When I started my blog, I had many preconceived notions about what exactly it would entail. Even after the journey began, I came to assume certain things would or would not happen. And some of them have turned out to be true, but most have not. I recently read Cora Harrington’s 5 Things I Wish I’d Learned My First Year of Blogging (a fashion blog, but the article applies to any blog type) and was inspired to think about my own first-year of blogging. So, I thought I’d do a few posts about my “expectations” versus the “realities” I’ve come across in the blogging world. (Remember, these are my experiences. Your mileage may vary.)
I’ll spend 80% of my blogging time reading and the other 20% writing the reviews. Easy peasy.
I spend my blogging time doing a crazy mixture of things I never could have imagined, the percentages of which change every day. As of right now, here’s what they look like:
- 15% Reading review books.
- 15% Writing reviews, which I usually do over a period of about a week.
- 10% Updating plugins, updating review archives, cleaning out spam, updating widgets, optimizing the database, setting up post templates and other blog maintenance.
- 10% Writing discussion posts.
- 10% Scouring Goodreads and the internet for book covers to fit the theme for the new Who Covered It Best? feature, resizing those covers, creating the posts, creating the Polldaddy voting form, then putting everything into the post.
- 10% Reading Facebook, participating in Twitter conversations, stalking authors and checking out various other social networking sites.
- 10% Reading other blogs; this includes reading the actual blogs, my Bloglovin feed and the updates I get via email.
- 5% Commenting on other blogs (this should be more, I feel like it’s my way of giving back to the blogging community as a whole). I’m great at reading blogs, but terrible at commenting on them.
- 5% Thinking up interview questions or guest post topics for authors, sending them to the authors, pasting the replies in the post, then formatting them for continuity.
- 5% Emailing other bloggers, readers, publishers, authors, guest bloggers, book tour coordinators and giveaway winners.
- 5% Thinking up and researching new post ideas, Let’s Discuss topics and themes for Who Covered It Best?
As you can see, there is a TON more to book blogging than reading a book and writing a review. A. TON. If I knew then what I know now, I don’t know for certain that I would have started the blog. But since I was oblivious, I did start one, and now I can say I’m so glad I did. If the work involved had scared me away, I would be missing out on so much.
All you bloggers out there, were you shocked by the amount of work involved once you got started? And for those non-bloggers, did you have an idea of all the stuff that goes into a simple little blog? Does it scare you away from potentially starting your own blog?