Hiya bookish people!

These too are also kinda late (November and December 2019), but I’m doing them now! I have never been nominated for this award before, and so it is absolutely amazing to have two amazing bloggers nominate me so close together! I was first nominated by Lauren @ Lala’s Book Reviews, and then by Daria @ Bookaholic’s Therapy. Thank you to both of you, you’re both awesome!

Rules:
  • Thank the blogger/s who nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
  • Write a post to show your award.
  • Give a brief story of how your blog started.
  • Give two pieces of advice to new bloggers.
  • Select up to 15 other bloggers you want to give this award to.
  • Comment (or pingback) on each blog and let them know you have nominated them and provide the link to the post you created.

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🌷 Where it all began… 🌷

Okay, well, maybe it isn’t such a dramatic story that I can use “where it all began”.

In about year 8 (four years ago) I went to the library and got Running Girl by Simon Mason. Inside the cover was a small, bright green post-it-note with a small review on it, only about 12 words or so long, and at the bottom was a URL. Naturally, I put the link in and was met by this site. Someone had started a blog listing all the books that they had put post-it-notes in. Unfortunately it doesn’t seem like this project was carried out for very long on there or the added Youtube channel, but it sparked an interest for me that I’ve carried for the past few years.

Taking this little green post-it-note, I approached Bruno. Bruno is a friend of mine, but unfortunately in the more recent year we have drifted off, but life goes on. We still wave and say hi at school, which is all anyone can ask for in the end. Before then, I asked Bruno if he would join me in making a book blog, as we were both avid YA lovers. Sitting in the back of Science class suddenly became a lot more fun, and our teacher even provided us with a classroom to work on our website during lunch times. It took a while, but after about four months we had a website built. It was terrible.

And I don’t mean “Emma, it’s a first draft, it couldn’t have been that bad!” terrible, it was terrible-terrible. A dark purple background, grainy and badly edited photo header, light pink writing and bubble letters inside bubbles as button menu terrible. So after this devastating realisation, Bruno and I agreed that we should take a little more time to work on our design skills. Fast forward to halfway through 2017 and our website was far better. We had a nice clean background with purple feature colours instead, bright images and even had some content sorted! Come July 31st, we were live and posting. Wix was good to us in the beginning. But it was slow and laggy, and we quickly realised that we wanted a lot more freedom.

Bruno found Blogger, a google based engine that allowed us to have a lot more freedom in our designing and coding. For a school project in the first half of 2018, that is all Bruno and I worked on together. There were some coding-based tears, and design faults, theme changes and bugs that had us both so frustrated because that would have worked so well, but it wasn’t to be. Come June, we had a far better designed and functional website, which is actually still live in order to save roughly a hundred posts.

After July though, Bruno didn’t seem to be interested in the blog. We drifted apart and only ever talked about the website, which was once every couple of months. Silently, we both decided that I was taking over.

I needed a fresh start, I wanted more freedom in design and ease for interaction and made the move to WordPress. Aditi was amazing during this process, she helped me with design and figuring out posts. I couldn’t thank her enough.

It’s strange writing this all down and realising just how far we had come from that little green post-it-note, there sure have been a few tears and missed timelines and unanswered emails, but I don’t think I would give up AFCTL for anything.

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🌷 My Advice 🌷

Firstly, it’s okay to struggle. I’ve slumped in reading, writing, coding and designing at different points throughout the entirety of AFCTL. I’ve stayed up all night fixing a code that wouldn’t be fixed, spent hours complaining to my friends, and cried more than a few tears when it just wouldn’t work. Nothing comes easily, and I think that is one of the best pieces of advice to remember, however it ties extremely importantly with my next piece.

Never stop having fun. I know, it contradicts what I just said, but never have I looked at AFCTL and thought ‘ I wish I didn’t have to do this ’. The victories and triumphs and experiences and people I’ve met have far out balanced the inconveniences. Make sure your blogging is always fun, and don’t feel scared to struggle or take a step back.

Okay, wow. I didn’t realise how much I had to say in this post!

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🌷 I tag 🌷
  • You! I don’t know who to tag since I have done so many award and tags recently, but if you have advice to share and a story to tell, let me know down below so I can ‘officially’ tag you.

12 thoughts on “

  1. aw.. this was lovely to know more about what went on behind the scenes and it certainly looks like you had a few ups and downs with design but I’m so glad you pushed through that. Your site is amazing!! I love that it all started with a post-it note and it inspired you!!
    It is great to know more about the hard times because I think struggling needs to be shown in the light because it is best to put them in the open and often people can relate, I have definitely had times when blogging has been hard with fitting it into life and learning new skills so it is apart of the process but if you love it you have to keep going as it can be so rewarding!!
    And having fun is so important too! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I have a slight design change in mind at the moment, but am gonna wait a little bit to put it up since I want to get it all done first ❤
      It's such a cool and unique origin story, and so I love sharing it. I'm surprised I haven't before now, to be honest.
      It really does – and it doesn't need to only apply to blogging. The rewards from blogging are amazing and it is so fun for me.
      Thank you for your wonderful comment ❤ ❤ ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  2. This post was just SO sweet!!! Your advice is golden, while you might have some difficulties blogging, it’s honestly so much fun. And the story of how you started blogging is really inspiring, it’s so cool how a bright green sticky note led to the existence of this amazing blog. 😉 Lovely post! ❤ xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ahhhhh thank you Ash, you are the sweetest!
      I know, it’s a bit weird to think back on the events that got me here. I knew the library was amazing, I just never thought it would start AFCTL for me!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Wow, that post-it note story is definitely worth the “Where It All Began” title! How cool that someone shared their reviews that way and that it inspired you. I love your advice as well – it’s so important to keep enjoying what you’re doing, otherwise there’s no real point in it.
    I loved reading this post and finding out more about your blogging journey 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Emma I LOVED reading this post! Getting the low down on the early years of your blog – the struggles, the success is so inspirational. Isn’t crazy when you look back at those said early years and realize just how far your blog has come? I’m sorry that you and Bruno drifted apart though. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you!
      I didn’t really see this as an inspirational story but I am so glad that you think it is! I have really enjoyed the entire journey with AFCTL.
      It is so crazy! If someone had told me I’d be a semi-succesful blogger three years ago, I would have laughed.
      Me, too. He’s doing well though and that’s all I can really ask for ❤

      Liked by 1 person

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