TTT: How to be a Great Blogger of Books

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The blogosphere is weird. I’m still not sure how I feel about it, but here I am another week. I had a blog once before, it didn’t work out too well. Then I moved to this blog, and it hasn’t exactly skyrocketed, but I enjoy it.

This week, The Broke and the Bookish talks about tips for new book bloggers. I think my tips are kind of for any bloggers –  does one decide from the get-go to blog about books? I don’t know. But here goes.

1. Appeal to the laziness – yeah, some of us are total nerds and will read your long essay extricating the philosophies in the latest chick-lit, but even I have my limits. If you really have so much to say, divide it into a series of posts. This way you have people actually reading to the end of a post, and they come back for more. (I am also very bad at this.)

2. Your readers are kids (at heart) – and we all like pictures. If you’re reviewing a book, at least post a picture of the cover. With the rising popularity of fan art and pinterest you really don’t have an excuse for forgetting the visuals.

3. …but don’t be silly now – pictures should at least be a little relevant. And not pixelated. And don’t rely on a picture to tell a thousand words, unless it’s Wordless Wednesday or unless the picture really is THAT GOOD.

4. CAPTCHA – is bad. Say it with me. I hate CAPTCHA, and sometimes when the prompt jumps up I get too annoyed to comment. And by the way, Blogger CAPTCHAs have become crazy difficult. Take away the damn prompts.

5. Reply to comments – seriously, I think the whole “follow back” thing is lame. BUT it’s common courtesy to reply to comments. Also, visit the person’s blog. Manners are important.

6. Don’t limit yourself – so you want to blog about books. That’s cool. But I know and you know that there is more to you than books. So it’s okay to write about things other than (but relating to) books. Just like I don’t ALWAYS write about being a medical student. Ellie once wrote about annoying customers at her bookshop, and check this cute picture I found at TBTB.

7. Participate in challenges or memes – it keeps you from stagnating, it helps when you’re feeling like a dead weight, and it introduces to entire new circles on the blogosphere.

8. It’s okay to have a negative review – Negative reviews have stopped me from reading crappy books. Then again, so have over-enthusiastic positive reviews. ’nuff said.

9. Join Goodreads – if you’re going to be a book blogger, you want to be on this site. This is not me putting you into a box, this is a great tool (and procrastination method).

10. Get off your bum – go out and live. Blogging is fun, and great, and creative (and so is reading). But some places you can visit in real life too. And there are some things you will only truly understand once you have lived. Your writing and also your reading will change as you gain more life experience.

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22 thoughts on “TTT: How to be a Great Blogger of Books

  1. Agreed with Captcha! It’s so freaking annoying. I’m always so sad when I have a good comment but can’t post it because of captcha. :(
    Lots of great tips. My TTT will be up tomorrow!

  2. I agree 100% with all of these. Great list! Also, I don’t think I pop in enough but I really enjoy all your blog posts. I read them in my email box, but they always fascinate me :)

    Julia
    The Broke and The Bookish
    CompBiblio

  3. I love your points. I think 5 is sometimes difficult to do but so far I have managed it. Then again, I’ve just checked and in April I only got around 1300 comments, including mine, which makes it rather easy. If I were a more “successfull” blogger, I don’t know if I could manage it.

    8 is very cool! Most people said “Be honest, but don’t be rude” but saying that the work of an author, his or her baby, is a bad novel that lacks complexity isn’t really rude, though it definitely is, right? Alas, most of the times it’s the negative reviews that make me want to read novels whereas the positive ones scare me away. *g*

    Have I mentioned that I love this list? ;D

    Patricia // My Post

    • You got 1300 comments in April?! I don’t think I’ve got that many including my own since the inception of this blog 18 months ago – geez ;)
      That’s true what you say about negative reviews. I guess if you write something that’s going to place you in the public eye you must prepare for criticism, which is especially true for authors. Vindictiveness should be out, at least. I’ve often read books with negative reviews just to see if they were true.

      Thanks a lot for commenting and visiting :)

  4. Phew…glad I’m “visiting back.” (so points for me on number 5)This is a great list…I know I don’t do some of these things (the visuals, the goodreads, the laziness [love that one]).

  5. Some fabulous tips here! I also loathe CAPTCHA – being wordpress, I often have enough trouble commenting on some blogger blogs, it just refuses to post my comment. CAPTCHA just adds a whole other element of difficulty to leaving my comment as they are becoming harder and harder to read. I often just give up, tired of clicking buttons and squinting to read nonsensical words!

    • I find that not caring about the word and just typing letter for letter tends to help. But some sites have clearly decided they don’t want me around so no matter how correct I think I am, it still says I’m wrong.

  6. Great post. I’ve got to say I love the images you include in your blog but I never think much about adding more photos or art to my own page. Thanks for giving me something to think about.

  7. point 2’s quite true. first i stuffed my blogpost with pictures.
    then i took the next step of enlarging these pictures as much as i could.
    talk about overdoing it. somebody shoot me

    now if only there was a way to get them to comment :P

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