of the bloggers I was too intimidated to approach at the beginning are now some of my very best friends. Sometimes the easiest thing to so is just tweet someone you want to talk to and then the rest of the group flows naturally.

      Thank you for your comment!

  5. Brave post, Kara! Okay, truth time on my part: there are days when I feel like I’ve made AMAZING friends in this community, and then there are days when no one tweets me, I’m busy, and/or I tweet people and they don’t respond…and my mind goes crazy. Or I’ll post something I worked HARD on and no one responds. And I start wondering if I’ve made an impression at all. If anyone really thinks of ME as a friend. I’m not as shy as I used to be, but I do feel like I’m an introvert too, and there’s this pressure we put on ourselves to review only the hottest books, keep with the trends… Heaven forbid you break from that, you know?

    Sometimes I feel like if I take a hiatus, I’d come back and just get…lost in the shuffle, you know? Like if I do my own thing, I’m irrelevant. But then I tell myself to NOT stress. I remind myself that yeah, I’m never going to be a big, famous blogger, but that I have my little circles I chat with, and I try to reach out to new people, and anyone who tweets me. And I GET comments, that I’m so so so grateful for. I have enough, you know?

    So basically…I just do my own thing. I don’t try to do ALL the memes and link up anymore, sometimes my posts are super personal or just random like the time I wrote a post about Doctor Who and cried writing it. I think it’s a HUGE community and it’s up to US to do what makes us happy.

    And for the record, because I do believe in saying what I feel, I consider you an amazing person and a great friend. I think sometimes because we’re all so affixed in social media we have all these daily conversations but we don’t really SAY deep stuff, you know? I love having inside jokes and conversations about my shows and books and my writing but sometimes we don’t really realize that someone needs us to go beyond the surface and really say “hey, you’ve made an impact in this community.”

    So to me? You and Lyn definitely have, Kara. Your support of me personally means THE WORLD to me, and I LOVE y’all’s blog. I don’t get here as often as I’d like, but I’m always excited to see what you ladies have posted about. Love y’all.

    • I always think it’s bizarre how people respond to the blogs I write. The ones I feel will usually get the most response get the least and vice versa. It’s so weird. Except for this post, of course. I am overwhelmed by the number of responses I got here. I love it. I definitely think of you as a friend, Molli. I think a lot of us do. It’s hard with commenting because most days there is just not enough time once I have finished everything I have to get done. As for what you review, you should review what you want. You are not blogging for your readers, you are blogging for you. The readers will stay on. Trust me. And if they don’t, they weren’t worth it anyway.

      It’s funny, I used to want to be one of the big name bloggers, but now I really have no desire to. I like the little niche that Lyn and I have built for ourselves here and I wouldn’t do anything to change it. As long as you keep reaching people–and you do–I think you are doing well. You’ve accomplished more in the time you have blogging than most bloggers have. You should be proud of that.

      Thank you so much for your kind words, Molli. I definitely consider you a friend as well. I know I haven’t been around as much as I usually am, but I go through stages with Twitter. I was in a bout of depression that I am just now coming out of. So I’ll be around more. I love all the personal conversations we all share. <3

  6. Okay, just fyi, I am totally abandoning my commenting system (in which I’m like a month behind on Great Imaginations to read this post, because I CANNOT WAIT TO KNOW. So. Those other comments are coming…someday. You know how I like my complex systems.

    I’m not great at making friends either. Oh, I can be good at it, but there’s that initial hump of me being mistrustful of new people and my hatred of small talk to overcome. And also the fact that a lot of people just rub me the wrong way.

    Hmm, I’ve actually never really felt excluded from the community, except when I first joined the community, but even then making friends wasn’t that hard. I do feel bad though that some of the people who feel lonely and lost in the community are people I thought of as friends. Makes me wonder if I am being exclusionary.

    Making friends is easier for me on the internet, but it’s hard too. Some people are very different online and you meet them IRL and are like whaaaaat who is this. I’ve always thought the community was pretty inclusionary as long as you’re not an asshole. I don’t really know though. Maybe I’m privileged to be a cool kid in the blogging world. I really don’t know. Still, though I’m sure we could be seen as a clique, I make new blogger friends all the time. I just “met” Gillian not too long before BEA and she’s a highly valued friend now. Ellis and Meg are relatively recent super important additions too. I think the main thing is putting in time on Twitter and letting people get to know you. There’s always room for more.

    Anyway, my blogging friends are super important to me. I mean, a bunch of you are IRL friends now, and I used all my vacation time this past year visiting bloggers, and I regret none of it. I just hope that the people who feel lost can find their niche.

    • LOL no worries. If I were you, I’d just clear the reader and start over. But I am super interested in hearing about your system!

      Totally agree about small talk. I hate it and I suck at it. I am so glad I am past that with most of y’all.

      This is pretty much what I am talking about. The only time I ever felt excluded was at the beginning: my first year or so. It’s different now, and that’s why it makes me sad to see bloggers that have been blogging for a fair amount of time now feeling like they are on the outside. And yeah, I agree with you. It’s frustrating to see bloggers who are supposed to be friends feeling left out. Because I try so hard to include everyone.

      And omg I know. Some people I met at BEA, I was just like WHOA. Good and bad, really. A lot of people are really different online. I know I am a LITTLE but I feel like I am pretty genuine in both places. I do think the community is inclusionary. But.I have seen other bloggers say otherwise so they must be looking through a different lens than we are. And I agree. I definitely feel that we have a core group of people but we have always been welcoming to new people, like Meg and Ellis. I love talking to new bloggers and getting to know them. In fact, I love that. There is always room in my circle for more.

      I am so glad you regret none of it. That was so awesome that you did that. I think I want to start doing it too when I have a little cash saved up. I don’t have to pay for a hotel and I get to see some cool cities! And you can come here anytime. We still need to go to the beach, lady!

  7. I don’t think this is an offensive post at all, so try not to worry!

    I am also an introvert, and while I have made some AMAZING friends in this community, I still get very anxious about talking to other people on social media. I always worry that I’m butting into conversations, or saying the wrong thing. It’s an issue, and I know that it’s silly to feel this way, but I can’t help it.

    I feel like the blogging community is actually a lot less clique-y than it used to be when I first started, about three years ago now. Maybe it was because I was new, but it felt like everyone else was already in a tight friendship group, and they were only interested in each other. I hope that newbies don’t feel the way I did, and I do try to make sure I treat people the same, whether they’re in my close friendship group or not.

    Which is another point, I never know if I’m acting too fangirlish with the people who don’t know me as well as others. What should be the line here? I worry about that, and I think due to my worries I sometimes come off as blunt or standoffish, like you said you think you may be seen as.

    We might not have daily conversations, but I think you’re lovely 🙂 Definitely not standoffish or closed off, or any of the other things you’re worried about. I totally understand about having a hard time being chatty with people, because I struggle with that. I like to shout about things on Twitter, to nobody in particular and then let people come to me.

    Like I said on Twitter, I totally cried while reading this post. I love this community so much, and even if it does seem cliquish sometimes, I know that the majority of people don’t mean for it to be that way at all, and I’m so happy that you wrote this post and spilled your feels. Hopefully I can improve with the socialising thing in the future, and those who feel left out will know that it’s not that way at all <3

    As you can see, I didn’t plan out this comment. Word vomit!

    • Thanks, Amber. I was just worried because I linked to another blogger. I totally didn’t want it to be misconstrued as an attack on her because it’s not. I love Renae dearly.

      I felt exactly the same way you did when I started blogging. I wasn’t sure how to break in to all these different groups I saw. But I figured it out. I must have, right? 🙂 I do think almost everyone feels that way when they start, but I think it’s normal. We are human and we get insecure. However, I do my best to include people. I’m not perfect but I try really hard.

      I never thought you came off ad blunt or standoffish or too fangirly. You are doing just fine. If anything, I’d like to see you talk more! I think you are lovely too!

      “I like to shout about things on Twitter, to nobody in particular and then let people come to me.” This is me exactly. You’ve nailed it.

      I’m still a bit sorry I made you cry though. Well, not really. I bathe in your tears. 😀 Thank you for sharing your thoughts, Amber. It means a lot to me. I’m looking forward to getting to know you better.

  8. OMG, thank you for writing this post.

    Making friends on the internet is hard. I spend my time lurking on twitter watching people have conversations and fun and wishing I was brave/outgoing enough to jump in and then when I do push myself to reach out and make friends, I then spend hours upon hours obsessively worrying about whether or not I’m a stalker.

    One thing I have discovered by forcing myself far outside of my comfort zone by tweeting to strangers I know only by taste in books is that most of y’all are pretty friendly and cool. I think I’m even starting to make friends (that or people are friendly because they are frightened and hope to pacify me with kind words, but I’m hoping that’s the neurosis talking)

    I think it’s especially hard because it seems like we all seem to be pretty introverted people and maybe we all have some trouble making friends and reaching out to new people. As a result, what may come off as cliquey is actually exactly what Giselle says, a group of people who are comfortable with each other chatting, they’re talking to each other because those are the people they know. Twitter adds an extra layer of complicated because it’s technically a public forum so there’s the rest of us who haven’t made friends yet sitting around like ‘I wanna talk to those people’

    I don’t know, maybe I’m projecting. Here’s an idea, how about someone who’s got a lock on the whole ‘making friends on the internet in a cool and not creepy way’ thing writes a how to book or blog post for the rest of us to refer to. I know I could use one 😀

    • You are welcome! You are so not a stalker! We love you, Meg! I don’t think anyone could think that about you. It is totally the neurosis talking. You are definitely making friends and we value your input and opinions. I know Christina does too! And omg, becoming a part of Cuddlebuggery is HUGE. I think I neglected to congratulate you on that, so yeah, CONGRATULATIONS! You are brilliant!

      I think we all suck at making friends because we are almost ALL introverted. You are totally right about that. And you are super correct about Twitter. It’s intimidating seeing all these people chat that you want to talk to but don’t know what to say to get yourself in there. But once you do it, the rewards are many!

      A book would be great. However, I think that would not go over so well since we all make friends differently due to our varying personalities. 😛 But if anyone could write it, Kat could. 😀

  9. Very interesting post! Sometimes I want to start up a proper book blog just so I can be more a part of the community, but I know I’m too lazy and not knowledgable enough in blogging to do that. Plus my reading tastes are so weird and I read as many old books/rereads as new books.

    Anyway, you are one of the first people I remember as being approachable when I joined twitter!

    • You don’t have to be knowledgeable at blogging to start a blog. We all have to start somewhere! But only do it if you really want to and have the time to commit. It is so much work. Way more than I ever thought it would be. And I love blogs that review old books. We try to review a variety of books here, but it’s been hard this year with BEA and all the review books I’ve amassed.

      Thank you for calling me approachable. That means a lot to me.

  10. Great post. Making friends is one of the hardest things. I rarely go to parties and I always feel awkward when I meet new people.. It’s hard for me to talk to someone I don’t know, because I’m afraid they will think I’m weird. The thing with the blogging community is that I don’t really have those feelings. Everyone is so welcoming and nice. It’s like I’m chatting with people I’ve known for a long time now. I even met some bloggers and we’ve started a book club, I never imagined I would become part of something like that. I’ve always wanted to make bookish friends and now it’s happening 😀

    The only thing is that, despite the good conversations and loyal followers, I don’t really know if I truly fit in, especially not with some people who formed groups. I see people talking for hours on Twitter and I sometimes like to bust in, but I don’t ever have the feeling I’m really part of the conversation. Twitter is a scary place! I’ve been trying to get out of my comfort zone, but yeah, I think I need to put myself even more out there 🙂

    • I am so glad you don’t have those feelings in the blogging community. Maybe it’s because we are ALL weird? 😛 I have met so many bloggers IRL now and I loved every minute of it. I will be meeting more of them this year at BEA and I can’t wait. Blog friends are real friends. It’s the coolest thing ever to have all these people in my life that I have SO MUCH in common with.

      You fit in. You totally fit in! Twitter is a totally scary place, but pretty soon it won’t be and then all will be right in the world. Continue being different, continue being you. As long as you keep taking chances, You’ll get where you need to go.

  11. THIS post so much!
    I’m terrified to make new friends, I automatically just think I have nothing valuable to say so what’s the point with even trying so I have to *force* myself to engage especially on social media. I find the blogging community very intimidating and even though I have found some awesome people on Twitter (you being one of them Kara) I still feel anxious and left out when I try to engage on twitter and am ignored. I try not to take it personally but it hurts when you admire someone and they dismiss you. I think the thing I’m learning albeit slowly is that I don’t need everyone to like me and I can do my own thing. I may annoy people if I fangirl and speak out against drama but there are people who do like me and that just has to be enough! I just have to *remind* myself about that OFTEN! 🙂

    • No, don’t say that! I LIKE ADORE YOU, Danielle! Everything you say is valuable! It’s normal to feel anxious when you are ignored, trust me. Just keep in mind that some of the people you may be tweeting have an enormous amount of mentions to respond to and they might miss yours or run out of time. Most of the time it DEFINITELY is not personal.

      Nope, you don’t need everyone to like you. Though it’s nice to have that validation, it is absolutely impossible to have everyone like you and you are going to end up hurting yourself if you try. I love that you speak out about drama. Makes Twitter more interesting. Like right now on Twitter. 😀

  12. MJ

    Thank you this.

    As an extreme introvert it’s very difficult for me to use social media without wanting to roll my eyes with the falseness feeling I get from a lot of sites. I love blogging and I started blogging primarily for myself, but it’s still difficult feeling like a part of the group. I think a part of the problem for me, besides being an introvert, is time management. Networking in the blogosphere is time consuming and when you’re in law school you just don’t have time read and comment on everyone’s blog. I think that’s why I used GR so much, all my networking/making friends was centralized in one place. However, with GR’s changing policies I am finding myself going to people’s blogs more and using Twitter….so that’s good (I guess).

    • Agreed. Some blogs feel SUPER fake to me. Like they are just in it for the ARCs and publisher/author love. That’s not why I blog. And I know. You are super busy with law school and you should be super proud for accomplishing every thing you have so far. It’s huge!

      Yeah, so I deleted my GR account as you probably know. But I actually feel a lot less stressed since I did that. Apparently the drama was REALLY getting to me. Who knew? I like BookLikes a lot more and I also have been reading more blogs. I think I like it this way!

  13. Wow. I felt like you wrote this about me. Between having a problem making friends, non digital commitments, reading books for review, and blog maintenance, there are days I can’t even comment on my own posts, let alone have the ability to go post on other peoples. Take you for example, I have been a follower for a while and I get an email delivery, so I typically read it, but rarely to I take the time to comment. It is just that it is not easy to be able to keep a dialogue going with someone when you are going a million miles an minute and only have time to respond every couple of days. *sigh* Thanks for sharing and letting me know that I’m not alone. 🙂

    • THANK YOU. I run out of time like EVERY DAY. It is impossible to time manage this shit. It is totally okay that you cannot comment all the time. Trust me when I say we understand. I just assume people are super busy that day if we don’t get a lot of comments on a post. Bloggers have insane schedules. Sometimes I think authors have it easier. Well not really, the whole writing thing, but you know what I mean. It’s rough!

  14. I feel like I read this post at the perfect time, since I have been thinking about this a lot too. I have been blogging for about 6 months now and still don’t feel apart of the book blogging community. I am on twitter often and follow alot of people. I just reall don’t know how to make friends. Maybe its due to my introverted way?

    Anyway, this was a great post and you seem really nice!

    • Thank you, Chloe! You will get there. Trust me. It just takes a while to ind your feet and your voice and the image you want to convey. Put yourself out there on Twitter a bit and get yourself into conversations. Never be afraid to share your opinion, even if it’s unpopular. This is how you find people you have stuff in common with. And thank you so much for commenting!

  15. I really, really liked this post. It’s very interesting, because I’ve been thinking about this community for a while now. I’ve been terrible at commeting lately because university is basically controlling my life, and I don’t like it. It makes me feel like other people feel like I appreciate them less, which I DON’T. I love reading other people’s post and I love thinking about them, but more often than not, I forget to or don’t have the time to leave a long and meaningful comment.

    When I had first started I felt left out, but for some weird reason, I thought it was supposed to be like this. After all, I had JUST started blogging. I had nothing meaningful to say to all these bloggers who had been blogging for years, right? Wrong, of course. I’ve been blogging for a year now. I’ve made so many new friends, some of whom I’ve gotten really close to. Yes, those are the people in my blogroll. Yes, I can understand why people would think of this as clique-ish. Sometimes I feel this way too.

    I think that the biggest problem and best thing about blogging is Twitter. I love it, because it allows me to meet and talk to so many people, because I can do whatever I want. I think it can be so scary to just randomly start talking to people, but it somehow makes me bolder than I really am. I can butt into other people’s conversations and make new friends. I can shout something random that starts a random conversation and lets me meet more people. I don’t feel shy on Twitter.

    Sure, some people have gotten really close over blogging, but I have the same thing, so I don’t think of this as clique-ish. What I love about this community is that, despite what people think, it really is open for everyone.

    Sorry for the rambling. (But not really.)

    • I totally get what you mean, Judith. I feel the same way about Twitter. It’s way easier to put yourself out there on Twitter than it is in person. And way easier to make friends there. Also easier to get into a confrontation. Basically, everything is easier. 😛

      I think life gets in the way sometimes and it is really difficult to manage everything in your life and still have time for commenting on blogs. I hate to say it, but priorities, man. And I do think most bloggers understand that. After all, aren’t we all in the same boat at some point?

      You do an amazing job, Judith. And I am so happy I found your blog. I will try to comment more often than I do now. But, you know… 😀

  16. Great discussion post Kara! While all my life had “making friends” issues due to many things, one being hard of hearing (that was my biggest obstacles) two, during the time I got really sick I was pretty much alienated from the big groups but not with my closest friends. three, making the wrong friends. But I think one and two were my biggest things, during high school I began to start creating my own role in life and wanting to pursue above and beyond but the person I was friend with didn’t like that idea and never had ambitious goals or such. In fact I was a witness between her mother and herself arguing about school and not wanting to go to school again and her mother said “I’m not having two high school drop outs” So yeah there more I could say about it all in the past and I’m glad that once I stated College I met old and new friends, then lose some because someone created drama in the group and had my group of friends in a strain. So I realizes through that time who were my real friends, now I’ve never looked back.

    Now when I signed up for Twitter I really didn’t know what I was going to get myself into, I want to follow a few of my authors and be done with that but then I found blogging and meet a great group of people through that network. I was shy at first but then for some reasons I grew out of it real quick, either because of the changes in my personal life that I’ve endure and that just continue into social media.

    Now I’ve made great friends with authors and I hope to make more as my journey as a writer/blogger goes on, I hope to become an author but we’ll see how NaNo does for me as I already made buddies through that.

    I say if you meet me 6-8 years ago, I would be so shy that I would barely get word out but now I can’t stop talking and some of my relatives says that I would do great as a spokesperson and who’s knows maybe I’ll be on the stage talking about something or about my books or blogging. You just never know.

    • Thank you, Kat! That is very cool that you are participating in Nano. Lots of people I know are taking the leap this year and I think it’s awesome. It’s always fun seeing everyone’s updates and excitement on Twitter. I’ve heard you make friends through the Nano experience too so that might happen as well. I’ve really been wanting to participate but I can never come up with a solid idea. There’s always next year.

      I think there are great things in the future for you, and I am glad you’ve learned so much about yourself through this process. I was slow to mature, but now that I have, I like to know what I can and cannot do, and what my strengths and weaknesses are. I feel like i finally know myself and that’s the best part. Seems like you do too!

      Thank you for sharing your story.

  17. I’m glad you brought this up and I think you worded it wonderfully. I was having a similar conversation with a friend not that long ago. It didn’t have anything to do with the blogging community in se. I just sometimes have these moments where I feel really detached from everything, both internet- and irl-related. It surprised me so much this time around because ever since I became part of the blogosphere, I’ve felt more accepted than ever.

    I’m sorry that you feel like you give people the impression you don’t appreciate them (enough). Honestly, you’re one of the most supportive people I know. I get the reflex of wondering whether you did something wrong when you see that people you are close to feel left out. I don’t think the blogging community is cliquey. Sure, there are certain groups within the community but it’s normal that you interact more with the people you feel close(r) to.

    I feel like I should mention somewhere that Christina is a very important addition to my life, too, in case she comes back to check comments. Really, though, all of you are. I know everyone says it all the time, but this community really is very welcoming. I remember when I started reviewing casually. I got on Twitter and started following everybody. Then all of a sudden bloggers I’d admired for so long started following me. All I could think was: “Wow. Guys, wait. Are you sure about this?” I felt so grateful and I couldn’t wrap my head around the fact that people who were (and still are) my blogging idols would take an interest in me.

    I used to be very scared of commenting, or even just replying to tweets. Sometimes it’s still daunting, but all of you are super approachable. I’m still a newbie blogger and while I don’t feel like I’m a crucial part of the book blogging community, I’m very comfortable where I am right now. You people are the main reason for that. I’m very glad I took that step, because I feel a lot less lonely these days. Yes, sometimes there’s a conversation going on I’d like to be part of, but I don’t want to give the impression I’m jumping on tweets.

    The way I make internet friends does differ from my real life. I don’t have many bookish friends irl, and certainly not friends that are so passionated about it as me. They’re also not nearly as invested in issues such as feminism, racism, sexuality, etc. as I am. That makes it harder for me to make good friends, because those issues do mean a lot to me. As far as real life goes, I feel like I often need to entertain people to keep them interested.

    Here, on the other hand, I can mix the silly and the serious, which is much closer to who I am as a person. I’m more careful at first, because I don’t want to give people the wrong impression and it’s often hard to tell in cyberspace. However, where in real life I would take my distance after a while so as not to become too vulnerable, I don’t feel the need for that here. I cannot stress enough that I have the blogging community to thank for that.

    So I guess this was a novella of someone who feels appreciated thanks to all the fabulous bloggers that took an interest in her 🙂

    • Ellis!! I do feel more loved now since I started blogging. I have met so many amazing people in this community, and I have more friends than I’ve ever had in my life. And they live all over the world and I feel like anywhere I travel, there will be blog friends to meet and hang with.

      Obvs I love Christina too. TO THE DEATH. Of course we would take an interest in you. You’re awesome, Ellis. And super intelligent and quirky, and I love those types of people. The more of them I have in my life the better I shall be.

      And I actually DO feel you are a crucial part of the book blogging community. It doesn’t take long to make an impact on people, and you certainly have made one on me. If you went away today, there would definitely be a hole there, Ellis. So don’t. Okay?

      I don’t have a lot of IRL friends. I moved away from the state I grew up in, and now that I am in Florida, I haven’t gotten much of an opportunity to meet people with the job I do and blogging. I am always inside and I’m kind of a hermit. The only time I come out is when there is a book event or when bookish friends are visiting. So really. Those ARE my real friends now. I do have the husband to though. Hahaha. And yeah, I’ve never had an y book lover friends IRL before and that is the BEST PART.

      I think it’s easy to be who you really are on the internet because of the layer of protection the distance gives you. And then if someone doesn’t like you, it’s not a huge deal because you don’t know them, and who really cares? So I definitely understand where you are coming from there. It’s hard for me to be myself in real life with new people as well. I am an awkward penguin. Giraffe, really.

      I liked your novella of a comment. I read every word. 😀

  18. I’m going to be honest, I super loved this post! 🙂 <3

    I feel like I’m terrible at making friends because I honestly do have social anxiety. It gives me a sick feeling when a stranger talks to me. It freaks me out so much and I just start hyperventilating. That’s why internet is easier for me and I can sorta reinvent myself into some cool person that I could never be. IRL, people don’t like me because they don’t get it me and yeah, I totally understand what you mean!

    PS: LOVE the use of J-Law gifs.

    • Me too, Nova. Social anxiety is the worst so I totally hear you! I don’t think you need to reinvent yourself into someone you aren’t IRL though. I think you are pretty awesome just the way you are! A lot of times people don’t get me in real life either. It’s okay though. It’s easy to learn who your true friends are and the kind of people that you mesh with!

      Thanks! 😀

  19. I am TERRIBLE at making friends. Being in my 30s I just don’t know how to do it anymore … especially when, in real life, I’m quite the introvert. Some people might not be happy being at home all week, but I totally am. If I could, I’d leave the house for supplies once a week! But even having said that, I’d still love to meet more people who I can just meet for coffee or whatnot. It’s tough!

    Even in the blogging community, I find it really hard to meet genuine people who I can be friends with. I have a small handful, but there have been people who I thought were friends who now don’t talk to me for some reason. I can’t be on Twitter all the time and I know it’s only going to get worse in the new year with the baby and all.

    The blogging community can get SO cliquey I find and it can be hard to break into a clique … but then, do I want to be part of a clique crowd?

    This is a tough thing to answer! I wish I could say more, but I’ve struggled with making friends for quite some time after a major disagreement over drugs in high school with a group of (supposedly) really good friends. I decided then and there that I didn’t need to be friends with people who would bring me down and make me feel like I had to do drugs to fit in. After that I was pretty much on my own. BUT I discovered the piano and the joys of making music, so it was a good thing, in a way.

    I just wish it got easier as time went on …

    • Same. I wasn’t great at it when I was younger either, but now that I am in my thirties, it’s gotten even more awkward and difficult. Most days I would just rather stay home with my dog and a book. And I agree. Leave the house to get groceries and come right back. Haha. I do like to get out to the beach and Disney every now and then though, being that I live where I do.

      I am so sorry that people just stopped talking to you because you couldn’t be around as much as them. That’s…annoying. Just so you know, I would never do that to you because I understand how it is to have a life outside of the blog and the need to take breaks from that.

      I actually DON’T think the blogging community is cliquey. Some might say I am part of a clique but I try my hardest to be welcoming and chatty with everyone. I used to think it was, but I really do think it’s just a bunch of close friends who really get each other. That doesn’t mean that they won’t get to know new people though. Because I make new friends all the time.

      I hear you on the negativity though. I’ve cut people out of my life who I felt were bringing me down. I used to be afraid to do that, but if I am questioning the friendship and not really wanting to be a part of it anymore, well life is too short for that shit. I think you are incredibly talented and it’s awesome that you have a hobby like that. I don’t do much outside of reading and blogging because there just isn’t time these days. But I do love music. And gaming. I do that too. Thank you for sharing!

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