The Story is About + TIME

Backstage Blogging: Part 3

Welcome to the Backstage Blogging!

So what is Backstage Blogging... well it's a way for you to see behind the blog, to find out what makes a blogger tick. More or less, why exactly we do the things that we do. (Plus it's also a way for me to promote some awesome blogs in the process!)

I know as a book blogger I want to be a perceptive blogger. I want to know the easiest and most comprehensive way of doing things. I want to learn from my peers and have my peers learn something worthwhile from me. Essentially I want to get into the mind of another blogger and by doing so, I think we can all learn something from each other. It's not just the bloggers that have been blogging for years that have all the answers, the new bloggers are just as knowledgeable at times.

In the past few weeks I asked 30 newbie bloggers: "What do you hope to accomplish with your book blog beyond sharing your love of literature?" You can see the answers here; Part 1 & Part 2. So many different opinions... it was great!

This week I will be featuring 15 bloggers that have been blogging for over six months, and then next week I will feature an additional 15 bloggers. This will conclude the first section of Backstage Blogging.



"As the operator of a well-known blog, how do you put your star power to good use?"

I feel like this is addressed directly at my unofficial #MasterPimp status, haha! I like bringing smaller known things to attention - blogs, old books, upcoming books, even fan videos and covers. I love helping people discover new things.

-Nicole of Word for Teens

I suppose I am a terribly selfish blogger and tend to blog only for myself. I like to keep track of what I have read and what I felt about it. I don't generally think about who might be reading the blog to be honest and I certainly do not think I have "star power". I'd like to think that by having fun writing and creating my blog it might inspire other bloggers to have fun as well and not take it so seriously and avoid all the drama?

-Cat of Beyond Books

Our main goal is to encourage teens and adults to explore different genres of books. Our hope is that people will look beyond a book’s classification and see that YA doesn't mean you have to be a young adult to read & enjoy it and that books are more than their genre classification!

Another mission we have is to promote more books looking at special needs children, with a strong focus on children on the Autism Spectrum. We believe that understanding the needs of special needs children will increase their socialization. This mission also includes the desire to promote books that deal with a multitude of issues that face today’s youth. We hope to encourage a culture of understanding and acceptance through reading.

-Pixie & Stacey of Page Turners

I have a well known blog? I have star power? This is news to me.

Well, in terms of any new bloggers asking me for ~advice, I tend not to bite them and try to give them things that I wish I knew before I started blogging so that they do not have to be as STRESSFUL as me.

And I would like to think that my posts where I complain help others realize and share things they want to see changed? I dunno.

-Khy of Frenetic Reader

This is a tricky question for me because I do NOT believe I have anything even close to 'star power'. Yet, I try my best to support and promote as much as I'm capable of. I spread the word in many networks about books I enjoyed and also donate books and swag to my local library. They always ask me which books I've enjoyed lately and I like to think I somewhat influence what they order. I have a very good communication with my local indie store and they always let me know about upcoming signings and events and I promote those as well. I also support and spread the word about good causes like Devyn Burton's Book Transfusion (link:http://www.booktransfusion.com/).

-Sab of YA Bliss

My goal with my blog has always been to share with readers the books I read and encourage them to step out of their comfort zones and find something they might enjoy. As YA has exploded over the past few years, I've also made a point to highlight books that might not get the reader attention books with larger marketing budgets receive, and encourage readers to pick those books up as well. I love discovering books that I've never heard of before and falling in love with them, and the best part about blogging is sharing that with my readers. I believe that everyone can become a great reader if they can just find the books that interest them, and I hope to be a part of that discovery process.

-The Compulsive Reader

My approach to life has always, always about genuinely honest, intelligent, and passionate about anything I care about. On a small scale, I LOVE giving little-known books rave reviews, interviewing their authors, giving them away... anything to promote books that I think deserve a bigger audience than they might have. On a larger scale, I tend to write a fair number of posts about topics/issues in YA lit--such as white-washing, and prejudice against YA lit--that I hope will spark discussion and awareness of each issues. It's not much--I'm really hoping to be able to do much more tangible things about these issues in the near future--but I hope that getting others to think and talk about these things is a start!

-Steph Su of Steph Su Reads

I never imagined having “star power” or even a voice big enough to get past my little space on the internet and I still think I don’t. Honestly, I have not done much “good”, though it would depend on your definition of good. Mine would be like Harmony organizing PAYA or Steph’s recent post about Asians in YA or the ladies at Color Online; no, I just talk book.

With book blogging I was exposed to so many more books—books that never made the New York Times Bestsellers list, but in my opinion should have—that I like to pass onto friends or just a random reader. “Did you like ____? You should try this book then!” I do like to pass on my middle grade novels to my younger cousins. (I will make a reader out of her yet!)

I have donated several books—books sent for review and from my own personal collection—to libraries. It is a nail-biting process! There is no guarantee that the books get through the sorting process and finally reach the shelves. I have dropped off packets of bookmarks, tattoos, and little buttons at the checkout table for their summer reading program. Did the promotional items managed to interest someone of the book? I hope so.

I also helped start Traveling to Teens with Carol, but let’s just not talk about that for now ;P (I always seem be lacking time, energy, or just the drive to see some ideas through!)

A lot of that can be done without being a well-known blogger. Then again what is considered well-known bloggers? According to Kristi’s email it is “established bloggers (blogging 6 months or more)”. Some might say it is by the amount of Google followers you have, which I really did think at a time or two in my blogging life. Now I just do what I like to think I do somewhat well, talk book.

Not all of us can be Batman; I like to call myself Robin (or should it be Batgirl). (Did anyone else think that line was just bad?)

Harmony and PAYA: http://www.bringya2pa.com/2010/07/paya-2010-festival-all-details.html
Steph: http://stephsureads.blogspot.com/2010/07/why-i-want-more-asians-on-ya-book.html
Color Online: coloronline.blogspot.com/
Traveling to Teens: travelingtoteenstours.weebly.com

-Yan of Books by Their Cover

I use it to get myself more free books. :) But seriously, I like to think I use it to help out other bloggers, whether through email or through answering questions in my Ask Book Chic feature. I'm such a helper and love answer questions about anything, so it makes me happy to have new bloggers come to me and ask me how to go about doing something or if posting this will be okay or whatever. Also, while I don't do it enough, I love to promote new bloggers whose blogs I love and want others to check out, usually by pointing them to a specific post that blogger did that's really thoughtful and eloquent.

-James of Book Chic

Because it’s always good to give a lesser known author and their book a little extra buzz, I use my blogger star power to good use by trying to promote lesser known books and their authors more than ones that have already had a huge following and lots of buzz. While I mainly do review newer books, I also try to review ones from a couple of years ago as well. Lastly, I'm always up to helping lesser know bloggers get the word out about their blog.

-Lauren of Lauren's Crammed Bookshelf

I wouldn't say that my blog is well-known or that I have star power. I just try to share my love of literature to anyone that wants to read it, because that is my passion in life. I encourage others to buy books that are amazing and I also review books that not many people have heard of or are sadly underrated. I am also a strong advocate of supporting local libraries, because I would not be the person that I am without books and my weekly visits to the library. I hope that is what you find on my blog and that you enjoy it.

-Sarah of Sarah's Random Musings

As a teen librarian, my blog started as a place to keep track of books I'd read so I could remember them to suggest to my teens. As it grew, my blog became a place for me to be an advocate for teens, YA fiction, and teens and YA in the library. I use my blog to talk about what it's like to be a teen librarian, what it takes to work with teens, and why teen librarians are important and why teens belong in the library. As big as the blogosphere is, it can be easy to forget that not every teen has a librarian they talk to or feel comfortable in the library and I hope I can change that by bringing awareness to YA and libraries through my blog.

-Sarah of GreenBeanTeenQueen

My star power is put to good use by trying to get the word out about books I've absolutely loved as much as possible. Between posting my review on my blog, then various other sites like goodreads and amazon, talking about the book on twitter and other social networking platforms, there's a lot that can be done.

To me, there's nothing more satisfying than someone telling me that they picked up a book as a result of my reviewing it and ended up enjoying it themselves. That's priceless.

-Melanie of Melanie's Musings

Each season, there are a handful of books that are heavily promoted and garner a huge amount of buzz... but what about those books that are quietly released and end up sitting lonely on the shelves? I strive to promote those books that are often overlooked, despite having amazing plots, engaging characters, and fabulous authors. Often, these are the novels that end up touching me deeply or keep me up at night wishing to revisit their pages... I don't want any reader to miss out on that!

-Sara of The Hiding Spot

In addition to highlighting books I love that I think should find a wider audience, I also try to participate in community initiatives (such as Nerds Heart YA) that promote underrepresented literature. As book blogger based in Germany, I also like to support my fellow international bloggers by passing on review copies and opening up contests internationally whenever possible. I even started a mentor program for international bloggers that has been able to get a lot of books into the hands of eager readers and hopefully given their blogs more readership.

-Lenore of Presenting Lenore

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Backstage Blogging: Part 3 + TIME