My blog, The Reading Chick, is now almost two and a half years old. Wow, where did the time go?!!
Initially I started blogging because I wanted to talk about all of the books I read. When I first started blogging all of my book choices were what I was drawn to read. As time went on I started following authors Facebook pages and twitter accounts, sometimes reaching out to let them know I’ve read and liked a book. Even making friends (of sorts) with some of them, joining review clubs and Facebook discussions, etc. Then I discovered NetGalley. Like many bloggers I went out of control. All of those books, free!!! All I had to do was write a review and post it on my blog, Amazon and wherever. When I couldn’t keep up, I had to reign myself in, stopping those requests until I honored the commitments I had made. Although I’ll confess, there were a few books that I just couldn’t get into and just sent a note back to the publisher saying I was sorry but I wasn’t going to be able to review the book. I felt so bad!
Once I was back in control I asked myself why I was doing this? The pressure of putting out a blog a few times a week can be another full time job, and one that doesn’t even make me any money. Is it worth it? I decided to make a list of my Pro’s and Con’s of being a book blogger to help me decide my feelings.
- I read at least two hours a day. On weekends sometimes 4-5 hours. At 50 pages an hour I get through 2-4 books a week. The point is, I read A LOT.
- I love to write. I get a really great feeling when I craft my post. Not all of my reviews are great, but some of them are really really good. When an author take one of my quotes and tweets it at me? Wow, there’s no better feeling.
- I have made friends in the blogging community that I can discuss my passion for books with? How cool is that? Something I have in common with hundreds, if not thousands of other bloggers!
- FREE BOOKS. I have a few authors that I jones for. If you know me well, you know I love Urban Fantasy authors like Ilona Andrews, Patricia Briggs and Anne Bishop and romance authors like Jill Shalvis and Kristen Ashley. If I can read them free? Bonus!
- Helping authors get the word out about a new book. Although this can also be a Con because they don’t hit a home run EVERY time they write a book, but still, I do love supporting them and seeing other bloggers talk about those same books.
- Reading a review about a book that I’ve already read and reviewed myself. I LOVE this! I love writing a note about what I liked or disliked. I love opening up that conversation.
- I love that I seem to be on a couple of publisher’s lists to send out notes asking me to read a novel because I’ve read and reviewed a similar novel for them. It makes me feel special.
- Reading my fellow bloggers posts. I love to find new books that you all recommend as well as chime in on some great discussions.
- Keeping up with my blog schedule. I put out three reviews a week and on Sunday I try to be more creative. Either a discussion, interview, or well, anything besides a review. It is HARD to come up with good ideas!
- Book review requests. I would love to help discover that next great novelist. It is hard to find the time!! Lately, I’ve started to get about 5-10 book review requests per week. Does everyone else get these too? How do you handle them? I try to respond to everyone thanking them for sending me their letter and I so want to support them, but I am only one person reading and just don’t have as much time as I’d need to get through them all.
- Not getting carried away on NetGalley. It’s so easy! I have my favorite authors, and sometimes they all have publishing dates close to one another. It makes life difficult when I’m a day away from their release date and I haven’t read the book yet. I know, they’re my favorite. I should read it as soon as I get it, but I don’t. I try to honor all of my commitments, so soonest date published gets read first. When they stack up? It freaks me out. LOL
- Sometimes I just don’t want to write a review but with the need to put out three a week I feel like I have to write one. I know that reviews mean a lot to an author, especially on site’s like Amazon where they get ranked and show up in more recommendations the more reviews they have listed, either good or bad. It’s the thought that I should write one that makes writing difficult.
- I have a full time job. Occasionally I write during the week, but the majority of my writing gets done on the weekend. So, that’s 2-4 posts I have to write in two days. The first one goes down like a fine wine, and then it gets less sweet and more acidic.
- Finding the time to keep up with commenting on other blogs. I love having that conversation, but there are some weeks where I just don’t get to it. I feel like I’m letting people down.
I could throw a couple more Pro’s and Con’s onto the list, however, I think these help you get my point. There are many great things about blogging. That’s why I keep doing it! There are also a lot of things that weigh me down when it comes to blogging. However, I do think that the Pro’s out weigh the Con’s. It all comes down to the fact that I like to read and I like to write. Now that I’ve started could I stop? I think I would miss it too much! I would miss you all too much too.
Do you have some of the same Pro’s and Con’s on your list? How do you handle the sacrifice you make to write daily or spend your weekend writing like I do?
How do you keep your commitments to put out a review as the book comes out? Do you fall behind? Not care? Are you always on time?
I’d love to hear your thoughts!
Until next Sunday,