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Apple



Joined: 24 Nov 2008
Posts: 1751



PostPosted: Sat Nov 24, 2012 6:15 pm    Post subject: Back to our Roots?  Reply with quote

I can't help noticing (and I know I'm probably not the only one) how quiet it is around here and has been for months now, I am hoping there are a number of members who lurk here but don't post, (I am thinking of a post in response to my resurrection of the Seasonal Shorts game last christmas when a long absent poster reappeared and commented that he had been lured out of lurking).

Anyway, back to the point of this thread, I am thinking we go back to our roots, to try and generate a bit of light hearted book discussion, as it has become increasingly obvious to me that, that is what is lacking, and has been for a while and members are dropping off at an alarming rate and if something isn't done there won't even be any lurkers to lure back to posting. So my idea is, remember how this book forum started? - the BBC Big Read, I'm thinking a top 100 is a touch ambitious given the fact there are such a small number of regular posters to start with.

My idea is a current top 5 favourite books we pick our favourite book and discuss what we like about it and why, and another quirky take on this we could also include a top 5 worst books which we nominate a book we have read which we have not liked and reasons why and then others post theirs and we compare the results, and compile a list of the best and worst books read by members. (If there are more than 5 in the list even better as it means more people have contributed, top 5 was just a starting point).  Similar in a way to the big readers cup which seems to have died a death, but no direct competition which some people seem to think is not a good idea.  There are numerous variations on this idea, as well as best and worst book, eg.  different genres, favourite authors, etc.

What do people think of this idea?



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Joe McWilliams



Joined: 10 Feb 2012
Posts: 689


Location: Canada

PostPosted: Sat Nov 24, 2012 7:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It sounds good to me, Apple. I look forward to more lurking and reading other people's thoughts.


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Caro



Joined: 22 Nov 2008
Posts: 2981


Location: Owaka, New Zealand

PostPosted: Sat Nov 24, 2012 9:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's odd - just last night I was thinking we used to do more of those favourites and literary quizzes etc.  And I wondered about resurrecting one.  I would be happy to.  (Some of them, though, ended in tears!)

I am always keen on hearing people's favourites like this.  Gives me ideas for authors and books to try.  

Cheers, Caro.


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Apple



Joined: 24 Nov 2008
Posts: 1751



PostPosted: Sat Nov 24, 2012 10:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for your comments nice to have a bit of postive feedback so soon after posting my idea.  Smile

Also, you know Joe, you don't have to just lurk and read other peoples point of view either you can contribute your fave's/worst books as well!!

Caro wrote:
That's odd - just last night I was thinking we used to do more of those favourites and literary quizzes etc.  And I wondered about resurrecting one.  I would be happy to.  (Some of them, though, ended in tears!)

I am always keen on hearing people's favourites like this.  Gives me ideas for authors and books to try.  

Cheers, Caro.
Exactly! thats what I liked about them as well, finding out about what other people liked and why they liked them, and gave me pointers for trying stuff I'd never read before.

I understand what you are saying about some of them ended in tears, the BR Cup got quite competitive and I know I got very competitive about it, mainly because of my very poor range of books which I had read at that point I was keen to promote the books which had meant a lot to me and sometimes I got a bit carried away, on a positive note though, my sparring with the Baron on the Bronte vs Zola tie was positively commented on and produced a hell of a lot of feedback and contribution which was the point of the whole thing.  As you say though sometimes it did get a bit heated which is why I have purposely left out the competitive element to this.

It does seem ages since we did any proper structured literary stuff like the BRC etc which encouraged all members to contribute - in my opinion it seemed to start to fade away when the individual reading blogs appeared and although I enjoy reading those, it it does kind of feel (to me) like a site within a site.  I'm just hoping that its not too little too late!



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Last edited by Apple on Sat Nov 24, 2012 11:26 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Evie
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Joined: 24 Oct 2008
Posts: 3569


Location: Kenilworth, Warwickshire, UK

PostPosted: Sat Nov 24, 2012 10:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Apple - I have to say I have long regretted starting the personal blogs...with all due respect to those who use them a lot, I think they've been a big mistake.  I did it in response to a request from a particular poster, but have never seen that poster since!  They encourage people to post on their own threads and not on the general What are you reading?, etc, boards.  It's too late to change it now, but I do take your point over that!




Last edited by Evie on Sun Nov 25, 2012 4:52 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Marita



Joined: 21 Nov 2008
Posts: 511


Location: Flanders, Belgium

PostPosted: Sun Nov 25, 2012 12:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Apple, I like your idea of a top 5 best and worst read. I haven't been posting much recently but haven't been reading much either.
I still visit daily and read every post though. Obviously I've become a serial lurker.


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Ann



Joined: 21 Nov 2008
Posts: 1112


Location: Worcestershire

PostPosted: Sun Nov 25, 2012 5:54 pm    Post subject: Re: Back to our Roots? Reply with quote

Apple wrote:
Anyway, back to the point of this thread, I am thinking we go back to our roots, to try and generate a bit of light hearted book discussion, as it has become increasingly obvious to me that, that is what is lacking, and has been for a while and members are dropping off at an alarming rate and if something isn't done there won't even be any lurkers to lure back to posting. So my idea is, remember how this book forum started? - the BBC Big Read, I'm thinking a top 100 is a touch ambitious given the fact there are such a small number of regular posters to start with.

My idea is a current top 5 favourite books we pick our favourite book and discuss what we like about it and why, and another quirky take on this we could also include a top 5 worst books which we nominate a book we have read which we have not liked and reasons why and then others post theirs and we compare the results, and compile a list of the best and worst books read by members. (If there are more than 5 in the list even better as it means more people have contributed, top 5 was just a starting point).  Similar in a way to the big readers cup which seems to have died a death, but no direct competition which some people seem to think is not a good idea.  There are numerous variations on this idea, as well as best and worst book, eg.  different genres, favourite authors, etc.

What do people think of this idea?


I agree Apple and I'm afraid I am a bit of a lurker nowadays too. If one is reading a blog there is very little to say except 'that sounds like a nice book' or 'I agree/disagree with your point of view.'
However do you mean my favourite top 5 books of all time or just this year? I assume the former. Many of my favourite books are still the same books I go on about a lot (I am loyal but boring) so could you think of a way of getting past that? Would it be possible to think of 'favourite book ever' and 'favourite book I've read recently' leading on to 'favourite book as a child'? I liked your idea of my worst 5 books though I would have a job to limit them to 5! Also the real meat of the post ought to be why this book means so much to the poster. I could think of lots of other sub catagories but I suspect these ideas are just going to make the whole thing much too complicated:-
e.g.
Books I am ashamed to own that I like
Books I like because of their associations with family or friends
Books I read just because someone here recommended them

I won't go on and on and do just ignore me - often the best thing to do!


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TheRejectAmidHair



Joined: 19 Nov 2008
Posts: 3864


Location: Staines, Middlesex

PostPosted: Sun Nov 25, 2012 6:35 pm    Post subject: Re: Back to our Roots? Reply with quote

Ann wrote:
 
I agree Apple and I'm afraid I am a bit of a lurker nowadays too. If one is reading a blog there is very little to say except 'that sounds like a nice book' or 'I agree/disagree with your point of view.'


I must admit that I've always regarded 'I agree/disagree with your point of view' as the start of a discussion, rather than the end of one, although I realise that's a dangerous perspective in a world in which personal opinion is regarded as sacrosanct, and challenging a personal opinion as an affront.

I think the only way to talk about books is to ... Well, just talk about books. Discuss. Argue. Put forward counter-arguments. Question the terminology. Consider the nuances. Be prepared to look on familiar things in different ways, and to modify one's own thought in the process. This is what discussion is. I find these days that I can't really get too interested in mere opinions - not even my own. A mere opinion leaves no scope for discussion. Presenting an argument is another matter, and unless and until we can do so, I honestly don't see much scope for discussion. But if we can do so, and are happy to do so, then even if there are only a few of us doing it, we can still have a discussion board on which we can actually discuss.



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Apple



Joined: 24 Nov 2008
Posts: 1751



PostPosted: Sun Nov 25, 2012 6:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well its nice to see two serial lurkers have come forward already!  Wink

Its also nice to see that my idea has been received so well!

Ann wrote:
Quote:
I agree Apple and I'm afraid I am a bit of a lurker nowadays too. If one is reading a blog there is very little to say except 'that sounds like a nice book' or 'I agree/disagree with your point of view.'
However do you mean my favourite top 5 books of all time or just this year? I assume the former. Many of my favourite books are still the same books I go on about a lot (I am loyal but boring) so could you think of a way of getting past that? Would it be possible to think of 'favourite book ever' and 'favourite book I've read recently' leading on to 'favourite book as a child'? I liked your idea of my worst 5 books though I would have a job to limit them to 5! Also the real meat of the post ought to be why this book means so much to the poster. I could think of lots of other sub catagories but I suspect these ideas are just going to make the whole thing much too complicated:-
e.g.
Books I am ashamed to own that I like
Books I like because of their associations with family or friends
Books I read just because someone here recommended them

I won't go on and on and do just ignore me - often the best thing to do!
Ann! good to see you I was only thinking about you the other week when I posted that I had pre-ordered the final Sookie book! Anyway back to the point, you have made some really valid points. So I am not going to bloody well ignore you!!

Of course it is important to state why these books mean so much to you, and you have given some brilliant idea's not for sub categories but for top 5's in their own right - love the idea of books ashamed that you own and like thats screaming out to be a "Top 5 guilty pleasures" and your other ideas are good as well "Top 5 recommendations" etc it could potentially generate a shed load of discussion and activity.  Plus with these sorts of things it doesn't rely on what you are currently reading, which is a valid point Marita made (Hi Marita good to see you as well again! wave ) I think is the problem here, people think its not worth posting because they are not currently reading anything , and then those who do are tending to do it in the personal blogs, rather than the wider discussion area. (Which is a point Evie also made)

I also get what you (Ann) said about sometimes there is very little to say except 'that sounds like a nice book' or 'I agree/disagree with your point of view.'  Now that has never bothered me I am the sort of person who never minds giving my opinion on anything (and at times it has got me into more trouble than if I'd just kept my big mouth shut (virtually so to speak) but in this case I felt something should be done as this is a well loved site which a lot of us have been with since the old Beeb days (albeit in my case I joined only months before the beeb board shut) and it is sort of a place I would miss if it wasn't here because I have personally learnt so much from it and "met" some fab people and discussed some really interesting stuff, yes we have our disagreements and I for one have probably made things worse sometimes with my forthright say it like it is attitude, but right now this site is just fading away and is a shell of its former self and that is just sad and wrong after all these years and shouldn't be allowed to just happen. There are just a handful of people now who post regularly compared to the long list of members and hopefully some of those members are still here and will take this oportunity to step out of the shadows and start posting again!

Ok I'll shut up now and get off my soapbox!  Embarassed



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Green Jay



Joined: 13 Jan 2009
Posts: 1605


Location: West Sussex

PostPosted: Sun Nov 25, 2012 8:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good idea(s) Apple. And I like Ann's ideas too, because, far from being too complicated, it is that sort of category that actually sets me thinking. I've said before that i'm very bad at putting things into a hierarchy and slightly resent the idea. I can just about choose my favourite colour becuase that's been the same answer all my life. But favorite anything else, even top 5, is very hard for me because I'm not comparing like with like and don't want to leave anything out. I realise that doesn't make sense with choosing my Desert Island Discs, which I recently said I had ready, but they're a shifting sand anyway, as shifting as the sands on said island.

Agree about the rot setting in after the personal blogs/logs started. I think I posted as such ages ago. They are just not as communal, somehow.

So I'm willing to give this a go.



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