Hey, you! Have you ever wondered why the heck I read a bit of everything? Maybe you followed me for the Amish fic and then I posted a Harry Potter reference and now you’re convinced I need to burn in the fiery pits of hell for my transgressions.
If so? Well, this edition of “Hey, You” is for you. Maybe it will even help you understand me a little better. If not, oh well, I tried.
Furthermore, I’ve had a few fellow bloggers pose this question, “Are you afraid of scaring off Christians when you review secular fiction? Especially books like Terry Goodkind’s Sword of Truth series or Harry Potter?” Occasionally I’ve had it phrased this way, “Do you fear turning off readers of secular fiction when you review Christian fiction?”
Bloggers are afraid of stepping outside their chosen genre for fear of losing followers. I get that. But, I’m definitely not the best person to ask this question. I have learned a lot about blogging over the years but I don’t follow the rules when it comes to this.
I guess some part of me used to worry about turning off my blogger audience. But here is why I’m honestly not stressing over it anymore.
I love my blog and I love sharing my thoughts with others. But, I read for myself. I don’t read for my bloggers. I read for me. And honestly? There’s no reason in my mind why secular and Christian readers and bloggers can’t get along.
I’m not going to tailor my reading for judgmental people. I am free to read whatever I please!
I’m going to completely ignore that this started off as an advice for bloggers and authors column and answer as a reader. Read what you love and pfft on what anyone else thinks.
Here is why I ignore the rules.
I love to explore characters that are different from I am.
As a long time sims player, I’ve discovered that my sims very rarely look like me. I am a fairly average woman. I’m not a model by any means and I don’t often wear makeup. I would consider myself to dress fairly conservative in leggings and bookish shirts.
My sims tend to be covered with tattoos and piercings while I have no tattoos and only ear piercings. I am not entirely a realist either. I have sims with blue or purple skin for example. I love aliens. I love gothic sims. I love redneck sims. I gravitate to sims that are different from me.
This explains me so much as a reader as well.
Almost everything I read is about people different from myself. This need for me to explore different lives is probably why I don’t read many contemporary books about women who are very much like me. It’s just not my thing. I mean, I like me. I just don’t want to read me.
I guess my point of all this is to say, I love to read. If Christians wish to judge me based on reading secular books? That is certainly their right. Luckily, I don’t answer to anyone for what I choose to read. If people wish to judge me for Christian books? Ehh, so be it.
At the end of the day, I enjoy both Christian and Secular books. I don’t really read for a target audience. I don’t care if I ever find my five minutes of internet fame. Let’s be honest. In fifty years will anyone ever really remember a blogger on the internet? Nah, probably not.
What I do care about is to read what I love. To give my honest opinion about what I read. And if I happen to meet a few special people along the way that tolerates me when I put up a book they may not particularly like? Awesome! I will be a truly blessed lady.
I don’t expect everyone to stick around as I genre hop. I know there are people looking for niche blogs and that’s okay! I totally understand if people unfollow and move on. I know that by reading multiple genres that this will likely happen.
But again, I’m not looking to have a niche blog and I’m definitely not looking for internet fame. I’m looking to connect with other booklovers who can bond over a love of reading and who maybe throws me a like here or there even if it is a book they would hate.
Should you follow this advice yourself? Well, I can tell you that logically, a niche on the net makes the most sense. I guess throwing caution to the wind and reading whatever the heck you like depends on whether you’re as crazy as I am.
Niche is easier to market but my suggestion? Read what you love. Always. And if you didn’t get that reference? Well, there is something Siriously Ron with you.