Exactly one year ago we launched 5171 Miles Book Blog! The idea of creating a book blog, however, popped into our minds months before the actual launch date.
We both have always loved to read but since we discovered e-book readers and e-book apps for our phones, we took reading to a whole new level. It’s not unusual for us to read around 100 books a year. What sounds crazy for most people, is perfectly normal for us. With the start of 2016 we started to write reviews for our favorite books here and there and published them on Goodreads. That went on for a few months until the idea of our own book blog came to mind. We started to discuss platforms, names, reviews and everything else that came with the launch of a blog. Then August 1st came rolling around and our blog finally went live. Fast forward one year: 5171 Miles Book Blog is still live and doing better than ever.
As this is our one year anniversary we decided to change up our look a bit. As much as we loved our old theme, we thought it was time for a change. I hope you love our new appearance just as much as we do.
Thank you to all of our supporters and the people who read our reviews and other blog posts. We appreciate you!
Having our very own book blog was just a thought I had last spring (2016). I started to really enjoy writing reviews on Goodreads, so I thought “Why not create a blog to publish our reviews?” From the start, it was clear to me that I didn’t want to do it alone. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think running a blog by oneself is bad at all, but I wanted to do it with someone who shared my love for reading and fan-girling over authors. Of course there was only one person that came to mind.
I was beyond excited when Ashley agreed to the idea of starting a book blog together. I really wanted our blog to be special and what better way was there then to start with a unique name. It needed to be something personal, something that expressed our unusual but amazing friendship and 5171 Miles Book Blog was the only way to go.
After all the planning, the launch day was finally here. August 1st was not a special day for either of us, it just happened to be the day we decided to go live with the blog. I was really excited and I couldn’t wait to publish our first review.
I honestly had no idea what I was doing at first. Ashley had experience with blogging but I was a complete newbie. Even after one year of blogging I sometimes still am not completely sure if what I do is right. But then I think of all the other blogs out there: Did they know what they were doing? Probably not. That’s the great thing: there is no right or wrong in the blogging world. That’s what Ashley and I did, we just wrote what came to our minds.
But that was easier said than done. To me, some reviews are really easy and quick to write, others not so much as it takes a few days to finally find the right words to express myself. On top of that, writing in a language that is not your mother tongue is sometimes trickier than it seems. Not to sound presumptuous, but I think my English is pretty darn good. Nonetheless, I feel self-conscious about publishing my reviews before having them proofread by Ashley. I still make mistakes here and there (yes, I’m looking at you, you stupid prepositions!!) and I don’t want people laughing at me for it. So if you notice a mistake, please forgive me and just pretend it isn’t there. 😛
Before launching the blog, we talked about our expectations and we both agreed that it’s best to not have any. Even if no one in this entire world would read our reviews or would follow us, we would write those reviews for fun, we would write them for us. To see and know that people actually read our reviews and even follow us, is amazing. Ashley and I know of a few people (friends even) who read every single review. They told us that they bought books only because of our recommendations. Say what?! That feeling is incredible but also scary. Incredible, because people read our reviews and trust our opinions. Scary because people’s perception and tastes are different. There’s nothing worse than seeing someone disliking a book you recommended, especially if that book is a favorite of yours. But that’s the beauty of us people, isn’t it? What good would it be if everyone liked the same things? It would get boring very quick. As much as I want people to like the books I recommend and love, I am glad that all of us have different opinions.
It sounds so cliché, but blogging changed my life. Besides reading, I finally found a hobby that I really enjoy. I not only love blogging, I also love the book community. Everyone is understanding, supporting and so kind to each other (that excludes the trolls out there who like to trash authors’ books and the readers’ reviews and opinions!). I love talking about books and I finally found people who also love to talk about books, it’s incredible. It might sound weird to outsiders, but through blogging and bookstagramming, I found so many awesome people I have so much in common with, sometimes even more than with my actual friends from my hometown or with my friends from uni. Some of them are from Germany, some are from different parts of Europe and others are from overseas. Thank you so much, I love you, guys, but why do you live so far away?
I still can’t believe 5171 Miles Book Blog is celebrating its 1st anniversary today. It seems like we just started yesterday.
Thank you again to all our followers and to all the other people who read our reviews, like them and comment on them. Thank you for your support, you have made this experience so much better than I had hoped.
And last but not least: THANK YOU, ASHLEY! ♥ You’re an amazing person and an even more amazing friend. Thanks for starting this blog with me. It has been such a wonderful journey so far and I’m so happy that I could experience this book blog journey with you. I have so much fun working on this blog with you and here’s to many more years. ♥
What an adventure this first year of blogging as been! As Sabrina mentioned, we went into this blog with absolutely no expectations, except to have fun. What we have found has far surpassed our wildest imaginings. We have made friends and become closer to each other through this process. In December I was even lucky enough to attend my first book signing at The Bookworm Box, where I met Colleen Hoover, Amy Harmon, Christine Brae, Brittainy C. Cherry, and BB Easton. As I was waiting in line with my fellow book buddies, I met Kim Holden and J.R. Rogue as well. It was one of the most exciting days for me to experience. As if I wasn’t already hooked, I was at that point. Everyone was so warm, generous, and fun to be around. It was truly one of the best days of my life.
I have witnessed the book community do amazing things, far more than I’m about to mention. Were you around when Colleen Hoover helped raise enough money for a homeless young man in her hometown to get on his feet? Have you bought a backpack of school supplies or groceries for anyone in Tarryn Fisher’s reader group? If so, you a part of what makes the reading community one of the greatest things on this planet. I tend to think reading makes people more compassionate and empathetic to other’s needs because we feel an array of emotions through our favorite characters. These acts of kindness are proof of this theory!
I cannot count the number of times Sabrina and I have texted each other about book related things this year: “Did you see this?”, “Did you sign up for this book?”, or simply “I’m so proud of our little blog!” We share so many things with each other and talk more with one another than any of our friends who actually live near us, it seems. That’s all thanks to you, readers! Without you reading our reviews and supporting our passion for books, we would not have experienced any of the truly wonderful things we have over this past year. We are immensely grateful for your support, your comments, and especially when you read the books we love and recommend. Though this, we are able to support our authors, to keep them writing the things that inspire us within our daily lives. Reading fills us up and we hope you are experience the same goodness through books.
Finally – thank you, Sabrina for asking me to blog with you. I am exceptionally thankful for your presence in my life and your constant friendship. With over eight years of friendship and one year of blogging together, I’m pretty sure we’re going to be friends for life! This has been our greatest adventure yet.
We can’t wait to see the amazing things this coming year has to offer!