Spreading Kindness

I’m a pretty genuinely positive person when it comes to this bookish community (because all the bloggers, authors, readers and publishers are MY PEOPLE and these 5 years have been incredibly) but lately, as I talked about here on my Tumblr, it’s felt different. I heard it from others close to me and I heard it very loudly as people reached out to me after I shared my thoughts. I don’t ever talk about the things I see or the various dramas/concerning things that I’ve seen take place publicly. I don’t want to add to the negativity. But it was bumming me out. REAL BAD.

Before I posted what I did, I had talked extensively with my girl Anna about it and we kept trying to build each other up and encourage each other because we LOVED what this community has been — this great interaction of bloggers, readers, authors and publishing. I had thrown around the idea of a challenge to do BEHIND the scenes to extend to others in the community to do along with us to spread some positivity but we never quite nailed it down and, honestly, the negativity was kind of demotivating us. But then, after I posted my feelings and talked to other people, I had this fire again to try. I had been trying on my own (and with Anna) to combat this but after sharing my feelings and hearing that SO many others were feeling the same way? It gave me a spark.

Then enter my pal Estelle. We started having a conversation about all this and what we could do to change it. We started talking about the times that the KINDNESS in this community has uplifted us and how genuine kindness can be so powerful — in blogging and in life. Just taking the time to encourage or let someone know you were thinking of them or that they had done a good job with something.

Estelle had this great idea, during Alexa’s annual blogging event Love-athon which I’ll talk about more below, that it would be fun to have everyone SHARE the random acts of kindness we’ve experienced in this community — but with NO names. Likely we’ve already thanked these people and we don’t want to make this a popularity contest but just a time to tell stories about the random acts of kindness people have shown us.

I’m going to be sharing more of mine during that week and adding my post to the linkup that Estelle is going to put up but I figured I’d give you an idea of what we are looking for with one story.

A year or two ago I got an email from a teacher, who isn’t a blogger or anyone that I knew, who wanted to share with me something that my blog inspired them to do with their classroom. If you read my blog, you know I started putting a “review on a post-it” on the bottom of my reviews — something I started doing in 2011 as a way to give an “at a glance” look and because I’ve always had this habit of doing it when I lend books to friends. This teacher loved the idea of it and started having her class do it after every book they read and they LOVED doing it. She sent me a picture and there along this big wall was SO MANY post-its. It moved me so much. More than anything else in my time of being part of this community. It made me feel really connected in a way I hadn’t and know that my reach wasn’t just to the community of bloggers that I love. It meant a lot that she reached out to me to TELL me. She could have not but the fact she DID made all the difference.

 

Check out Estelle’s great post HERE!

Another thing I decided to do, to combat some of what I was feeling just on a blogging level, was to create a little Random Acts of Kindness checklist to guide me each month. I don’t make myself do each one of them because I want this to be genuine but I try to do at least a couple in the hopes that this will just become a thing that just naturally flows out of me. And when I’m feeling negativity? I’m trying to whip this list out and DO IT to combat what I’m feeling. I’d love to share it with you guys. Feel free to use it, print it out, share it, add to it. WHATEVER. (I’d love to hear if you have any other fun suggestions for me to put on my list!!).

 

bloggingRAK

On a community-wide scale, I’d love to let you know about this annual event that Alexa at Alexa Loves Books throws together which is just a super positive week for bloggers, authors and readers alike. It’s called Love-a-thon and it’s a great way to spread kindness and meet other readers! She has challenges and all sorts of fun activities involved on a community wide scale to uplift this wonderful community! So check out her post about the details of when it starts and how to sign up and what it is all about!

 

So, in the spirit of random acts of kindness online and beyond, tell me something really nice someone has done for you lately or something that inspired YOU to “pay it forward.” And, if you are a blogger, keep this story in mind and link up the week of February 16, in the spirit of Love-a-thon, and link up with Rather Be Reading and I!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

About Jamie

Jamie is a 30 year old married lady who is in denial that she's actually that old. When she's not reading you can find her doing Pilates followed by eating ice cream, listening to music with oversized headphones and having adventures with her husband and dog.

Comments

  1. A few weeks ago, I tweeted an author thanking her for sharing about a sale on Amazon for another book by another author. She tweeted back and said she thought I would really like it because the MC in the book was a bit more palateable than the MC in her book – and she quoted my review in saying that. I didn’t love her book (I think I gave it 3/5 stars) that much – but the fact that she remembered an actual line in my review and was able to quote it to me, and used it to help recommend another author’s book…I was floored. It was so kind and honest, and just that bit of recognition made my week.

    Thank you for doing this. I’m totally saving the graphic and printing it for my wall. I might even post about it if it’s okay with you?

  2. I love this initiative! I’ve recently joined the “Pay It Forward” initiative, where you post the status on Facebook, and the first five people who comment get something small during the year. In return, they post the status on their wall as well. I’ve posted the status on Facebook and put it on Goodreads as well, creating a small chain of kindness there. Now I’ve got about 12 people to look after, so one for every month 🙂

  3. I always leave a lot of comments to show my love for someone’s post. It feels good to leave comment love, especially on posts with not-so-many comments or on posts from new bloggers. I want people to feel appreciated, so I spend a lot of time on this 🙂

    I recently send a book to one of my blogging friends as a thank-you and I always try to credit the people who made me pick up a book. I LOVE it when people tell me they’ve read a book because of me. It feels like you are doing your ‘job’ right.

    I’m going to invest my time a 100% into this initiative 🙂

  4. I always think you are a very positive blogger Jamie and you always inspire me to be more creative on my own blog. And I love how honest and insightful your posts are. I have been avoiding twitter a lot lately because there is too much drama on there and since I did that, I’m no longer feeling the negativity. I’m spending the time I was on twitter, leaving a comment on a blog and finding new blogs and that makes me feel more positive and uplifted about how great the community can be. I know the focus is on the drama but when you step away, you find so much good stuff going on quietly in blogs too.
    I love the idea of Random Acts of Kindness, small things can mean a lot. And I think with enough positivity and goodwill that we will drown out those that moan and rant.

  5. I love that list you shared! Loads of great ideas!

  6. I started writing a reply.. But deleted it because it was far too whingy! Ha ha! Basically, January sucked but the blogging community came up trumps for me. I love this initiative. Positivity, encouragement, support, it’s not hard to share, but there can never be enough 🙂

    You rock. Xx

  7. Wow, I really love this post and I love those blogging random acts of kindness. I am still relatively new to blogging (started in November), so I guess I haven’t gotten caught up in all the drama. I am lucky that way. 🙂 I do love the sense of community though and I am trying hard not to compare myself to other bloggers. I don’t want blogging to seem like a chore and I want to remember why I started my blog to begin with. Love this post!

  8. This is a great idea! I’ve had so many people be so kind to me in my 2 years of blogging I hope I’ve shared some if that back. It feels so good to send someone a book they’ve wanted, leave s comment or any number of things. Great post

  9. I am probably very lucky blogger who is surrounded by nice poeple and fellow bloggers because I have not experience this negativity myself. I hear a lot of drama going on in bookish industry, but fortunatelly no negativity among bloggers.
    However, I have to admit that I love the list you shared. I already try to comment and share as much as I can, but thanks for sharing other lovely ideas 🙂

  10. I’m glad there are bloggers who stay out of all the drama. I’m the same way, I mean why spread negativity around? I think some people just THRIVE on drama and they seek it out. I honestly have no idea what drama you’re talking about, it sounds like something recent, but I guess it doesn’t matter. I love the Lovathon idea and I also love your random acts of kindness idea. I’ll be doing both for sure!

  11. I really enjoyed this post. It’s so nice to see something positive amongst all the jealousy and bitchiness that I’ve seen floating around recently. I haven’t been blogging long but I have had some nice comments and someone tweeted me to say they really enjoyed a book they read based on my recommendation 🙂 I love things like that. It really makes it all worthwhile.

    Oh and just so you know, your blog is saved in my Daily Blogs tab on my bookmark bar. I reserve that for my very favouritest blogs 🙂

    Have a good day xx

  12. Great post Jaime! I love this idea!! I wanted to be part of the solution but have a terrible time translating ideas into action. I also feel like i might have missed the boat of what the drama is, not sure if that’s good or bad but regardless I still want to push positive karma out there since im a firm believer in you get back what you give. *hugs lady* Hope to see you soon!!
    <3 Britt

  13. This is such a great idea! I’ll probably start doing some of these as well. I haven’t been on the book blogging community for very long, but I have really loved the embrace and excitement about books from everyone. It’s been a really great couple of months for me!

  14. What an awesome post! I can’t say I know all the drama that has gone on in this community (I’m not a HUGE part of it. I do blog and participate in a few things here and there, but I’m more of a sidelines kind of person) but I do know how much drama sucks. And I’ve had my fair share of dealing with people who are not so pleasant and definitely need something like this random act of kindness. I love your list, and I would love to encourage the blogs that I follow. Such a great list, and I hope I can spread some kindness and positivity and I hope you can too! There is a lot of good in this community from what I’ve seen, and I hate to think it could be brought down with this kind of drama. I hope more can take part in things like this, because the world sure needs it.

  15. I love this!! Yes, we have seen so many negative stuff around book community lately, that it time to step back and do something to about it. Thanks for do it this and share it with us. We need this!

  16. Hey Jamie, just read your Tumblr post. I don’t have a Tumblr account, so I thought I’d leave a comment on here instead. I’ve been blogging for about 5 years too and I almost never notice the drama or I find about it like a month later (probably because I don’t spend that much time on Twitter). I completely agree that the community has changed a lot since we started in 2011 – some good, some bad. I think it’s great that you want to spread more kindness around! I think the changes that have bothered me the most is the new fear of being stalked because of a negative review and the incredibly annoying way some people feel the need to criticize others blogging styles. If you don’t like the way certain people blog, just don’t follow them! Why spend all that time bashing someone instead of just finding blogs you do like? Sheesh.

    On a separate note, I think the topic of book blog monetization is an important one and gets dismissed far too easily. I’d love to hear your opinions on it if you ever feel like making a post on it!

  17. I’m a new blogger. I love how supportive this community is. I used to mostly hang out on GR. And while I still do, there’s a lot of negativity over there whether it’s from trolls or other reviewers. It makes you look at everything with a very cynical eye. I think this a great idea. Even though I still have a lot to learn, I’m enjoying learning and getting to know other bloggers in this community.

  18. Sam @ The Little Munchkin Reader says:

    Love this post! So thought provoking!

  19. Such a beautiful post and what wonderful ideas! I love following your blog and following you on Twitter! I think you have so much to offer the blogging community, and this newest venture is just one indication of that!

  20. THANK YOU.
    This community is one that is important to me, and so many people are so lovely and wonderful, and I hate that the negativity gets us down. Because it can. I recently got my first truly mean and hateful comment on one of my reviews, and it tore me apart for about a week because I didn’t know how to handle it.
    I’m so glad you and Estelle are helping to combat this, and I for sure will be taking part 🙂

  21. I absolutely adore the idea of random acts of kindness! Whether it’s real life or it’s in this blogging community, being kind to each other is so very important. I really think it was wonderful for you + Estelle to collaborate on this, and can’t wait to participate in it as well. It’s a perfect match for the Love-a-Thon, don’t you think? 😉

  22. Great post Jamie! I’m still a newbie so each comment I get is exciting…haha. Love the random acts of kindness list! I have loads of notecards I collect that could be sent out 🙂

  23. An author sent me a Christmas card this year. It was super exciting to get something like that via snail mail. No promos or requests for book reviews. Just a card. <3 I like your random acts of kindness and will start trying to adopt some of these things into my own life.

  24. In the light of everything that’s gone on recently, this is a really beautiful and uplifting idea. This community is so full of positive and kind people, that it’s important we get back to emphasising that, rather than focusing on the more negative side.

    The best thing about blogging is the people and I’m so glad that everyone is eager to spread the love and reiterate how amazing this community can be!

  25. Ahh Jamie, I absolutely LOVE this idea! Being kind and making people happy is such a lovely thing and it’s awesome when you make somebody’s day! Well, a couple of months ago a general blog emailed me telling me she loved my blog and that she wanted to know if I had any advice for her as she was starting a book blog. The fact that she had read my blog and was asking me for advice (and she referred to stuff so thankfully it wasn’t a spam post!) made me so, so happy! I also love it when I rate a book high and the author tweets me and says thank you – it’s one of the best things ever! 🙂

  26. I like this checklist a lot. I might have to print it out for reference even!

  27. That story is so touching! One thing you might add to your list is to donate books to the library. It always makes me so happy to walk in with a bag of books and they ask if I’m returning them and I get to say nope, I’m donating them 😀

  28. What a great idea! Since I don’t have my own blog, I guess I can’t participate in the Love-a-thon, but I definitely plan to do the random acts of kindness ideas on your list. I enjoy commenting on less trafficked blogs, because the bloggers tend to respond to more of the comments, so it feels more meaningful.

    Also, your story about the teacher is amazing! You should feel proud of yourself. 🙂

  29. That’s a beautiful post Jamie!
    This is the first time I’ve been to your blog,but I know it won’t be the last.
    Thank you so much for doing this.I’ve always admired how close knitted and supporting the blogging community is,even before I became a part of it.
    I’ll definitely be a part of this initiative.Thanks again!

  30. I came across this post quite accidentally via Pinterest and it really struck a chord. I’ve been thinking a lot recently about the nature of relationships with people whom you only know in cyberspace because of the recent death by suicide of a blogger who was loved and respected by many people. So many of us were left wondering how we could have been more supportive, and if we could have reached out in some way. I don’t know if feeling more connected would have changed anything for her, but your words and ideas are timely. Who knows what how much one Random Act of Kindness might mean to one person? Thanks…

  31. I generally try to be good to other people in my life, from everything from my friends to random strangers. A simple smile or ‘good afternoon’ to the bus driver makes the world a LITTLE better place.

    – Love, Felicia

  32. I just wanted to let you know that I am a teacher as well and I’ve used many ideas from bloggers. Please keep up the great work. I’ve also directed students toward book blogs as a way to find new books.

  33. Damn, I missed this post but thankfully Kristen linked to it on one of her recent posts!
    This community has been amazing for me these past few months, my blogging friends have been so supportive for me, messages of support, being there for me when I need to vent and need reassurance… and sending small messages and even postcards…
    What a wonderful idea and initiative Jaime, I’m so joining!

  34. I love this! We bloggers are an awesome bunch and getting support from each other feels wonderful. I love the idea to take it a step further to deliberately spread kindness.

  35. I love that story about the teacher being inspired! That’s so magical isn’t it? That blogging can really, really really change peoples lives?? I’m brand new at blogging. I don’t know anyone yet or have any ‘blog friends’ per say but I know that it can lead to such great things and I am very excited for the journey.

    I do love your blogging acts of kindness list. That’s a very thoughtful and sweet thing to do on a regular basis. You are absolutely awesome!

    http://www.mystery-girl007.blogspot.com/

  36. Brilliant post.. I totally agree. I’m a pretty new blogger and don’t pay much attention to Twitter/other forms of social media so haven’t really noticed much drama going on. BUT that doesn’t mean this isn’t good advice. Love the idea of random acts of kindness, blogging style and just general positivity and mindfulness in what we do 🙂

  37. First, I read your TumbLr post and loved it. I was unaware of the cutthroat business-minded attitude some people were taking. I blogged for almost 4 years, took 4 years off and now I’m refreshing and building my audience back up. So I quit around when you started. There were only a couple of the blog tour groups, and none of the electronic opportunities. Since I returned to blogging last month I notice a lot of “fake” comments and lack of comments. By fake I mean people who came to me from a Linky and left a comment like Nice! I checked and my page hits are quadruple the comments I receive. I’d rather have 3 sincere comments than 12 page hits to build my numbers and get advertisers. I’ve also noticed that people hwve ARC piles they can never get to, so there actually are enough books for all. I know you think there’s no “right” way to blog or review, and I agree, but I visited one person a couple of times with a huge ARC pile and the reviews were the copied publisher blurbs only, not even one opinion or revision.
    I actually do most of your suggestions frequently. When I participate in a meme link up I visit as many participants over the course of the week as I can, depending on how big the list is. If I can’t hit them all, I try different patterns so I don’t just visit those at the top of the list.
    Are you aware of the bloggers commenting back group? I’ll find the exact URL FOR YOU.
    I could go on and on, but that will just feed the monster. Instead I’ll go visit and comment for a while.
    I think a concerted effort like the Blog LoveAThon will be a great way to get this idea out there.

  38. Hello Jamie. I really very impressed with your blog post. The point, which I like more in your blog is discussion with your friend about kindness. Moreover, you observed society and community. Well done. After reading this blog, I want to read more about kindness.

Trackbacks

  1. […] you haven’t already, be sure to check out Jamie’s post on this project on Spreading Kindness and pop over to Alexa’s blog for details on the blogger […]

  2. […] the same time, Jamie at The Perpetual Page-Turner and Estelle at Rather Be Reading have come up with a Random Acts of Kindness […]

  3. […] love what Jamie at The Perpetual Page-Turner is doing right now with Spreading Kindness If you are needing a boost of positive in your day head […]

  4. […] for Alexa’s Love-a-Thon to hopefully spread the love to all bloggers at the end of February. Jamie posted about random acts of kindness that we can all do to increase nice gestures to others. I need to print out her list, because […]

  5. […] talk about next, is the week to do Random Acts of Kindness. Hosted by Jamie, Estelle and Magan,  Random Acts of Kindness is the time to share how you’ve been touched and inspired by acts of kindness in the […]

  6. […] Spreading Kindness at The Perpetual Page-Turner […]

  7. […] Spreading Kindness by Jamie at Perpetual Page-Turner   […]

  8. […] been a fair amount of discussion about positivity in the book blogging community lately and it’s got me thinking about a couple of things. The […]

  9. […] spurts of drama as the reason. I understand that completely; it can drag you down. An emerging theme for the 2015 book blogging community is definitely kindness – people are striving to bring back a welcoming and […]