Showing posts with label blog post. Show all posts
Showing posts with label blog post. Show all posts

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

What Book Blogging Really Is Like | #BloggerConfessions





Today I'll be letting you guys in on a couple of secrets about blogging. 

I think we all know blogging isn't as easy as it looks, but what is it really like? 

~ Well, come in and find out ~





  • #1: Obsessing over self-imposed deadlines
90% of the time you won't have a deadline for reviewing a book. Sure, with ARCs sometimes people will say "review before or close to the release date", but in real life any and every review whenever helps. 
The only deadlines I've ever had were those that I invented myself; the more review copies you accept, the more stressed out you get - the more you obsess. Ugh

  • #2: Side-eyeing other bloggers' follower counts and trying to keep up
It's not necessarily a matter of getting jealous, it's more about feeling left behind. Feeling like people surpass you. I definitely do try to keep up with my friends, to look at people's follower counts who have been blogging as long as I have, and it's really not a good habit. Adds unnecessary stress.

  • #3: Cringing at old posts
All day, every day! Sometimes I click through my old posts and cirnge at every single one. I don't think this will ever stop.

  • #4: Having slight breakdowns when all ARCs come at once
Again, this goes hand in hand with #1

  • #5: Refreshing the page 100 times after a new post went online
Do people like it? Did I make an annoying mistake that will make me cringe for 10 hours? Will this post do well? Will people hate it? You bet I'm refreshing my site 3829829 times every time a new post goes online.

  • #6: Really not reading that much
Yes, we're book bloggers, but reading is really not even half of what this gig is about. Maintaining a blog site is so much work from formatting, to designing, to brainstorming, to writing posts, to commenting, to replying to comments and so many more things! 

IT'S REALLY SO MUCH WORK, and in addition to that, many bloggers have day jobs and/or go to school, and there really isn't that much time left for actual reading. Sometimes I go months without reading a single book, but you guys would never know from looking at my blog because all the reviews are queued up as if nothing happened. Muhaa #trickery

  • #7: Wrestling emails
Review requests from authors, requesting books yourself, dealing with regular inquiries - I spend a good hour daily just replying to emails. Book blogging is really a surprising amount of office work.

  • #8: Crossposting until you want to throw out your computer
Crossposting is a must if you want your blog to grow and the bane of my existence. You must crosspost every single post to every social media platform you have, sometimes even a couple of times to give it the maximum exposure. 

Some sites can do this automatically for you and you can cheat a bit with Wordpress widgets, Google+, and Bloglovin, but you'll always always still have some outlets left to crosspost manually to. Sigh.

  • #9: Theme customization until somebody cries (it's probably me)
Just when you think you've reached that point in your blogging career where you're confident with your old posts, your theme, everything about your blog - oh boy, you'll have another crisis incoming.

I don't believe that blog themes are ever complete, I actually just changed something about it yesterday. Who knows, maybe I'll completely redo the entire site next month and then spend another year completely customizing it to my likings! Wow, just the thought of that makes me want to quit blogging!


What are some of your #BloggerConfessions? 

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Saturday, November 5, 2016

8 Tips to Get Motivated to Write Blog Posts | Book Blogging Tips (#45)



We all love blogging, don't we? 

As much as we do, sometimes it's hard to get motivated, to keep writing, to even gather enough motivation to click on "write a new post". 

I'll try to help you with that. 


#8 Look at your favorite bloggers that you look up to

You want to be like them, don't you? You aren't ever going to be like them if you don't write those posts! Envy is the biggest motivator. Trust me.

#7 Binge-writing and Scheduling: the OTP

You don't need motivation when you just live for those little moments when blog inspiration seems to come to you on its own. Use those moments up and binge write every idea you have at once and then slack for the rest of the month!

#6 Try something different.

Chances are you're probably not motivated because you're not ~feeling like~ writing a review, a discussion, a meme post, or whatever you're used to writing all the time. Personal posts are a great way to get motivated and to bring fresh content into your blog. What are you passionate about right now? A TV show? Your celebrity crush? Write about that. 

#5 Do something else blog-related

Not feeling like writing a blog post yourself? Comment on other blogs, design something, read a book - eventually you'll very likely randomly get inspired and will want to write a post. 

#4 RANT

Not feeling like writing a post - write a post about how much you don't want to write a post! Ranting in general is so much easier than putting together a well-structured and well-thought out blog post or review. Just rant away, let your anger flow, my buddy!

#3 Set goals and reward yourself
If you like playing video games or writing or whatever you do in your free time - only allow yourself to indulge in your favorite hobby once you've written a post. Half a post, if the motivation really is extremely low. Sometimes you gotta force yourself. You'll be surprised what you can accomplish if you really want to continue watching your favorite show or playing your favorite game.

#2 Brainstorm

It's perfectly fine if you don't want to actually write, but that doesn't mean that you'll necessarily also not have any ideas. Write down the titles of the blog posts you WOULD write if you wanted to actually write. Make a document on your computer with those titles and whenever you're in a motivation slump, read through those titles. The more ideas you've collected the more likely it is that you might fancy writing one of those posts!

#1 Remind yourself why you started your blog. And then do exactly that.
  • Did you come for the reviews? Then go review a book or read somebody else's review.
  • Did you come for the social interaction? Go comment on other blogs.
  • Did you come for the discussion? Participate in a discussion on another blog or write your own.



Remember 

Being in a blogging/motivation slump isn't the end of your blog. If you really need to and none of these tips help, go on a hiatus, if you like. The blogging world will still be back when you return and welcome you with open arms. 


How do you get out of motivation slumps?

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Friday, July 29, 2016

How often should YOU post per week? | Book Blogging Tips (#43)


I often find myself absolutely overwhelmed by this question.

I don't want to be that guy who posts too much or too little. I take blogging ridiculously seriously, I want to put quality content out there regularly.

But all the time I ask myself - am I really posting often enough or too often?

Looking at other bloggers, they seem to either post every day or every other day or every week, and I never know what works for me.

Just like everything in blogging, there won't be a general answer I can give you, it's all up to your personal preference and blogging needs. But the thing I can give you is a list of pros and cons of the different frequencies of blogging.

1.) Once per month
+ super easy-going, one post per month is an easy frequency to keep up for a long time
+ no stressful blogging!
- it'll be difficult to build a strong reader base unless that one post you post every month is phenomenal and you really found your niche
- readers prefer a higher frequency
- very little content
- you're absolutely limited in the things you can say in a single post
- lots of publishers demand that you post daily or almost daily if you want review copies

Recommended for: niche blogs, directory-type of blogs (if you post a lot of lists and links), established blogs

2.) Once per week
+ easy to keep up for a long time
+ not very stressful
+ 4 times per month is definitely enough content to put out
- some readers prefer a higher frequency
- you might have difficulties
- lots of publishers demand that you post daily or almost daily if you want review copies

Recommended for: all blogs, blogs with mostly original content

3.) Multiple times per week
+ lots of publishers demand that you post daily or almost daily if you want review copies
+ usually the preferred frequency of most readers
- can get stressful, it's quite a lot of content!
- you should look into scheduling to keep this up

Recommended for: all blogs, blogs with mixed content (reviews, memes, original)

4.) Multiple times per day
+ lots of publishers demand that you post daily or almost daily if you want review copies
+ pretty much no limitation in what you can say
+ so many possibilities to post different things and put a crap ton of content out there
- readers get annoyed by people who post this often very quickly
- very high possibility of accidentally making it spam-y (as in, posting a lot of low-quality stuff just for the sake of posting)
- it doesn't get more stressful than this if you can keep this up, you're probably a witch
- if you don't schedule, this is pretty much blogging hell, coming up with a couple of posts every day isn't ideal

Recommended for: meme blogs (seriously, how can you keep this up without doing a lot of memes), blogs with multiple hosts

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Thursday, July 14, 2016

No Comments on Book Reviews? | Book Blogging Tips (#42)




What I've noticed recently is that book reviews generally seem to get less reader interaction in form of comments. 

And I wonder why, because reviews tend to be the one thing I focus most on when I'm checking out a new blog. 


I personally read other blogs mostly for the reviews, but I figured maybe that's not what everyone seems to be interested in.

So I did a little digging, observed my own commenting habits, and tried to find out why people tend to comment less on book reviews than on other posts


1) People like to share their opinion

You'd think this would go towards the "reasons why people comment on reviews" pile, but it doesn't. Not everyone will read or even think about reading the same books as you. While I do follow many, many, and almost exclusively YA book blogs, there are maybe only two people whose tastes mesh very nicely with mine. 

If your readers haven't read the book - they can't share their opinion of it, so no comments on that!

2) Reviews are longer than most other posts

Everyone has their own way of writing reviews, but I noticed that people tend to write too much rather than too little. If I see a brick wall of a review in front of me, I sometimes just close the window and don't read it, even if I was interested in that blogger's opinion in the first place. I usually just zone out after a certain length and just skim the review. If I have skimmed the whole thing, I don't feel comfortable commenting.

3) Formatting is everything - you can lose a lot of readers over this

The only thing that's worse than having a 2500 word review is a poorly formatted 2500 word review. I do know some bloggers who do this only with their reviews but format everything nicely. If you post reviews like these, it's even less likely to get comments. 


Should we just stop writing reviews then? Nobody reads them anyways...

There are so many factors that can impact whether I read a review in the first place and whether I'll comment. Even if there's a perfectly formatted, wonderful short review of a book that I have read by someone that I trust - I don't think this would be a 100% guarantee that I'll comment. And you want to know why? Because I'm scared to disagree. 

Sometimes I don't like a book and I still keep reading reviews of it to see if I'm the only one, but I don't want a fight.

There'll always be books that people like or dislike, and there'll always be people who defend said book to their dying breath. I think maybe that might be the reason why there are usually so few comments on book reviews. People don't necessarily agree and don't want to start a fight. Maybe this, or they just don't read them.

Regardless, I'll still keep writing reviews. Will you?

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Thursday, February 4, 2016

You're A Terrible Blogger Because You Don't Post Every Day | Book Blogging Tips (#37)





For some reason there seems to be the general idea that book bloggers have to read 24/7. Read between classes/at work, read in our free time, read before bed. We aren’t casual readers, we read obscene amounts of books. Are we even human?

Book Bloggers are reading machines…?

I was approached by authors who thought that they were doing me a favor providing me with reading material because I might run out. As ridiculous as this sounds, this isn’t even a rare thing. I’ve heard this quite a couple of times. Ha.

MT0JxQ

Just because we like to read and are very public about liking to read, this does not mean that we aren’t human beings. Some of us are students, some of us have full-time jobs, some of us don't. Please don't look left and right and panic when you see other blogger publish multiple posts per day and always be on top of the new releases.

We aren't all the same. We aren't all reading 24/7. Some read a book a month, some read 10, and that's absolutely okay. Because guess what? We're all different human beings. Individuals. Ever heard of that word?
Don’t ever let anyone tell you you’re not a good blogger because you aren’t doing everything the same way everyone else is!!!

But other bloggers post more than you….

When I started out, all I did was post reviews. I mean it. A review a day. I felt bad when I didn't read more than 2 books a week. I was a reading machine. And that lead to me having tremendous problems later on. Reading slumps everywhere, panicking when I didn’t fulfill my self-invented quota.

Don’t do this like me.
Don't let the pressure get to you.
Don't ever feel like you have to read a certain amount of books or publish a certain amount of reviews to qualify as a good blogger. This is bullshit.

You're a good blogger, whether you post 0, 1 or 100 reviews a month. And you know why?

Because BLOGS just like PEOPLE are individual. I can give you as many tips as I want and try to make it easier for you but at the end of the day, you're the one blogging. You're the one making decisions. And they're right no matter what, because in that instant it works for you.

Post once a month, or post hundred times a month, whatever works for you.



Come back next Thursday for a new Book Blogging Tips Post!

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Thursday, January 28, 2016

When To Post ARC Reviews: Pros and Cons of Posting On Release Day or Months Before | Book Blogging Tips (#36)





What I do is usually very simple. The second I get the ARC, I read it and then queue the review to be published exactly on the release day, or if I can't, I schedule it for the day before.

However, recent discussions about this with other bloggers made me contemplate whether there's a better method.

Usually it's expected of you to have the review ready and online by the time the book is released. That's why you're getting the ARC, to deliver instant reviews even when the book has only been out for half a second.

When you get an ARC, you usually have three(ish) options when to post the review

1) The second you finish (~3-6 months before release)

+ Even if that's months ahead, you already got it out of the way
+ There's no chance you'll forget about the book
- Literally nobody cares about a book that'll be published in a couple of months time
- Honestly, not even if it's Rick Riordan or Richelle Mead, one week after the announcement people stop caring = ZERO publicity profit
if somebody sees the review and wants the book, they can't get it yet. 

2) Close to the due date (~a week before release)

+ everybody knows the book is coming, everybody's searching for early reviews
+ traffic!!!
+ simultaneously early enough to create buzz around the book (publicists likey), but also late enough to make the release seem very close and get people excited (readers likey)
- if somebody sees the review and wants the book, they can't get it yet. 
- you'll have to plan this one ahead, either read the book right away and queue the post, or pray to God you'll make it in time

3) Last minute (on release day)

+ everybody knows the book is out, hello traffic
+ if you got somebody interested in the book, they can get it right away
- again, either queue or pray
- you won't be able to get people interested in the book before its release

4) #yolo

Of course you still have the "screw it" option, where you just post the review whenever. But in order to do that you really have to have your life/TBR together enough to manage to keep track of all your review copies. Because nothing's worse than requesting an ARC and not delivering a review at all. Don't do that. 

When in doubt:

Ask the publicist that you've been in contact with and don't listen to people online who are probably working with different publishers and publicists that also have different expectations of you.



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