Book Related · Everything Else

Six Lessons I’ve Learned in Six Months of Book Blogging

I can’t believe I’ve been at this book blogging thing for six months already. I honestly thought that I wouldn’t stick with it this long, but somehow, here we are.

I’ve learned a lot over the past six months. I had never really blogged previously, never getting past two or three posts before I gave up on it. And I’ve written a lot of book reviews over the years, usually on a much smaller platform, but this is a bit bigger than the small library sites for teenagers. So this has been quite the adventure, and I’ve learned a lot about books, writing, and people over the course of these six months.

In celebration of actually sticking with this for so long, I’ve decided to share six different things I have learned about book blogging, reading, myself, and everything else in between. Some may be very specific to me, some you may be able to relate to, I don’t know. You’ll have to tell me in the comments.

Lesson #1: Discussions and memes get the most attention, reviews get the least.

Technically, my posts about music get the least attention, but as this is predominantly a book blog, I’m not going to count those.

Almost without exception, my reviews of books get the least amount of views, likes, and comments. It was actually the hardest thing to accept about this whole thing when I started, because that’s what this blog was created for. I know now that it mainly comes down to people being into different books and different points. And I’ve seen it mentioned on different blogs and booktube channels, so I know it’s not just me. It’s just sad because I really want to just talk about books as I’m reading them.

Lesson #2: Getting ARCs and review copies is awesome, and also sucks a little.

Admittedly, I’m fussy when it comes to agreeing to review books. Because I work a lot, I will only take a certain number per month so I don’t accidently get too overwhelmed with stuff to do.

But having to read on a schedule, even one I’ve set myself, is stressful and sometimes feels like work rather than fun (not often, but now and then). Plus, new books come out or I get my hands on something I’ve been looking for for ages, and I want to read those right away, but I have other books I need to get to first.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining, because it’s usually a blast. Just saying it has it’s moments.

Lesson #3: Social media is probably very helpful, but not necessary.

When I was researching how to create a successful blog, they made it sound like social media was a make or break thing. So I made a twitter, instagram, bloglovin, and a couple others.

But here’s the thing: I suck at social media. Which is terrible because my business partially relies on social media to get news of my programs out. Six months later, the instagram account is the only thing I’ve kept up, and that’s hit or miss whether I actually post anything (I’m working on it, I swear).

Despite sucking at social media, though, I’ve managed to get a fair few followers and attention from a publisher and some authors, and all has been good.

Lesson #4: Re-reading is less of a thing when you blog.

I love re-reading books. That’s why I buy them, so I can read them over and over and over again. But when I’m writing reviews, re-reading books don’t happen as much, because I’ve always written something for them. While that means I’m finding all kinds of favourites, I’m not getting to enjoy them nearly as much.

Lesson #5: Scheduling posts is the absolute greatest thing.

If not for the ability to schedule my posts, I would make five posts on the weekend, and you would barely see me through the week. Most of my posts are written on the weekend, or at odd hours, but I can keep them regular with the amazing scheduler on WordPress.

Incase you’re wondering: Yes, this post was scheduled. This was written at 10pm mountain time, on September 6th. I am awesomely ahead on posts right now.

Lesson #6: Self-care is still a thing with book blogging.

Let me say this first: the book blogging community is amazing, and you are all so wonderful.

But we all set up expectations for ourselves, and set a schedule for ourselves, and sometimes that gets to be a bit much. I’ve learned when to step away and how to manage this little blog without making myself crazy.

Now, I have a question for all of you lovely readers: What would you like to see on this blog? More discussions, more memes, more music stuff, more anything else? Or would you like to see less of some things? Let me know, so I can make it happen!


26 thoughts on “Six Lessons I’ve Learned in Six Months of Book Blogging

  1. Is this really true? Reviews get the least views?
    That’s really all I write besides book sales and the occasional random post about a library visit. I want to do tags but I thought the whole point was to do book reviews.
    Now I’m crestfallen. I want to get more readers, but I love reviews. I love that aspect of blogging. What are the most popular posts?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. For me, reviews get the fewest views and interest out of all my book related posts. Some exceptions with very popular series, but tags and memes and discussions seem to get the most attention.

      Reviews are my favourite, and still the most important part of my blog. It’s what gets attention from authors and publishers. Just not from other bloggers and readers.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Great points!

    Reviews do get the least reviews, and I think it’s vaguely disappointing for all of us because talking about books is obviously the reason we started book blogs. πŸ˜‰ I do understand that people only read reviews for books/genres/etc they’re interested in, though. I still like writing them anyway, and I do like reading them.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Congrats on six moths of blogging, Hilary πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰

    I love all the points you brought up and definitely agree with them. It can sometimes be really frustrating when reviews get the least interaction because they’re what take me the longest to write. It’s kind of a catch-22 because to be a book blogger/vlogger you NEED to write reviews, but it can be off putting when it seems like no one is interested in them. I get what you mean about ARCs too. It’s definitely why I’ve cut back on them. I need to start scheduling posts more. That’s one thing I still haven’t managed, haha. And yes at #6, that is SUPER important!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you!
      It’s definitely the part of book blogging I’ve struggled with the most – the review issue. I like reviews. I love writing them, and I love discussing them. I’ll just have to try to comment on more reviews myself, and then go from there. Be the change and all.
      I’m actually planning to do a whole post on self-care for blogging, when I find time from work to do it. I think it’s something we need to talk about more.


  4. Great post! I definitely agree with you on re-reading. I love re-reading books, and ever since I started my blog over a year ago, I’ve just re-read 2 books. And both were re-reads because they were book club selections. I really miss my re-reads!
    And scheduling posts is the best thing ever! When I first started, I didn’t schedule any posts, and now every post is scheduled! It really makes a difference!
    About types of posts, I love discussion posts! I will usually click on them and read. But memes, tags, and recaps I tend to skip over. Especially when it is something that so many people participate in (www wednesday, top ten tuesday, etc). I love reading reviews, but I follow so many blogs now that I don’t have time to read every review posted. I tend to read reviews on books that I’ve read, books I’m interested in, or if the title or cover looks intriguing.
    I feel that reviews should be the bulk of a book blogger’s posts and not just memes and tags. Even if they aren’t as exciting.
    Great post!! πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Agree about Lesson #1 .. Which is a bit of a bummer at times, bcuz reviews is what I love the most.. I can understand why discussion and memes get more views and comments though ( something I am “guilty” of too 😦 )

    Liked by 1 person

  6. First, congrats on 6 months of blogging.

    I am so pleased you posted this. I’ve just past two months of blogging and am still learning every day. It’s really nice to see more veteran bloggers talk about things that I struggle with. I feel like I am always behind / getting it wrong on social media, so it is wonderful to hear you didn’t find it make or break.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. This was a great post. I’ve been blogging for almost 3 months now and I recognise myself in many of the things you’ve written. Scheduling has been a lifesaver for me! And I’m also a rereader. This hasn’t been a problem for me yet since I’ve had my blog for such a short time, but it might be in the future. But why wouldn’t it be possible to review the same book a second or even a third time? You could then for example focus on how the experience was different.

    Congratulations on 6 months of blogging and keep it up!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I agree with you on Lesson #1, which is kind of shocking. But I love discussion posts. They are my fave on any blog. I’m hoping to get some discussion posts up on my blog soon, but my brain just isn’t allowing me any ideas right now lol. So to answer your question, discussion posts!!! πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

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