For What It's Worth

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

tell me something tuesday


Tell Me Something Tuesday is hosted by Rainy Day Ramblings and discusses a wide range of topics from books to blogging.

Question: What are some big misconceptions you had about blogging when you started?

Answer: ALL THE MISCONCEPTIONS!

~ I thought no one would ever see my blog so I wasn’t too worried about content. It was more like a personal journal for me – about all kinds of things – not just books - and who would care what I have to say and how would they find me??

~ It’s easy! You just throw a post up when you have something to say.

NOPE!

The more my blog veered into book reviewing the more time and planning it took. It’s so much harder than it looks! Between the reading, writing a review, formatting (the worst part of blogging), answering emails, visiting other blogs… It’s a really time consuming hobby.

~That I could read ALL the books. When I started accepting review copies  I thought I would love everything and be able to read every book I took on. I can read fast but the more books I accepted for review – the more I hit reading slumps and became a mood reader.

I was never in it to make money, get page views or arc’s when I began because those were all things that didn’t even really exist when I started blogging 9 years ago.

I’m glad I didn’t have those expectations. I think that’s something that really gets new bloggers down these days when they’re just starting out and seeing all the book hauls and popular bloggers. We were all starting out at the same time and discovering this new thing together so there was very little competition.

As for the good!

~ I never in a million years thought I would talk to people from all around the globe, make so many friends, attend conferences, interact with authors and publishers, beta read, and find so many life long friends.

It is REALLY hard to maintain a blog – even part time - but it has been worth it to me.

54 comments:

  1. It is super time consuming, but I'm glad you still love blogging! I also wish there weren't so much expectations for ARCs and stats now; I started blogging in 2011 and I feel like it was more gushing about books we loved and less actual reviewing for publishers. Oh well. This was interesting, thanks for sharing!

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    1. Yesss!!!! No one even knew what an ARC was at the time - or stats lol

      We were all just talking books and supporting each other. Then there came this *professional* aspect to it. With design, and format etc and it took a lot of fun out of it and this idea that you're doing it wrong even you dont' blog a certain way.

      Then of course the competition for views and books and jealousy came into play.

      It's so hard to keep doing this for a long time though if you aren't having fun so I noticed that only the hardcore bloggers that have fun remain.

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    2. Lol Exactly! It was a lot of fun getting into it so early. I think the blogs that do the best are the ones where people just do their own thing and not worry about doing everything the "right" way.

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    3. Totally agree. I have a much smaller audience/page views now but I'm fine with it. The people I do have visiting are here for the love of books or talking about fun things in our lives.

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  2. Yes to all of these things!! Man it takes time. But still I love it and the whole community.

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    1. I had to scale things WAY back to take off some of the pressure but I do still enjoy it and the people.

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  3. I never realised how time consuming a blog would be! It takes ages each day to catch up with everything!

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    1. It REALLY does! I don't think anyone outside of blogging realizes the time and dedication it takes even if you only post a few times per week. And I used to do it 7 days per week.

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  4. You are SO right. I had no idea how time consuming running a blog would be. Had I known, I may have reconsidered! I love it and I love my blogger friends but sometimes it really cuts into my reading time.

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    1. I was blissfully unaware of things when I started. Of course there were no rules back then and it helped. I'm sure I wouldn't be able to start now.

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  5. TO start a blog now would be hard and I would have so many misconceptions to be sure

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    1. These days is all about the stats and getting noticed and it's so much harder to that now with so many blogs out there. Your blog has to look nice and you need something that stands out from the rest.

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  6. Quote: "I thought no one would ever see my blog so I wasn’t too worried about content."
    LOL, this is new. Everyone seems so self-conscious today. I suppose back when you started there were many people who thought the same - Blogger, Wordpress or LiveJournal sounded all the same to them!

    Quote: "It’s easy! You just throw a post up when you have something to say."
    It would seem like the case, wouldn't it? But of course, even if you don't want to have a demanding schedule or follow strict rules (basically...YOU REBEL 😂), you soon realise that you need to plan a bit, or at least work a little (lot?) more than you expected. The very part of commenting/replying to comments can overwhelm you easily, at least if you have a thick group of friends-slash-followers. As for posting...hiatus are OK, but if you disappear for too long, you feel like you have to catch up with ALL THE THINGS!

    Quote: "Between the reading, writing a review, formatting (the worst part of blogging), answering emails, visiting other blogs… It’s a really time consuming hobby."
    Haha, that's more or less what I said replying to your comment on my blog.

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    1. This post took almost 1/2 hour and it's just a simple list!

      I used to blog 7 days per week and host features/events. I could never manage that now. It's a crushing schedule to keep up for long term. And honestly, there's very little reward for it these days.

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  7. I never thought anyone would read mine either! Back when I started I had 2 or 3 friends that read mine and I would read theirs. I never thought that I would meet so many people either. It's been fun though. I still just do my own thing though, no pressure that way.

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    1. That's definitely the way to go if you want to last. It's too draining to try to keep up with trends or stats.

      Not that there's anything wrong with that! Some people are more motivated and goal oriented than I am btu for me it has to be low key.

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  8. Yep yep yep. Formatting is the worst and while blog hopping is fun, it's sooo time consuming. I wonder if 9-years-ago Karen would believe where her blog is today.

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    1. It really is! And i love visiting and supporting other bloggers but it can take literally hours per day!

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  9. I'm not sure I had any preconceived ideas before I started blogging. I do know that I had no clue about how time consuming it would be. Add in visiting and commenting on other blogs and it's crazy how much time it eats up.

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    1. At my peak I would say I was close to spending the equivalent of a full time job on my blog. I just couldn't keep up that pace.

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  10. I definitely bit off more than I could chew with galley requests. I really blame pubs leaving my requests in limbo for so long, that I give up, and then BAM! I have 25 approvals for books being published on the same day. I didn't think I would bond with other readers the way I have. I actually feel like a part of this for real, and I never anticipated that.

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    1. I was always pretty good about Netgalley but I accepted too many books from indie authors at first. It seriously never occurred to me that I couldn't read them all right away or that I wouldn't love everything.
      Meeting other bloggers though has been totally worth the effort.

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  11. I definitely did not expect blogging to be so time consuming. I actually started with anime blogging way back in 2011 then moved to book blogging a few years later. And both are extremely time consuming but I love the things I learned :) Unpopular opinion but I kind of like the formatting part of blogging (but maybe also because I don't do much formatting and have a post template every time).

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    1. I've streamlined my process but blogger seems to fight me every single time I try to post something - rearranging my pictures or spaces. GRRRRR

      On the plus side - if you ever told me I would learn HTML or basic designing I would not have believed you. This has really pushed me out of my comfort zone.

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  12. I totally agree that a book blog is super hard, and I know I'm not organized enough to do it. Kudos to you for getting it done, and I love your blog a lot! Hugs...RO

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    1. your blog is awesome! And so fun with all the variety in your posts.

      Thank you :-)

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  13. What a great question. I so relate to your not being too worried about content, that for you it was more like a personal journal as these were my exact thoughts on starting my blog.

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    1. I got so far away from that once I started reviewing but I'm slowly getting back to that original concept.

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  14. Yes I never imagined that book blogging would be so challenging either or how much work it would take but I also never imagined how much I would fall in love with it and that I would still be doing it after eight years!!!

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    1. I have such slumps and want to throw in the towel a lot but I never do because I really love this little corner I've carved out and I love interacting with the friends I've made.

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  15. It's definitely time consuming to run a blog with frequent content. When I first started my blog I had high hopes for it being a good place to write articles regarding mental health, and I kept it up for a while with regular content. But when I started homeschooling my son all my blogging time went out the window. And that's okay for me, no regrets. Even though I don't write much anymore and it's little more than an online journal now, I still enjoy doing it. When I have time lol

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    1. Yeah - it's a really time consuming thing, even if it's a part time hobby.

      I think finding the level you're comfortable keeping up with is key.

      I had fun doing it 7 days a week for years but that's not where I'm at now and it's ok.

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  16. Yeah I don't think I really had expectations either when I started. I don't think I knew this whole book community even existed lol. It's kind of better that way, not to have expectations, because then it's a pleasant surprise when you start getting views and comments and review copies, haha.

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    1. Same. I didn't know there was such a thing as arc's or even book bloggers. lol

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  17. so glad that I met you through blogging and yes its hard work to maintain the blog. Yeah the arc, and pageviews and all okay. I think the only fun memory I have was getting the divergent book and meeting you online and asking for book :) but a great friendship came from that . I also remember some scandals from YA with other bloggers . But hey its like a job .Love you

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    1. The friends I've made are the biggest surprise. I'm so shy but I feel like I've met *my people*.

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  18. Meeting people from all around the world is the best! 💜 Nine years, wow! When I first started five years ago the longest lived blogs were four years, and maybe I knew of one or two that were five years, at that stage in book blogging. It's amazing to see bloggers who have around 9-10 years now.👍✨

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    1. There aren't many of us left from WAAAAAY back lol

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  19. Yeah, the more you niche into book blogging the tougher it gets and keeping up with the reading too! I definitely had that misconception you did going in. I am glad we get to meet so many wonderful people from around the world - you included <3

    My recent post: https://oliviascatastrophe.com/2019/02/january-wrap-up-2019/

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    1. I think it's so much harder to carve out an audience these days. but if you do that core group is loyal!

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  20. That would be my answer too! ALL THE MISCONCEPTIONS!

    Yes Sis! formatting IS the worst part of blogging! UGH!

    I had to learn not to have ANY expectations about my blogging!

    GREAT POST!

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    1. My expectations were weird - like I didn't think it would be anything so it's all surprising to me lol

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  21. It is so time consuming, but I think it's worth it too. And yes it's amazing how we talk to people from all over the world now- that still amazes me.

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    1. It's crazy how much time it takes even if you're only casual about it.

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  22. Haha I can relate! I didn't even know the book community existed! I definitely thought I'd just be blogging for myself.

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    1. Yes. I was completely oblivious. I didn't even know book reviewing was a thing,

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  23. I couldn't agree more Karen, it's hard work but the benefits are rewards within themselves really. I love the interaction. I love meeting people and readers from places oceans away who share a love of reading and through books, become friends. I honestly didn't think I'd last longer than a year or two, I'm so glad I kept going otherwise I wouldn't have met wonderful people such as yourself Karen.

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    1. I think you have to find your own pace and style to last a long time but I think it's worth it.

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  24. I don't think I really had any expectations or anything from it. I went in without knowing much of anything or about the community. Just jumped in and started and was like...just do my thing. lol I don't really mind the formatting until something doesn't do like what I thought it would do. LOL

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    1. It's strange but my expectations were that I had no expectations lol Everything is was surprising to me lol

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  25. Oh gosh, I'm so glad I didn't have all the pressure of stats, followers, etc. when I first started blogging. It's been tough sometimes, but I love it. I've met some wonderful people and discovered amazing books.

    -Lauren
    www.shootingstarsmag.net

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    1. Yeah, I didn't even know about analytics or anything for YEARS lol

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  26. I started blogging 8 years ago and I have to agree with this. I had no clue what I was doing, and at first it was light and easy because no one really read my blog. However, once I started to take on more books, and learn what blogging was all about, I realized that it was more of a job than a random "let's do this!" sort of thing. I don't regret it though. I love reading and sharing books with everyone and I've met some pretty awesome people and have come across some amazing books that I wouldn't have come across otherwise.

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  27. I agree with all these. I had no idea how time-consuming blogging would be. It’s like having another job. Every day, I wake up early and stay up late so I have time for blogging.

    Aj @ Read All The Things!

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