Turning the Page: Blog Evolutions



Blog Evolutions

I feel inspired. I went to the Book Expo America with mixed feelings and have returned feeling inspired above all else.

I am still sometimes attacked with major doubts about my decisions and path in life. I don’t think I’ll ever get over those. I am always comparing myself to others and usually find myself falling short. You can tell me until you’re blue in the face that the grass is not always greener on the other side, but when I’m dealing with one of those self-doubt attacks, it won’t make a difference.

BEA helped knock some of the most recent attack away. I feel ready to make some changes, both in life and with this blog.

I function best with structure. I have a game plan to impose some structure to Playing Jokers to hopefully improve its content. I never intended Playing Jokers to become a space for innumerable blog tour posts or just reviews. It’s easy to fall into that though and I think with this set of guidelines (Guidelines not a schedule! There should always be flexibility!), I should be able to follow through in a way that is closer to my vision for this site.

Since this blog’s inaugural week, I have followed a rough schedule of publishing my “Turning the Page” posts. I would like to formalize this. turningthepageTurning the Page is meant to be my reflections on life and on this blog. It’s the time when a new week is beginning, or a new day, or a new moment, and I spend some time looking back on where I’ve been, what has happened, and where I’d like to be. It’s perhaps one of the most free-form types of posts I have. It’s a display of my thought processes and blog journey.

These are the days that I will continue to post both new reviews, reviews fromthestashthat I have written in the past (“From the Stash”), and book world news. It’s completely unrealistic for me to expect myself to write three reviews a week, much less any more than that. But with this structure, I’m hoping that I will have a greater incentive (or impetus) to really hunt down book world news for you to make sure that I am getting quality content up. I am also brainstorming some other fun ideas for these particular days, so keep checking back!

Based on some of the feedback I received from the little informal poll I conducted as well as reading a lot of popular blogs, the “Waiting on Wednesday” posts are popular, fun, and worthwhile. I’ve been a bit hesitant in the past to do those posts because quite frankly, I’m unsure how people figure out what books are being released soon. But I have a few ideas how to go about it. I think that doing the research means putting my ear further to the ground of the book world and can only help myself as well as be fun for visitors.

Over a month ago, I stopped doing some of the memes I was trying out. I stopped doing In My Mailbox/Stacking the Shelves because I was friday 56actively trying not to request/buy/receive any more books. And I stopped looking up new ones to do for no real reason other than perhaps laziness. Well, laziness must be combated! Memes, when done right, can really connect one blogger and blog to the wider blogging community. On Fridays, I’d like to use the day for fun memes, like Friday 56. Perhaps the memes won’t always be the same ones, but this way, I can do something together with the great bloggers that I’ve begun to meet.

This is my grand finale, the day that I am most excited to announce. Remember how I mentioned that I feel inspired because of BEA? Well that extends to the actual art of writing. Going to BEA and meeting authors, editors, publishers, and book lovers reminded me of my love for writing.

(Side note: I was in an arts program in high school for Creative Writing and worked on the literary art magazine for all four years. In college, I majored in English with a concentration in Nonfiction Writing and Rhetoric, worked at a nonprofit concerned with writing in the classrooms and children’s creative writing, and attended quite a few writers’ workshops. I have never been ‘published’ outside of college and high school literary publications, but have always enjoyed creating stories and poetry.)

Going to any book event, whether it was the Hunt Country Writers’ Retreat last year or attending events at Mason’s Fall for the Book Festival, has always made me want to get back into writing again. Writing takes commitment and time. And while both of those things can sometimes be a bit lacking, I’d like to push myself to try.

“Sunday’s Scribble” will be my time to post about what inspired me to notewrite in the past week, what I’m working on, and my trials and tribulations as I try to return to the world of words as a writer and not just as a reader. Let me repeat one of those things again: trials and tribulations. That means that I am not committing myself to actually completing anything substantial each week. It’s definitely a goal, but I’d rather not be dealing with the unnecessary stress of having some sort of standard to fulfill. I am not a full-time writer so while I can take a lot of the advice I’ve heard over the years and apply to myself (discovering whether I’m a ‘pantser’ or a planner, finding the right writing medium for me, devoting time each day to writing, getting into a routine, etc.) I also know that it is not my job and just something I’d like to do. “Sunday’s Scribble” will document that journey as well as hopefully connect me to some other writers out there.

So what do you think?

3 thoughts on “Turning the Page: Blog Evolutions

  1. “It’s completely unrealistic for me to expect myself to write three reviews a week, much less any more than that.” Thank God someone finally says this. Going into this book blog thing I was so worried. I CAN’T READ FIVE BOOKS A WEEK.

    I also really like this post – the whole planning thing. When I started blogging here I got worried because I didn’t have many reviews up and eventually my blog has evolved to being a book reviews, opinions, articles about literature blog. I write reviews when I feel like it, I continue doing Top Ten Tuesday because I absolutely love that meme, and I write articles about reading. It’s different from my original plan but it’s definitely fun.

    Definitely interested to see how you’ll continue.

    • Yeah, I mean as you can see I sort of fell off the whole schedule wagon the past two weeks but I would’ve failed putting up posts regardless of a schedule or not. My new plan is to do the schedule but try knocking out a week’s posts in one day if possible because sitting in front of a computer is completely unenjoyable to me these days, despite the pleasure I get from the blog itself. It’s almost a catch-22. 😛

      I definitely might be changing the schedule around a bit and maybe do Top Ten Tuesday because that seems to be a really popular meme and a fun one to do.

      • Top Ten Tuesday is FABULOUS. It’s a WONDERFUL thing. And yeah, I sometimes write up posts in advance so I can automatically post ’em on time, especially on busy weeks. If you ever feel like it drop by my “Book Talk” page and see what I mean with the whole opinions. I also have a new “My Writing” page. Maybe you should have one too because you’re writing more now!

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