Thinking outside the page

I lurk on Tumblr. It’s a space for me to let a different side of me breathe. I call it Research and Staying In Touch With Things but to be honest a lot of it is mainly based around giggling at things like this. I have a range of tags I track (my latest is *cough* Galinda with a Ga). I worship at the altar of those much more skilled in the world of GIFs than me. There’s a whole sub-culture of expression on Tumblr that fascinates me and makes my day. Tumblr is like an eye into a thousand worlds. I always discover so much on there.

And two of the tags I love so very much are book arts  and bookarts

Books, by their very nature, tend to be somewhat page-bound. Sometimes they get lost in the form of what they are rather than what they contain. This is why I will never have issues with e-books, or apps, or new media storytelling. I am concerned with the word and not the object. I love collecting books. God, I love collecting books but I wouldn’t give up my kindle for anything now.

But that’s not to say I don’t love the concept of the book. I adore books. I adore the sensory explosion an old book can give you. The life it’s led! The places it’s seen! These objects hold stories in them. And the book arts tag is one that pushes that concept to the extreme and it is stunning what people do with the simple concept of “a book”

The works I get to see in Tumblr are label-defying, limitation-ignoring, stunning pieces of arts. To be honest, paper never looked so damn sexy before.

I would recommend starting with F*ck Yeah, Book Arts! It’s a beautiful, beautiful blog which is rammed full of inspiration. I am in debt to it for precipitating this post.

Image credit : Wicked Game

Image Credit: Guy Laramée

Image credit:


I’ve become curiously obsessed with the confession trend that populates Tumblr. A brief definition of these is that they allow a place for fans of a genre (be that the Gilmore Girls, the X Men or Harry Potter) to express anonymous opinions.

I think there’s an intriguing potential for some research here (maybe along the lines of the community reading experience, fandoms or some sort of sociological discussion type thing) and that’s something I hope to do some more work on because I love that sort of stuff. The treasure hunt of research and being a big old nerd has a lot of appeal for me. But for now I thought it might be intriguing to share some of the confessions that have proven particularly moving and intriguing for me – and the last one is the one that started this whole thing.

All credit is naturally due to the relevant blogs (and whoever came up with that middle confession is genuinely my new hero).

Tumblr love

Tumblr isn’t all about kittens or over emoting self-portraits, though there *is* a lot of them.

Here’s some of my favourite children’s literature related Tumblrs – and do add any you’ve come across and feel need a mention!

Maureen Johnson Funny, warm and vibrant stuff from the author herself. I really enjoyed the NaNoWriMo posts that she recently did.

Reasoning With Vampires We all know Twilight is a bit of a love it or hate it series. But this Tumblr dissects it on a textual level and it’s brilliant.

F* yeah Book Arts Just beautiful design related posts ranging from front cover design through to custom books. It’s a constant inspiration.

Fictional Characters Reading Books Pretty much what it says on the tin, featuring lots of appearances by nerd goddesses Lisa Simpson and my 90s spiritual heroine Daria.

The Lisa Simpson Book Club Talking of Lisa, here’s a Tumblr which features everything she’s read.

Chicago Public Library This is the Tumblr which got me hooked. I love what they do. These people absolutely get how to present themselves on the net.

Something kinda ooooooooh

Two things made me go oooh today (apart from my envious leanings towards somebody else’s lunch).

The first was this: 

(from here)

Is it not Amazing? I don’t know about you but I’m checking this out as soon as I can. A good front cover sells the book before you’ve even read a word – and this does that in shedloads.

The second ooh worthy moment was discovering this. Similarly Amazing. I’m in love with it. Whoever got in charge of their online presence is a freaking genius.  The more I discover brilliant things like this, the more I edge towards something brilliant for my own job. I love being inspired by the work that others are doing out there – and this has inspired me no end.