Armchair BEA 2013: Development

Design credit: Nina of Nina Reads
Design credit: Nina of Nina Reads

Today’s blogger prompt from ABEA is all about Bogger development.

The purpose of the conference is to foster “blogger development”–and clearly, that development can go in a variety of directions! Today, we’re inviting you to talk about your approach. Have you branched out into your community? Do you partner with other bloggers? Have you gone “pro” or tried generating some income through your blog? If you’re a long-term blogger, how has your online personality developed over the years?

Tell us about things you’ve done to expand your blogging horizons, and the things you’d like to do but haven’t managed (or figured out) yet. Come back here to link up your post, and then go see what other participants have to say. Let’s foster our development as bloggers and learn from each other!

I guess this is where I differ from many other bloggers out there  and even from myself of a few years ago. I have settled into a place where I realized that my blog is for me and if people think it is cool and want to come along for the ride, well, awesomesauce!

I know I have written before about how I feel about follower numbers and ARCs and I am sure that there are those who think it is sour grapes, but honestly, it is not. Once a blog gets to the point where I feel like it is all about the chase and not about the books or the love of reading I stop going back. For me this thing is still about how can love books more not how can I get more books. I have a TBR pile that is 500+ books long and a library which is full of books I have not read. ARCs while lovely are not a requirement for me to continue to blog.

I do monetize my blog. I have tried to be 100% honest about that. All of my links except for those buttoned to other places go to amazon.com. Have I made any money this way? Nope. Does it really matter to me? Nope. Would I like to some day? Yup. Enough to add ads? 100% honesty? Not yet.

That is not to say there are not things I could be doing better. One of my major downfalls is my failure to regularly review the books I read. Part of that comes from a fear of “the dumb” and part of the comes from wanting to move on. There are so many books to read. I am finished with that one why would I focus on it one more second.

Another “issue” is I let my favorite thing “Thoughts on a Thursday” languish. Honestly, I love doing it but with 2 active kids, one husband and a part time job and a million hobbies sometimes it just seems like my passions are being juggled and this is the ball that gets dropped.

A way to manage these things and something I am hoping to do this summer while I am home it really devoting some time to work on getting ahead and using the scheduler. Also I want to find a format for longer reviews which works for me. Prompts or something which will give me a format to use until reviewing is more habitual. 50 Word Friday has helped somewhat but I would like to be better at more thoughtful reviews than SQUEEEE!

10 thoughts on “Armchair BEA 2013: Development

    1. I don’t think it is a bad thing. But I do think that you need to be upfront about it.

  1. Thanks for visiting. Nice to meet you. I’m a laid back blogger too. I don’t worry too much about followers — it’s about the books for me, and mostly I just post reviews. The followers were a surprise. But I do enjoy meeting new bloggers and reading their thoughts.

    1. I think followers and people you can talk with are fabulous but going after followers to get ARCs is a bit different in my book.

  2. I totally understand about having the blog for yourself and not really caring how many followers you have. Part of the reason I have my blog is because I read so many books, I sometimes forget if i’ve read it or not or what it is about. Now my blog can remind me. But i still do love my followers.

    tanya

    1. Followers are great when you are getting them to have followers. Follower to boost numbers and get other things make me sad. 🙁 I want conversation and connection.

  3. I’m with you. If a blog sacrifices its “voice” or sense of fun and engagement for ARCs or paid topics, I’m so out. I personally get weird if there are too many deadlines in my life (outside of my full-time PR job for a university), so I try to keep review requirements and “stuff” to a minimum. It’s just what works for moi.

    Cheers to a great post!

    1. Thanks. I know what you mean about deadlines. I am having enough issues with the ABEA ones. 😉

  4. I started blogging just for my own amusement, and meeting people has been a terrific and wonderfully surprising bonus… so I try to remind myself not to look at the stats or worry about such things too much. I request ARCs from time to time, but honestly, if they’re not for books I want to read anyway, then I shouldn’t be requesting them. (Of course, on the down side, the ones I really want are never the ones I seem to get approved for…) . I totally get that it’s hard to juggle everything. Having young kids in the house is a sure-fire way to NOT have time to read and blog as often as you might plan to! 🙂

  5. I really love your blog and completely love how it’s just for you. I have been trying to keep my head in that mindset but there are days that I wish I could reach more people.

    I will definitely be staying around here. I love it.

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