Tuesday, April 17, 2012
Top Ten Tips For New Bloggers
Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week's topic is Top Ten Tips For New Bloggers. Let's get this party started!
1. Network. I'm not kidding when I say that Twitter is your best friend. It's a great way to meet other bloggers, authors, publishers, etc. I've met some of my favorite people through Twitter and cannot tell you how grateful I am for that. Socialize and have fun with it.
2. Go to book signings/events in your area. Signings are a great way to meet authors and other bloggers out there. They're also a great way to meet publishers as well. If you get the chance to go to a conference (ALA, BEA, RT, TLA, etc), go. Trust me, it's not only a great way to promote your blog, but it's a helluva good time!
3. Don't be in it for the ARCs. One of my biggest pet peeves are bloggers who are clearly blogging for ARCs or as they put it, "free books". A) They are not free and B) you're setting yourself up for failure. When I first started blogging, I didn't even know what an ARC was. I did it because I loved reading and wanted to share that love with others. Period. If you're doing it for ARCs (and my guess is, requesting them like crazy), you're going to get overwhelmed and eventually hate blogging. It's a full time job, requiring (in my experience) at least 30 hours of work a day. Also, did you know that ARCs cost publishers more money to produce than an actual final copy? They're there to help promote the book/spread the word. They are NOT free. Plus, if you love an author so much, why wouldn't you help support them by buying their book?
4. Don't bite off more than you can chew. How many of you have felt completely overwhelmed with your TBR pile? *Raises hand* It's hard not to get caught in the hype. "OMG, look at all the books coming out! I must get my hands on those". Then, let's say May rolls by and you realize you have about 10 books you must review and less than two weeks. EEP! My advice is don't bite off more than you can chew. If you're TBR pile is already sky high, stop requesting books. By the time they release, you'll have punched a dent in your TBR, and then you can buy the book and enjoy it. If you ever do feel overwhelmed...
5. Take a blogging vacation. I do it every Christmas. Let's be honest, sometimes your real life (work, school, family, and friends) beckon you, which leaves you less time to blog. Maybe you're just feeling overwhelmed with everything. That's okay. The best thing you can do is take a week or two off. Believe me, it will feel like spring break.
6. Make friends. I'm not kidding when I say that blogging is a great way to meet new, amazing, and fabulous people. Some of my favorite people in the world are bloggers. Not only will you have fun with them, but you'll also have a great support group. Trust me, when it comes to blogging, no one will know more about what you're going through than a blogger. It goes without saying, but still.
7. Get a fabulous blog design. The way your blog looks says a lot about who you are. I personally can't design worth a dime, nor do I know anything about html, so what I did was hire a blog designer to design my blog. She listened to what I wanted, offered a view suggestions, then voila! My new look was born. I know not everyone can afford to put that kind of money into your blog, but there are sites where you can get free designs and step by step information on how to install it. The Cutest Blog on the Block is a great one.
8. Get on Goodreads. Want to know where to find the latest books, covers, debut authors, etc? Goodreads, my friend. Goodreads is a great way to showcase your reviews, learn about books you've been curious about, and also see what other have to say about certain books. It's like Facebook for book lovers!
9. Comment, comment, comment! I have seriously failed in this department lately and am sorry for that. The cordial rule is if someone leaves a comment on your blog, you go and leave a comment on their's. You don't have to, but it's the nice thing to do. The more comments you leave, the more you'll get in return. After all, everyone loves comments, right?
10. BE YOURSELF! I know a lot of people have a ton of advice for you. Post memes, don't post memes, write kind reviews, write mean reviews, don't share your personal life, share your personal life, etc. Remember, your blog is your blog. Do what you want with it and be yourself. Some advice is great and incredibly helpful, but if you don't agree with it, than don't do it. Let your voice shine, and I promise, people will take notice. :-)
And that's my advice to you. What advice would you give to new bloggers?