- *BatProfile* -

Currently (Jan 2016): 

I am COMPLETELY ok with the lack of snow! And as always, still adoring all the time I can read on the train in my daily commute. Spring will mean a possible change of scenery - will see how that turns out.


If I'm not posting here for a space (usually busy and/or forgetfulness strikes) then you can always see if I'm around at my tumblr on the book page or the random pop culture area. Because all I have to do over there is hit reblog and the lazy being in me can handle that.


Also I'm now 49, for those of you who don't know the batgrl thing is something that I've used since my 20s. If I'd thought about it at the time I'd have realized it's a nickname with a limited shelf life age-wise, but meh, I'll eventually find some other, tolerable bat-related nickname.


The books over there in my Currently Reading column aren't really current reads. They're usually books I want to remind myself to get back to because I'm reading them slowly or have them on pause (I plan to get back to them later). To peek at what I'm really reading - it's usually multiples - check my Shadow Reading shelves. 


If I'm not following you in return here on Booklikes it has a LOT more to do with me not spending enough time going through the followers list and checking out everyone's blog. I don't do that often enough, sorry!




The following has been posted as About Me at other sites and I've just continued to add bits to it, in no particular order.


Various Bookish Info


Favorite books:
History, nonfiction, pop culture, journalism, television/film/mass communications, and the odd romance or scifi story or mystery. Also books about cemeteries and ghost stories. I have LOTS of anthologies of ghost stories, all of which I love. (Thus the many boxes of books in storage. I only sigh at the thought of moving them.)
As far as specific favorite books I did the 30 Days Book Challenge/Questions thing (Oct. 2013) which I was very bad at because I seemed to want to quibble over a lot of the questions. Which is mostly due to my inability to just pick one favorite book - it's usually going to depend on what I've been reading recently!
(We'll ignore the fact that I didn't finish the rest of that list, ok?)
Reading habits:
I have the (bad?) habit of trying to read too many books at once. Which has a name: Shadow reading! (Now you'll know what's going on with the random books on my Shadow Reads shelf.) I really should write about why I do this - the usual reason is that I have to be in the right sort of mood for particular genres, and when I need a change I hop to a different one. You could almost have a gauge for what my mood is based on the particular book I'm reading that day.
What you won't tell from my shelves:
I also read romance and some fantasy that I haven't shelved (I'm slowly starting to add those). Now that it's no longer a mockable offense to read romance (now that many educated, smart women have spoken up about both enjoying reading it and writing it), what should happen but there's now a new reason for me not to shelve it - authors. Well, mainly certain authors. There is a select group (many self-pub, sadly) that tends to freak the hell out over anything but glowing reviews. If not the authors, some of the fans are just as easily angered. It's a small percent, but it's enough to make me want to avoid all of that. So if I do add my romance titles to the shelves I may end up not reviewing them. (It's weird that I've never seen anyone have this problem with authors of history or nonfiction. So far.)
Later (21 Oct 2013) reviewing decision: after reading Duchess War and having a lot of fun with the group read, I decided that in the future my romance reviews won't have any rating. So no stars, no grade, no pressure - I'm just going to post reviews if I feel like it. Quantifying enjoyment is where I stop having fun with this genre, for some reason.



About Me:
Despite the nickname and all the babble about video games and pop culture - I'm in my late 40s. (I add this because this often surprises online folk. Did everyone think all the kids who grew up with Atari, shopped at Claire's, and watched Thundercats just never grew older?!)
Nicknames get attached to you for decades, especially when you continue to have bat-like tendencies to stay up late. When I'm not reading I'm probably playing video games.
I'm a former teacher (ages ago), which I mention because that explains a lot of my shelves and reading choices. I still approach research in grad student flashback-mode, probably because I still love it.

Info about image in current user icon here. With more photos. If you're curious.
Other Places I'm Online:
Also found at LibraryThing. I'm here at Goodreads. And my book Tumblr (where I'll repost reviews, eventually). And also here at Leafmarks (I'm still figuring it out).
[I forgot that my Library Thing account is a free one and maxes out at 200 books, so that rules that site out for the moment. But! I think because I joined early I'm grandfathered in somehow? I'm really not sure how to tell, except that it let me add more books than 200 Later - a friend tip'd me off to yes, I did have the older, grandfathered account, so I really should be making more use of Library Thing.]



Reviews will tend to:
1) note how I found the book (if it was free I'll add the link - which is usually to Gutenberg - I think I might be addicted to Gutenberg),
2) link wikipedia and other sites if I felt the need to go googling about for interesting background info,
3) wander off topic, and/or
4) be really really loooooooooooong. Sorry about that. This is usually because have many quotes from the book - a sign that I really liked the subject and/or the writing. I'm primarily adding that many quotes for my own reference, but I think it also helps readers have a better idea of the author's writing and the book's contents. Because I do go on a bit I sometimes add "Short version" near the top of the review as a summary.
Some idea of reviews I consider long:
That last one is the best example of me saving a vast amount quotes I wanted to refer to later (or thought I might) because it's a library book.
Authors: you don't want me to review your book. Why?
Short version - star ratings are for me. Think of it as my filing system. It's all about rereading.

I tend to be frugal about handing out stars, and I consider 3 good amount. (I point this out specifically so that authors won't ask me to review things if they're worried about the amount of stars they'll get. Stay away from here if you think 3 stars is a bad thing - because I don't.) 4 and 5 stars are more rare - I like to have them mean something, like the need to own the book and read it again. Doesn't mean I didn't enjoy the book. It comes down to the question "did I like the characters/plot enough to reread?" Seriously look at how many books on my Classics shelf I've given low stars to. I can easily acknowledge that the writing is wonderful and well worth being taught and discussed - but if it's not something I'll keep on my bookshelf/ereader and read again, I'm probably not going to gush over it. Well, not with stars anyway.

Don't feel badly if I don't follow you - I may be going through an attack of internet-shyness, or I may not have realized you're following me (that's the most likely option), or you may be an author and I'm leery about following authors (sorry, others have ruined it, not necessarily you).



Because I'll still mention and talk about Goodreads from time to time:


The best summary of what happened at Goodreads this Sept. (2013) that caused so many people to leave is here:


Summary of GR's New Censorship Policy - Summary of GR's New Censorship Policy


Non-Goodreads page, same content: Literary Ames blog post


It's written by Amy or "Ames" and is long, but it's also the best rundown of what happened along with links to various forum posts, etc. that should make things clear.


Ceridwen's analysis of the specific data:


By the Numbers: An Analysis of the Reviews Deleted in the Goodreads Policy Change

Data from 13 users who'd had GR delete content (one was added after initial number crunching):

"...So, some very basic numbers:

Number of delete lists: 12
How many reviews deleted, in total: 377
Average number of books deleted, per user: 31.4

...Overall, the 377 reviews on this list were written by 174 authors..."


Recent update as of 25 Nov 2013:

++Please Reinstall Universe And Reboot++ 's post: GR Debacle 101


Which contains a series of questions and answers, and many many links.



My take on the GR Sept 2013 Shelf Issue/User Exodus/Whatever-it-was: Lack of policy updates and communication with all GR users really annoys me - and that's aside from the deletions of content. I'm making daily csv backups. I also have a shelf named Do No Read Buy Authors and another named Author Right Bastard to Wife. I've not received any notice about either, and neither have been deleted yet. The entire incident is illogical, and GR have reversed their statements more than once. It really seems that they simply wanted to get rid of some users or more likely make a rule that they weren't really concerned with policing and instated just for show. There's no way they have enough staff to police the shelves and reviews without users flagging them. When questioned about specifics of what "attack on author" means - they folded and users were again allowed to be completely harsh about reviews and writing ability.


The continuing problem - authors that feel such reviews are personal, no matter how much they deal with the book or cite quotes/examples.


(The Author Right Bastard shelf is for Dickens, who I don't think will complain, and yeah, he did treat his wife terribly. I still read his books though, I just critique him and his female characters differently now.)