December 4, 2010

Busting the Newbie Blues.

This new event, which is running for the month of December, is brought to us by Small Review.

" This event is designed to:
• Put new YA book bloggers on the map
•Increase blogger interaction
•Start a discussion by sharing our experiences as a new bloggers
•Learn about what it was like for all those impressive established bloggers when they were newbies

So how does this work? Simple:

•Select the questionnaire that best applies to you (there's no "wrong" choice, so just pick whichever one you feel most comfortable answering)
•Create a post on your blog with the questions and your answers
•Grab the banner above or the button below to include in your post or sidebar
•Link back to my post here
•Sign the Mr. Linky below so we can all come and visit your post!
•Spread the word! "
1. When did you start your blog?

The very end of July of this year.

2. Why did you start your blog?

I’ve always been a big reader and writer, and enjoy discussing books with others. So what better way than blog to get to do all three?

3. What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?

I don’t think I could choose just one. It’s been quite a challenge to maintain followers. Oftentimes if I post a negative review of something especially popular in the YA circuit I’ll notice the number drops a few. So it’s been difficult to attract readers that are genuinely interested in what I have to say as a reviewer.

Then there’s having to find balance between reviews and non-review related posts, like memes. As fun as it is to participate, I feel guilty if I clutter my blog with too many meme posts all at once. Sure, it takes longer to write reviews and get them up, but I like to keep it balanced as best I can.

4. What do you find most discouraging about being a new blogger?

The limits. Authors and publishers aren’t interested in contacting a blogger that’s been around less than five months, so I’m always more than thankful and grateful for the opportunities when they arise.

5. What do you find most encouraging?

The book blogging community is very supportive of each other, and getting to know other bloggers is a wonderful experience. There’re so many writers and readers to relate to!

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

They juggle it all: reviews and so much more. I love discussion-based posts, and have incorporated a few on my blog.

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

Grammatical errors. It’s my number one turn off. I’m also not a fan of long, extensive reviews; they’re just not my style or preference. I like quick, cut-to-the-chase reviews. I don’t need the background of the story summarized, or a list of quotes, or a review of the cover. I just want to know practical things about whether the characters, plot and writing are good or bad.

8. Any advice for other new bloggers?

Take your time. Don’t rush around, trying to get as many followers as possible. Be thankful for the amount of readers that you have, big or small, because they support what you do. You don’t need giveaways or a fancy layout to win them over.

9. Anything else you’d like to share about your experience?

I find that blogging helps me become a better writer, because it gets me to write all the time. It’s practice, little by little.


  1. Sorry to hear that you've lost followers just for posting your honest opinion. That sucks.

  2. Great thoughts, Alissa. It's good to see newer bloggers diving into the blogosphere with a vengeance. It definitely takes time, but it's really rewarding when you realize publishers are starting to notice your blog and enjoy your specific voice on books. That's a great feeling.

    Always know there are bloggers out there to help build up your blog and support you! It's a great community that we have :)

  3. Aylee - It's unfortunate, and possibly coincidental, but it happens. I'm thankful for the readers that stay with me.

  4. Melissa - I bet it is! Better than great, even.

  5. Thanks for participating in this event!

    Yikes! You've lost followers due to negative reviews? That's a shame. I like that bloggers are brave enough to post negative reviews. I honestly lose a bit of trust in a blogger if they're always raving about every single book they read. Good on you for staying honest.

    I'm so curious now about your negative reviews. I'm going to go find a few :)

  6. Small Review - No problem! Thank you for hosting it; it's an awesome idea! :]

    And I can't say for sure if I have or haven't. I've just noticed that after posting a negative review, the number of followers drops. Could be a coincidence, could be that I'm right.

    But I don't think my reviews are TOO negative. I think maybe they come off the wrong way occasionally because I'm so blunt and straight-to-the-point when writing them.

  7. :-O you lost followers from just publishing a negative review? Yikes! I think everyone is entitled to their opinion, and we can't all love the same books ...

    I enjoyed reading your answers. This has been a great event by Small Reviews hasn't it?

  8. Slowest Bookworm - Definitely a great event!

  9. Oh, no! I'm a long-winded reviewer. Once I get started, sometimes I can't stop. Don't hold it against me. I try to edit for grammatical errors, though I find I'm much better at editing other people's stuff than my own.

  10. I agree, the community really is quite supportive! Also taking your time and being patient is so important. Getting established as a blogger will take a while, just like anything else!

  11. I completely understand what you mean about memes. There are so many that I want to participate in, but I feel that if I participate in too many it will take away from my blog. Loved your answers!


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