And authors think they have a hard time. * snorts * Try asking some book bloggers how difficult they have it sometimes and I bet you´ll get a mile long list of things that have made their lives harder.
At some point, every book blogger is confronted with profession related difficulties. Whether it´s from simple human interaction or due to an occasional schedule hiccup… We struggle.
Kind of weird considering this book blogging business is “just” a hobby for the majority of us. A hobby that doesn´t pay ( much, if at all ). There are book bloggers that are actually making some bucks but the rest of us? We´re riding this train for fun.
So, where does the surviving part come in to all this? I´m glad you asked. Have a seat and a drink while I just unroll my trusty scroll. In all honesty though- How book bloggers survive completely depends on the book blogger. I cannot speak for everyone. Although, I might be able to speak for the majority of the book blogging community.
This might sound a little dramatic but there is no other way to describe what happens after we finish a book. It´s like being forced in to an open field where all sorts of emotions start to run lose. A book can evoke strong feelings from a reader and these feelings can leave invisible scars. Say you´ve read a beautiful book and it leaves you in a book funk. You´re ruined and can´t find the strength to touch another book. Or let´s say you´ve read the shittiest book EVER and feel like ranting about it. But hey, either way, you survive.
These questionable authors… Oh, how I´d love for them to all meet on a remote Island so they can have a go at each other instead of us having to deal with their unbelievable crap. You might not have had contact with a questionable author, but some of us blogging folk have. And it ain´t fun. Sometimes they´re picky, arrogant and so full of themselves. They can be demanding and exhausting. These authors are able to make book blogging less fun. Because questionable authors are down right rude. Hey, you want something from me? Be nice. Do you like my review but would like for me to rewrite it for whatever reason? Then write your own review.
Some things these questionable authors do often leave me speechless. Which isn´t easy to accomplish. But, hey… we always have the option to remove ourselves from the face of the earth and let them try finding someone else they can use if things don´t go as planned.
We might think we´re not in the limelight but sometimes we are. Aside from comments and the occasional like on our posts we have no way to track down who actually took their time to read our work. But we do find out when our posts are shared and analysed online. We also have friends who have friends who again, have friends. Word spreads fast and we eventually find out who´s been working the gossip mill. We all might be spread throughout the world but we´re still just a click away from one another. The internet has eyes, people. Never forget that.
Every book blogger can become a target for the angry fan mob. All it takes is a 3 star book review for their all time favorite book. There´s no point in hiding. These fanatics will find you even if it´s the last thing they do. And when they find you, you have two options.
Option #1 Stand your ground and call up your inner William Wallace to defend your review.
Option #2 Run.
A combination of the two is also not a bad choice. First fight back then run away and hide. I´ve heard it works for some.
The important part is, though: We survive the angry literary fan base mob.
It´s quite an intimidating moment when a book blogger gives you ( wanted or unwanted ) feedback on your post. For most of the time the feedback us book bloggers receive is great. Words of encouragement are given, positive statements are left in the comments of our posts. But sometimes we publish things that strangely provoke other bloggers.
Here are a few totally random examples:
- including pictures of animals ( it´s impolite )
- using foul language ( it´s fucking crude )
- not having the right kind of empathy ( it´s unacceptable and a crying shame )
- not thinking in general ( that´s what they think )
For whatever reason these book bloggers feel it´s their sole duty to lecture other book bloggers on book blogger etiquette ( as if there was such a thing ).
The self declared Lord Commanders of the Book Watch ( if you will ) are often more opinionated than any entertainment critic, dead or alive. Yes, the idea of trying to give someone a lecture on how to go about things for a hobby that doesn´t require ANY type of qualification is ludicrous. Yet, it still happens to book bloggers.
And every time it happens we survive.
This sounds harmless, right? Well, it depends. We´re a busy bunch with having to juggle reading, writing reviews, reading ARCs, maintaining social contacts, working social media, etc etc. Blogging can get overwhelming. If we´re not super careful we can get carried away with adding new books and accepting cover reveal posts ( blog tours in general ). For some of us- Our biggest enemy is time and the fact that we´re constantly trying. Trying to squeeze in another post. Trying to do an author a favor. Trying to get those reviews up. One could say we try too hard. Because we don´t always succeed. Even with a packed schedule and the promise we made to include a cover reveal post for X author, we sometimes fail. This is because we´re only human. We fuck up. And we survive.
Of course there are well organized book bloggers who keep a well organized schedule. I´m not one of those. Are you?
This is not a book blogger´s fault. It´s the book that kept us up all night we should blame. “Just one more page / chapter.” and before we know it we hear birds announcing the ass crack of dawn. Some of us are able to survive on 2 hours of sleep. Some of us flip the clock off and start a new book ( because why the hell not? We technically have a good hour to spare before we hit the shower ). For reasonable people this is an unacceptable act that compares to idiocy but for us book people… We were able to get that page / chapter and so much more in, so we won at life.
The day might feel a little torturous for us but hey…. we´ll surive. We always do. There´s always the weekend to catch up on sleep, right?
With all the hard work book bloggers pour in to their hobby they don´t nearly receive the recognition they deserve. It doesn´t matter how big or small the book blog is or how well known they are – the one thing that´s important is always missing.
Even if us book blogging folk love our hobby there´s no ignoring the position we are in.
We´re the middle men in this book universe, sandwiched between publishers / authors and the consumer. Money is always flowing around us, just not close enough for us to have our share. The publisher / author wants to make money and the comsumer spends money that travels over our heads and straight towards the publisher / author. For some strange reason money is not an option for the hard workers who read and recommend day and night.
But other things are. Book bloggers might not bathe in cash but they´re sometimes showered with books or other book related items as a token of appreciation for the love, sweat and energy given.
Just as important is the lack of verbal recognition. This doesn´t apply to every single person because some people actually share posts from fellow bloggers and even authors do a quick shout out for a book blogger. Which is wonderful. But it´s like a drop on a hot stone. More authors need to help spread the word. Sometimes book blogging feels like a one way street. More publishers should go out of their way and mention book bloggers in public more. This might not feed a book blogger but it´s balm for their souls to see their work has been noticed by the people who´re indirectly making money off them.
With all that book bloggers experience it´s safe to say, no matter what we´re confronted with, we always survive. How do we do it? Sadly enough, not many of us aren´t able to deal with these things and end up quitting book blogging. As for the rest who remain: we ignore, we drink cocktails or have late night snacks to digest it all. Or, we just read and more foward.
Is there something you would like to add to this list? Do you agree with these points? Let´s chat ❤
Thank you so much for taking your time to read The Art Of Surviving As A Book Blogger.