We’re back with another Bookstagrammer of the Week feature! Can you believe it? This week, we approached Leah of @coffeesoakedpages to talk about how having a Bookstagram account has impacted her life as a reader. With Leah’s fantastic pictures and vintage, almost dark academia aesthetic, it’s no surprise that she caught our eye. Let’s get into this interview with Leah, because I know that you’re two things: 1) foaming at the mouth to consume our Bookstagrammmer of the Week content and 2) impatient and want me to get to the point! Well alright then, get in losers, we’re talking to Leah.
If you aren’t familiar with our Bookstagrammer of the Week content, don’t worry, I’m here to guide you! Every week, our outreach team–props to them, they’re putting in the real work–talks with different Bookstagram accounts that we think deserve your attention. As I mentioned, today we’re talking to Leah of @coffeesoakedpages who has the warmest aesthetic that everyone can adore.
One of our favorite ways to get to know our Bookstagrammers of the Week is by asking about their beginnings. Specifically, their bookish beginnings because what better way to get to know someone than asking about their roots?
It’s obvious that reading is a passion of yours and we’re curious–when did you first get into reading?
My earliest memories of reading date back to my preschool years. My grandmother often took me to story time at the library and she allowed me to check out a few books each time. As the years went on, I developed a voracious appetite for reading and even worked as a student librarian in my school. I loved reading classics like Shakespeare and Dickens and I love sharing my books and passion for reading with others.
Now you might be fearing that Leah features a few coffee-stained pages on her Bookstagram feed, however, I can confirm that she is a responsible book owner and doesn’t do that! I can’t say the same of myself, but we aren’t getting into that today!
Your account–@coffeesoakedpages–is so stunning, how do you find the motivation and creativity to make such wonderful content?
Bookstagram has given me the space to express myself in so many ways. My motivation for my account comes from the peace and comfort I feel when sharing my passions with this community. My creativity for my content is drawn from the beauty of nature or the details that comprise antique pieces and architecture. I love putting together content for my followers that I feel may be calming or helpful to them in any way.
Leah definitely isn’t exaggerating about her content having a calming effect, I mean just a simple glance over her feed is enough to make me remember the peace I find in books and in bookstores.
Speaking of bookstores, we’d love to know where you’re from and if you have a favorite bookstore close to home!
I’m from a very small town in Ohio, and unfortunately, I do not have a favorite bookstore close to home. I often take short day trips to bigger cities to get coffee and to browse through beautiful shops. My favorite bookstore is almost three hours away, but the drive is well worth it. The Book Loft in Columbus, Ohio, is comprised of thirty-two rooms of books and music that span an entire city block.
Another way that we get to know our Bookstagrammers is by discussing fictional characters, especially the ones that they feel most connected to. This could be for a number of reasons, but we think that it’s a way to get a little more insight into our featured Bookstagrammer!
Which fictional character do you feel most connected to, and why?
The fictional character I feel most connected to is Jo March from Louisa May Alcott’s novel, Little Women. Jo is a character full of dreams and dazzling ideas. She is constantly holed away in solitude completely engrossed in reading or writing. She is fiercely devoted to her family but also longs to be free and independent. I have always felt most at home while surrounded by stacks of books and dreaming of the world around me.
Jo March definitely holds a special place in my heart too! Little Women was the first book that my Grandma recommended to me! I always enjoy getting recommendations from anyone around me, so you can probably guess where I’m going with this.
What is one book that you’d recommend everyone to read?
A few months ago, my answer to this question would have been different. I recently finished a book that truly impacted my life. When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi is a brilliant non-fiction, autobiographical memoir that details his life and battle through stage IV metastatic lung cancer. It is packed full of emotion and questions pertaining to life and mortality. I do not read non-fiction often, but this book touched my heart in such a visceral way.
Our time with Leah is coming to a close but that doesn’t mean that you have to go without her content! Leah is very active on her Instagram and posts at least once a day! Following and supporting Bookstagrammers is really fun and it’s what all the cool kids are doing nowadays–I would know because I am a certified cool kid. ;)
Leah’s posts are always accompanied by fun and engaging captions that somehow link back to what’s going on in her life or in the world. But there was one particular caption that stood out to us that we have to ask about.
In one of your captions you explained that you do not like making New Year’s resolutions, but do you have any bookish goals you’re striving to achieve in 2023?
New Year’s resolutions have never been something that I have truly followed, but I do enjoy the feeling of a fresh start that each New Year brings. I have not set in stone any book-related goals, but I am striving to read most of the physical, unread books I have on my shelves. As fellow Bookstagrammers probably know, Bookstagram constantly tempts you to buy new books. I have fallen victim to this more times than I can count, but there is no such thing as having too many books.
This is our final question for Leah, but as I said, she’s always posting on Instagram so this doesn’t have to be the end of your love affair with her! It certainly isn’t the end of ours! Now this question is really more of an inquiry based on your experience as a successful Bookstagrammer.
Do you have any advice for aspiring Bookstagrammers?
My advice for an aspiring Bookstagrammer would be to focus on what books and reading truly mean to them. I think we get so caught up in what books are popular or what we think our audience wants to see and we forget about what reading means to us. A Bookstagram should be a place where anyone can share their love of books with others. It doesn’t matter how many books you read or how aesthetically pleasing your page is; what truly matters is that you love what you are doing and that you make it a place where you feel comfortable sharing your thoughts with others.
That’s the end of our interview with Leah! Make sure that you drop a follow on her Instagram account to experience her calming content all year round. And as always, be on the lookout for our graphic feature for Leah on our Instagram–@bookstrofficial! Seriously, our graphics department–Karly Kolehouse, our Bookstagrammer specialist–is always churning out these gorgeous features for our Bookstagrammers of the Week!
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