I think it’s well known how much I love the fantastic creative platform that is YouTube. I love to watch a whole range of things. But there are only a handful of creators on YouTube who I watch religiously and today I’m sharing a Q&A with one of them: Lisa from City of YA Books! I have to again thank the #UKYAChat for inadvertently introducing me to her, I’ve been subscribed to her channel since we first shared book recommendations. Back in September I got to met her IRL at the Birmingham Book Blogger Bonanza and she is just the nicest! So when she agreed to answer some questions from me I was thrilled. Lisa is honestly one of the loveliest and funniest people you will ever meet. And so without further ado let’s get on to the Q&A!
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Tell us a bit about yourself, what made you start your booktube channel?
The story of my channel is quite the tale! In 2013 I learnt that my favourite author was coming to Brighton, a place hours away from me. I made my first long journey on my own to meet her and and at the end of meeting Jana (The Author) she told me I should blog. She planted the seed in my mind and I decided that I would love to become a blogger. Several months later I thought about blogging seriously and encountered a problem. I have Elhers-Danlos syndrome, which I don’t discuss too much on my channel but it means that the collagen in my joints is breaking down so typing is something I struggle with, even writing a few lines could be too painful! (Now I’m lucky enough to have voice soft wear that types for me!) At the time though, it was a real issue and it made me feel extremely low at times because my medical state was holding me back.
Then I discovered Booktube. I suddenly realised that this was something I could actually do without my illness limiting myself. I immediately threw myself into making videos, there was a lot of trial and error. The quality of my videos and my editing skills have increased immensely since I started. I met amazing people through booktube and I have also met a lot of friends in the Blogging community which feel so amazing because I originally wanted to be part of the blogger community.
What are your favourite types of video to film and do you have a favourite video on your channel?
Collabs! I have been lucky enough to film collabs with some amazing booktubers including Sarah Jane from TheBookLife and Lucy and Veronica from The Bookish Best Friends. Filming with these people who I have become great friends with is a treat! There is a lot of laughter, bloopers and memories made while filming those videos.
I would have to say my ‘React’ videos are my favourites on my channel right now, I find they are slightly different to most videos on Booktube and they are a perfect way to display my odd personality! They are also the hardest to prepare, film and edit but I feel it is completely worth it!
Who are your favourite authors and who are your favourite other booktubers?
Authors are easy! Jana Oliver, Marie Rutkoski and Leigh Bardugo. These women manage to weave some of the most intriguing worlds that suck me in. I could live my life with my head firmly planted in these worlds. As for Booktubers, I love watching all my friends, Whitey from the channel Accio Books. Megan Oliver. Witty Novels and plenty more!
Has booktubing changed your reading habits at all?
I still read just as much as I did before I started uploading videos but I think I now read more eclectically. I have loads of friends recommending and sending me books I would never usually read and I have been pleasantly surprised by several of them! I’ve even read and enjoyed a few contemporary books! (Which I NEVER would have done before I started booktube!)
What opportunities have you been presented with because of your channel and is there anything you’d really like to do?
I have been stupidly lucky. In the last year I have done media and press work at several of the biggest UK book events. Some have put me in touch with amazing authors who I have interviewed for my channel including Lauren James and Lisa Heathfeild. I am also holding a workshop at a large book event later this year (I can’t disclose which one yet though!) I’ve also hosted a twitter interview with my favourite author Jana Oliver and Lauren Kate! That interview was insane… I’m pretty sure half of Brazil tuned in! Looking back on the last year it’s been pretty epic, and I’m looking forward to more!
How would you like to see your channel grow in the future?
All I can hope for is that I continue to love doing this and it grants me more opportunities as time passes. I would love chances to work with some more authors that I adore, any chances to work with fellow book minded people. I have no goals in terms of subscribers, views or anything to do with YouTube analytics – they’re not important, what matters to me is the experiences. Staying up late to film a collab with a friend and re-enacting scenes from supernatural. Getting tipsy with bloggers and having loud conversations on what bookish boys we would date. Deciding at the drop of a hat to travel half way across the country just to meet a fellow booktuber and ride a Ferris wheel. Doing shots with blogger friends and using fries to give ourselves fangs (There are pictures of that particular instance…) These are the memories which are truly amazing and make everything I do worth it!
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