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Armchair BEA: Blogger Development & Genre Fiction

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Design credit goes to Nina of Nina Reads
Blogger Development

Today we’ve been asked to talk about “how we develop ourselves as bloggers.”

While I’ve been blogging for over two-and-a-half years, I haven’t been doing so with a set goal in mind. So I haven’t put much effort into the development of my blog in terms of building an audience, making connections in the industry or increasing traffic to my site.

And as I’m not a marketing expert or a blogger who feels comfortable with outreach, my blog has grown much slower than many of the blogs out there. But what I have done, I hope, is establish a presence.

I’ve been fairly consistent with my blogging – posting daily aside from four or five days since I began. I try add a touch of “me” to the blog by sharing my thoughts in each and every post I write – I don’t do pre-written posts, information only posts, blasts. I promote only those things that I like.

I do what makes me feel comfortable.

During my first year of blogging I had gotten caught up in the numbers and I saw my blog’s statistics climb. By being social, by getting involved in events in the blogosphere, by reading the hyped books, by hosting numerous giveaways. While I didn’t require follows or other incentives, all these activities did help my blog grow. But it didn’t make me a happy blogger.

At the end of 2011 I decided to blog in a way that made me happy. I basically stopped requesting review books. I scaled back the activities I got involved in and reduced the number of giveaways that I hosted.

So, I guess you could say my blog developed inorganically before I allowed it to develop naturally. And that’s why I am still blogging today and don’t wonder each and every day why I am doing this or what’s my end goal.

Blogs tend to be transient things. Without monetary incentives to keep one blogging it’s so easy to spend an enormous amount of time and effort developing ones blog only to give it up in the blink of an eye. I don’t want that to happen with my blog.

I don’t consider myself a long-term blogger, but I’d like to think that in a few years I will be one of those. I’d like to be around to see the changes in the blogosphere and how it has evolved since I began blogging about books. While some of my secondary blogs may come and go on a whim, I plan to be blogging at Fiktshun for a long while. Even if it does change its focus down the line.

While my blog has gone through its own set of growing pains there is one thing that hasn’t changed since I began blogging and that is me. Well, my beliefs, thoughts, approach, anyway. I’ve always striven for fairness, for honesty and for integrity in how I blog. I’ve always believed that no one blogger is better or more deserving than another. I’ve always believed in sharing my books with others when I can.

I’m not in this for popularity, to make others envious or to be the best of the best. I don’t share my thoughts and expect everyone to believe the same as I do. I don’t dismiss other people’s opinions or thoughts simply because they differ from my own.

In my everyday life I have to deal with judgment, sarcasm, snark, competitiveness, cruelty. Blogging is my creative outlet. Books are my passion. From the outset I have chosen to blog in a way that excludes as much of this real-life stuff as possible. And after blogging this way for the past couple of years, I’m happy to say that it is mostly possible.

Genre Fiction

I have always been a fan of vampires. Rather, books about vampires. If the undead creatures of the night do exist, I don’t think I’d ever want to meet one. Whether scary, sexy or a mix of both, I love reading about them. And, no, I will never tire of stories about vampires.

Discovering the world of young adult fiction back in 2008 has opened the door to other genres that I’ve grown to love. First it was angels – guardian, avenging, fallen – and the nephilim. Then banshees, demons, fae, ghosts, shifters, zombies, revenants.

I love the fantasy aspects to these stories. I love the adventures. I read to escape, and reading about real-life issues, especially ones that hit too close to home, doesn’t allow for that.

But what draws me to stories about vampires is that they are such fascinating creatures of the night. I always preferred night to day and beings bound by darkness always held an appeal for me. Even when those creatures were mindless or blood-thirsty or just plain evil.

The fact that stories nowadays add characteristics to these creatures, ones that make them lovable, sympathetic, daring, makes me even more thrilled each time I read one. And while I do enjoy stories with day walkers, I will still forever prefer my vampires to rise as the sun sets.

10 Responses to “Armchair BEA: Blogger Development & Genre Fiction”

  1. Wonderful responses. I definitely think it’s easy to want to do whats popular with blogging but if you can’t truly be happy doing it your own way then it’s like what’s the point? Oh and I also prefer my Vampires to live in the dark. Although I do like the idea of outside influences maybe allowing brief moments in the sun if it helps the story.

    My Responses

  2. Very nice. Thanks.

  3. loved your responses and agree about numbers the first year 🙂 But I am glad that you are happy with the way your blog. I think with blogging I have made some wonderful friends 🙂
    I love vamps but have gotten burned out on them LOL

  4. Ashley says:

    Love your blog (s) ! And you! Kinda named dropped you twice in my bea posts cause your blogs amazing! I love the experience and knowledge you’ve shared!

  5. alexia561 says:

    Great post! So glad that you were able to find a blogging style that made you happy! I’m still working on that 🙂

  6. Julie S. says:

    Great post. It is great to hear that you do this because you enjoy it, and you blog on your own terms.

  7. Hi! Thank you so much for your thoughts on blog development. My blog is close to being six months old and though I don’t do as much as I’m sure I can, I do what keeps me interested and happy. I know this path will mean my blog will grow more slowly than others but I’m OK with that. It’s just me sharing about one of the many things in this life that I love and I’m OK with that too. The bottom line: your post and words on this topic are encouraging for me and prove that you can do things your way and be both successful and a long-term site. Thanks and blog on!

  8. Rinn says:

    This is very true – I’ve stopped requesting review copies now because I just felt too much pressure to review them. I still have a massive backlog to review but I’m just doing what I can, reading what I want rather than what I FEEL like I should read.

  9. Laurie C says:

    Wow! It sounds like you’ve really defined success on your own terms and have made your blog a real source of pleasure, both for yourself and your many readers! I may eventually go to no review requests also. I’m started to get tired of reading books that are just good or okay just because I said I would. Although I try not to end up reading any that are really terrible.

  10. Laura R says:

    You’re right about the growth and development. Sometimes approaching with a plan is the best approach and other times it just requires flexibility. I’m glad you’ve figured out your best approach. Tattooed Books

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