Long ago, in 2011, I became a book blogger.
By mid 2012, I had stopped blogging (short story: had babies), and didn’t pick it back up fully until this past January.
So here’s the thing. Back then, I used blogger to blog. Without really trying, I had a pretty decent following. It was also when you could still follow blogs and use google reader, so I actually knew how many followers I had.
After coming back to blogging six years later, things have changed. And really, so have I.
I’ve tried to treat becoming a book blogger this time around as though I’m new, because there really are new things to learn.
Instagram. Ok call me old, but I can’t remember if Instagram was even around in 2011. Am I a terrible person? Probably. But either way, I didn’t use it at all to drive traffic to my blog. Now Bookstagram is a big thing and I’ve been swept into it all. I love it.
Hosting Platforms. Back in 2011, I used blogger. I’m not saying it’s unacceptable to use today, I just don’t. I made the painful learning curve in switching to self-hosted WordPress. And honestly now that I’ve been here a while, I’ll never switch back.
Pinterest. So I wrote a hilarious Facebook post in 2011 about how I had no idea what people even used Pinterest for, because I wasn’t sure what it was for. Oh 2011 Jenny, you naive person. Nowadays, Pinterest is my biggest source of blog traffic.
What’s the Same
Twitter. The twitter community is honestly my favorite. I’ve met the most amazing people on Twitter. That’s not even an exaggeration. It’s my favorite place to socialize.
Netgalley. I used Netgalley in 2011 to request books, that hasn’t changed now. They have revamped their site and do a ratio of your accepted review books to how many you’ve sent feedback in to, and I think it’s awesome.
Book Features. A lot of the group posts have carried on throughout the years. Such as: Top Ten Tuesday, sharing your fave gorgeous book covers, etc. It’s neat to see how those have maintained and kept going throughout the years.
How I’ve Changed as a Book Blogger
First and foremost, the biggest thing I’ve done differently this time around is to be choosy with what I request to read.
I’ll fully admit that the first time around, I ended up on Netgalley and I went bananas requesting books. It was only after I started getting mass approvals that I realized I had to write a review for each book.
Only request what you will actually read and review!!
That’s the biggest tip I can share when it comes to reviewing books. Be choosy and only request what you know you absolutely 100% will read and review.
Even though reading is all about enjoying what you read, reviewing books is still work. Because while you’re reading, you’re also simultaneously thinking about what points of the book to write about, and how to rate it, etc.
The other thing I’ve done differently is not stress myself out doing all the group posts everyone else is doing. And this is not me dogging on those posts in any way, I know people love them and I love to read them.
But one of my biggest goals blogging this time around is to focus on my own schedule and my own content. It’s been fun stretching my imagination to come up with blog posts so far.
Don’t be afraid to go your own way.
It’s been an adventure this second time around delving into the book blogging world. Even though I’m coming back into it with some experience, there’s new things I’ve learned along the way.
And I think maybe that’s the most fun for me, that there’s always something new to learn.