Celebrating Two Years of Books Speak Volumes!

Hello lovelies! I’m excited to announce that Books Speak Volumes is two years old today!

As you may or may not know, this blog started as an assignment for my college Social Media Marketing class. Each student was required to start a blog about a topic of his or her choice and maintain it over the course of the semester — writing posts and promoting them using social media. A lifelong avid reader, I cautiously decided to blog about books. And I found that I really enjoyed it! I discovered a group of people passionate about the same things I care about. I don’t have many people to talk to about books in my offline life, and I am so glad to have found my people in this little corner of the blogosphere.

When the semester ended, I decided to keep Books Speak Volumes going. There may have been some practical reasons for this, in addition to my enjoyment of the community. I was graduating from college without a job, moving back home to work in a restaurant part-time while searching for degree-validating employment. I needed something to stop my brain from atrophying, keep my analytical and writing skills sharp, and have something to show potential employers. Blogging was the perfect creative outlet for more than a year of post-grad underemployment.

When I finally found a full-time job six months ago, I was worried my reading would slacken and I would fall behind on blogging. If anything, though, my has reading increased, somehow! And it’s been during these last six months that I have found a really wonderful, strong group of bloggers to call my friends. I’m so grateful for their wit, wisdom, charm, and grace!

I’m also grateful to all of you who read this blog! Everyone who reads, comments, and shares — I love you.

Shall we check out some stats?

In the last two years, I have published 284 posts, 95 of which are book reviews.

Books Speak Volumes has had 30,357 views from 134 countries. It currently has 524 followers on WordPress, 101 followers on Bloglovin’, 173 Facebook fans, and 347 Twitter followers.

My five most popular posts over the past two years are:

Blogging highlights

Receiving my first book from an author/publisher: Understories by Tim Horvath, in 2012. Tim got in contact with me after I randomly read and glowingly reviewed his novella, Circulation. We struck up an email correspondence, and he offered to send me his new story collection! I was so over the moon! (And the story collection was brilliant.)

Meeting some of my favorite bloggers in person! I’ve met Allison of The Book Wheel, Rebecca of Love at First Book, and Shannon of River City Reading! It was so cool to meet people I’ve been geeking out about books with online for so long.

Hosting my first event! Jazz Age January is still going on, and I’m so glad I got up the nerve to host it! I thought maybe 5 people would sign up, but more than 40 people did! After two linkups, 22 posts have been shared. I’ve been blown away by the amount of enthusiasm!

What’s next

I’m really excited about the coming year! In the next month or so, the site will be getting a full redesign; say goodbye to the generic WordPress theme! Tom, my fabulous web designer boyfriend, and I are working on a new design and I CAN’T WAIT for it to go live and switch to self-hosting.

I’m also looking forward to attending BEA for the first time!  It will be wonderful to meet many of the bloggers I’ve gotten to know online, as well as interact with publicists and other industry professionals in person.

Thank you

Thank you to everyone who reads my ramblings, whether you’ve been following since the early days when I refused to call my posts “reviews,” or if you started reading last week. You are all fabulous, and I love you.

Here’s to another year of reading and blogging!

Tell me, if you remember: how did we meet? If you don’t remember, what’s your favorite BSV post or memory?

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58 thoughts on “Celebrating Two Years of Books Speak Volumes!

  1. Congrats! What a cool story behind the start of your blog. I think I found you through The Book Wheel! Love the Leo gif…I posted it once just so I knew where to go back and find it any time I wanted!

    • I’m actually a little embarrassed that I didn’t start blogging because it was something that I wanted to to; I had never even read a book blog! But it turned out to be the best class assignment ever, because it led me to you lovely people!

  2. Happy Blog Birthday!!
    I found your blog on Musing Monday and never left. I was so impressed with your blog and it is always a pleasure to read your posts.
    Good luck with your big step to self hosted, enjoy BEA and I hope your third year of blogging will bring you many good books and more bookish friends and fun.

  3. Leah, this is the most lovely post EVER. And BTW you have made it as a blogger, in my eyes anyways. I have only been blogging for just over a year and you are one of the bloggers I look up to. Hopefully we will meet at the BEA if I make it there. I’m in the next stage of applying for permanent residency here and they will have all my documents (ie passport) for up to 6 months!! Congratulations on everything and I can’t wait to see the new blog design, though I kind of like the old one.

  4. Congratulations! I just hit the 1,000th view of my blog (just started this past October) and that felt like a big deal — so it’s great to see you’ve had so much success. Gives us newbies something to shoot for. Happy Blogging!

    • It was nice to meet you, too! I don’t think I’ll be able to go this year, unfortunately; I have to work every Saturday and Sunday and I’m not sure I have enough vacation days to take the day off 😦

  5. Happy anniversary or birthday or whatever we want to call it.

    I think that Jazz Age January has been such a fabulous success. I’m surprised (in a good way) at how many people are using the hashtag and by the fact that a fashion blogger I met very briefly and have connected to via blog stuff is participating! You’ve really captured the reading market with Jazz Age January and you have to do it yearly! It’s SUCH a fabulous success!!!

  6. Congrats Leah! I don’t remember how I first stumbled onto your blog, but I’m so glad I did. I had been looking for new book blogs to follow but it seemed like 95% of them were focused on YA books. I was so pleased to find a blogger who had a similar taste in books to me and also wrote wonderful, thoughtful reviews. Those reviews have led me toward a few fantastic books (“The Age of Miracles” comes to mind). I hope you keep blogging long into the future 🙂

    Cheers!

    • Oh, I’m so glad you loved The Age of Miracles! It’s still one of my favorite books that I’ve read since starting the blog. Thank you for your kind words!

  7. I have only just recently joined this book blogging world, so two years seems like quite an accomplishment! Congratulations! And I’m looking forward to seeing your newly re-designed blog!

  8. Congratulations! From the look of these comments, you’ve amassed quite a following! There’s something really refined about the blog and you’re writing and I’ve really enjoyed reading it! Looking forward to finally meeting you in person at BEA!

  9. I was thinking I commented on this but somehow I didn’t see myself in the comments list. Anyway. Happy two years! Hopefully I will get to meet you at BEA this year. I do believe we officially met through the online group, but I may have glanced your site a time or two before that. 🙂

    • Thank you! We don’t live too far apart (I’m in Buffalo), so we should plan something sometime! I’m sure Small Fry and Tater Tot keep you super busy, but maybe we could get together for an author event? I think we would be pals too 🙂

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