05 December 2010

Busting the Newbie Blues

In some peoples' eyes, I am still a newbie to the blogging world. I have been blogging (properly) since the end of September and I can honestly say that I've been enjoying almost every minute of it. I've met some amazing people, and discovered blogs and books that I would have never read if it hadn't been for all of you. Thank you all! 

I'm taking part in Small Review's new event Busting the Newbie Blues. I think that I am more of an established blogger now, so I picked the second questionnaire. 

When did you start your blog?

I started blogging properly on September 30, this year. I had a few posts before that but they were choppy, boring, and not particularly book related. 

Why did you start your blog?

Initially I just started as something to do. I posted my first (sloppy) book review way earlier in the year, and then I had a long break from the blogging world. Then, I read "Clockwork Angel" by Cassandra Clare, and I just had to write a review on it. So I came back, and then realised that there is a whole community based around book blogging. And here we are!

What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far? Did you make any mistakes new bloggers can learn from?

My biggest challenge? There haven't really been challenges, as such, but I have often felt pressured to post things that others want me to post, and read books that others want me to read and review. I have also, in the past, read books faster than I normally would just so that I can get a review up asap. However, now I have a little more experience to fall back on, I can tell you that you - as a new blogger - should only post what YOU want to post. Only read what and when YOU want to read. It's your blog after all. Have fun!

What did you find most discouraging about being a new blogger? How did you deal with this?

I didn't get many comments at the beginning, but I knew that this was normal so I wasn't too bothered. I did, however, feel that my blog will never be as good as some peoples'. BUT, I continued blogging, and then I realised that each blog has its own style and there is no such thing as a blog being "better" than another. It just comes down to personal preference, to be honest. 

What do you find most encouraging?

I love it when people comment on my reviews/posts. It really makes my day month when I receive feedback! Another thing that really encourages me to keep going is looking at my stats. Maybe this sounds weird, but when I see how many views I have in a day, I love it! I love that each week I get more and more views, and more and more comments. 

What do you like best about the blogs you read? Have you tried to replicate this in your blog?

The main things I like best in a blog is organisation, good reviews and nice layouts. I have tried to keep my blog as easy to navigate around as possible and, of course, to write as good reviews as I can. I have kept my layout nice and simple, although I will probably change it soon because I like to change things up every few months. I feel mine is too purple. 

What do you dislike about blogs you’ve read? Do you try to avoid this?

I haven't read many blogs like this, but I really do hate it when people write posts and reviews which are packed with spelling mistakes and grammatical errors. I know it must sound horrible, but I honestly think that if you're going to be a book blogger who criticizes and analyses works of literature, you should at least make an effort to check your posts thoroughly before submitting, and not speak in 'text talk'. 

Do you have any advice for new bloggers?

I've already pretty much covered this, but I'll say it again. Post what YOU want to post. Blog about what YOU want to blog about. If it's something that you truly love doing, it doesn't matter what other peoples' blogs look like. Just concentrate on making your blog the best blog in your own eyes

How did you bring your blog to the attention of so many people?

I just joined in with the community. I posted memes, which brought in a good few comments (although I wouldn't suggest doing too many, no one wants to read a blog that's packed up with memes), I joined GoodReads and YouTube and I just simply moved around the blogosphere, talking and chatting with all you lovely people! It's not hard. If you're a nice person and have a decent blog, people will find you.

Is there anything else you’d like to share about your experience?

Blogging is honestly one of my favourite pastimes, I think it's an amazing way to relax and to share your thoughts with the world. If you are having second thoughts, take a break for a couple of weeks. Come back when you're ready. It's okay to try it once and then never try it again. Blogging just isn't the right thing for some people. 
I have experienced people using my ideas and reviews without letting me know. This has really annoyed me, and if it happened to you then I'm sure you'd be just as disappointed as I have been. But, if you have a (polite) word with these people, then they'll perhaps realise that what they did is not very nice and won't do it again. Some people just don't know that's it's not the right way to go about things until you tell them.


  1. Great answers. I found them really helpful as a new blogger :)

  2. Thanks so much for participating!

    I'm so happy you wrote about writing for YOU and not the blogging community. Your comment here really spoke to me. Just last night I was deciding which book to read next and it was down to one book I wanted to read and another book I wanted to read, but not as much. I knew a lot of people wanted to read reviews for the second book, but I just wasn't feeling it and so I was torn. Ultimately, I decided to go for the book I wanted to read. Your advice here is so supportive of that decision. Thank you :)

    I can't believe someone used your reviews! Well, I can believe it, but that's terrible. You have a great attitude about it though. I'm glad I read about your experiences and the way you handled it. I'll keep your advice in mind if that ever happens to me.

    Thanks again for participating. You responses were super helpful!

  3. I completely agree with your answer about what you dislike about other blogs. It's pretty ironic when someone points out grammar mistakes in a book and they are making those same mistakes in their post.

    I really like your blog so I became a follower :)
    Looking forward to reading more of your posts.

  4. I'm glad my answers helped!

    Small Review - You're most welcome! I know a lot of new reviewers and bloggers fall into the debacle of reading a book for the masses instead of themselves, so I'm hoping my comments will help them. And I guess they will :)

    And I know, it's not a nice experience when someone uses your thoughts and words as their own. But you just have to prattle on through it!

    Again, I'm glad I helped!

    Jessica - Thanks so much for following! And I agree, it is ironic. Unfortunately I do tend to see this sort of thing quite regularly. I'm not bothered by a small mistake, but if the post is filled with them then I just won't bother reading.

    Thanks for reading my answers everyone! :D

  5. I like to return the favour to those who look at my blog (I became a follower of your blog:) I am new to the blogging world too, been here for a week, loving it so far,.!! I do it for me too, fun times :):)

    Jess :)

  6. Thanks Jess ! :D

    I'm really glad you're loving it, blogging is great fun isn't it? I'm slightly addicted now, I don't know if that is a good thing or a bad thing!

  7. Great answers. =) I was going to participate in this as well... I think I'll fill out the survey today or tomorrow.

  8. Thanks Ashley :) I look forward to seeing your answers! :D

  9. You have some really great answers. I'll admit I'm one of those people whose reviews (and other posts) are kind of messy at times, but when I go back and read them I try to fix it. I'm not good at ALL with punctuation. Actually I suck at it. Anyways, I love your answers again. :)

  10. Amber, I love your answers. They are extremely helpful to a brand new blogger like me. Thank you!

    P.S. I am going to have to read THE MORTAL INSTRUMENTS series...they look fantastic.

  11. Thank you Ashley :) At least you try to fix them, a lot of bloggers don't even try that. And I've seen a few who talk in "Text speak" which is just terrible. I admit, my punctuation is a bit messy at times, haha.

    Jessica - thank you! I'm glad to have helped! TMI series is brilliant, let me know what you think of the books. Also, the prequel trilogy "The Infernal Devices" is just as good!

  12. Hiya! I'm only now getting around to stopping by your blog for this event. Anyways, it's nice to have found your blog! I love TMI, too! What do you think of the casting of Clary?

  13. Oh, and also (sorry, I'm spamming your blog!) how upsetting that some people have been stealing your reviews. I hope this never happens to me.

  14. Hi Aylee! I hope the "stealing reviews" situation never happens to you too. I'm sure it won't. It was probably just because this blogger was fairly new, and she/he may have been looking around for ideas and didn't mean to steal them so openly.

    Oh, I love the casting of Clary! What do you think? I think Lilly is stunning :D And don't worry about spamming, it's a good kind of spam ;)

  15. I think she looks great with red hair. Overall, I'm pretty happy! Of course, no actor is ever going to look exactly how you pictured someone while reading but I'm pretty satisfied with her. Jace is up next!

  16. I'm worried about the casting for Jace.. I can see myself being disappointed :( But let's wait and see :D

  17. Are you part of the majority in wanting Alex P.?

  18. I really don't know, haha. I haven't seen him play in anything since Stormbreaker, so I'll decide after I've watched I Am Number Four :)


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