It’s been a while since I’ve written a personal post and I’m overdue for a book tag, so I figured I’d do two in one with The Secret Life Of A Book Blogger Tag. I’m not sure who started the tag, but I got the idea from Sammie @ Bookshelves & Biros. Thanks, Sammie!
I chose this tag specifically because I wanted to further connect with my readers and followers. I don’t want you all to forget that there’s a person behind this blog and that I’m kind of cool but also lame and very relatable. 🙂 Book reviews, reading lists, and Q&As are all great; however, personal posts are just as important in a book blog.
This post turned out longer than I expected, so feel free to skip around. Let me know if you agree with any of my answers or respond to the questions yourself in the comments!
Without further ado…
~ The Secret Life Of A Book Blogger ~
How long have you been a blogger?
Seven months and fifteen days to be exact! My very first post wasn’t even an introduction. I went straight to the reviews because I had legitimately no idea what I was supposed to be doing with a book blog. Before publishing this review on January 24th, 2016 I had never run a website of any kind and only wrote sporadic reviews on Goodreads. Now, I like to pretend that I know what I’m doing and sometimes people believe it. I think.
At what point do you think you will stop?
I’m not going to say never, though I certainly can’t imagine myself running a book blog when I’m fifty. But hey…life is weird, life is strange, so who knows? What I hope to accomplish with this blog is to establish myself in the bookish community so that one day, it will be just a tad easier for me to break into publishing or do cool things like become a Book Riot contributor! When I started, I truly never imagined I would acquire the following I have now. Granted, I’m not a huge blogger or anything, not even close, but the small successes I’ve earned have shattered even my highest expectations.
What is the best part?
I’m inspired by other bloggers and members of the book community (especially on Book Twitter) every day. The best part of being a book blogger is that I learn so much from you all through discussions and conversations. But most importantly, I have never been more knowledgeable about the publishing industry, new book releases, hidden gems, and tons of other bookish things than I am now. In the 7 months since I started my blog, I have added more books to my TBR than all other years of my life combined. The amount of book titles I have learned and book covers I now recognize is staggering. I’ve never had the best memory, but when it comes to remembering book titles, covers, and authors, I amaze even myself! Also, getting free ARCs and review copies is pretty amazing. I’ll never get tired of bookmail.
What is the worst part?
*sighs* I must give the boring answer because it’s the honest one. And I’m going to get real honest now. You guys, I love being a book blogger, but it has essentially taken over my life. Don’t get me wrong – the reason you see me on Twitter constantly and blog hopping almost daily is because I love doing this. But it is literally exhausting sometimes. The time it takes me (I’m naturally slow at everything..basically) to run this blog even at 2 posts per week is far more than I ever expected. I can’t finish most 300-page novels in 3 hours like some people, so the reading aspect of blogging is already a huge time commitment for me. The planning, designing, and writing of blog posts also takes me hours for each one. When you add in blog hopping and replying to comments, I basically have a second full-time job. I do get paid for site visits now, thankfully, but with all the giveaways I do, the ad revenue barely makes up for the expenses. See, now I’m getting all negative and depressing. Even though there are negative aspects to blogging, the positives outweigh them all because I’m still around and won’t be going anywhere any time soon.
How long does it take you to find/create pictures to use?
Before I joined Bookstagram, nobody warned how time-consuming taking pictures of books would be. You’d think snapping a good shot of a book would be quick and painless, but it ‘s most definitely not. You need the right lighting, props, angle, and a certain je ne sais quoi that I certainly do not have. I feature my own pictures of book covers for all reviews, so that means spending 15-20 minutes snapping several shots until I get the right one, then heading over to Canva and making a header image. If I didn’t have Canva, I would probably wouldn’t be book blogging, to be quite honest. Okay, I’m exaggerating but only a little.
Who’s your book crush?
I don’t know what this means, so I’ll break it down to a few categories.
Fictional character crush: Zacharias from Sorcerer to the Crown. He’s very handsome, kind, empathetic, and starts off as one of the most powerful magicians in the story. Sometimes I’m attracted to power.
Book I’m in love with / cannot get over: Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi
Author crush: This is kind of embarrassing to admit, but Adam Silvera 1000%. *swoons*
What author would you like to have on your blog?
Hmm, let me think *coughAdamSilveracough* about this for a bit. I’ve already featured a few authors on my blog and it’s been a wonderful experience every time. For Latinx Heritage Month, I’m going to collaborate with tons more! So I’m actually very happy with the connections I’ve made with authors, especially on Book Twitter. I’ll remain realistic for this question because I don’t want to be disappointed. I’m happy to work with any *coughAdamSilveracough* author in the future! Ahem, excuse me. *clears throat*
What do you wear when you write your blog?
I’m wearing my regular work clothes as I type this response, which is very business casual. I don’t have a schedule for when I write. It may happen literally whenever I feel like it, so sometimes it’s in the early afternoon, right after work, or at 2 a.m. in the morning. I don’t want to talk about what kinds of clothes I wear.
How long does it take you to prepare a post?
I addressed this question briefly already. I don’t want to get specific about how long it takes me to write a review because I’m embarrassed to admit it. Just know that it’s probably longer than most of you, okay? Any kind of post you can think of — book tag, review, discussion, listicle, a serious piece, etc. — it will likely take me longer than you to write it up and have it ready to be published. That’s the reality and I have come to accept it.
Did you know I landed a role in Zootopia? It’s true:
How do you feel about the book blogger community/culture?
My little corner of the blogosphere is wonderful, but recently I have seen a more unpleasant side of this community. It was disheartening to witness so much conflict and discord among people who are usually friendly and peaceful. But these prominent discussions around diversity and the importance of calling out problematic representation are necessary if we want to see progress. Initially, it may have seemed like we took a few steps back, but the overwhelmingly positive response in support of diversity since the initial conflict has been encouraging. We will always have critics and opponents, that’s a fact of life. But a shift in reading culture is happening now and I’m glad to be a part of this community to witness it first-hand.
What do you think one should do to have a successful blog?
If you ever want to get noticed and gain a loyal following, however small or large, you have care about other people’s work too. Book bloggers who are in it only for themselves or who legitimately do not have time to read other blogs may not get the stats and engagement they desire. There are exceptions, of course. For most book bloggers, the reality is that people aren’t going to magically show up to your blog and become loyal readers just because you publish something. Once you build this base of loyal readers, you have yourself a successful blog. It doesn’t matter if your blog isn’t getting 1000 hits per week. What matters is that you build a community of your own so that you may experience the joys and perks of being a book blogger.
That was fun! If you’ve done a personal post or book tag recently, link me in the comments and I will read it because I’d like to know you all a little better too. The next month or so will be very busy for me, so I may not have as much time to blog hop as I’d like. However, I will try because you all are awesome. Please don’t forget about me and do comment on my posts even if I’m not the one who wrote them. 🙂
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