In This Playlist:
You may have heard that Microsoft just spent 2.5 billion to buy a game called Minecraft. Given that most of us hate spending even 60 bucks on games, a game has got to be pretty great for someone to shell out billions of dollars. Well, Microsoft is worth all that and then some, and if you don’t know why, this playlist will help you understand.
Minecraft appeals to males and females equally and rewards and inspires creativity in its players. It’s sold over 50 million copies across almost every platform you can think of. People spend dozens of hours a week building, tearing down, and exploring its terrains. Its creator never expected it to get as huge as it’s gotten, so it’s a relief for him to turn responsibility for the game over to one of the world’s leading software companies. Its fans just hope that the game maintains the level of quality the game has held.
What do you think? Do you play Minecraft? Do you think this is a good deal?
Earnest Pettie, YouTube Nation Sr. Curator and Minecraft noob
Peoples of the internet, do you love books? Do you love YouTube? As an avid reader, I often find myself asking what book should I read next? That’s where BookTube comes in, one of the fastest growing communities on the platform and one guaranteed to bring you literary fulfillment. A community of mostly youths — as an almost 30-year-old, I’m qualified to label them as such — this lively bunch has a deep passion for books and the world around them.
If you’re the type of person who mostly reads Young Adult literature you have will no problem finding a BookTuber that agrees with your taste. Don’t get me wrong, YA is a great genre, but I tend to lean more towards the classics and contemporary. Enter, Barry Pierce, the creator of the channel Bazpierce. This Irish gem has become my literary compass and convinced me to finally attempt Moby Dick. Only 18 years old (a youth!), Barry is not afraid to give an honest, straightforward, and sometimes scandalous review infused with intelligence and wit.
I knew I needed to find more about this redheaded kid that almost got me to dislike The Bell Jar and so, oceans apart, we sat down this week to discuss books, the scandals of BookTube, and the BookTuber he insists you should be watching.
Angela Sauceda: What made you want to start your own BookTube channel?
Barry Pierce: I wasn’t very good at vlogging because my life wasn’t interesting enough. One of the first BookTubers I watched was Elizziebooks and I watched TheReadables a lot as well. I was really fascinated by this community of book lover[s] and stuff. I was like, ‘Well I love books, why don’t I make videos about books?” And so here we are.
AS: I’ve heard TheReadables is an inspiration for a lot of BookTubers.
BP: Yeah, she’s the BookTube grandmother in a way.
AS: What sort of experience have you had so far?
BP: It hasn’t been incredibly difficult to kind of get people to watch. In many ways, I still don’t know why people watch, it’s kind of odd, because all I do is complain about books and just insult people. That’s basically my channel. But it hasn’t been easy either, I live in the middle of nowhere and my internet connection is less than desirable. So most the time I do have to upload videos overnight while I sleep.
AS: That’s a commitment!
BP: I just can’t wait to move somewhere that has a reliable internet connection so I can properly do videos more often, because my videos are very sporadic, I don’t really have a timetable or anything like that. So, yeah, it’s been fun, it hasn’t been very hard and it hasn’t been very easy.
AS: What is the most surprising thing people comment, or ask you, or anything generally you’re surprised about [with] your audience?
BP: I get a lot of comments of people saying, because mainly I’m a classics reader, “You make me want to read classics,” and stuff like that. And that is amazing because BookTube is still kind of like this big YA [Young Adult] dominated thing. Just the thought of reading Jane Eyre or stuff like that is so amazing because it’s kind of hard to get teenagers to read books that were written 200 years ago, there really is no appeal to them at all. So when people comment saying that they somehow find me funny, I don’t know!
AS: What draws you to the classics?
BP: I’m just so fascinated with history and how people lived. I feel like classics are really kind of a document of what life was like. The majority of the books I read are from the 19th century and life was just so vastly different. I think it’s fascinating to read just how different life was, how different things like marriage, the attitude of money was, and families were different. People were marrying their cousins and stuff like that, it was an interesting time.
AS: What’s the goal with your channel? Are you going to go back to making baking videos?
BP: I keep on saying that I’ll go back to baking and I never do it. But I really must persevere and actually make more baking videos. I’ve never really set out to be like just a mainly BookTube channel. I usually say I make videos about books and movies and baking. But I only really make videos about one of those things. But I really want to in the future not have it solely based on literature. I need to talk about films more, because film is my other major passion. And baking is just one of my favorite hobbies. Hopefully, I’ll be able to amalgamate them all equally sometime in the future and just make my personal channel.
AS: You just graduated, correct?
AS: Are you going to start school this year or take a gap year?
BP: I’m going to university, I actually start on Monday!
AS: Where are you going?
BP: I’m going to University College Cork, I’ll be doing a Bachelor of Arts focusing on English, of course.
AS: Do you have any life goals after, any career passions?
BP: I’d always love to be a teacher or lecturer professor or something like that. But I also always wanted to try my hand at writing, like write plays and stuff like that. But I feel I’m not a good enough writer. I think I’ll just stay with the books instead of the writing.
AS: Do you have plans of possibly moving out of Ireland?
BP: Not currently, nothing in the foreseeable future out of the Emerald Isle. But I’d love to live in London, it’s one of my favorite cities, I’d love to live there. I’d love to go to Paris for awhile because Paris is, to me, the center of literature.
AS: Going back to the BookTube community, this past year has been this evolution of the community becoming bigger and being recognized as a larger community on YouTube. And we’re seeing panels popping up at Vidcon and Summer in the City, do you see that as well?
BP: Yeah, it’s clearly obvious that BookTube is becoming bigger and bigger. BookTubers now are all getting sent books straight from publishers before the publication date. Which I am a bit iffy about, I don’t think that’s a very good thing. I’d love for BookTube to just stay a nice close knit community, but it’s going to grow exponentially. It’s going to become this big corporate thing, and it sounds awful but it probably really will some day.
AS: I feel like it’s the only community on YouTube right now that is the most loving and welcoming and I guess I hope that doesn’t go away.
BP: Yeah, that is one of the best aspects of BookTube, you don’t really have trolls on BookTube or anything like that. It’s just a nice friendly community.
AS: How would you describe the BookTube community to someone who is new or has no idea what it is?
BP: Well, BookTube is a community of people who like making video about books, basically. And they make videos on book reviews, there’s book hauls, there’s tags, there’s to be read piles, and stuff like that.
AS: How do you feel about those type of videos?
BP: I have been particularly vocal about them in the past, in my mind I think BookTube channels should be like, “I read this book, here is my review.” I feel like we’re losing reviews and if we lose reviews on BookTube, then what’s the point? There is just emphasis on, “Look at this pretty cover,” instead of, “Look at this brilliant content.”
AS: I actually agree. I think that’s the reason why I found you, because I was really tired of those types of videos. As a viewer, I had to seek out people like you, do you think that’s how people discover you?
BP: I regularly get comments and messages saying, “Oh thank goodness, I found a person that doesn’t review YA”. And people seem to be so happy to have found someone like me. I think that people do find me from just being tired of just the homogamy of hauls.
AS: I know you recently read Moby Dick and you said it was one of your favorite books of all time.
BP: Yeah, it was amazing.
AS: What book has changed your perspective on life in general?
BP: The book that probably influenced me as a person most is just going to sound really cliche, but it’s going to be The Catcher in the Rye. I read that when I was fourteen and it just blew my mind. I still think that Holden is the most realistic teenagers ever written in all of literature. That book is a godsend, I think The Catcher and the Rye is one of the greatest books ever written. When people criticize it I just ignore them.
AS: I’m not going to criticize you. Even though I totally disagree. People criticize me for saying that I didn’t like it. So I feel you on that one. So we talked about what book has influenced you greatly. What person has influenced you?
BP: In my second year of secondary school, my English teacher, he’s a priest, because this is Ireland and we’re all very Catholic. He instilled a love of literature within me. It was just the way he spoke about things, he’s read every book ever and is one of the most fascinating men I’ve ever talked to. I owe my entire love of literature to him.
AS: Would you want to be that to your future students?
BP: I hope I try to be!
AS: Well, if you think about it you’re already kind of doing that already with your YouTube channel. Do you have any recommendation for BookTubers that we should be watching?
BP: I’m really a big fan of Ron Lit.
AS: I love her too!
BP: She’s amazing isn’t she? She is so amazing, I love all of her videos! She’s talking about stuff that literally no other BookTuber is talking about. I love her to death! Everyone should watch her.
Angela Sauceda is a YouTube Nation curator and recommends drinking an Irish Coffee while watching Barry’s videos.
Pull your most fabulous heels out of the back of your closet and check your lipstick twice because today we’re venturing into a world run by Anna Wintour. Vogue. There is no denying the glamour, imagination, and style that goes into each Vogue cover, but what of the people that make it all happen? In this playlist, you’ll be treated to to an exclusive look into the personal lives — and closets — of Vogue editors, including the ever elusive Anna Wintour and her creative counterpart Grace Coddington. At the end of the playlist we want to know, could you survive a day working at Vogue?
Carly Lanning, Youtube Nation Curator, chief animal sweater consultant, and oxford shoe admirer.