This is a pretty big topic in the bookish community nowadays. Do you give trigger warnings for books or not? And then if you do how do you do it? There are so many different styles!!
I don’t know if people realise, but I actually put the trigger warnings for every book I mention in my videos at the bottom of the description. And I also include them in my reviews on the blog, you have to highlight the text to reveal them. I never want to have recommended someone a book and they trigger themselves when I could have easily warned them.
So you can probably tell I fall into the “yes I give trigger warnings” camp. I’m a “content creator” albeit a small one, and so it falls on me to make sure I’m giving enough information about the books that I’m promoting. And I also fall into the “slightly hiding it category”.
I know some people actively dislike trigger warnings, they don’t personally need them and so for them it falls into spoiler territory. I actually fall into this category! There’s only one trigger that I sometimes need and 99% of the time it can be inferred from the synopsis. So I’m really privileged with that. It means when I see triggers it often spoils me for the content in a book that otherwise would’ve been a twist for me and I prefer to go in blind. Now considering I post my tbr’s and I write out the trigger warnings for all the books… I don’t get to do that anymore 😂 but as I said before, being a “content creator” comes with a certain level of responsibility and so I suck it up! I Me not needing trigger warnings also means that I have to go on, sometimes oddly long, hunts to find the warnings themselves as I never know what needs pointed out. There are some really great databases like Book Trigger Warnings or Storygraph or people’s reviews on Goodreads. But sometimes it takes a lot more searching to be able to find them. But it’s always worth it. And I’m slowly accumulating a massive excel spreadsheet of all of the triggers that I can go back to when I mention a book again! (war and peace I’m looking at you)
Because I don’t want to “spoil” people who don’t like to see them, and because I want to be able to give people the active choice to check out the trigger warnings (and I always want to have them available) I “hide” them away. In my YouTube videos they are at the very bottom of the description box with a little “🔐Trigger Warnings🔐” header so no one gets confused. On my blog I put them in on the review posts, and they’re in white text on a white background. Which means that they can only be seen if you highlight them. Both of these options mean that the warnings are easily accessible whilst not being so in your face that anything is spoiled without warning
Highlight here for an example: this is how I do the triggers in my reviews. See how it works? It’s cool!
I totally stole the idea from Olivia’s Catastrophe (with permission of course) and it works super well! But I do think I need to make some changes in my videos, maybe with a little pop up stating that the warnings are in the description box. Because I don’t always say it while I’m filming and so people don’t always know they’re there!
Let me know how you feel about trigger warnings. Whether you like them, and if you’re a content creator how you make them available to your viewers!
2 thoughts on “Trigger Warnings for Books? 🤔”
I read a lot of romance genre books and this is hotly debated in romancelandia for a lot of reasons and a big one is that romance is major escapism reading and some romance readers don’t want to be caught off guard that way or they have an actual trigger to certain storylines and they want a trigger warning. I have reached out to different authors about their book and questioned if their book needs a trigger warning and it’s always a mixed bag of replies. Mostly authors say they aren’t responsible for how a person responds to what they wrote and I understand that response and I find that to be true. I have always said I don’t have triggers, but then I read a story recently that triggered me and it probably wouldn’t trigger others, so you never really know what may trigger someone. I’ve lost a child, a parent, siblings and I can read stories with these storylines, but once in a while you read something that levels you. So, while there are the obvious triggers, you can’t cover all the possible triggers a person may have and I think it can be somewhat subjective.
I do put triggers in my reviews but I do second guess myself from time to time!
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That’s really true! You can’t warn against absolutely everything that could trigger someone (I know I have a “weird” one that no one would warn for) but hopefully putting in some common ones can help people!
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