Tuesday, 7 February 2017

Should bloggers promote everything?

I've debated back and forth whether I post about the current blogger debates going on, I've commented on a couple of posts but thought I'd give my thoughts on my own page. 

There's been a lot of debate at what and who bloggers should promote of late, and I find the need to address it. Let me start by saying, blogs are extensions of the reader, very few of us do it to earn a living, while some are able to (and good for them that they can) it's not the "norm". Most of us, collectively speaking started blogging to share our love of reading, to give voice to what we love, reading is subjective and personal, and just as a reader shouldn't dictate what an author should write, an author shouldn't dictate what a blogger should promote or read. 

The industry has become saturated, not only by authors, but by bloggers, for every new reader, there's a new author and indeed a new blogger deciding to open their laptop, and that is a testament to this great community. 

I can only speak to my own blog, so I will give you some insight into my observations, in 2012 I became an avid reader, over the two years that followed I read, almost obsessively, I penned reviews and posted them to Goodreads, in 2014, after encouragement from friends I started GPI, I felt it was my duty to read and promote nearly everything that crossed my path, I was reading and reviewing a book a day, for over 2 years I continued that way, I was beta reading for dozens of authors, I loved every second of it, but I also lost precious time away from family and friends, I had book induced tunnel vision, and somewhere along the way I found myself getting more and more burnt out. Last year I struggled to find the same enjoyment I once found, I was overwhelmed by obligation, and I stopped loving reading. I did a lot of soul searching and decided I would change how I operated, I would ONLY read what I desperately wanted to, (be it a "big" or "new" author) I would not sign up to blog tours or accept review requests, or beta requests if the blurb or cover didn't "speak" to me, I would promote books that captured my attention, I would NOT say yes out of obligation. The result is my readers *know* my recommendations are purely given because in my opinion they *need* to read that title. Has that reduced my audience? Possibly. Do I feel that despite that, I made the right decision for me? Absolutely. 

I would like to point out, that bloggers are unpaid, yes we earn money from affiliate fee's but by and large for most those earnings don't even come close to covering the costs with running giveaways on our blogs. Bloggers hope to connect with readers, to open a dialogue about books they are passionate about, to encourage readers to try something different, there is no greater joy for a blogger than introducing a reader to a new to them author, be it an established NYT best seller or a indie author marking their debut, and finally please remember that bloggers are people, and respect goes both ways, if you want to reach out to a blogger, big or small, personalised emails introducing yourself rather than a generic "dear lovely blogger" email will go a long way to differentiating you from others.


1 comment: