Are you surprised by the title of this post? Yes, you did in fact read that correctly, I have lately been considering the idea of starting a booktube channel.
That is ironic in several respects, as I will get on to later in the post, but if I were to go ahead with it I have a feeling that it would either be a really good decision or
perhaps more likely a total, unqualified disaster. I can think of many reasons why it could be a bad idea, but it would also represent another way for me to talk about books, which is something I really love doing.
So, let’s weigh everything up and see what the pros and cons of me starting booktube might be. This is a more personal post than normal, but like always I would really appreciate your thoughts or advice all the same. 🥰
The Story So Far
When I began book blogging, I had no idea that booktube was a thing. For a lot of the time since discovering its existence, it has seemed like an entirely separate realm for book lovers who happen to be excellent with technology and graphic design, as well as having a natural talent or charisma when in front of a camera.
More recently, I have learned that this is not necessarily the case. Anyone can create a video and upload it, and a lot of booktubers use them as a platform to simply talk about books, share their love of books and what they are reading, and interact with others, regardless of any talent or experience (or lack of) that they have with recording themselves.
Finding this out has been very reassuring for me, but the fact remains that I have hardly ever watched a booktube video in my life! I wrote about this before in a previous blog post, and the reason is that in terms of social media, I have only really had time for other book blogs and book Twitter.
If I was to start a booktube channel, I certainly imagine that I would have to start watching and subscribing to multiple booktube channels. I love connecting with other book lovers (it is my favourite thing about being a part of this community) so it should be no problem. The only thing I would have to do is make sure I can find a way of balancing that with all the other things in my life.
The first time I began to considered booktube as a possibility was at the start of this year, before the pandemic struck. I even bought a tripod for my mobile phone and tried recording myself discussing a particular book. It was not great, but on the other hand it could have been worse. I recorded it with no thought regarding the process of editing, creating designs, or uploading it. But that was all it was – just a practice.
It is only recently, say since the beginning of August, that the possibility of starting booktube has crossed my mind again, and this time I feel a lot more serious about it. I have come up with several possible video ideas and have filmed myself again, although my many anxieties and uncertainties remain.
- I have a lot of good ideas for videos, in addition to everything I post on my blog
- It is a chance to make more new friends and discover more books
- It is very flexible and my discussions do not need to follow a set structure
- I am able to physically talk about books. I do not really have many people in my personal life with whom I can share a relatively equal love of books.
- It will give me experience of creating and editing videos
- I will become a better and more confident speaker
- Nerves. I have been known to be quite camera-shy and have always found it difficult talking to an audience. In the practice recording I have done so far, there have been times where I have simply froze and had no idea what to say next. I am sure I will get better at this over time, but the thought of putting myself out there does frighten me. There is also the fear of doing things wrong. Is there a right way or a wrong way to do booktube? I am not sure.
- I am also pretty self-conscious about my voice and how I appear on camera. Perhaps it is just me, but I worry that my voice is monotonous and unrefined. When I talk, I hope I am engaging enough. On the plus side, I do smile a lot when talking about books and I have been told by others that my eyes ‘light up’ when I speak about something I am proud of or passionate about. The key is to just be myself, like I am on my blog. What you see on my blog reflects my personality, and that would very much be the approach I would take with booktube.
- From what I gather, most booktubers create their videos in their bedrooms in front of their beautiful bookshelves. I am unable to do that due to my current living arrangements (I am in the process of moving), so visually it might not be the best to begin with!
- I have little knowledge of the booktube community.
- There are some occasional dramas on booktube. I would just have to avoid them wherever possible
- I would need to find time to film videos, then edit them, create graphics (only the essential ones), and post them. I am often stretched for time already, but I keep trying to do more!
To summarise, I definitely think I can do it. The only things that are stopping me are nerves and possibly a lack of time. It would be a big step, and one that I would be willing to take, but only when I am ready.
I would also like to say that even if I was to start booktube, book blogging will always be my main focus. Some book bloggers have made the transition to booktube and have left their blog behind, but there is absolutely no way I could do that. For me, my blog and the book blogging community will always come before a booktube channel.
Indeed, my plan for a booktube channel would mainly consist of spoken versions of the reviews I post on my blog, monthly wrap-ups and TBRs, top five lists, and the occasional tag. It would be a spin-off from my blog, if you like 🙂
A Year Of New Booktubers
For one reason or another, the pandemic and the subsequent lockdown seemed to be the cue for so many book bloggers to start a booktube channel. I am often present on Twitter, and in the last six months it seems like barely a week has gone by without another book blogger deciding to make the leap over to YouTube!
Here is a short list (with links to their blog). They include some wonderful book friends. If I start booktube, then they may just be some of the first ones I follow…
Kate @Reading Through Infinity
Lily @A Home For The Lost
Brittany @Book Ramblings
Belle @Belle Can Read
Ruby @Ruby Rae Reads
India @What India Read
Have you ever considered starting a booktube channel? Or do you already have one? Is there anything important about booktube that you think I should know before starting? Is me starting a channel a bad idea, or do you think I should just go for it?! Let me know in the comments!
I am really sorry for this post being an anxious mess! Happy reading 🙂