Today I want to introduce Sam to you. *ahem* *grins* Everyone, meet Sam! Sam, meet everyone! She's the blogger behind a well-known blog Realm of Fiction. She's talented with words and her blog is just completely adorable, yet very professional. She always has kind words for everyone and *shrugs* what can I say, she's a rockstar!
Blog name: Realm of Fiction
Blog’s age: 2.5 years
Favorite book of all time: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling
InterviewSiiri: Introduce yourselves in 140 characters or less.
Sam: I’m a Londoner, a music lover, a science enthusiast, and a girl who would really like to be allowed to live in a bookshop.
Siiri: *tries to hide her girl crush after that introduction* *ahem* Why did you start blogging? Have you changed a lot throughout it? What kind of advice would you have for people who are thinking about picking up blogging? Do you have any blogging inspirations who you look up to?
Sam: Goodreads was the spark for me. Before Goodreads, I had no idea I enjoyed talking about books so much – and to strangers, no less – and it was the first real platform I used to voice my opinions. From there, I discovered book blogs, and Heidi at Rainy Day Ramblings who suggested that I should start my own site. I simply thought, why not? I love to read, and a book blog seemed like the perfect place to document that.
I think, since starting, I’ve changed in two main ways; being more confident in my writing and reading more often and more widely. The only piece of advice I have for new bloggers is to keep in mind why you blog. If you blog for yourself, be confident enough to follow your own rules. There are hundreds of book blogs out there, and it can be easy to get caught up in trying to stand out or meet expectations. The most important thing is to have fun at every step.
There are SO many bloggers that I admire (I follow exactly 70 of them regularly), and I hate this question, because I can’t mention them all. But to name a few: Christina, Nick, Danielle, Amanda, Alexa, and the ladies who have inspired me from the very start, Maja, Heidi, Keertana, Rachel and Jasprit.
Siiri: And I thought I followed a lot of blogs! You're a champion, Sam! Are you an organized reader? Tell us a little bit about your blogging habits.
Sam: I am a fairly organised reader (sometimes to the point of obsession). I make myself lists, pay attention to release dates, and nearly always know what I plan to read next. Other times, I am a total mood-reader and will throw organisation out the window and read whatever I want whenever I want. When it comes to blogging, I definitely take this latter approach. I don’t plan ahead or schedule very often, and simply just post when I have something to post.
Siiri: This is where we differ since I plan almost next to nothing with reading (*waves* A mood reader alert!), but I schedule a lot. Can't really live without scheduling anymore. I admire both people though: the ones who schedule and the ones who don't. It takes a lot of work either way. What is your favorite and least favorite thing about blogging?
Sam: My favourite thing about blogging is BY FAR the other bloggers. The number of people in my life that read as much as I do is equal to zilch, and so, to have this whole community of passionate booklovers online is a real gift. I’ve met some incredible individuals through blogging, and have formed some invaluable friendships too. And let’s be frank, book people are the best people.
My least favourite thing about blogging is the formatting and coding. Does that count? Technically, I don’t always need to do this stuff, but I do it anyway for perfection’s sake, and I hate it with a passion. I can’t see the letters HTML without throwing daggers from my eyes.
Siiri: Bhahahaha! HTML is one of our worst enemies. But yes! The friendships we make are so worth all the stress that we may have to suffer and overcome. No question at that. How many books do you own and do you categorize them in some ways on your shelf?
Sam: More than I will ever have the energy to count! I have about twice as many ebooks too, which is a pretty scary thought. I used to categorise by genre and author, but now, it’s simply a case of double-stacking and squeezing thin paperbacks into every available space in any which orientation. One of these days, my bookshelves will collapse and there will be tears. Loud ones.
Siiri: Ahhh!! Double stacking is the worst! It has come to the point where I have to triple stack and seriously? It hurts to my very soul. Here's to hoping your shelf will live at least a few more years unless you decide to buy one before. What are your favorite genres and who are some of your favorite authors?
Sam: I like a lot of different genres – science fiction, romance, horror, paranormal fiction – but my go-to genre is definitely fantasy. Some of my favourite authors include Melina Marchetta, Elizabeth Wein, Leigh Bardugo, Markus Zusak, Laini Taylor, and since The Scorpio Races, Maggie Stiefvater.
Siiri: When I think about you (and Mel), I always think of fantasy and vice versa :) I’m a big shipper and I almost always ship a pairing in a book I’m reading. Do you have any OTPs? :D If so, why do you like these pairings so much? What makes them special?
Sam:Favourite question alert! Here are a few pairings that I love:
- Taylor & Jonah from Jellicoe Road
- Tessa & Will from The Infernal Devices
- Lola & Cricket from Lola and the Boy Next Door
- Gaby & Rafa from The Rephaim
- Gansey & Blue from The Raven Cycle
- Chaol & Celaena from Throne of Glass
- Penryn & Raffe from Penryn & the End of Days
I am a big fan of romance in books, usually the slow and subtle kind, and all of the couples above have either made me grin, swoon, or die in anticipation. (Or all three.)
Siiri: Just when I thought I couldn't adore you any more, you point out 5 of some of my favorite ships! So in love with T&W, L&C (Cricket!!!), G&R, G&B (Gansey. Le sigh.), C&C (*swoons over Chaol*). Or all three indeed haha! Ok, so if you could have dinner with 5 authors/characters, dead or alive, who would they be and what would you ask each of them (without spoilers, of course)?
- Mrs. Weasley. I’d ask her if she would like to adopt me.
- Lucy Christopher. I’d ask her what a certain character from Stolen was doing now.
- Sarah J. Maas. Simply: WHY?
- Marie Lu. I’d ask her if there was ever a moment when she considered a different ending to the Legend trilogy.
- Ronan Lynch. I wouldn’t ask him anything. I’d just stare at him in awe and wonder how he ever ended up having dinner with me.
Siiri: Except for Lucy Cristopher, since I haven't read her book yet, I'd love to meet all of these people. LOL @the SJM question haha. Ronan can be a tad intimidating, but I just love him so and I'd probably just stare with you, heh ;)
This or thatBlogger or Wordpress? Blogger, if only because I find it easier to use.
Facebook or Twitter? Twitter.
Physical books or e-books? Both!
Contemporary or fantasy? Fantasy.
Music or no music? (while reading) Music.
Triangle or no triangle? NO triangle. Ever. All triangles must die.
Insta-love or slow-burn? Slow-burn!
Cliff hanger or no cliff hanger? No cliffhanger. It is better for my health.
Siiri: I love that you chose music! *high five* Not a lot of people do, but I love it both ways. Depends on the book and the mood :)
3 random facts about you would be...
- I have a snake phobia.
- I am bilingual.
- My second-greatest ambition in life is to visit The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. I kid you not.
Siiri: YIKES! I hate all kinds of snakes and spiders and ugh.. *shudders* all kinds of bugs, actually. The other day last week, I went to a zoo in Riga, Latvia with my mom and sister. Really don't know what I was thinking going into a tropical house. AGAIN. Ew. That place was so grose. For me only though >.< Anyhooow, bilingual? Wow! I didn't know. What other language do you speak? It's always so fascinating to hear that people are bilingual and with different backgrounds and whatnot. Eeeep! YOU MUST GO THERE, SAM! Take all the pictures and show us. Pour jealousy all over us and give us all the HP feels :) I'm sure you'd love it there! Fingers crossed you can go there someday!
And that's a wrap, everyone! Thank you so much to Sam who was everlovely and took the challenge to answer these questions *hugs* I'm looking forward to sharing next interview with Amber, another UK friend of mine, next week and be sure to leave Sam some love :)