armchair bea: blogging about blogging

BEA is ending? It seems like it only just begun. Thanks to Armchair BEA for letting us attend virtually - it was so much more fun than just reading along with Twitter reports (although I did that, too!). Hopefully next year I'll be able to attend BEA in person if it doesn't get scheduled too close to finals.

Today's armchair post is about the blog part of a book blog. I love lists, so I'm going to make some lists about what I enjoy about other blogs and things I try to avoid myself.

Things I like:
  • I hope it's okay if I spotlight you a bit, Jenny (of Alternate Readality)! Something that I love about her blog is that she has these fabulous book vs. movie posts, a topic that would have never crossed my mind but is inexorably linked to the original story. When I read a book I'm usually curious about the screen version and usually the book wins but sometimes it doesn't and that's when I trust her opinion.
  • On occasion I've seen non-meme posts and I will always stop and read those regardless of whether or not it's about characters, an author's writing, organising bookshelves, blogging techniques - just the uniqueness of the topic alone will always pull me in. I plan on having some posts like these in the future so keep an eye out! A blog that is always good for this is We Heart YA. Thanks to you lovely ladies!
  • Blog designs that are easy to maneuver without too many trailers, images, and widgets. This is just a personal preference, though. I visit blogs for their content and the great people behind them, not to get waylaid by page load speed or trying to find a link somewhere.
  • Twitter! I like to follow you guys on Twitter. If you have an account feel free to let me know in the comments because like I said yesterday Twitter is almost like a fresh of breath air sometimes and it's overall a fun environment.

Things that are meh:
  • Followers that are just followers. I don't mean to sound ungrateful, but if I follow you it's because I thought you and your content was genuinely interesting and I want to actively participate with you and your blog. All of these memes are fun but I'd rather get to know a person rather than be a number.
  • One thing I avoid is trying to feel pressured to do too much at once such as: if I'm reading 5 books and then some galleys and then also have 2 recently read books that I need to review. To be frank - I don't do this. This blog is here because I love books not to feel like I have to keep the pace with anyone else. Once you get stressed it's not fun anymore and your motivation wanes. Keep only your own goals and never feel bad about it.
  • Thinking it's not okay to dislike a book. It's perfectly okay and then it's also okay to review a book that you don't like. There's a big difference between constructive criticism and being needlessly cruel. The best part about reading reviews an author doesn't like is that the things they may point out could spark an interesting discussion over the story and you could learn something you've never thought of. It's always good to keep an open mind and to be honest to yourself.

There are some other neat topics that this post could have covered but I thought I'd keep it simple and perhaps expound upon those other ideas sometime in future. In any case, thank you again Armchair BEA for letting me participate and keeping me abreast of wonderful book news. It's been a blast - see you next year!

And to everyone else: back to your regularly scheduled programming! Reviews coming soon. 

6 comments on "armchair bea: blogging about blogging"

Aleeza wrote: Sat May 28, 05:15:00 AM so glad to have found your blog! ive been perusing some of your recent reviews...and i loved them!

and this post is awesome. i agree with you on every point :)

We Heart YA wrote: Sat May 28, 11:48:00 AM

We *completely* agree with you on every point. And thanks so much for the super-sweet shoutout!

(Btw, we love your blog design. It was one of the things that attracted us to you in the first place. :))

Jenny wrote: Sat May 28, 12:12:00 PM

Ah, thanks for the spotlight! I'm glad you agree it's OK to dislike a book. If I don't like a book I'm not going to lie about it. I admit I sometimes get needlessly mean but I'm trying to be a little more professional on my blog.

Jennifer A wrote: Sun May 29, 04:31:00 AM

Yeah, I only follow a blog that I think I may actually be interested in. The good news is that there are tons of blogs worth following!

Thanks for linking those 2 blogs. I've never visited them before. I'll definitely check them out.

I try not to pressure myself either. I read for fun! If I pressure myself, I'm going to get stressed out and not enjoy the book as much, and it won't get a fair review.

Great post! I went and found you on Twitter! :)

Jennifer of Little Shelf

Natalie wrote: Sun May 29, 12:51:00 PM

Great post! I totally agree with you on a lot of the points that you made! I also only follow a blog if I'm actually interested in it and will take the time to look at any updates it might have. And I've often almost not posted a review because it was bad...but isn't that the whole point of reviewing a book to begin with? To share your thoughts and personal opinions keeping in mind that others may agree or disagree with you!

kaye (paper reader) wrote: Mon May 30, 10:02:00 PM

@Aleeza: Hello! Thank you for stopping by and being so kind! My reviews are still something I'm nervous writing so it warms my heart to hear you say that. :)

@We Heart YA: When I was thinking of things to write about blogs you guys were the first thing I thought of! And, also, you were probably the first book blog I started to read and helped me start this so I owe you many thanks! (And thank you - and I thank photoshop!)

@Jenny: Usually when I dislike a book I only dislike parts of it that sort of set the tone badly for the rest of it so the review is somewhat easier to write. For every one of us that dislikes it someone will like it so the universe balances out. :)

@Jennifer A: Thanks for finding me on Twitter and thanks for stopping by. You're so great in both places. Oh, I love book bloggers!

@Natalie: I had a really hard time writing my latest review which is why it's somewhat shorter, but yep, that's why the blog exists. I'm not here to be mean, just to be honest. And I make sure the two never overlap - one doesn't have to insinuate the other. Thank you for commenting!

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