The answers to all the survey questions.

The answers to all the survey questions.


As promised, here are the answers to the nitty-gritty questions that came up in the recent reader survey.

How can I browse the archives? 

There’s now a simple archive tool on the sidebar, but you can also check the fancy new card catalog page. I opted for Dewey Decimal over Library of Congress.

I lost my link to the summer reading guide. Where can I find it?

Here’s your direct link to the 2014 summer reading guide. This page will remain live on the blog, probably forever, even though summer reading season is over. (Sniff.)

Additionally, here’s the link for the 2013 summer reading guide, and here’s the link to the 2012 summer reading guide. (Previous years are in PDF format.) These links are also on the card catalog page.

I can’t find you on Goodreads. Help!

I’m right here.

Why is there not a podcast? Seriously.

I was surprised at how often this question came up. The short answer: it’s time-consuming and I don’t know how to do it. But find me places to guest, and I will.

Can we do a book club?

I was shocked how many people asked this question in the survey! I’ve never seen an online book club format I really loved, so I’m not wildly enthusiastic about starting one. If you’ve participated in a kicking online book club, please tell me all about it.

I can’t always tell when you’ve read the books you’ve recommended. How can I know?

If I am actually recommending a book, I’ve read it unless I say otherwise. But many times I share lists of books I want to read, or covers I’m swooning over, or concepts that intrigue me. I haven’t read those. I’ve read every book that appears in the summer reading guide.

I can never find the current Kindle deals page. Where is it?

It’s right here! I also added it to the top navigation for you, and there’s a link in the sidebar.

When will it be my turn with literary matchmaking?

I’m tackling submissions from the original post more or less in order.

Will you reopen submissions for literary matchmaking?

Not unless/until I can figure out a way to do it without making it my full-time job until 2019 or so. If you’ve got ideas, I’m listening.

I can’t find one thing (I think) I’ve read here. It was about how being a good relationship makes you more active and productive, and being in a bad relationship makes you stagnant—I think it was based on something Madeleine L’Engle had said? Anyways, I haven’t been able to find it back and it’s driven me crazy because I’ve thought about it a lot.

Oh, help. I thought this sounded familiar but I’ve checked every Madeleine L’Engle reference on the blog and none of them fit the bill. I thought it might possibly be this one about creative habits and daily rituals vs. day jobs and family life, or perhaps the work that makes more of you. Tell me more about it; we’ll find it!


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  1. Julie says:

    The MLE quote is in one of the Crosswicks Journals – I *think* it is circle of quiet. i would pull my copy out and find it, but we are in the midst of a massive move, and it is packed somewhere!

    • Julie says:

      Quick web search and I found it (much more fun than what I am *supposed* to be doing this morning!)

      But over the years two questions of mine have evolved which make sense to me. I ask the boy or girl how work is going: Are you functioning at a better level than usual? Do you find that you are getting more work done in less time? If you are, then I think that you can trust this love. If you find that you can’t work well, that you’re functioning under par, then I think something may be wrong…

      The other question I ask my “children” is: what about your relations with the rest of the world? It’s alright in the very beginning for you to be the only two people in the world, but after that your ability to love should become greater and greater. If you find that you love lots more people than you ever did before, then I think you can trust this love. If you find that you need to be exclusive, that you don’t like being around other people, then I think that something may be wrong.

      • Arenda says:

        Thanks so much for including that question, Anne! 🙂
        And thanks, Julie!! That’s the quote I was thinking of!! It’s going into my commonplace book now. 🙂

  2. You really would be terrific at a podcast! You have thoughtful insights that seem to just flow naturally when you speak. If you do decide to try your hand at a podcast, Beth Anne and I would be happy to tell you everything we know. We are self taught, so we are still learning too, but we are happy to share anything we can.

  3. I am in an online book club that works well, but possibly because only five or so people show up for the book discussions. We have a Facebook group with a shared doc where people can add nominations for books. Every two months the organizer uses a random number generator to pick five books and puts them in a Facebook poll, and we vote on the next one to read. The two with the most votes are the next two months’ books. Middle of the month we put up a Doodle poll with some times the first two weekends of the following month and decide on a discussion time, and then the organizer creates a Google+ Hangout and posts the link on the Facebook page, and we join in and have a 30-60 minute discussion of the book. It’s been going for a little over a year now and has worked very well. We have lots of people who vote in the polls and read along but don’t show up for the discussions (maybe because they’re recorded?).

    • Victoria says:

      I tried to start a book club with friends who have all moved far away and time zones just made it too difficult to actually “meet” (we were planning to use google hangouts).

      I’ve joined book clubs on sites only to find that the discussion time is one long comment thread.

      Is your group open to new members? I’d love to join it! 🙂

  4. Lacy says:

    I’m sure many people have said this, but I’m confident that you could charge a fee for literary matchmaking and people would pay. It’s such a great value and a unique offering, and could even be fun as a subscription service! Though I know time is a factor, too. Just wanted to pass the idea on!

  5. Esther says:

    I also wish there was a way to do a virtual book club! However, I do love the Twitterature posts and link ups. My “to-read” list has grown exponentially as a result! 🙂

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