15 Day Book Blogger Challenge: Day 7
The awesome people over at Good Books and Good Wine came up with the fabulous 15 Day Book Blogger Challenge!
Today’s Challenge is: Talk about your blogging quirks.
This challenge is likely to be the most difficult for me simply because I don’t really have blogging quirks, at least not many I can think of at present. Well, here goes nothing!
- Saving and Previewing – I know many bloggers that obsessively click the “Save Draft” and “Preview” buttons every couple minutes (or more) to make sure every minute change is absolutely perfect. If they don’t it is utter chaos. I won’t say that I don’t do some saving or previews, but for the most part each post has but a handful of previews and maybe a save or two and it’s good to go. I have photos, for the most part, sized the exact same for my posts such as the one above. 400 x 300 in case you are curious. This allows for a very streamlined process and not too much fuss about if it is lined up just right. The major thing I adjust is the spacing and alignment of my “Smiling Frodos” because each one is slightly different, but even that is only a couple previews and I’m good with it. I know what I like and my posts reflect it, but admittedly this does lower the originality a bit.
- Review, Review, Review – This blog is known (by the few people that read it regularly) as a book review blog. While I do readathons regularly, do the occasional giveaway and dabble with other posts such as these challenge ones, the bulk of my posts has been and likely will continue to be book reviews. Why? Don’t get me wrong, I think incorporating memes (to a degree) is fine, but I have a limited amount of time to blog as well as read and in order to get posts up regularly I can’t be participating in a thousand things at once. While memes are easy to post and take less effort they feel a bit empty to me. The reader might get a feel for what books I like in a Waiting on Wednesday or look at my new pretties in Stacking the Shelves or Sunday Post, but it isn’t doing anything for the bookish community and that’s a big reason why I do this. I want to support authors and so my posts are reviews because that’s what helps them the most. It also is intended to shed some light on some pieces that either you are on the fence about, or even better, that you would never hear about otherwise. (Wow that got ranty o_o)
- Don’t Like It, Don’t Care – Quite a few bloggers shy away from negative reviews for a variety of reasons but that’s just not me. If I didn’t like a book the review is going up anyway, partially because I spent the time reading the piece so if I didn’t like it at least I’m getting a post out. I’m shedding some light on it so that maybe you will think harder about purchasing/reading it and I feel that’s worthwhile. Also, while I know a TON of effort goes into writing a book that doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be critiqued any less than a movie or dish at a restaurant. If it’s bad you should know just as much as if it is 5/5 worthy. There are more books out there than we have time to read, decisions have to be made and maybe I can help a bit. However, when I’m tweeting out my latest review and it is a negative one I don’t link up the author’s handle. I don’t want to upset people by what I write, and this way the people who enjoy my posts will read it without the author having to feel crappy.
- Scheduling Posts? Bahaha – Plenty of bloggers I know are waaay ahead and have scheduled posts through most of the year and if I could I would be all over that kind of preparation. Alas, I can’t get ahead of the game and almost never have posts ready in advance. Heck, I’m posting this one right after I finish writing it. I have a limited time to read and as I mentioned most of my posts are reviews so I can’t exactly have those in place prior to finishing the book. If your blog has a lot of memes, giveaways and cover reveals then sure it would be possible to get ahead of the game rather easily. Those posts are formatted and require mostly a change of title, a few pictures and maybe a brief bit about how excited you are for whatever piece you are talking about. This isn’t a slam on those posts, I just don’t do them. So there is no order to the time stamps on my posts and usually even the days are random because my schedule is too. Oh well.
- Let There Be Music! – I don’t do silence. Reading a book? There’s almost always music or something going on in the background. Blogging? Definitely, its the best time to listen to some music while I’m not being distracted by Twitter, YouTube or who knows what else. Sometimes I even match the type of music I listen to (I listen to all sorts so variety isn’t a problem) based on what kind of post I’m doing, if I’m enjoying a book or not and even the genre of the book. I feel it enhances the experience. ^.^
- Must Review IMMEDIATELY – If I finish reading a book I immediately dive into writing the review. I want my thoughts as fresh as possible and since I don’t take notes of any kind this is the best time for me to talk about the book as I can keep all of the details straight. I also feel I’m more passionate about how I feel about a book when I review it right after I’ve read it.
- Rambling – A quirk I kinda was aware of but that this post made me realize was a reality is that I ramble a lot in posts. If I LOVED something I can’t stop gushing about it. If I hated something my feelings are just as strong and are hard to reign in. So yes, I ramble, and the best I can hope for is that after you read a post you gain something out of it and the main sentiment isn’t lost.
So those are a few of my “quirks” when it comes to blogging. What quirks do you have? Are there any that you could never give up? Let me know! Come back tomorrow to see 15 things I find appealing in blogs and see if you love (or hate) them! Thanks as always for reading. ^.^
In Which I Ramble and Have Too Many Ideas
Yes I am posting again which happens to coincide with the date that was set for the return of my blogging ways. However, this does not mean that I am indeed going to continue my plan to go back to blogging on a regular basis. Don’t worry, I will explain why. Over the last few days, as my impending return date has been getting ever closer to the present, I have been considering why it is that I want to blog anymore. What is the purpose? Many of my book blogging acquaintances, I hesitate to call them friends since I don’t know how close we are, virtually or no, do it simply because they love books and want to share their passion with viewers. I respect and admire that desire, and while I to absolutely do have a fondness for many works whether it is the lengthy works of John Grisham or Stephen King, all the way to the eBook short stories of the amazing Jeremy C. Shipp and his Attic Clowns, I don’t know that I have the same desire to voice my opinions on them. Who wants to listen to me babble about these pieces when there are so many others who do it more eloquently or who already have established followings in which to voice their viewpoints? Certainly mine might differ, but when it comes to the majority of the books I have or would review it is something that has already been talked about at length on multiple platforms by people much better at this than I am, and some invariably would have shared the same general opinion as I have or would do in the future.
Do I share my thoughts to viewers because I want to share books that aren’t mainstream and so to help lesser-known authors get the word out about their pieces? I have done so at times, but I never planned on limiting myself to that area and I don’t think I really want to, though I do enjoy helping out debut authors since they do seem to appreciate it, even though I don’t really have the following to help all that much.
So if my opinions aren’t new, and I’m not truly helping anyone by expressing them, what do I achieve by writing them at all? There are more selfish reasons, I wanted to continue bettering myself as a writer. I haven’t had any classes on it, and to be honest my high school education when it comes to writing even pales in comparison to the average person, let alone those who dare to call themselves “writers” or anything of the sort, hence my atrocious punctuation. I think I have improved slightly, but I don’t necessarily need to bombard potential viewers with my drivel in order to continue to write, I can do so without sharing it if improvement was my only goal. So again, I have yet to find a reason to blog.
You may notice how my background mentions fantasy sports, it is now only there for the color, I like how it meshes with the current theme and that’s the only reason it is still there, outside of laziness. However, my previous blogging attempts have been on sports, which is where a lot of my passion lies. I quickly discovered that there was no audience for what I was writing, which was even worse quality wise at the time, and the niche I was trying to get into was so saturated as to be ridiculous, so eventually I gave it up. I’m glad I did, it wasn’t really worth the effort to be honest.
During my thinking process I have also considered vlogging instead, or in addition to my blogging efforts. I figured a small trickle effect would come from my blog/twitter followers, so it wouldn’t be completely without audience, and that perhaps that would be a better medium. However, though I have been on camera in front of people before, and I even know how to edit (though audio mostly, foraying into video would be new for me), I don’t really have anything new to share there either. I could do a daily vlog and be one of those types who try and vlog that way for an entire month or year, but I don’t know that I have any message to convey or any worthwhile opinions to share to anyone anyhow.
You see my life experiences are incredibly limited. The condensed version of my life path has went as follows:
Smart kid but nowhere near “genius” > Does well getting As in grade school > Goes to college at 17 and WAY overburdens himself with max credit load + 2 jobs (when never having worked before or taken classes at that difficulty level) > Bombs out of College 1 after 1 year > Tries an online school which goes well for the first semester but there aren’t enough classes available so quits afterward > Joins the Air Force > Gets injured so is forced to leave > Tries another online college but gives up quickly due to lack of direction > Tries working but doesn’t work out (anxiety) > Tries an online radio show which goes well until the realization that the main host doesn’t know what they’re doing/refuses to take criticism > Goes back home and job searches > Currently Working at a basic job.
Not as condensed as I planned…but you get the gist, I haven’t done much, I’ve given up on most of it, and I haven’t really succeeded in learning or gaining much of anything in the process. I know how to edit audio fairly well, I’m relatively bright though I haven’t applied it in anything and because of bombing out/quitting college so many times that avenue has closed (also can’t afford it), and I really like sports and have a fondness for books. That’s pretty much it. I know, I know, I’m bombarding you with a ton of crap, bear with me I think I’m almost done.
So I don’t know that I really want to blog about books, I love reading them, and I’m all for trying and helping new authors, but I think there are plenty of people who do it better and more effectively. I love sports but that field has no room, seriously. I don’t have any skills to share and I’m not like the Vlogbrothers (geniuses by the way) who have someone else to bounce off of creatively. I enjoy writing and I loved participating in NaNoWriMo, but I think that might even be more about the social interaction than because I truly love the craft, plus I need to work on it before I’d even consider sharing any of it anyhow. What seems to be the case is that I enjoy surveying other people’s awesome. I don’t think there is anything wrong with that, but I shouldn’t leech off of their creative juices and try to replicate a slightly varied version of their amazing product, it isn’t fair to them and it isn’t really worth it to anyone who would view it. I’m more than happy to give my viewpoint on something if someone asks me, but that doesn’t mean I should be so presumptuous as to assume that anyone wants it if they haven’t requested it beforehand. I’m not doing anything interesting enough to share, I’m just going through the motions of life and until that changes maybe I should keep it to myself. That doesn’t mean I won’t continue reading my favorite blogs, watching awesome YouTube videos, or talking to the awesome people on Twitter, but maybe that’s all I should do, at least for now.
If you’ve made it to the end of this drivel I commend you, though I must say I’m surprised. I know a handful of people that I can think of who may actually have read all of this and to those people you are amazing, but you probably should find better ways to spend your time than my blog, just saying. 😛 If you have ever commented on any of my posts, if you have even thought about it but decided not to, or for some reason you actually have enjoyed any of my previous content (and didn’t just see it because I put a link up on your meme post) then please, feel more than free to let me know your thoughts on all this. I’m more than happy to read them. Thanks. This is Frodo, at least for now, signing off.
**Addition: I just wanted to summarize something here that maybe I wasn’t clear on. If I’m not honing a craft I think I can use in the future (such as vloggers who plan to make video their career or bloggers who use it as a writing tool as they work towards making writing theirs) and I’m also not really sharing anything new to viewers then maybe there isn’t any point to it.