Hey all! Well, while I was spending all weekend reading, furiously, I didn’t have much time to pre-write posts up and last night was a bust so…no review today. But that got me to thinking about book blogging in and of itself and how hard it can be to balance everything sometimes.
Finding Balance – Let’s Break it Down
It’s hard to balance things in the book blogging world! Not even counting all of the other things in my life (family, friends, work, and home life) there is a lot just to balance within book blogging itself!
- Writing Reviews (2-3 per week) – 1 hour each
- Tags / Meme / Other Posts (3-4 per week) – 1/2 an hour to 1 hour each
- Blog Hopping (visiting blogs, commenting, sharing content) – 45 minutes daily
- Social Media (twitter, instagram, facebook, goodreads) – min. 1 hour daily
- Blog Maintenance (updating site pages, etc) – 15 mins – 1/2 hour per week
- Reading Books – 12-15 hours per audiobook (multitasking), 8-10 hours per print book
So I’m spending about 19 hours a week just doing blog related stuff! That’s as much as a part time job and I’m not even counting reading (which, let’s face it, is the most fun part). I work a full time job, have a husband and three cats, a house to maintain, friends to hang out with, family to visit, help moderate the largest fantasy forum on the net, and somehow still squeeze in time for blogging (most of the time). Not sure how people who have children or school manage to work blogging into their busy schedules, but you guys are rock stars!
I try to have a post go up everyday, just to keep up the momentum and also so folks don’t lose interest in my content. Most of my posts get views the same day they’re posted and maybe a few times the day after, maybe once or twice after that. So if I’m not posting often then traffic dies way down. I know, I know–we’re not supposed to care about traffic and stats, right? And yet, most of us do anyway. It’s just the nature of things! Also, if you want to get approved for those sweet ARC’s then chances are higher if your stats are higher and you’re regularly producing content. This can put a lot of pressure on us as bloggers to constantly produce posts. I try not to think about all that, but it’s usually in the back of my mind anyway (eeeeek!) Regardless, always remember to do what’s best for you and your health! Book blogging should remain a fun hobby, not bring you down!
How To Find Time In a Busy World
Pre-scheduling is great if you can do it. I usually try to schedule a week out but it doesn’t always work out (especially lately). Participating in some of the daily book blogging memes are great for pre-scheduling since the topics (if they are topical) are usually out way ahead of time. Book tags and awards posts are also easier posts to fill out and pre-schedule for days when you may not have other things going on. Keep in mind that all of this still takes time and you may not want to set aside a huge chunk of a day to work on several posts at once.
Maybe daily posting is more of your style. If that’s the case then scheduling a time to work on blog stuff daily and establishing a routine may work out well! There is no one way to do this, so just find out what works for you so that it doesn’t become a chore. 🙂
Write the kind of content that YOU want to write and what interests YOU. Don’t feel obligated to do a bunch of memes just because everyone does them or tags just because someone tags you. If you’re not into reviews, then don’t feel obligated to write reviews. If you love what you’re doing then you’ll be happy to work on it and it won’t feel like a chore. Remember, talking about books is supposed to be fun!
Engage with other bloggers who you enjoy talking to! The blogs I follow and the folks I talk to on social are all awesome bloggers with similar interests in books to what I like. I enjoy reading their posts and talking to them over the internet. Sometimes I get great book recommendations from them too! Like the above, blog hopping and social media engagement should be fun and organic–if you’re not having fun then why are we doing it? Yes, these things will also take time, but if we get into a routine then usually it melds into part of your ‘daily things I do’ and no longer feels like you’re taking time specifically out of your day to do them.
As for reading, well, I try to work that in whenever I can. I am lucky enough that I can listen to audiobooks at work and I also have a commute that gives me about an hour and a half each day (minimum). Using audiobooks to multi-task has been great for me. But I know it’s not a solution for everyone. For print books I try to read a little bit each day, usually at night before bed. On the weekends I may read a lot in the mornings before my husband wakes up. Whatever works for you!
But how do you find time to do all of these things at once? Well, like with anything, it’s all about balance and routine. Last week I spent so much time reading (there were too many good books all out at once, hah) that I made the mistake of falling behind in blog stuff (whoops!). It happens! Don’t beat yourself up if you fall behind or need to take a break or whatever. There’s no one answer on how to do this, so my best advice is just to keep things fun and interesting for yourself. If that means you have to change things up once in a while, then go for it. 🙂 ALWAYS do what’s best for YOU so that you continue to have fun with this crazy thing called book blogging!
So, I’m really curious, fellow bloggers! What is your book blogging routine like? Thoughts on mine? Leave me a note in the comments, I’d love to chat!