Wow. I have been blogging for an entire year, this is crazy for me. Tonight I’m going to be talking about a few things. For my third blog anniversary post I’m going to discuss how I started book blogging, how it’s affected my life and overall what I’ve learned while blogging.
~How I Started Blogging~
I remember sitting at home for the second summer (and year) in a row. I wasn’t going to school and I was unemployed. I needed something to do, so I thought I’d start a book blog. But of course, I already mentioned how I started the book blog in my first blog post. However, I’ll reiterate it in some basic bullet points.
1. Somehow in this time period, I was buying more books and wanting to kind of talk about them, but I wasn’t sure how. I thought of having a journal to keep book notes in, which, kind of went okay. Until it didn’t. And I stopped.
2. A book blog came to mind a couple weeks later because I had already had unsuccessful “inner self” blogs, fairytale blogs and music blogs. For some weird reason, I was reminded of the book blog I wanted to start a few years ago.
3. I researched booktube first. After some failed moments of me recording myself (unsent to YT), I decided it wasn’t for me. At all.
4. I looked into the blogosphere second and liked what I saw.
5. After a couple weeks of researching, I made my blog, email and changed my Twitter handle (which had no followers anyway, really).
That’s basically it. What drew me to the book community in the first place was the sense of community that booktube had and I wanted that, but at the same time, it seemed like there was a big inner circle that I wouldn’t be able to break into, if I wanted to. I thought book blogging would be a better fit because there was the sense of community there, an even stronger sense of community there and I’ve always wrote better than I talked.
~How Blogging Has Affected My Life~
Did I just say I wrote better than I talked? Because now the words are not coming at all. Haha. How has blogging affected my life…Let me count thee ways.
1. It’s given me a sense of purpose
Not being in school, not having a job and not being in a relationship can definitely wear a person down and I had already been in that position for about a year at this point. When I discovered book blogging and the community, I liked having something to look forward to doing each day. Does that sound pathetic? That totally sounds pathetic, but it’s true. I liked having those first few readers who would comment or even just VIEW my little, tiny bog and occasionally comment. I liked reading blogs and commenting and getting to know people at least a little. It’s kind of small, but blogging has given me a sense of purpose which has really helped me.
2. I’ve discovered so many books
Oh my gosh, if I didn’t blog, I wouldn’t be reading Fangirl right now. Okay, I may have since I was interested in that book before blogging, still! It was an “after blogging” book I bought. I wouldn’t have discovered the awesomeness of I’ll Meet You There or All The Bright Places or More Happy Than Not.
~*~Basically an interlude~*~
-If I Didn’t Blog-
I wouldn’t be able to fangirl with people over said books.
I wouldn’t have found characters I related to since I kind of stopped reading “new” books.
I would be pretty lonely without people in the community.
I would have one less outlet than I had before.
I would miss twitter chats and never know so many of you existed.
I would have missed out on a great community. Which brings me to number three:
3. I’ve been welcomed into a community.
No one knows how much I love this bookish community. I really do. Even when I’m going through month long reading/commenting/blogging slumps and there’s drama, I love being here. I can’t even mention how many friends I’ve made since joining the community. I don’t know what I’d do if I wasn’t somehow in the book community on a daily basis through blogging or commenting or Twitter. It’s become so important to me that even with my hiatuses I’ve taken and there have been several, I always come back. This section is really short, but basically being welcomed into the book community is such a big deal for me, so thank you all. Again.
~What I’ve Learned While Blogging~
1. Make sure your laptop can use Adobe Digital Edition BEFORE requesting e-ARCs on Netgalley/Edelweiss
I’ll admit it, before I was book blogging, I DID know about arcs. Why? Because I researched. 🙂 I’ll also admit that arcs were very enticing (I’m only human) so after a while of book blogging (a month later), I requested books on Netgalley and Edelweiss. Little did I know, that my Mac would NOT be compatible with the ADE program. So I had these eARCS that I could not read. And this is why my ratio on NG is half of where it should be. 🙂 Moral of the story? Make sure your laptop is compatible or have a Kindle beforehand.
2. Don’t request so many eARCS
I know, they’re exciting, they’re shiny and you can get them in ADVANCE. Yeah, don’t go overboard, I went totally and completely overboard, especially since December when I finally got my kindle. Do you want to know how many eARCs I have right now that I have not read? Me neither! Too. Many. Pace yourself. I was just way too excited when I made my account that I requested eARCS immediately. Not to mention at least one was the third in the series and two were NA which I’m still not sure I’m interested in. Be careful what you request and when you request ARCs, you don’t want to end up with like, 50. . .
3. Don’t freak out
I kind of worry. A lot. When I first blogged, I was pretty okay though, I did my posts in the morning, I read blogs, I commented on those blogs and I commented on people’s blogs who commented on mine. Do I do all of this now? No, not lately. 😦 Which really makes me freak out. However, don’t. freak. out. I’m such a procrastinator (which has always been my nature) so I freak out if my pictures aren’t perfect on my blog, if I wait until 11pm to do my blog and hope I can post it by midnight, if I end up not posting on a day I wanted to post on. I freak out if I don’t read my arcs in time, if I bounce around when reading, if my arc review doesn’t get posted for a month or two or three (I know, I know)… I just freak out a lot. I’ve learned that it’s not good to freak out! It doesn’t do anything, it makes you tired, it makes you feel bad, it makes blogging a chore and not fun. And that’s not good.
4. Twitter is essential
Before I was blogging, I read on several posts “Get a Twitter. You need one” and I thought “Psh, what do I need a twitter for?” and now I know. I will never be without Twitter. Except for when I like, have to, but even then! I’ll be back.
It’s through Twitter that I met so many people, that I discovered so many books, and that I’ve talked to authors.Twitter is really an essential thing in the book blogosphere. Yes, there’s drama and yes it’s not perfect, but if I wasn’t on Twitter, I probably wouldn’t be blogging right now. Twitter is really where connections are made. I met my first bloggy friend through Twitter and we talk almost every single day. Yes, first bloggy friend, I will end up mentioning you….Don’t worry other bloggy friends, you’ll all be mentioned as well, somewhere in this week’s posts. 😉
Anyway, Twitter is so important for making friends, finding new blog posts, discovering books, talking to authors, getting questions answered. Did I mention it’s fun? It’s really fun. I love it. There are twitter chats, readalong hashtags, etc. etc. Since I’ve gotten a Twitter, I hardly ever check Facebook for anything really. Basic point of this bullet? Twitter. Is. Fun.
5. Make friends
I’ve said this a lot, but it’s true, the blogging community is fantastic. I love it. But if I didn’t have friends in the community? As great as it is, I probably would not still be here. My friends are sometimes the only reason I am still blogging and why I do still try. It’s easy to get caught up in the “Well this blogger has so many followers” or “this blogger has this arc” or “Wow. These bloggers seem so close” and it can be upsetting for me. Because I want all of that.
However, do I “need” all of that? Do I need like 5,000 Twitter followers and all the arcs I’m dying to read? No. I don’t need that. What I do need are friends and I have those, so for that, I’m thankful. I’ve always thought to myself “If just one person reads my blog and enjoys it, I’m satisfied” Is that still true? Do I still think that? Yeah, kind of, but I’d like more readers. Plus, when you have friends, you pretty much guarantee at least ‘one’ person will read your blog. 🙂 So there I go.
And this is the conclusion of my third post. Tell me how blogging has affected your life or what you’ve learned while blogging and come back tomorrow for a slight discussion.