Monday 9 November 2015

Secret Life of a Book Blogger Tag

Hello there, bookworms. I was tagged to do the 'Secret Life of a Book Blogger' tag by the wonderful Georgia at Stories In Books! So, I guess it's time I answered the questions. Let's go!

1. How long have you been a blogger?
I started my blog in January 2011, so almost five wonderful years. It was the first time I'd ever set up a blog, and here it is all these years later.

2. At what point do you think you'll stop blogging?

Honestly, I hope I never do. My blog has done so much for me these past five years. I put a lot time and effort into it because I love it. Sometimes I let things get the better of me, and it can cause a little stress. But whenever that happens, I just remind myself that no one forces me into blogging. This is something I chose because I have a passion for it, and if it starts to become a chore, I can step back for a while.

3. What is the best thing about blogging?
This is a difficult question to answer because there are so many great things about blogging. I love readers saying they've picked up a book because they liked what I had to say about it. There's nothing better than sharing books with others. That's what this blog is all about! But it's also been a great way for me to connect with other bloggers and make friends. The community is one of the reasons why I adore blogging so much. I've never known a more welcoming group of people.

4. What is the worst thing?
The pressure that can sometimes be placed on bloggers. This is only something that has happened to me a couple of times, but I regularly hear other bloggers discuss it. It's not a nice thing when authors and publishers get rude over review request rejections (it doesn't happen often, but it does happen). As book bloggers, we don't get paid for what we do. So many bloggers have exceptionally busy lives outside of their blog, and can only put time into it when they have time to give. As much as we want to be able to give every book a chance, sometimes there is just not enough time in the day to read everything that appears in our inbox. Blogging is supposed to be fun, it shouldn't ever become a source of stress in your life!

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

Mostly, I just add book covers from Goodreads to my reviews, which takes no time at all. But I adore photography, so taking pictures of books is something I love to do, so if I have a post that needs a specific type of book-related image, I'll photograph it myself. That can take quite a bit of time, because I'm a nightmare when it comes to getting the right shot!

6. Who is your book crush?
Oh boy, I have a whole list. But my first book crush was Jesse de Silva from The Mediator Series by Meg Cabot. I still swoon over him to this day.

7. What author would you like to have on your blog?
Gosh, again I have a whole list. There are so many authors that inspire me! I'd would really love to have Ruta Sepetys on my blog though, because it was her book, Between Shades of Gray, that inspired me to start this blog in the first place. It was such a fantastic story that I just had to talk about it.

8. What do you wear when you write your blog posts?

I won't lie, I write up most of my blog posts of a night, whilst in my PJs. Guess what I'm wearing whilst I write this post?

9. How long does it take you to prepare?
If it's a review, then it depends on how far in advance I get the book. Even if a book isn't out for another six months, I like to read a proof quickly after it arrives. I do this because I once got an advance copy of a book which wasn't due out until the next year, so I thought since I had plenty of time to read it, I'd put it aside for the time being to concentrate on other books. Guess who forgot all about it until three days before the release date? *points at self, hangs head in shame* So it all comes down to when the book arrives. As for actually writing the review, that can take a while, especially if I loved the book, because sometimes it's more difficult to find the words for something you adore!

10. How do you feel about the book blogger community?
Oh my gosh, I can't begin to describe my love for the book blogging community. As someone who has suffered with anxiety for a long time, I've always found it challenging to socialize, but the book blogging community is so welcoming that I felt at ease from the moment I began taking my first wary steps into the blogging world. I love the readers and fellow book bloggers that take the time to chat on Twitter and comment on blog posts. There is a tremendous amount of support in this community. I also love the authors and publishers that get in touch! I'm so grateful to the authors that want to share their work with me!

11. What do you think one should do to get a successful blog?
I would start with not trying to get a successful blog. Just do what you love doing. If you begin following a strict set of rules you think you need to follow in order to get your blog noticed, then you won't enjoy doing it. And besides, I think readers like to see something unique. Don't try to be like the other blogs you see out there that are successful, be however you want to be. If you don't want your reviews to be formal and follow the traditional reviewing style, then don't write them that way. It's up to you! You created this blog, you make the rules.

Thank you so much to Georgia for tagging me! I'd like to tag ANYONE that wants to answer these questions! Be sure to let me know if you do, I'd love to read your answers!

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