The Secret Life of a Book Blogger

In which I answer questions that give a sort of behind-the-scenes look at this blog. 

I just know that there are tags and awards that I’ve forgotten to do, and I feel like a horrible person about it. I’m going to be better in future!  I’ll at least remember the ones that are pingbacks to my about page, because I can see those. Maybe sometime I’ll hunt for the others.

Anyway, I was tagged by Mystery Date With a Book for this tag. Thank you! It looks like fun. You guys should really go and have a look at her blog. It’s quite lovely.

I don’t see any rules for this. That makes me slightly uncomfortable. Well, okay then. I guess we’ll just…get started?

How long have you been a blogger?

Well, I’ve had blogs in the past, but I’ve had this blog since March.

At what point do you think you will stop?

When it no longer serves any purpose.

What is the best part?

Being able to say what I want to say. It’s often quite frustrating to try to get my point across in real life, so I don’t bother. This is my outlet. And I love it.

What is the worst part?

When I’ve been away for a few days and I know I’ve missed lots of posts from people. The thought of scrolling all the way down my reader is overwhelming, but I feel guilty about not being caught up on people’s blogs. I’m actually in that situation right now, because I’ve not been on WordPress as much lately.

How long does it take you to find/create pictures to use?

It used to take me a long time, especially for featured images. But now I have a template that I use, and so it takes considerably less time. To find out exactly how much time it takes, I timed myself making this post’s featured image. It took me 1 minute, 30 seconds, and 23 milliseconds. So there you go.

Who’s your book crush?

It’s super weird, but I rarely crush on characters because of how much of a shipper I am. I don’t want the character to be with me, I want him to be with the person I ship him with! So for example, I’d probably have a MASSIVE crush on Zombie from the 5th Wave trilogy, but I ship him with Ringer way too much. When I finally get around to doing that Q&A video, however, I’m going to reveal my first fictional crush, because illuminatedliteration asked about it.

What author would you like to have on your blog?

Like, to interview? I don’t know, actually. Good question.

What do you wear when you write your blog?

It depends. If I’m writing after work, I look all office-y: heels, slacks, blouse. Right now I’m in comfy weekend clothes: loose pants, a t-shirt, and slippers. Sometimes I write in my pyjamas. One time I had this idea for a post in the shower, so I drafted it in my towel. It just depends.

How long does it take you to prepare a post?

Depends on the post. There are some ideas that are still simmering in my mind from back when I first started blogging. There are others that I sit down and post immediately. In general, though, I don’t plan my posts very well. I do so much planning about every little thing in real life; blogging is one of the few areas in which I take a casual approach.

How do you feel about the book blogger community/culture?

I don’t presume to being a part of it, so I can hardly comment on it. But in general I would say that it seems to be a diverse, welcoming, and comfortable place. It’s like a bookstore with comfy chairs—that kind of environment. As I’ve said before, though, I’m just kind of standing outside with my nose pressed against the glass.

What do you think one should do to have a successful blog?

As someone who doesn’t really have a “successful blog”—actually, hang on. What is a successful blog? How are we measuring this?

Are we talking about having a mass of followers? Because if that’s the case, I would say, get out there and follow other blogs like mad. Also, zone in on what types of posts are popular, and make more posts like that. Read the hyped books, and post about those.

Are we talking about having a small but very loyal following? Then go out and have quality interactions. Respond thoughtfully to every comment you get (not just a, “Thanks for commenting!”) and leave insightful comments on other people’s blogs. And post regularly, because once you have that loyal following, they’ll miss ya. They will.

Are we talking about just posting really solid, quality content? Then do that! I can’t tell you how to do that, but I can give you some basic tips:

  • Review books you care about. Doesn’t have to be what everyone else is reading.
  • Proofread your posts. Mistakes happen, but the less you have, the better the quality.
  • Bring your own unique perspectives to the table. Try to say what isn’t already being said. Share an unpopular opinion, if that’s what it takes.
  • Write in your own voice. It may be tempting to copy someone else’s, especially if you admire them, but it won’t sound like you. And blogging—almost more so than any other form of writing—should sound like you.


Since there are no rules here, I don’t know how many people to tag or anything. But I tag everyone! I think it’s fun to get a behind-the-scenes look. So please do this tag and link in the comments if you do. 🙂

Have a lovely day!

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29 thoughts on “The Secret Life of a Book Blogger

  1. I completely agree with your blogging advice! I don’t know what a ‘successful’ blog is either, but I prefer actually interacting with my followers. I’m always so overwhelmed when people actually comment on my posts and think it’s worth reading.
    I know exactly what you mean about dreading the catching up on posts. I’ve not been active at all lately, and scrolling through all the posts I missed out on my Reader … is time-consuming. I want to read every single post and comment, but if only we had enough time in the day.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Me too! I hope I never get to a point where I don’t respond to comments. If that means never having thousands of followers, that’s fine with me! And yeah, we need more time in a day, that’s for sure.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Definitely! I’m actually subscribed to a few blogs (yours included!) to make sure I never miss their posts. Not even one. But now that I’m getting more followers and following more people, it’s definitely getting harder to read all these posts.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. That’s smart! I was going to make a list of blogs that I don’t want to miss posts from so that I could remember to check them regularly, but I never thought about just subscribing! I’ll do that soon. And it completely made my day to hear you say that you’re subscribed to mine, by the way. 😀

        Liked by 2 people

      3. Haha 😀 honestly, you were the first blog I subscribed to. I think it makes catching up a lot easier, and maybe it’s admitting that I do have favourite blogs, but it doesn’t necessarily mean I don’t enjoy reading all the posts on my Reader either. 🙂

        Liked by 2 people

    1. Slumps are the worst. I have a whole list of posts I need to write (top of the list is my review/rant about The Last Star) but I’m just lacking motivation all a sudden. Anyway, you should totally do the tag! 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  2. I agree 100% about the catching up thing. I’ve gone away for a while and have come back to about a BILLION posts to read! And about the photos…how do you come up with a template? I know barely anything about that and have such a hard time finding the right measurements for my featured photos and I don’t even know any program to use to make the photos. Your insight would be much appreciated 😂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So I just googled like the ideal dimensions for a WordPress featured image and then on MS paint I made a white rectangle that size and put a border on it. Then I use Pixlr to layer images and text onto that basic template. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh man, I’m right there with you on the Dreading Catch Up After A Few Days Away thing. I’ve been out of town for a few days, and just sat down an hour ago to start playing catch-up on posts and comments. I feel like I’m drowning. Seeing that you struggle with it (and are currently struggling with it) is such a relief; it’s nice to know someone else is struggling at the same time. (That sounds weird. Um.)

    Excellent advice for creating a successful blog! I recently started working on a spreadsheet of blogs I’m following, and tracking which are my favorites, which I rarely feel compelled to comment on, and which never really respond to my comments. It’s past time I trim down the number of blogs I’m following, and devote my time and energy on those people I’m really connecting with. It’s a kind of big project, and I’m not hugely excited about it, but reading your advice gave me renewed motivation. So thank you for that! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know what you mean about the knowing someone else struggles thing. Um, LOVING the spreadsheet idea (especially since I don’t really use Excel for anything and that feels wasteful). I’ve been thinking about making a list of blogs that I especially care about so that when I am away for a few days I know what I actually want to catch up on. So that’s pretty brilliant. Might steal that idea.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I really enjoyed reading your answers. Thank you for the mention. I can relate on the “catching up” feeling. Unfortunately, I have a few awards that I have let slip through the keyboard. We are all just doing the best we can in this fast-paced, busy life. Thank you for such helpful advice, it’s really appreciated.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I liked your answers for “how to be successful”. You’re right, “success” is in the eye of the beholder.

    I already did this tag, and found some of the questions a little tough, too. Your answers were honest and well thought out, as usual. 🙂

    I tagged you for one of mine as well, but there’s no rush to get to it… Time isn’t necessarily my friend these days, either, so I understand!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. If I can’t get online to read posts for awhile, I admit I often write it off as a loss. There’s no way I’m going to catch up on posts if I go away a week on vacation or whatever. So I guess I just hope I didn’t miss anything extremely interesting.

    I’m posting the results of the book blogger stats survey tomorrow, so there’s that as a look into “successful blogging.” But I agree with you that, even though I set up the survey to assume successful=big, it really doesn’t have to. There are blogs with lots of followers I frankly don’t find interesting at all. I’m far more into quality content and blogger interaction.

    Liked by 3 people

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