Hello fellow bookworms 🎉 I cannot believe it but … IT’S MY BLOGVERSARY!!! I’m celebrating 1 year on WordPress … which is so surreal, because time flew by so fast and now we’re already 1 year farther 😱 Overall, this is my 2 years and 4 months blogversary, as I had a blog before switching to WordPress … and that’s a lot of time too, that I spend blogging, I’m so happy I could keep it up for such a long time! 😄 I’m so grateful for everyone who has supported me and my posts in that time, it’s amazing how much I have grown to love the bookish community over this year, after finally fully getting into it 💗💕 So thank you so much for everyone who has followed, commented, liked and supported my posts, it means the world to me and gives me the motivation to keep on blogging and share my passion with the world! I have found great friends and discovered so many talented and hardworking people in the community, my heart is full of love for you ❤
I’m sadly currently not able to host a giveaway, with moving into my new flat and all, but I wanted to answer some fun questions for the occasion. I asked on Twitter if anyone had any questions they wanted to ask me and the lovely Lily and Sandra asked such great questions! For the rest I stumbled upon the Secret Life of a Book Blogger Tag and took the rest of the questions from there (I only used a few of them, as there were plenty more), as I liked them a lot! Sadly I couldn’t find out who actually started the Tag.
In 1 Year of Blogging
I have read 110 + 22 = 132 books and written 174 posts
My Most Popular post
My Favorite Post
My Favorite Review
My Experience with Blogging
If you could give your younger self advice on blogging and everything do with it, what would you say?
asked by Sandra (@sweetestfray) 💕
1️⃣ Choose your platform wisely, or for me: Start your blog on WordPress! That’s a very specific advice for younger me, because I started blogging on Tumblr, as I had no idea about any other platform and had made not so great past experience with a lot of them. However, there is not a lot of interaction possible on Tumblr and that’s why after a year I began to regret my decision to blog here. It just wasn’t the right platform and I wish I had changed to WordPress sooner! For me it was the best decision, because I love WordPress format and making a blog was so much easier than I had anticipated, I definitely recommend it for newbies!
2️⃣ Put a lot of effort into your blog & gather as much advice as you can. This is such a cliché answer, but I think it’s important to work on making your blog the best possible version that it can be! So look through the advice more experiences bloggers give and take them to heart, because they are very valuable! It starts with things like choosing a clean, nice design and a theme you want your blog to have (e.g. my theme is Alice in Wonderland) and trying to make your blog posts easily readable. That includes doing paragraphs, highlighting important parts and using graphics to xxxx. It goes on with advice on blog-hopping and answering your own comments as best as you can. So try to keep an eye out for advice and work on your blog – but of course also have fun 😄
3️⃣ Be open to change. During my times on Tumblr I wasn’t very keen on change, but I did the first changes when I moved over to WordPress. I highly recommend being open to change your posts or layout or whatever keeps bugging you. It might mean having to work a lot, but it will keep you pushing forward. E.g. I decided that I would stop reviewing every book on my blog as it kept overwhelming me and therefore, I stuck to posting most Reviews on Goodreads and only 4.5 or 5 star Review (+ Arc Reviews of course) to the Blog. Generally, it’s best to listen to your gut instinct: what bothers you about your current state and how can you improve it?
At what point do you think you will stop?
💭 That’s honestly so hard to say, because I have no idea. Blogging is something I’m passionate about, something that I consider a beloved hobby, so it’s nothing I want to quit in the near future. If a lot of stress and work arises I might go on hiatus or reduce the amount of times I post a week, but I really want to make this work, as I gain a lot from blogging. I will only quit when I feel like I can no longer gain something from blogging, when I feel like it’s time to move on, because my priorities have shifted and I want to focus my enemy elsewhere. But that’s not likely to happen anytime soon.
What is the best thing about blogging?
❤ Getting to interact with the bookish community. Of course I had to mention the blogging community, because this is what I have especially been loving this past year. I will say it again and again, but blogging on Tumblr was a bit lonely and only when I switched to WordPress did I fully immerse myself in the community. It was one of the best decisions I could have mad,e, because I have gotten to know so many incredible people, among those people I’m proud to call friends 💗 I love blog-hopping and seeing what everyone else is putting our – there are so many amazing posts each week to check out – and of course I’m always touched at the comments I get on my posts. It’s honestly still baffling that people take the time to read my post and the comment on it, I’m the most grateful for everyone who takes the valuable time out of their day to engage with me and my content, it makes my heart very happy! I’m literally getting sappy, but time is the most valuable resource we have, so for someone to freely give it to me means the world 😭💕 Not only that,. but everyone has been so kind and nice with their comments to, it literally melts my heart! Earlier this year I shared in a few wrap ups how I really wasn’t feeling well and how everything was kind of difficult right now and everyone was so supportive and wishing me well, it got me so emotional and grateful!
What is the worst thing? What do you do to make it okay?
😪 Stress and anxiety that sometimes happens. That’s NOT because of the people, but rather because I’m a generally anxious person who easily gets overwhelmed and therefore is prone to stressing out about a lot of things. As much as I love putting my passion for books into words and sharing that love with everyone else, when life gets hectic my blogging mindset gets stressed. I think that’s something a lot of people can relate to: you want to do all the things, but there is simply not enough time and you get overwhelmed by all the things you told yourself you had to do. I have been fortunate enough that everyone was incredibly kind and friendly to me, so what I’m talking about is purely internal. Oftentimes I try to calm down by really looking at my list of things to do and prioritize. What is the most important? Couldn’t I just post less this week to ease the stress? What can I change about the way I organize my blog hopping and answering to comments. Switching things up often helps!
How long does it take you to prepare a post?
📝 It truly depends on my current state. I have never actually timed myself for this, so I don’t really know. But what I have noticed is that how fast I can get out a post is correlated with my motivation and general state this day. If I feel super energized and ready to seize the bogging day, I can be finished with everything (making graphics, outlining and writing the post, checking for grammatical errors + spelling, scheduling and proofreading) in about an hour. However, it can take a bit longer (1-2 days if I spread it out) to finish a post when I don’t have the motivation and keep getting distracted by other shiny things like Twitter or reading. When it comes to Reviews this wildly changes. It can vary from 30 minutes (most Goodreads Reviews) to 1 h 30 minutes or longer depending on how much I plan to ramble that day 😄
What do you do to keep yourself motivated to read?
asked by Sandra (@sweetestfray) 💕
📖 It’s a mix between consuming bookish videos/posts and figuring out when I get my best reading done. What really got me back into reading and always helps me when I lack the motivation is engaging with the bookish community. Just watching a video about someone talking about their passion for books or reading a post about what books someone is excited to read, immediately gets me in the mood to read as well. I especially love watching reading vlogs as they always motivate me to do more reading myself. Generally, it helps to surround yourself with all the content about books, it never fails to boost my own passion for them 😊 Apart rom that it always helps me is trying to figure out how you read best. I know I read best in the evening or late afternoon, so I try to carve out a space at that time to get the best reading done! I also cozy myself up in a blanket and get a hot drink to get myself in the mood. If I feel like I cannot concentrate I listen to ambience sounds or something instrumental (I cannot listen to music with lyrics while reading at all) to keep me focused on my book! I also always have a book with me when I have a longer train journey, as there are usually fewer distractions and I have time to kill!
Which book has influenced you in a very major way/has left a deep impression on you?
asked by Lily (@sprinklesofdreams) 💕
💗 Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde. THIS BOOK. It means the world to me and has really touched me by how much it understands me. It has excellent anxiety representation, fandom culture and profound friendships that really left left their mark on me. I literally cried while reading the book, while writing the Review and whenever I think and write about the book in general. What most touched me was how much I related to the main character Tay and her anxiety. She said so many things that really resonated within me. She talked about how she isn’t good with conversation around people that she does not know well. Tay fears change and is afraid that in the future her friends will stop hanging out with her, too busy with other things. For her going to this convention and having so much attention on her is very hard. Public speaking is her nightmare and it was books that helped her through a lot of hard times. What I loved was Tay’s character development and how it was not about “curing” her anxiety, but about learning to live with it. She realized that there was nothing wrong with her, that she was strong for continuing to do so many things that might be easy for other people but were hard for her. Tay began to accept herself and to see that there was nothing wrong with the way she was, that she could still do things that might scare her but that were worth it in the end. That just really meant a lot to me, it was something I needed to read myself.
What is your best blogging advice? Is there a post you are very proud of? 🎉