I wish I could proudly say I have been blogging for almost a year. I will be celebrating my blog anniversary on 30th June. But, to be very honest this is my 5th month as a blogger because I was on a “hiatus” for the rest of the year (6 months in total). This makes me a highly inexperienced blogger. But since I am back and have been doing so much better with my blog I also have a lot of experience, in a way. I have learned from my mistakes and I want others to do the same.
I Learned Its Time Consuming
When I first started this blog I had just graduated and started working full time which tired me out by the end of the day. Yet, because the blog was new and I was in a honeymoon period with blogging, I came home and wrote almost every day! What I didn’t realize back then was how much time it would take. There is so much to do while blogging: designing the blog, designing the blog title images, making a social media presence, commenting etc
Due to my lack of understanding and a new job, I went into hiatus, not four months after I started. Had I known how time-consuming blogging was, I would have planned better and prepared a game plan, so to speak.
I Learned To Save My Ideas
I can’t stress how important good, original and consistent content is in the digital world. I remember when I first started out, I had so many ideas. I couldn’t wait to put it all out and I did. But I was so wrong! There was soon a time when I was struggling with coming up with original or even above average content. This “burnout” is why it’s so important to space things out. This leads to the next point:
I Learned the Need of a Plan
As a new blogger, I posted whatever idea came to mind whenever I found time. What I learned from my experience as a content marketer in the digital marketing world was the importance of planning. Rather than posting every day, it’s best to plan. A planner is a blogger’s best friend! It’s a great way to plan what and when you will post. Plan a week’s worth of posts on a weekend before. Planning is so very important for a blogger! If not done, life gets in the way and maintaining the blog itself turns into a headache.
I Learned That Reading Slumps Are OK
Before I started blogging, I never thought I would not want to read. But as a book blogger, reading slumps are inevitable. A few weeks before I stopped blogging, I hit a reading slump and reading turned from being enjoyable to being a job. And soon enough, the little bit I was reading stopped completely. In the excitement of having a new blog I read so many books in such a short period of time, I was simply burned out. Now, I only devour books in a day if I really REALLY love it.
I also have a game plan now, on days I do not feel like reading, I blog. Just not about books, this takes me to my next revelation:
I Learned Its More than Just Reviews
Yes, it’s a book blog but that doesn’t limit you to just writing reviews. There is so much more you can do with your blog. Why not try doing tags, discussion posts, memes, features, or blog about something else you are passionate about other than books! There are so many book bloggers out there who post so much more than just reviews.
Alexandra from Twirling Pages posts about various topics related to lifestyle.
Marie from Drizzle & Hurricane Books posts about traveling.
Kath from The Last Reader has product review posts.
And they are all book bloggers!
I Learned To Ignore the Numbers
As a new blogger, I could barely leave my computer alone. Not just because I have so much to write, but also because I needed to see the numbers – the follows, the likes, the retweets, the comments, everything. I needed those numbers to increase as fast as possible. In the process of concentrating on the numbers, I forgot why I started a blog. To write because I love writing and reading! So not feel discouraged if your numbers are low and do not obsess over them! It’s not easy, I agree, but it’s worth it. Keep giving it your best – provide quality content, socialize and comment – and the numbers will eventually come.
Please do not let any of the above points discourage you. This post is meant to help bloggers and soon to be bloggers to avoid a “hiatus”. I realized the hard way this was hard, but I also realized that my passion and love for blogging and reading hasn’t changed!
What are some things you learned on your blogging journey? If you aren’t a blogger, are you thinking of starting one yourself? Let me know in the comments below!