Tags #16: 10 Open Hearted Answers of a Blogger

It’s been a while since I’ve done any sort of a tag, right? But then Jolien Nathalie tagged me in this one and, honestly? I’m not really sure to what extent some of these questions technically apply to my blog, but none the less… Let’s get into these open-hearted answers of a blogger!

First introduce your blog in 30 seconds

My blog is something of a mishmash. The main focus is definitely books – reviews, weekly lists, tags, new releases… Basically, I love books and my blog reflects that. Other than that, though, there’s posts about travelling, college (first as a student, now as a teacher), and basically anything else that’s going on in my life…. Maybe that’s the best short version: my blog reflects whatever’s keeping me busy!

1) Why did you start blogging?

Because I’d run out of reasons not to? I’ve always loved writing. My grandma still has this little *book* I made when I was four, where I did the drawings and then told her exactly what words to write down with them. Basically, I just change my medium every once in a while, and blogging felt like the right thing to start at that moment!

2) How did you get in touch with PR companies?

I don’t?

Here’s the one thing that kind of “sucks” about being mainly a bookblogger: there is much less of a community as far as PR and things goes. I mean, in some way that’s kind of logical – you  know, it can seem very much so “books or nothing”, but still. Not as many possibilities, maybe?

What “PR” I have gotten, was mainly because I’d reviewed other books of an author – or similar books to a new release – and then got asked to review another book. Unless you count Netgalley and Edelweiss as PR? In that case, those two!

3) Which collaborations do you regret?

None. Because, again, I’ve not really done any. I would love to be part of a blog tour but I’m finding it incredibly intimidating to actually get into that. Why, you may ask? Well, because I feel like my following isn’t really “big enough” to be valuable for such a thing? And, as a matter of fact, this brings me right to the next question!

4) What is your biggest blogger blunder?

Underselling myself.

It took me a year and a half to actually set up an Instagram and a Twitter for my blog. I had to talk courage into myself for months to finally set up a profile on Netgalley, and even after I did? I think I took 2 months to finally request my first ARC.

It’s not so much a “concrete” blunder, I know, but still. The hardest part about blogging in general, for me? Actually selling it. I mean, hardly anyone in my family even knows I have a blog, no one at work knows, and if my friends know I have a blog? I certainly don’t promote it to them.

5) How do you experience the blogger world?

Intimidating.

As I said, I only really set up social media for my blog after having it for a while. The reason for that is that the blogger world seemed (and at times: seems) incredibly closed off.

Now, you need to take this with a grain of salt, of course. Just about everyone I’ve ever spoken to? They’ve been really nice. But…

Well, I’m finding it really hard to find my *roots* in that world. It often feels as if there’s these groups of max. 5 bloggers that are so close, and I just joined the game too late to actually be part of any friend group. Also, if you’re not from a country that is English-speaking, I feel like you’re already at a disadvantage.

A typical example: #FollowFriday. I can just about guarantee you that if you look at the people mentioned in those #ffposts? You will see the same 5 or 6 names in all of them. Which makes it both incredibly intimidating and kind of hard to do one yourself. Because, you know, you want to be at least a bit original, right?

6) How many offers do you get per day?

Let’s put it this way: what many bloggers get per a day? It’s what I get in a month – if it’s a particularly good month 🙂

7) Do you earn a lot of money on blogging?

None. I spend money on blogging – haven’t earned any yet, though.

Which, let’s be real, is at least partially because Belgium… Well, it doesn’t have the most *motivating* legal environment to earn money as a blogger.

8) Do you know/work together with other bloggers?

Work with any bloggers: not really. I mean, I would love to. I did do one guest post a while back, but again: I find it incredibly intimidating to take that first step and ask people? Because, you know, why would they want to work with me?

Do I know other bloggers? Yes! This is where that grain of salt from the  5th question comes in: there’s a couple of bloggers that I interact with on a regular basis – and that I really like both as bloggers and as people. The funny thing is, I feel like I want to ask them to work together even less. Because then they might think that I only started talking to them (months earlier) to eventually get to the point where I could ask them to work together and…

Yeah, I tend to overthink things, don’t I? Gotta love anxiety!

9) In which manner has your blog changed over the year?

Over the years: it’s gotten more specific to just book-ish content, and my style of writing, I feel, has definitely changed quite a bit as well. I still use entirely too much of these: “-” though.

Just this year: well, I’ve changed my images to better suit Pinterest, I’ve added a couple more “reappearing posts” (like the new releases, reading updates, favorite blogposts), …

At the same time, though, I feel that I am staying true to what I wanted my blog to be: a “safe place” filled with all the things that are “me”. Most times, that is a lot of bookish fun, but if I’m in a travelling mood, if my mental health is lower than usual, or anything of the sort? That’s what I talk about.

10) Best blogging tip?

Probably the one I need to listen to a bit more myself: “Just do it.”
If you want to start a blog? Do it.
If you want to collaborate with brands, people, blogs? Do it.

Don’t spend months hyping yourself up to then do something that turns out to be not that big of a deal but somehow in your head it was this humongous thing and people were going to look at you weirdly or just laugh in your face or it was going to blow up in your face and now you feel kind of stupid because it was actually so easy but then maybe if you hadn’t spent those months preparing it actually would have failed but also why can’t you ever just get the things you want to do done and why must it always be such a constant thing of forcing yourself way and beyond that nice little comfort zone?

Aaanyway… With that full stream-of-consciousness I’ll leave you with these 10 open hearted answers of a blogger! I’m not going to be tagging anyone in this (although: thank you, Jolien, for tagging me!) but: if you feel like this might be something you would enjoy? Consider yourself tagged – and then let me know your responses below!

-Saar