Eight days after starting entirely too late on a Sunday night to create a blog for the first time in a couple of years, I have learned some valuable lessons.
I started this book blog because for the past three years, I have been reviewing every book I was reading on Goodreads. I enjoy reviewing books for the most part and there is a great pleasure to be found when a book can be marked completed and when I can officially join in the conversation about it. A review can be the start of that conversation, not necessarily the end of its journey. I have been aware in a cursory manner of the subculture of book blogs (or as I consistently refer to it, the rabbit hole) for about a year. But there are some things you don’t learn until you’re falling down that hole.
Assumptions I Had (and now no longer possess)
- Typos and layout glitches were a sign that the owner was lazy. Okay, maybe that sounds even harsher than the reality of this particular assumption. But I would sometimes be shocked when I would peruse blogs and see typos in their reviews. How dare they? cried the editor in me. Don’t they edit their own writing if they feel the right to talk about someone else’s writing? And my equally critical eye would be drawn to broken margins or clashing colors and I would balk at how someone would like that.
- My lesson learned: Blogs are meant to be fun. There’s a difference between a website and a blog. I have learned that while there are definitely some that aspire for an almost business-like approach to their blogs, it is in the end up to the owner to decide what is important to them. Content trumps layout. And we’re all human. I’m sure there are typos in this post. And I’m sure someone like me with that sick joy of finding grammatical errors in writing will discover them and whisper ‘ah ha!’ to themselves. But bloggers are generally a single human being, not an editorial team or with time to go through various drafts. And that’s okay.
- Two separate communities existed: those with the blogs, and those that just read the blogs. I had this idea that the people who read blogs were primarily those that just read. There were those that supplied the content and then there was the greater audience, the audience who didn’t want to hunt down information or (for some reason) valued the opinion of the bloggers.
- My lesson learned: I find that a majority of blog readers are in fact bloggers themselves. It is a very large book blogosphere here, and it would be asinine to believe that there are an equal number of only readers to match the numbers. I had read that there was a community of bloggers, but it’s really something that you only can fathom once you’ve again fallen down the rabbit hole into the strange world of book blogging. It’s up to the bloggers to really support one another.
I will continue to give some thought to this subject and will hopefully post a week two update on my changing mindset towards this grand experiment. I would like to thank everyone who has helped this blog in its week-long infancy. I would not have believed last Sunday that in just eight days, I would have over 160 views (I promise only like…25 of those are from me checking on different devices). I have managed to post at least once a day and my ultimate goal is to keep that up (but we all know goals can be easily broken). I hope to continue to read enough to post reviews the most, some memes to continue to connect with the wider blog community, and hopefully some original content that I brainstorm. After all, we need to play some jokers around here.