Welcome to my BOOKSTAGRAMMER SPOTLIGHT, where I show some love to our fellow Bloggers, Bookstagrammers and common Romance Readers. I started this because while there might be a lot of us out there, each of us is different and unique in not just reading, photography, books…everything! A fun way to show some love & learn a little more about the romance community members!! Today’s feature is a very lovely young woman who I met through Instagram and glad to have! ENJOY!
Name: Carly Wilson
My name is Carly, I am 30 years old, and I am originally born in Newcastle, but currently live in Leeds (UK) with my husband Craig. My favorite color is purple, which ironically ties in with my birthstone Amethyst making me an Aquarian. I’m a creative person at heart and love being crafty and getting to make things. You can often find me trying my hand at glass painting, knitting or sewing. I’m super talkative and love getting to know new people and socializing. I am an absolutely appalling cook, pretty much nearly everything I try to make ends up being a disaster!
Logo/IG name? @CarlehWilsonBooks
How/Why did you come up with it? My account became a ‘bookstagram’ account purely by accident. I began an Instagram account with the intention of interacting with friends, following celebrities and posting about my life. I then became very aware of the amount of books I wanted to talk about, post pictures of and fangirl over, so started to take pictures as and when and posted them. Over a few months I realized it wasn’t fair to people like my boss and my non-book loving friends having to see all my posts, so I created a separate profile for my personal pics and kept my initial account for books. The conjuring of the name is my name, surname and books. I simply have not found a title I’d like to keep and stick to, so in the meantime I’m keeping it simple.
When did you start Bookstagramming? What was the first thing you did? I first started intentionally bookstagramming back in August 2018, which doesn’t seem that long in hindsight. The first thing I did was just casually take pictures when I bought a book or began reading. I only started amping up my posts properly March this year when I made my account fully about books.
Why did you start what you started? Influence? I started innocently as just a regular user of Instagram and joined because my husband thought I’d enjoy ‘seeing all the book related pages’, and he was so right! I love everything book related and realized that despite my profile being about me and what I was up to, I just wanted to tell people what I was reading, and what I enjoyed. I then got offered a number of opportunities to review and share artwork, and the chance to apply to share things, so it has continued from there.
I have been influenced by so many good bookstagrammers, I just love seeing what different people come up with, and how they display or promote books.
Did you have any help at the beginning or winged it? I am a complete amateur when it comes to social media. I have no experience of how I should post, of trends and I most certainly do not have any photography skills. So I have completely winged it. My husband is a Digital Marketing Manager for a football club and he sometimes makes helpful suggestions, but I am very independent in terms of wanting to learn myself how to do things and what works. I get a buzz seeing new people follow and like my reviews or posts, and love being able to meet new people via my hobby.
Where I am an amateur at social media, I excel in being a passionate reader. I have pushed myself over the past few years to be an active member in several online book groups, and I am part of quite a few ARC teams for authors. I have been offered some amazing opportunities when it comes to reading, and I can’t help but want to post or talk about them.
What is your favorite part about BOOKSATGRAMMING and why? I adore sharing book covers, and feel real excitement when I see one that is absolutely stunning. I love the freedom to post that I have on this type of platform, and I feel like it is more interactive. I am still very much in an early ‘trying out’ stage for my account, but I am very grateful to those who like or comment on my posts, as it makes me smile and want to continue discussing books.
What platforms do you use (this is meant for APP’s mainly, things like Canva and so forth) Some people will be horrified to learn this, but it’s just me and my iphone.
What social media’s are you on? And do you have a favorite? I have a Facebook, Twitter and Instagram account, but I use them each for different reasons. My Facebook account is mainly for keeping in touch with my family and friends, and I view this as my ‘personal account. Facebook does however have lots of author/reader groups which I am a part of, where I regularly join in conversations that fellow book lovers are having.
Twitter is my mixture of personal and hobby, I will post about about things I watch, things I see and books. My account username is @carlehwilson.
Instagram is my hobby account, and it is the account I try to post on every day. This would be my favourite by far as I love the lack of drama, and how it is a place for everyone to showcase their hobbies, talents and lifestyles.
Do you have any tips and tricks about blogging? Try and show your personality in your posts, and post what you love.
Have you had any bad/negative experiences on Bookstagram? I have not personally had any bad or negative experiences on Bookstagram. The book community is a very friendly and open group and most readers I encounter enjoy the conversation.
What have you learned from blogging on a public platform like IG? I have learnt about ‘themes’, I have learnt about different types of accounts and about injecting personality into posts.
Do you have any goals that you haven’t yet been able to get to, concerning your account? I really want to start taking more pictures of paperbacks whilst trying to be more creative with my images.
What are some highlights or special moments that have happened, concerning your book blogging career? The first was being asked to do this (completely flattered), the second would be getting the chance to beta read a book for someone, and them adding my name in the dedications in return for my opinions and advice.
Do you think Bookstagram is an effective platform to express your opinion on books? I am a bit advocate for Bookstagram. I love having the freedom to post, and to me it has always felt less judgmental in comparison to other platforms. I think this is due to people only following you if they want to, so they are essentially following because they like what you post, or because you have a shared interest. I am incredibly thankful for the people who like my posts. I have seen so many people do amazing things with their book accounts, and honestly I’m in awe of them all.
What do you use camera vise when taking book photography? Iphone camera
Do you use your own props? Is there a fun or MAGICAL way you set it all up? (loc, props…) I would love to certainly explore things like this, but usually it’s me and my kindle or images that I get supplied.
Do you have advice for new bookstagrammers on how to start, be, and do? (anything goes here) Start because you want to, post what you love and enjoy it.
Do you have any favorite Instagram accounts that you follow for books, inspiration, ideas…? ‘The Guide To Romance Novels’ is my absolute favourite! I love the reviews, the pictures and content. I think your passion for books and your genuine love for the authors is evident in all that you do, and it looks like you have fun with it. I also love James_Trevino, he is just so clever in what he creates and thebookdisciple…just obsessed!
What was the first book you officially bookstagrammed, how about the first book you reviewed and posted on Instagram? The first book I ever posted about was ‘A Little Too Late’ By Staci Hart (amazing book) my first ‘review’ on Instagram was ‘The Fallback’ by Mariah Dietz.
LET’S TALK ABOUT BOOKS
Tell us, do you know the exact amount of paperback you own? How about ebooks? (I suggest not to count because I did & I regretted it) I would honestly be on for days. I once made the mistake of adding up how much money I’d spent on books from amazon in one year…don’t ever do that!
Do you prefer paper or kindle? I love the feel and smell of an old paperback book, but I love kindle books as it saves me from having to find space for another bookshelf in my house.
Do you know your first paperback/ebook? First e-book read would have been Debt and the Doormat by Laura Barnard.
Do you remember your very first read? My first ever ‘proper read’ which I can remember was ‘Alice’s Adventure’s In Wonderland’ by Lewis Carroll, and I can honestly say this is one of my favorites and a book that gave me a passion for reading. I loved it that much my parent’s got a cake for my 30th birthday with the cover on it.
What is it that draws you to a book? (picture, blurb, author..or all?) I am particularly attracted to book covers, I love anything that stands out, or is unusual etc. Once I read a book by an author, if I love their work I will binge read their books for days.
Do you have a favorite genre you read? And which one? I’d have to say Romance all the way. I’m just a sucker for it, love historical romances, angst, chicklit, all of it! I’m just a sucker for love and reading about characters finding their Happy Ever After’s.
What is your ideal bookboyfriend like? (looks, actions…) Interesting question, for me I seem to love the broody heroes in books. They always have dark hair, tall with that chiseled jawline and they are protective of their heroines.
Do you have a real life bookboyfriend? If he is a celeb, book model and so forth, care to share a photo of who? It would have to be Ian Somerhalder, or ‘Smolderhalder’ as I call him :p (I will happily share a picture of him!)
What is your favorite part about a story? (the beginning get to know each other, the sexy scenes, the middle right before the peak…) I love that pivotal moment where a hero or heroine needs to admit their feelings. It just gets me every.single.time.
What book are you currently reading? I am currently reading ‘On The Rocks’ By Kandi Steiner.
Do You have a favorite book quotes from any recent or previously read books you’d like to share? ‘The best kind of love is the kind that awakens the soul; that makes us reach for more, that plants the fire in our hearts and brings peace to our minds. That’s what I’d hope to give you forever.’- The Notebook
‘We were still broken, and cracked, and growing and learning. We were mistakes and perfection, flowing steams and hurricanes’ – Eleanor and Grey by Brittainy C. Cherry
How long does it take you to read an average book? I read around my job so about approx. 2 days.
How many reads per week do you think you rea don an average? 4-5 books
Have you ever considered writing a book? If so, why, how, when and who?! Hehe I have written books, but I am terrified of letting anyone other than my close family and friends read them. I have toyed with the idea of a pen name, letting people see snippets to test the water etc, but I guess I worry about negative opinions and how that would affect me.
Who is your favorite author and why? (you’re welcome for this one *smirk*) I am going to have to list them as I couldn’t possibly choose one. I love Deanna Raybourn, Meg Cabot, Melissa Foster, Staci Hart, Kandi Steiner, Katy Regnery and Brittainy C. Cherry (you are lucky I narrowed it down, this could have went on a while)
Now, the real important question -> What is your favorite book & why! Tough question, one of my all-time favorite books which has stuck with me ever since I read it back in January 2018, is ‘On The Way To You’ by Kandi Steiner. It was thought provoking, touching and emotional, and it gave me all the feels whilst breaking my heart and healing it. I could relate strongly to the topic of grief, and it captivated me.
Do you have any magical words for everyone out there?! Do what you love.
STALK THE BOOKSTAGRAMMER
THAT concludes another great SPOTLIGHT! Let’s show her some love, and more to come!