I’m currently #safeathome with Mr Maybe – but over the past couple of weeks cabin fever has started to slowly settle in. Not for me obviously but Mr M isn’t suited for limited social interaction. While I’m happily pottering around planting a windowsill herb garden, testing cook book recipes and taking the opportunity to reorganise and deep-clean the flat – in comparison, poor old Mr M is binge watching Netflix series into the small hours and feeling very much like Will Smith in ‘Legend.’
I noticed that (bless him) he becomes quite glazed over and hunted-looking when I start cheerfully talking about the latest book I have been reading. A bit like a toddler when you tell them its bathtime. It’s a look of desperation and fear.
So, I decided to stop torturing him and start a book tube channel.
What’s the worst that could happen – right?
Starting one was a surreal experience. You need a channel name, a google email account to link to said channel, have an intro / outro jingle, decide what your content is going to be… all of that jazz. And then after setting up your channel you need to start filming yourself.
Which opens up another bag of worms.
Sound and image quality… Getting your hands on a microphone and ring light… Wardrobe malfunctions… Camouflaging double chins… Coming to terms with the fact that (yes) that really IS what your voice sounds like and (yes) you really ARE that awkward in person.
I managed to get my hands on a cheap microphone and a desk ring-light of sorts and started obsessively watching / analysing channels I already followed to see how the experts did it. Only to realise that I really had my work cut out for me just in time to post my very first video.
This was a “booktube newbie tag” and so horrifically cringey I can’t even tell you. My top came a bit loose and my boob almost popped out. But it got to the point that I couldn’t face looking at the camera any longer so I just uploaded the damned video footage I had managed to film and sent a silent prayer to the Youtube gods that it wasn’t that bad.
I mean, it was bad… but hopefully not that bad.
Saying that (between you and me) I’ve made the executive decision to keep the channel secret from my family, friends and Mr Maybe. This is because I think I may spontaneously combust and die if they ever saw it.
Much to my delight over the following week I have a few subscribers (7! Imagine!) and a couple of views under my belt. I was also shocked at how nice and supportive the other booktubers were.
I don’t know why I was so shocked but an image of ‘Mean Girls’ popped into my head and wouldn’t go away. Thankfully it wasn’t like that.
The only thing to do now is to keep producing videos. Which is a bit harder than you’d think as a lot of my ideas for videos outside the “normal” review fomat are vlog-style tours of literary hot spots and places of interest in London. This is understandably not possible at the moment.
However the upshot is that I live in a small village in the heart of North London where there are quite a few film and heritage locations / weird and wonderful bookshops to explore etc … so that’s something. I could also do a bit of celebrity spotting considering there are quite a few creative types in the area. Such as Jude Law, Kate Moss and Sting.
Fingers crossed it doesn’t all end in a fiery chasm of failure and regret!
But on the bright side, you’ll get a ringside seat.