Rays of Sunshine and Hope – Krista Bagley

 

Back down the road a piece, Krista won a copy of The Skin of Water.  I checked out her blog and was highly impressed by both its content and construction.  At that time she had a thing asking what Jane Austen character you saw yourself as.  She was Miss Elizabeth Bennet and I know I should think of myself as Mr Darcy but I’ve always preferred Miss Bingely and her catty comments.  Anyhoo, I started to follow Krista’s blog and liked her interviews and admired her tenacity.  She works hard for her blog.  This inspired me to want to know a little more.

GSJ – tell us about yourself.

Krista – I just turned 32 this June and have been married to my soul mate, Gary, for almost 12 years. We have 5 beautiful children together, Rocky 10, Emily 8, Samuel 7, Noah 5 and our smallest blessing of the bunch Sarah Love who is 2. My husband and I met at work when I was 17 and dated 3 years, you could say he robbed the cradle being 6 years older than me!

GSJ – What was the first book you read by yourself?

Krista – I don’t remember the first book but I remember my favourite childhood book, Anne of Green Gables. I was 9 in the 4th grade. I wanted to be Anne. I’ve always felt I was born in the wrong era. Anne was me wrapped in words, or at least how I dreamed of being.

GSJ – What does reading mean to you?

Krista – Reading has always been my way of entering another world. I grew up in a home that was… well, very neglectful. I found a way to escape through a book. As I left home and went into the world, reading still remained an escape. The world is on hold for a moment. Then as I met my husband, we’ve enjoyed reading together. I started a book club because I often have trouble with finding friends.  I’m shy.  Through my book club I found that reading changed me, opening my mind to different book genres as well as classics books. I often stayed on the path of reading only historical fiction.  After starting the book club 2 years ago I was introduced to many other genres that I liked. Horror, Vampires, Classics, etc.

GSJ – How much do you read?

Krista – Depends on the month.  Sometimes I can read 1 book a week or more. But during the summer months I read a lot less as my children are on “vacation” for 6 weeks then we focus on a science summer.  Last Year I read close to 100 books. I read at night mostly, every now and then an hour during the day, just to relax while drinking my tea.

GSJ – Do your children love to read?

Krista – My children love to read, our oldest son has Autism, and he reads several hours a day. I have a struggling reader as well, so getting him excited about reading is a motivation of mine! My kids have their own book review blog as well.

Greg – When and how did the website start?

Krista – After I started a book club we began to grow and get other women coming to the meetings so I wanted a place to post the books we were talking about just in case some women couldn’t make it to the club meeting that month. After doing that as a private blog for a year, I decided to go public.  In February 2012 I hit the public button, not having any clue at how many book bloggers were out there. I was excited! I’ve added so many more readers that share our passion. Have to love it!

GSJ – Who designs your site?

Krista – I do all the designing. I like to change things every 6 months or so. I went to school originally studying art.  Sometimes I can go crazy with the graphics. Blogs to me are about trial and error, just fooling around with stuff to see what looks good. It took me about a year to master HTML, though that was the hardest part.  The site’s evolved well.  My friends seem to like it. I think sometimes bloggers focus on what everyone tells them to do with their blog.  Me? I’m more free-spirited. Beat to my own drum. LOL

I write most of my post late Saturday night and auto–post throughout the week. When someone comments, I go and reply. Each week I do at most 10 hours of research and blogging. Lately I have been a little behind on things so I tend to post the night before.

GSJ – Are you approached by writers or do you approach them?

Krista – Both. I’ve been approached by several writers. I still approach writers too. I’m a member of other book blogs so a lot of time I will scan the new authors to see if their book is something I would like to review/interview or have on my blog. I then leave them a comment. I have quite a few books mailed to be by publishing companies too (S&S, HarperCollins, Random House and Penguin). I’m also a tour host for Full Moon Bites Blog Tours.

GSJ – Your tastes seem rather eclectic?

Krista – I love a lot of different genres but this being a book review site, I want to give a broad knowledge of different types of books for readers to choose from. Jane Austen is a wonderful author, my favourite. But I also love Stephen King and Christopher Pike, plus so many more authors. Why be close minded? I find that blogs that only read one type of book can get a little boring. Mixing it up a bit is good. Plus other ladies in my book club love other things. How do you know you won’t like a different genre until you try it? In that said, Jane comes in many forms, historical romance to zombie!

GSJ – How quickly has the website grown?

Krista – Quickly. Never thought it would be this rapid. I feel a little overwhelmed at times. But the thing for me is not to focus on the numbers. I write, love it and want everyone on my blog to feel as though when they read the post I wrote it just for them. So when a person comments I make sure to comment back.  I respect people’s time. I like my readers and enjoy knowing people read my blog, no matter what the number of readers.

GSJ – Have authors ever criticised your reviews?

Krista – No, if they did, I wouldn’t care. I’ve had other bloggers bash me, saying things. I really don’t care what they say. If they want to invest that much time criticising me, go ahead. My life is too busy. If an author did criticise me I would wonder why, if they want an honest review I will give them that, if they want me to lie I cannot.

Thank you Greg, so much for taking the time to get to know me, Krista, the author behind Book Review Club! I have really enjoyed this interview. Just a little fact, Greg, you were the first author interview on my blog.

GSJ – well, there you go.  My first as a first!  You can check Krista out at;

http://bookreviewclub.blogspot.com

or the children’s site http://lollipopsandbooks.blogspot.com

tweet her @bookblogmama or email her your book request bookreviewclub@yahoo.com

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