Jun 4, 2012

Armchair BEA Day 1: Introductions First

Armchair BEA icon
Welcome to the first post in a series for Armchair BEA! If you're not sure what it's all about be sure to visit the Armchair BEA headquarters. They sum up the event with:

So, what exactly does being a[n Armchair BEA] participant entail? First and foremost, you'll be able to celebrate and participate in an event that happens each year in New York City, Book Expo America, from the comfort of your very own home, hopefully a snugly armchair! Secondly, and we hope equally as important, you'll be able to meet new book bloggers and join together in a celebration of the wonderful community that comes out of book blogging. Last year we had over 600 participants, so you're bound to meet some new great bookish friends! Lastly, it means participating, however you're able to. This can be by posting, tweeting, discussing, or even by simply reading and commenting on participating blogs. Your level of participation is entirely up to you, but we hope you'll find something to get you involved in this fabulous event! 
Each of us has an entirely valid reason for not being able to make to BEA in NYC, including many of the organizers. Because of that the organizers and publicity team are working hard behind the scenes to give you an event that you won't soon forget!

-Posted from 2012 Participant Registration Now Open

Needless to say, for another year I am unable to attend BEA. Having recently moved 800 miles from my home state of North Carolina to the corn-filled fields of Illinois, it just wasn't in the budgetary plan to spend a long weekend in a very expensive city. One of these days I will make it. In the meantime I am perfectly content to sit at home in my green, oversize, covered-in-cat-hair armchair with my tea & computer to participate in Armchair BEA.

Now down to business for the day! It's introductions day so here are my five self-interview questions.

Please tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? How long have you been blogging? Why did you get into blogging?

So there is a little bit of confusion surrounding who I actually am. My handle usually says loreleimarsh & my blog URL is lisettebes. In reality these are both variations on my real name. My name is Laura. I'm a 25 year old, cataloging assistant at a private college in the Midwest. I started Tattooed Books in the summer of 2009 as a way to get my opinion about books out into the world. At the time I was a YA program specialist in my local public library. Teens found it easy to relate to me & often asked my opinion about books. As I have been writing personal book reviews since elementary school, it was only natural for me to transfer my thoughts into a digital format. I will admit though that it took the convincing of the lovely Terra Elan McVoy for me to finally take the leap & commit to blogging.

Tell us one non-book-related thing that everyone reading your blog may not know about you.

I have been with my husband for 12 years as of this fall. That's right, do the math. Accounting for the fact that my birthday is before our anniversary, I was 14 when we started dating. He was 17. We are that sickening couple that despite all our time together still act as though we're newly dating. It helps that we are both the children of older parents, so many of our values & ideals are a little old fashioned for our contemporaries & we just seem to get each other. I truly hope our future children can find that same kind of happiness & support.

Which is your favorite post that you have written that you want everyone to read?

It's hard to believe that I wrote it over 2 years ago, but my post on Age Appropriateness & Content is my favorite. After working in libraries for several years, you expect all sorts of issues, but working with young adult/teen readers lends itself to a special set of rules or rather guidelines. There are no hard & fast rules for what books are appropriate for specific age groups at any particular time. There are a number of factors to be included in the decision making process & this post highlights that issue as seen from a public library worker's standpoint.

If you could eat dinner with any author or character, who would it be and why?

It took me FOREVER to decide on this one. Obvious answers would be Shakespeare, Harry Potter, or Scout (from To Kill a Mockingbird), but I decided to go with the author Jennifer Echols. While I have met some incredible authors and there are so many more I would like to meet (Ellen Hopkins, Rachel Vincent, Patricia Briggs to name just a few) I can't shake the desperate wish that I could meet Jennifer Echols. I have reviewed several of her books & I can't imagine a better lunch/dinner discussion partner. She creates such strong, independent characters, even if they don't start out that way. I really would have given almost anything to have some of those kinds of characters in my books at a younger age. Seriously, realistic fiction for teens doesn't get more powerful than her writing.

Have your reading tastes changed since you started blogging? How?

When I first started this blog I was reading YA almost exclusively. I just didn't like "adult" books because the ones I had been exposed to were murder mysteries, psychotic thrillers & hum-drum "woe is me" fiction. As I spent more time exploring my options I found several adult authors who carried on the themes & character-driven books that I found myself drawn to in the YA genre. I've even read somethings outside of my comfort zone & preferred reading niches just so I can say that I've tried them. Some I've liked & some I haven't. While my reading tastes are ever-evolving, I try to review books that are still mainly geared toward teens & young adults looking for books to help bridge the gap between children's books & adult books.

There you have it folks! Please feel free to ask me any questions you like & I'll be sure to give you the best answer I can. You can find me on Twitter & Goodreads as well. Let the Armchair BEA fun begin!


Natalie (Mindful Musings) said...

Wow! You've been with your husband for almost twelve years at such a young age? Congratulations! It's always nice to hear about a couple that stays together like that! :)

It's nice to meet you, and I hope you enjoy Armchair BEA!

Anonymous said...

Nice to meet you!

It's interesting that blogging has led you to discover more adult novels, most bloggers I've encountered are the opposite.

Rhonda's Doings said...

I appreciate the fact that you are committed to helping young readers find books they love as I am a retired middle school English teacher. Kudos to you!

Maidenveil said...

Hi, Laura! I want to have dinner with Shakespeare too and find out who he/she really is! Haha! Perhaps he can make a sonnet for us? Maybe we can inspire him for one. :)

See you around!

-Len of Musings of a Reader Happy

Sarah said...

Hi Laura, congrats on your upcoming anniversary!

Love that you help out young readers, but that you've also branched out more into adult fiction. I actually had the reverse problem - I read mainly adult and had a hard time finding types of YA that I liked.

Happy ABEA!!

Ryan said...

I'm in awe of couples who have been together since high school and are still going strong. It's what I always wanted, but never had.

Hope you have a great week!

Kate said...

I have to admit that I LOVE couples are sickeningly sweet.

They may at times make me uncomfortable but I love that even after all those years together and all the stuff that you've no doubt been through you can still show each other you love each other :)

Congratulations on the upcoming anniversary.

I think Shakespeare is one of those people I'd be so intimidated by that I'd probably just make a fool of myself if we had dinner together :P I'd love to have dinner with Patricia Briggs too. She'd probably get sick of all my questions about Mercy, Adam, Anna and Charles...

Ellen said...

Congratulations on your upcoming anniversary. I met my husband when I was a teenager also. What an great job for a book lover. I love your blog.

Amanda @Stuck In YA Books said...

Awesome blog!! Congrats !! Welcome to BEA!

Debz said...

I love how you said you've been writing personal book reviews for a long time. I used to do that, too (well, kinda)! I liked writing my thoughts about books long before I started a blog!

VikLit said...

Great interview ;) Congrats on your 12 years!

The Literary Darling said...

oh wow! 12 years huh? That's amazing! What a wonderful story to share :)

And I wish I had your job! Lucky you!
It was great to get to know more about you and thanks for stopping by!

Lindsay @ The Literary Darling

The Book Mystress said...

You and your hubby sound cute, you sound ike a pritty cool person,

The Book Mystress, x

Kristen My Bookish Fairy Tale said...

Wow! My husband and I have a relationship like that. We started dating when we were 16. We've been together for so long! Couples don't do that anymore. I am glad that you two have. Nice to meet ya!

Ashley said...

Hi Laura! Nice to meet you :) I love the name of your blog - Tattooed Books! Such a great title! Wow it's so impressive that you've been with your husband for 12 years! I really admire that!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog! I love that Armchair is introducing me to so many YA experts, as I'm launching more into that. I loved your thoughts on age appropriateness in YA . . . something that I'm thinking about how to approach with my own two girls! Have a great BEA week!


Jessica @ Tales Between the Pages said...

I feel that way about my husband as well. We're also one of "those" couples.

I've always wanted to be a librarian. I went the teaching route instead and love it ... but there's always that little nagging thing inside my head that always wonders what it would have been like to be a librarian.

Thanks for comments on my Armchair BEA Introduction. I'm a new follower.

loreleimarsh said...

Thank you all so much for your kind words! My husband & I never set out to be long term (I mean who necessarily thinks like that at that age?) but it's been a great ride & we can't wait to see how much more awesome it gets.

Autumn Crochet said...

Great interview. I agree with your comments about content in YA and it must be hard to make decisions for a public library.

Valerie StuckInBooks said...

Oh I love that you've been with your hubs that long. It's so cute!! Hope it's at least that many more.

Thanks for participating!

Here's my intro


LittleRed Reads said...

Congrats on the 12 years of being with your hubby! I hope that is me and my boyfriend in the future :]
It's so great to meet you!!
Hope you have a great Armchair BEA week!
Here's my post:

xo Stephanie

Sue CCCP said...

Hi There!

I am glad that you are trying things outside YA fiction: there are so many wonderful titles out there! :)

A Buckeye Girl Reads said...

I love stories like you and your husbands-it's great that you are still together. :) I love it when blogging expands our horizons. I so have to read Jennifer Echols books. I've heard great things about them.

Anonymous said...

Being a librarian is my dream job! Jennifer Echols is a great choice! I've only read a few of her books, but hopefully this summer I can remedy that! Thanks for stopping by my blog! Have a great week!

Heather said...

My husband and I have only been together for about five years now, but we are also that "sickening" couple who acts like we're still in the early stages of dating. I think we always will be that couple, and I love it. :)

Chrystal said...

Nice to meet you. I love those love stories where people are together forever and still have that spark. :) So happy for you!

I find it very interesting that you've discovered more adult books since you've been blogging, as I have noticed a trend of people discovering more YA. :) It's more fun not following the norm, I think. Glad you are finding some great reads out of your comfort zone.

See you around ABEA!

Miscellaneous Maria said...

Hey! THanks for stopping by my blog! Love yours!

Novel Chatter said...

Oh wow! What a great idea! Dinner with Scout!! Great blog, going to wander around a bit! Nice to meet you!

Jasmine Rose said...

Congrats on nearly 12 years! My husband and I have been together for three years. We just got married this past December but we've been dating since I was 16 :]

Jessi said...

Patricia Briggs is one of my favorite authors and I can't wait for her upcoming graphic novels (total comic book geek here).

Happy BEA from a new follower!

Armchair BEA: Best Yet of 2012 and Giveaway Day at Otherwhere.Co

Jeremy Bates said...

Glad to meet you. I too am a fan of Shakespeare. I am actually reading Macbeth...again along with a few other books.

Yeah, it's good to venture out and try new genres. You never know what you'll find out there via suggestion from a fellow blogger.

It's also cool that you help and obviously encourage others to read. With the availability and distraction of social media and video games, many are losing out on the real entertainment of reading.

Take care.

Perogyo said...

Jennifer Echols does seem like she would be a super-fun lunch date. Hope you get to meet her some time!

It's A Hardcover Life said...

You and your husband sound so cute! Thanks for stopping by and writing on my post, sorry mine is late :) I added you on Twitter and Goodreads and am Following you. I like your blog and can't wait to read more posts from you.

By the way, I got into reading by joining a group at my local library when I was a teenager so I'm sure you had a lot of influence on those kids, I know the people at that library influenced me a lot.

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