Tuesday 30 September 2014

How To Start a Book Blog

If you’re here I’m guessing you want to start a book blog (or already have one) and are looking for a few tips. Back when I started I’m Booked! I didn’t really know what I was doing or how to go about becoming a book blogger. Along the way, after making many mistakes, I found myself learning a thing or two about blogging. Here I have compiled a list of a few book blogging basics:

1.    Start a blog: Seems a little obvious, but that’s because it is. Now, the age old question that every blogger faces:  Blogger or Wordpress. I don’t think it really matters as you start off because they both have their pros and cons. Blogger is probably the simplest and I liked it back in the day because of GFC but this is a feature I don’t really use much now. Wordpress allows you to make a more personal design if you use the .org website but this requires more know-how in terms of website building. A lot of people start off on Blogger and move to Wordpress when they’re more established but I don’t think it really matters which one you choose as long as you find that it suits you the best.

2.    Read, read, read: It’s hard to fit reading so much around your daily life but you need to keep on top of your TBR (I’m guilty of not always doing this) so that you can schedule your reviews. Before you publish your blog it would be good have 3 or 4 reviews ready so you can stay ahead of the game. When I started I only had one review ready and I found myself hectically trying to read and write new reviews in time for the next day which brings me onto my next point.

3.    Schedule your posts: Having no schedule or structure to when you post makes it hard to keep on track with your blog. When I started I tried to post everyday until I realised it just wasn’t practical for me. Now my goal is a weekly Fun Fact Friday, a review and hopefully something helpful or random. If you know when you’re going to post and when you’re going to give yourself a break it makes life a lot easier.

4.    Socialise: So now your blog’s up and running you need people to read that stuff you spent so long writing. This is where websites like Goodreads, Twitter, Google Plus and Facebook are handy. I only use the first three but I think that’s enough. Goodreads lets you join groups and connect with other bloggers in your niche. You can also let everyone know when you’ve published a new post. Google Plus is good when you got a lot of people in your circles and you want to keep them up to date with your blog. I probably use twitter the most since it’s a great way to promote your reviews to other bloggers and make new blogging buddies. It’s good not to spread yourself too thin though so while I’d use more than one resource, I’d mainly use twitter as a way to connect with bloggers and authors, and promote posts.

5.    Comment: I know when I get comments I always get warm fuzzy feeling. Comments are like virtual hugs. Well, nice comments :). When you get a comment, try to reply. They gave you their time so you can do the same. Also comment on other peoples blogs. But only if you’ve got something to say. Saying Great post! and leaving your URL isn’t really a comment.

6.    Sit back and relax: Just kidding! If you want a successful blog then you can’t really be too relaxed about it. It should be enjoyable but sometimes it’s kind of hard work. Sometimes you won’t want to post anything. That’s okay, we all have lives away from our blogs. But to keep people coming back for more you’ve got to do a bit of hard work.

Did I miss something? Let me know in the comments.

Friday 26 September 2014

Fun Fact Friday (#35)

Fun Fact Friday is a meme hosted by Lettora at I’m Booked! If you’d like to join and do your own Fun Fact Friday, just ask! At I’m Booked! Every week we’ll give you five new, fun facts.

This week’s five facts:

1. There was a "Beard Tax" in Russia, during Peter the Great's Reign, paid by anyone who had a beard.

2. Snakes can have two heads and fight each other for food.

3. A million seconds is over 11 days but a billion seconds is over 31 years .

4. Coca-Cola would be naturally green if the food colouring wasn't added to it.

5. It takes more calories to eat a piece of celery than the celery has in it.

Friday 19 September 2014

Fun Fact Friday (#34)

Fun Fact Friday is a meme hosted by Lettora at I’m Booked! If you’d like to join and do your own Fun Fact Friday, just ask! At I’m Booked! Every week we’ll give you five new, fun facts.

This week’s five facts:

1. You swallow a litre (4.2 cups) of snot every day.

2. Horses can sleep standing.

3. 70% of all the world's spices come from India.

4. Sharks can grow a new set of teeth in 8 days.

5. Israel is so small, you can run through it from west to east in 2 hours and from top to bottom in 9 days.

Wednesday 17 September 2014

Review: Geek Girl by Holly Smale

Title: Geek Girl
Author: Holly Smale
Publisher: HarperCollins
Page Count: 378
Publication Date: February 28th 2013
Obtained: Purchased


Harriet Manners knows a lot of things.

She knows that a cat has 32 muscles in each ear, a "jiffy" lasts 1/100th of a second, and the average person laughs 15 times per day. What she isn't quite so sure about is why nobody at school seems to like her very much. So when she's spotted by a top model agent, Harriet grabs the chance to reinvent herself. Even if it means stealing her Best Friend's dream, incurring the wrath of her arch enemy Alexa, and repeatedly humiliating herself in front of the impossibly handsome supermodel Nick. Even if it means lying to the people she loves.

As Harriet veers from one couture disaster to the next with the help of her overly enthusiastic father and her uber-geeky stalker, Toby, she begins to realise that the world of fashion doesn't seem to like her any more than the real world did.

And as her old life starts to fall apart, the question is: will Harriet be able to transform herself before she ruins everything? (Goodreads)

What I Thought:

Harriet Manner’s life changes the moment she is scouted by a modelling agent and propelled into the glamorous world of fashion, much to the dismay of her best friend Nat. On her journey from geek to chic she falls in love with a handsome stranger and finds out what it really means to be a model.

One thing is certain about this book; if you like your facts (which I certainly do) then you will have a great time filling your brain with the little titbits of trivia that happen to fall from Harriet’s mind. In fact the random factoids were probably the most enjoyable thing about the novel. Harriet kind of reminded me of Mia from the Princess Diaries pre-makeover. She’s pretty, but she doesn’t know it. All she needed was a haircut and some contacts.

And then of course we have a classic enemy, Alexa, who hates Harriet’s for no real reason but sure knows that she wants to make her life as difficult as possible. Thankfully she gets her just desserts. But let’s not forget her stalker-friend Toby who sprinkles some much needed comic relief throughout the novel. I thought Geek Girl was good for what it was. It was a nice change from the usual YA novel that I find on the shelf but it wasn’t anything particularly spectacular. The characters were pretty run-of-the-mill, which is my only gripe, that and the plot being predictable. Those thoughts aside I enjoyed it.

Rating: 3/5

Friday 5 September 2014

Fun Fact Friday (#33)

Fun Fact Friday is a meme hosted by Lettora at I’m Booked! If you’d like to join and do your own Fun Fact Friday, just ask! At I’m Booked! Every week we’ll give you five new, fun facts.

This week’s five facts:

1.  Rabbits often sleep with their eyes open

2. The longest time between two twins being born is 87 days apart.

3.  Koala bears aren't bears: They're marsupials.

4.  Rats multiply so quickly that in 18 months, two rats could have over a million descendants.

5.  Hot water is heavier than cold water.