Top Ten Tips for New Book Bloggers

“I’m like ancient Rome, baby, all roads lead to me.”

Jason Webley

So, I guess I’m an Old Book Blogger now.

  1. Research your platform before you start. I knew absolutely nothing about blogging before I leapt in nearly four years ago, with the result that I spent two years blogging on a platform which was, quite frankly, crap. WordPress is like a dream in comparison, and I wish I’d started off here.
  2. Quality, not quantity. Yes, I know everyone says this and it’s a real buzzkill and you just want to post every single day ever, but, thing is, it’s true. Burnout is a real thing and it’s not good for you or your readers – find a posting schedule you can stick to, and your content may well become even better for being planned in advance.
  3. Write for yourself. It’s your blog, and it’s for you to figure out what you want it to be.
  4. Listen to feedback. Even if you don’t do anything about it – if someone makes a well-intentioned comment about your blog, think about it. Is it valid? Will putting it into practice help you achieve your long-term aims? Does the person you’re talking to understand your long-term aims? Feedback is precious. Destructive criticism is not.
  5. Stats are stupid. Don’t obsess too much over your stats. That way lies madness. Just keep doing what you’re good at (she says, counting her pageviews on one hand).
  6. Don’t stress about the extras. I am a firm believer in the idea that if your content is good and your blog is straightforward to navigate you’re probably fine. (Look at Strange Horizons, which is amazing and also looks like it was built in the ’90s.) If you want to dress your blog up, that’s great; if you just want to focus on the writing, that’s also great. (I bet you can’t tell which camp I fall into.)
  7. Don’t let your blogging dictate your reading. Read whatever the hell you like. Jump between genres on a weekly basis if you want to; read one genre for a year. Letting what you think your blog needs dictate your reading is an excellent way to fall out of love with both.
  8. Proofread. Even if you think you’ve just written the best post ever posted on the internet, read it again – making yourself aware of how your writing reads can only help you improve it.
  9. Respond to all your comments (apart from the spam ones). Even if it’s just a smiley face. Interaction is key.
  10. Have fun! That’s the most important one, really.

(The theme for this post was suggested by the Broke and the Bookish’s weekly meme Top Ten Tuesday.)

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