To Do Lists, Young Adult

Top Ten Tuesday – Hey there, Newbie!

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature created by The Broke and the Bookish. Every week they come up with a topic and invite whoever wants to add their own list to their own blog.

I’ve actually only been blogging for a short while – about 6 months – so I think I’m still fairly new to the book blogging game. One of the things I’ve noticed about the book blogging community is that everyone is pretty over the moon when asked for advice and eager to give tips and suggestions to help others be successful. What this stems from, I have no clue, but it’s been one of the best communities I’ve been a part of.

Although I am still new, I do have a  few tips that I’d suggest for new book bloggers.

Here are my Top Ten tips for new book bloggers:

Have fun! – That’s why you started your blog, isn’t it? Blogging is fun. Enjoy it!

Don’t be afraid to copy – I looked to several other favorite book blogs when I was starting mine, seeing what they did, how they were set up. At the time I emulated some of the things I liked about their blogs and eventually I changed them to suit my own tastes and preferences.

It’s a marathon, not a sprint – Successful blogging doesn’t come in a day or a week or a month… you might not find a large audience for a year. You might not find your niche right away. Don’t let these things be discouraging.

Pace yourself – It’s easily to become ambitious and want to do all the things. Slooooowwww down! Don’t try to do everything out there; you’ll only burn yourself out. Start out with what you know: writing about books. Become good at this, develop your book reviewing/blogging skills. Once you feel comfortable and find a good balance, add something. Whether it’s one of the many memes out there or discussion posts or something of your own creation, keep it minimal until you feel comfortable to add another.

There’s no “vs.” in blogging – When you start blogging you’re probably going to “meet” some other new bloggers. It’s easy to say “well so and so’s blog is going better than mine. I must make mine as good as theirs!” No… no you don’t. You’re writing your blog, not theirs. Don’t compare yours to theirs; each are individual.

Read others’ blogs – This is probably one of the most important aspect of blogging. It’s a social community. BE SOCIAL! Read others’ blogs, comment on them, create conversation… this will draw people to your blog and in turn will create conversation on yours’. That’s the point of blogging – creating a society.

Don’t take things personally – This is one I’m still working on. Not everyone is going to agree with your opinions, not everyone will write things you like. That’s life. Unless someone says something like “You’re ugly, dumb and a terrible person” you shouldn’t get offended. Everyone has an opinion, everyone sees things differently. That’s the beauty of literature… we all interpret things in different ways.

Don’t be afraid to state your opinion – Like the above tip, this is one I’m struggling with too. It’s difficult to put your honest opinion out there sometimes; you may be afraid of reactions, offending someone, whatever. In this community, there’s a lot of respect among bloggers. I may not agree with some of my bloggy friends, but I respect them as bloggers. If you present your opinion professionally and tactfully, there’s nothing to fear but open and honest discussion.

Always remember why you’re blogging – It’s easy to forget this reason, believe it or not. You can become inundated with trying to keep up with others, pushing yourself, whatever; you can lose sight of your initial reasons for blogging. You love books and you want to discuss them. Keep this in mind and you’ll be successful.

Take advantage of media outlets – Going back to blogging being a social activity… most blogging websites have features that enable you to link your blog to Twitter, Facebook, etc. Do this! Whether you’re big on tweeting or facebooking or whatever it is you do, take advantage of them. Promote your blog on these sites, keep in touch with your fellow bloggers, however you wanna do it. DO IT!

I’m really excited to see what other tips I read today. Maybe some I can use, maybe some I can suggest to others… Either way, if you’re new, welcome to the neighborhood!

 

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20 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday – Hey there, Newbie!”

  1. Great tips! The “marathon, not a sprint” tip is especially helpful. I think it’s easy to want to be huge and popular from the get-go, but it just doesn’t work that way. Content is king, and really good content takes a while to build and connect. You really do have to blog because you love it!

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    1. As lame as it sounds, that’s been my motto over the past couple years. My little sister graduated from HS 2 years ago and I made her a mix-tape of “graduation” songs. One of them was Baz Luhrman’s “Wear Sunscreen” song he did from like 97. One of the lines was something like “the race is long but in the end it’s only against yourself.” That’s become my motto for blogging and I have to remind myself of it CONSTANTLY!

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  2. I particularly agree with not being afraid to copy or be inspired by someone else! I’ve learned a lot just by reading book blogs and seeing how others promote their stuff and engage with the community!

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    1. Exactly! I followed a couple blogs before I even thought of blogging, so when I decided to create my own, and was unsure about what to do, I looked to them for insight to see how they were successful. Although at the time I hated that I copied some of their stuff, I feel like now it’s evolved into my own work and I’ve learned a lot from trying out things that others did before me.

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  3. Great point about pacing yourself. IF you want to try to do tons of stuff, write it up and draft/schedule it. See how you feel about it in a few days or weeks. You might realize you spread yourself too thin.

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    1. I ALWAYS have problems with that… I want to do too much all at once and sometimes have to stop and say “dude, you’ve posted 3 things already today. People are sick of seeing you pop-up!” I need to make it more of a habit of scheduling things, jotting down ideas and deciding when to post them. I feel like I would be a lot less frantic-scatterbrained if I did!

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  4. I agree that it’s okay to have differeing opinions or negative reviews. All you have to do is make sure you explain yourself clearly. This way, no one should be too offended, and they have better chance of seeing whether they agree with you. For example, if you say, “I didn’t like this book because there were too many points of views and I was confused,” I can understand it. But it won’t discourage me from reading the book because that doesn’t generally bother me!

    Thanks for sharing your advice!

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    1. You’re welcome! And I totally agree. When I read that someone doesn’t like a book, I’d much rather know WHY they don’t like a book. That’s what makes literature so fantastic… one person’s dislike is another person’s love. Blogs that point out their reasons behind not liking something and backing up an opinion with reasoning are much more appealing than those that just state something with no backing it up.

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  5. Really good words of wisdom. I like that you said to remember the reasons you started blogging. It’s easy to lose track by worrying about what other blogs are doing, but ultimately you have to be yourself. Your blog is definitely fun and has a lot of personality. Thanks for sharing your tips!

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  6. One of my favourite aspects of your blog is the opinion-ness of it. Also, I love the setup of your reviews because they’re always fun to read. Great tips!

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  7. I really agree with the last point you made about taking advantage of social media. I joined Twitter and its helped so much! I feel more connected to the book blogging community, and its helped me find blogs I enjoy and helped me get to know followers too 🙂

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  8. OOO I need to work on not taking things personally. Sigh.

    ALSO I totally agree that blogging is a marathon and not a sprint. AND I LOVE LOVE LOVE your tip about how there is no vs. in book blogging, because I always forget that but it’s so important.

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  9. As a new blogger, I find this post really helpful. Especially when it comes to trying to do everything at once or how there’s no vs in blogging. I’ve done my fair share of looking at other blogs for inspiration on where or how to begin, but I also already knew the type of blog I wanted to create. The dilemma with that is feeling pressure (from myself) to get enough quality content in all my blog categories without either posting too often or spreading myself too thin. Thanks for writing this post, you have great advice.

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