Welcome to Beyond the Blog, where we'll not only be featuring some amazing blogs but also the creative people behind them. Today we have an interview with Rachel a.k.a Fiktshun. We love that she has a number of blogs that cover just about all of our blogging needs. To learn more about her blogs and Rachel herself, let's get to the interview.
You have a few blogs. Can you tell us a little about each?
I do have a few blogs. A few too many, actually, but I’ll only talk about some of them or this answer will be endless.
My main blog is Fiktshun. I started it in November 2010 with no real clear identity, but it quickly became a young adult book blog as those were the only types of books I was reading at the time. While I’d love to say the main focus is on reviews, I typically can only review one to two books a week. Tops. So I have other posts where I talk about books and bookish things or promote the books I love. But only the books I love. While I may read and review books that don’t fall into that category, I won’t promote a book I’m not either madly in love with or excited about possibly falling in love with. Oh, and as I do tend to love to give away books, I have those too. Giveaways, that is. This blog gets the most love and it’s where I blog daily.
My blog Fiktshun’s Ramblings was really just supposed to be an online journal of sorts. But it’s become the blog where I talk freely about anything and everything book-related. And since I don’t participate in memes on my main blog, I will occasionally participate in the “Top Ten Tuesday” meme here when I find the weekly topic too good to pass up.
My blog My Reading Pile is a blog I have where I get another chance to talk about the books I love, which can include any non-YA books in any genre that I feel like discussing. It’s where I spotlight a few books that I haven’t had a chance to read or books I want to read, where I do my clearing the pile giveaways, where I post my friend Nic’s book reviews and where I occasionally participate in either Parajunkee’s “Desperately Wanting Wednesday” meme or GReads “TGIF!” meme if the weekly topic is one I want to chime in on.
And I also have a blog called Fiktshun After Dark. As Fiktshun is now exclusively a YA blog, I wanted a place to talk about and post reviews for paranormal/urban fantasy books that weren’t for young adults. It’s not as active a blog as the other three, but as I’ve been falling in love with more and more non-YA titles who knows….
What type of audience do you think would most enjoy your blogs?
For Fiktshun it would be a YA audience all the way as I only review young adult titles on the blog. And I would definitely say it’s a blog for someone who likes a mix, because I don’t specialize. I like to read a variety of sub-genres like paranormal, urban fantasy, dystopian, contemporary, historical, steampunk, horror. Why limit myself, right?
Fiktshun After Dark is exclusively a blog where I talk about paranormal/urban fantasy reads for an adult audience. If you don’t like dark, potentially steamy books about vampires or other paranormals, you probably won’t want to visit.
What’s your opinion on negative reviews? Do you think reviews should be posted or if someone doesn’t like a book, they should keep their opinions to themselves?
I actually blogged about this extensively and have definite opinions. I think bloggers should post and review how they choose. It’s their opinions and they have every right to voice those opinions in any way they want to.
That being said, I personally don’t like, or read, book or author bashing reviews or reviews written just to create drama or get attention. But I have no problem with negative reviews. I enjoy reading them much of the time. And if well-written, even with a touch of snark, they can be incredibly helpful when deciding on a book. I’ve purchased many books based upon negative reviews. Just because someone else doesn’t like something doesn’t mean I won’t. A good reviewer will point out what wasn’t to their taste in a negative review so that readers of that review can make an informed decision.
And, for the record, I do not believe people should keep their opinions to themselves about the books they read on their blogs. If they don’t like something they shouldn’t feel pressured into keeping silent because they are worried about hurting someone’s feelings, being the subject of someone’s wrath or being cut off from receiving advance copies of books. Nobody’s voice should be silenced because of fear.
Who are some of your favorite authors/books that you discovered because of blogging?
While I was a reader long before I became a blogger and had many authors I’ve loved for years, there are quite a few new authors I’ve discovered since I became a blogger that I might never have discovered on my own. Authors like Leah Clifford, Tahereh Mafi, Jeaniene Frost, Mary Lindsey, Scott Tracey, Samantha Young, Karsten Knight, Tammara Webber, Courtney Summers, Bethany Griffin, Brodi Ashton, Wendy Higgins, Veronica Roth and so many more.
And yes, they’re all favorites of mine.
Where are you from?
Everywhere. I’ve moved around a lot in my lifetime and I plan on moving a lot more. But the two main places I’ve lived are New York and California. At the moment I’m in Los Angeles and loving it. It will definitely be hard to leave.
Are you a morning person or is coffee a must before you are able to function?
I am not a morning person yet I wake up super early. I don’t sleep very much. Maybe three hours a night. Six tops. But yes, I must, must, must have coffee to function. Though I usually only have a cup a day. I’m not that much of a caffeine addict.
It’s noon on Sunday, what are you up to?
Reading or blogging. I wake up early on Sundays and have no responsibilities until the love of my life wakes up. He is not a morning person. At around two, though, it’s breakfast time and typically, until the evening, it’s time I spend with him. Unless, of course, I’m totally caught up in a book I just can’t put down.
What is your favorite thing to do (aside from reading) in your down time?
I have very little downtime between blogging, reading and working. But I love to go to the movies, I love to take day trips around So. Cal., I love biking at the beach, and I love window shopping for mid-century modern furniture.
Oh and I’m starting to love writing again.
You just found out the paranormal world is real. What is your reaction?
Kill me now.
Or possibly… [insert expletive here].
Haha. Most of the paranormal books I read are filled with violence and death. They are not worlds I’d want to live in. Though if I had to, I suppose I’d learn to wield a sword, ask to be turned into a vampire and kick some serious a**.
If you could ask your favorite author any one question, what would you ask? What would you hope the answer would be?
My favorite author is Stephen King. I would ask him if he always intended his Dark Tower series to end as it did or if there were any other possible outcomes for Roland Deschain.
I would hope he’d say yes. That at one time he might have been kinder to his character. Even if it was just a fleeting thought. The series did end perfectly, if cruelly, and I still am hopeful about the possibilities of what comes after, but I’d love to know if that was always the planned ending.
You just won your dream vacation, all expenses paid. Where are you going?
Oooh this is tough. There are so many places I want to go. But I suppose I’d have to say Russia. I would love to go to Russia and get to witness the white nights. That would be awesome. Though Sweden’s white nights would be a close second.
Oh, we forgot to mention you get to take your fantasy man with you. So, who are you taking?
The love of my life is my fantasy man. I’ve known him forever. Loved him forever. And I can’t imagine going anywhere or experiencing anything without him. He is my dream. He is my existence. I don’t want to breathe if he’s not breathing. So, a dream vacation without him would be a nightmare.
If it had to be a character from a fantasy novel, however, it would be a tough choice. I couldn’t decide between Lestat, Eric Northman, Ethan or Bones. Yes, I love my vamps.
Thank you so much for having me on your blog! These questions were super tough but a lot of fun!
Thank you Rachel for the interview! To find out even more about Rachel and her blogs, here is where you can find her around the web.
Fiktshun (Main Blog)
My Reading Pile
Fiktshun After Dark