My Face Is Somewhere Else On The Internet!!

You guys! You know how much I love Anna and the French kiss, yes? Remember my crazypants review of it and how I even posed with it randomly? Why? I don’t know..why not? My love affair with that book needed to be documented apparently.

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Or there was the time I made a book inspired date based on Anna and the French Kiss? Or the time I met Stephanie Freaking Perkins and about died (especially because she liked my outfit!).

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So imagine how excited I was when Margot of The Real Fauxtographer, a lovely lady who takes fauxtos inspired by YA books,  had this amazing idea to do an Anna fauxto and I GOT TO BE ANNA. Well, of course I said yes because OMG ANNA and it meant a fun adventure with Margot!

Go check out the fauxto on her blog! It’s a scene I adore! Also my yellow sweater makes an appearance again! Leave her some love and come back and tell me what you think! 🙂

How Books Are Turning Me Into A Super Fit & Productive Person!

Let’s have a moment of full disclosure before I begin: I am in no way a trained fitness guru or a doctor. Seriously, up until last month working out to me was walking to the freezer to mingle with my friends Ben & Jerry or car dancing to Call Me Maybe. This has just been my method to get myself more active with something I love.

It’s true.

I have discovered the amazingness of audiobooks in helping me curb the lazy and get done All Of The Things I Hate To Do But Have To Because I’m A Grown-up. I have been an audiobook participator prior to this. They made me a wee bit less stabby during my commute and I really started to not care about sitting in traffic (minus when I have to pee or when I’m really hungry). They’ve been great on long car rides when I’m by myself. I had become a fan of them finally after being scared of them.

But I never realized how fantastical they were as motivators.

How They Are Helping Me To Get In Shape & Be Productive Maniac Around The House

I’ve always been a pretty thin girl (runs in the family) but I’ve  noticed that the ol’ metabolism just ain’t what she used to be so the husband and I decided we were going to work out. Guys, I hate working out. I’m 27 and haven’t worked out regularly since I played lacrosse in high school. I’d rather been subjected to torture than willingly work out. Though working out really is about the same as torture. I feel like I am going to die every moment I’m working out and make the most hideous faces doing it. I call BULLSHIT on the glowing people who feel all magnificent and like they could conquer the world after working out. LIES. I look like death and feel like death afterwards.

I’ve never been able to be consistent about it until now. I mean, I’m only a month in but UM this is an accomplishment for me. Here’s the deal:

1. Pick an audiobook you know is going to REALLY REALLY capture your attention or that you’ve been dying to read. I go for something lighter because sometimes really densely written books are hard for me to concentrate on. I also ask other audiobook lovers or read audiobook reviews to find audiobooks with really great narrators. A narrator can make or break your experience, folks. Nobody wants to listen to someone that reminds them of the most boring, monotone professor they ever had. This is an IMPORTANT step because it ties into step 2.

2. Motivation is a problem for me and I needed strict rules. I’m like the horse that needs to follow the carrot. Thus I have made a rule that I am not allowed to listen to my audiobook anywhere else except for working out (or taking a walk) or while cleaning. This is why #1 is so important because I have to WANT to find out what happens and to finish the book. I made a strict rule about my “Active” audiobook not being allowed to be used in the car. I’ll have another audiobook for that.

3. Figure out what “active” is to you. The rules I have made for myself for now as I’m easing in to the workout thing is that I must do some sort of cardio for at least 30 minutes every day. Sometimes I do some free weights. I also let myself listen, as I said, when I’m being active around the house — washing dishes, cleaning, folding clothes or even yard work like raking leaves. I’ll cut myself some slack if I’m sick or in other situations where I may not be home and have access to a gym but that’s it. Even if I’m not feeling like I want to do a really intense workout, I still make myself at least walk on the treadmill slowly for 30 minutes.

4. Give yourself reward: The audiobook itself is a reward in a way but I’ve decided that for every three ( you can change this accordingly) audiobooks I complete I get to go out and buy a new book (y’all know I am still looking for work as I got laid off from work right before my wedding so this is a big deal to me). Pick whatever reward you want — new shoes, new makeup, a fancy dinner, a whole chocolate cake after your workout. Whatever will help motivate you.

5. Give yourself a punishment: You don’t HAVE to do this but I’ve made a rule for myself that if I skip a workout because I’m just being lazy that the next time I work out I am not allowed to listen to my audiobook or my music. So that’s THIRTY FREAKING MINUTES OF TORTURE IN WHICH I AM NOT DISTRACTED BY ANYTHING. It has helped me by making me less likely to skip a workout for lazy reasons.

6. Enjoy the results! I don’t feel like I’ve drastically seen a difference in my body yet but I honestly have stuck to my workout which I truly have never done before. I feel super productive because I’m getting through a book a want to read and keeping myself active and healthy. It’s funny because I also find myself sometimes getting done with a workout and ending on a good part and so I’ll come home and do the dishes just so I can end at a better place. The house is staying a little bit more clean and I really dread doing some of these tasks less because I’m doing something I enjoy. I still don’t enjoy working out but this helps. It does.

A few other things:

– Let’s do the math a little bit. Let’s say you work out/are active for an hour each day and your audiobook is 8 hours long…you can have that sucker done in a little over a week. So that would be 3-4 extra books you could be “reading” per month! WOO!

– I find them to be great for times when you might want to re-read a book in the series before the next book comes out. It will be easier for you to concentrate and follow because you are already familiar with the story. Same goes for old favorite. Harry Potter fans SWEAR by the audiobooks and say that the narrator is incredible so all you HP fans who are dying for a re-read it might be a good route to go!

– I’ve been utilizing my library for free audiobooks as well as their Overdrive system where you can download it online. Sometimes I can find decently priced ones on Amazon. There is also ITunes and of course Audible.  Another great option is Paperbackswap. You basically get credits for swapping books and sending them out to people in exchange for credits. I used to use it A LOT. That way when you are done with the audiobook you could put it back up there and get a new one!

-Be careful. I know it’s easy to get all caught up in a book but I don’t want to see this happen.

 

What about you guys…do you listen to audiobooks to help you work out or get things done around the house? What are some of your favorite audiobooks? I’m sure others (including myself) would love some good recommendations for audiobooks that were so captivating!

A Very Bookish Playlist

I am notorious for making really random playlists. I’ve got some pretty normal playlists — “songs to make me dance” or “songs for a rainy day” but I also, because I feel I have SO MUCH MUSIC that I miss things, create playlists based upon random things so that I can maybe listen to some things I’ve neglected. Some playlists are based on  things like: Songs With A Color In Them, Songs With Cities In The Name, or Singers With Beards, etc. etc.

I was browsing my bookshelf the other day and saw the ARC of Breathe by Sarah Crossan on my bookshelf and I started to sing Anna Nalick’s Breathe! Something triggered in my mind and I thought “OH MY STARS. I SHOULD MAKE A PLAYLIST OF SONGS ON MY ITUNES BASED OFF OF BOOKS I OWN/BOOKS ON MY TBR LIST. I came up with about 30-40 songs actually but I decided on these as my “official playlist.”

I then thought it could be kind of a fun to make a post to also highlight some books that I’ve already read or that are on my TBR list. So it’s a win…I get a new playlist and I highlight some books! WEEEE! You should do it too!!

 

The Books & The Songs

YA Book Review I'll Be There

I’ll Be There by Holly Goldberg Sloan (my review) | I’ll Be There By Matt White

Glass by Ellen Hopkins (2nd book) | Glass by Ingrid Michaelson

Never Let Me Go dystopian book

Someone Like You by Sarah Dessen | Someone Like You by Adele

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro (my review) | Never Let Me Go by Florence + The Machine


Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
| Speak by Nickel Creek

How To Save A Life by Sara Zarr | How To Save A Life by The Fray

Forever by Judy Blume | Forever by Ben Harper

On The Road by Jack Kerouac | On The Road by Keane

Lost & Found by Jacqueline Sheehan | Lost & Found by Katie Herzig

Linger by Maggie  Stiefvater (Book 2) | Linger by The  Cranberries

I’ve Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella | I’ve Got Your Number by Passion Pit

Ten by Gretchen McNeil | Ten by Yellowcard (dudes. Yellowcard was my FAVE in HS. Had to get the new album!)

Where I Belong by Gwendolyn Heasley | Where I Belong by Motion City Soundtrack

Forget You by Jennifer EcholsForget You by Cee Lo (bahaha I love that I have this  song on  here)

Stay by Deb Caletti  | Stay by Gavin DeGraw

The Sweetest Thing by Christine Mandelski | The Sweetest Thing by  Camera Obscura

Speechless by Hannah Harrington | Speechless by Morning Parade

Fury by Elizabeth Miles (my review) | Fury by Muse

Stolen by Lucy Christopher | Stolen by Civil Twilight

Beloved by Toni Morrison | Beloved by April Smith & The Great Picture Show (one of my faves! OMG I LOVE HER)

Over You by Emma McLaughlin & Nicola Kraus (my review to come!) | Over You by Graffiti6

The Road by Cormac McCarthy| The Road by Matt Costa (BONUS TRACK!)

Read any of these books? Love any of these songs or artists? Do you think any of these songs actually GO with the book well? If you like more book and music posts, check out my top ten books I’d give a theme song to. Also check out my Monthly Rewinds for what I’m listening to each month.

Another One Of My Bookish (Err Well Maybe More Blogging) Fears!

I’ve talked about one of the most terrifying things in my bookish life before but I’m now going to share with you another one in my bookish/blogger life. I’ll start off with the story that prompted this post.

So a few weeks ago I had a friend from high school (who I absolutely adore but just haven’t talked to really SINCE then) said to me, “SO…I was searching about wedding stress induced shingles today and guess what I found?”

Well, if you saw my post about my wedding and how I got stress induced shingles, then you’ll know why I  was ready to pee my pants and flashes of screaming out things like “DANGER! THERE HAS BEEN A BREACH IN SECURITY. WE ARE NOW ON LOCKDOWN” as loud warning bells blared in the background! The Google machine naturally led her straight to this blog! THIS was one of my biggest fears– somebody happening upon my blog that I knew.

Why is this a fear you might ask?

I’m very controlled in who I give my blog out to in terms of my friends. Most of my closest family and friends KNOW that I blog obviously but very few “IRL” people know about it or have the URL. I’ve been thinking a lot about WHY this caused me anxiety and here’s what I’ve come up with:

1. My blog is a very personal space to me. Sure, I do book reviews and what not but I also put A LOT of myself into this blog. When I’m reviewing a book that resonates with me, I might tell you why it does on a personal level. I share A LOT here on this blog. Things that I don’t necessarily want to be vulnerable about with people who know me. I guess sometimes it’s easier with my blog readers — people get how books can affect you deeply and personally. And also, sometimes I just don’t want to talk about these things with people who I may see in real life. I feel much safer on my blog which seems counter-intuitive I suppose.

2. I’m afraid people just won’t understand. I am unabashedly myself on my blog. It’s funny because you always think about how easy it is to be someone else with an online persona but I am more myself than ever. It’s funny even how much Will sees that with my blogging. I don’t hide the nerdiness or feel embarrassed when I post really weird things or when I’m FREAKING OUT about a book or an author and flailing incessantly. I fear that they just won’t get it or think it’s super weird. I also sometimes fear being judged for reading YA when I shouldn’t at all. You all GET the things I love and that being a nerd is awesome. There’s a lot of people that I know in real life that either haven’t known this side of me because we were friends a long time ago or that I just know would automatically find it weird. Why I care I DON’T KNOW. Because it’s me. And the people who know me the best…know that about me.

3. I fear being open about it because there are just people from my past that I don’t want to creeping around here. I always kind of get these bursts of OMG I WANT TO TELL EVERYBODY ABOUT WHAT I DO but then I realize if I do that — I can’t control who gets here. So I may be friends with them on Facebook, and that’s fine to keep in touch, but I don’t really get too personal on Facebook. It’s more shallow for me than this blog or I just give very general life updates. This is probably why I’m the most conscious about who I tell. Some people I just don’t want to know get to see what my every day life is like via this blog or my Twitter that is linked to this blog.

In some ways I feel like I lead a bit of a double life — I mean not REALLY. Not like some Jerry Springer show where the wife finds out that her husband is some sort of internet p0rn star. It’s funny when I identify the reasons why I’ve been so anxious about being open about my blogging with my IRL people, the more I can’t understand some of my reasons — with the exception of #3 and some of #1. Because let’s see:

1. I’m NOT ashamed about blogging or what I read. So why should I be worried about what my friends or family may think?

2. I’m ok with who I am and all the nerdiness that abounds. SO again…why do I care that my friends my see JUST HOWWW nerdy I am? I happen to like the self I’ve become who doesn’t hold back about being unabashedly ME. I’m freaking WEIRD and  I own it.

I guess my hangups lie in not being willing to give access to a very personal (and important) side of my life to just anyone. In writing this I’ve already decided that I’m going to try to be more open about the fact that I blog about books and that it’s super important to me. Maybe not to EVERYBODY on my Facebook but just more people that maybe I trust or who I’d feel would be interested about it. I don’t necessarily need to GIVE them my url by any means but just being more willing to put it out there and stop feeling so scared to talk about an awesome part of my life. And then go from there!

What I want to know (because I’ve seen MANY bloggers put there stuff out on their personal FB pages): Do you feel like you lead sort of a double life — your real life or your blogger life? Do you tell people about blogging? Who knows that you blog about books? Do you post your blog stuff on your FB or elsewhere? Are you like me where you just don’t tell a lot of people or do you tell everybody you know? What fears do you have in telling?

SO mull it over and tell me how you are about this topic! I’m so very interested!

Letter To My Young Blogging Self

Dear Young Blogging Self on Day 1,

First and foremost, pat yourself on the back for making the decision to join this community. You will learn a lot, make some lifelong friends, meet amazing and inspiring people, find incredible books that you might not have read before and ultimately find even more passion for reading. You’ll struggle and you’ll feel like quitting but there will be this pull that keeps you wanting to be a part of it. Embrace those good days. You’ll need them. Also, remember that this is supposed to be fun.

Don’t let yourself get caught up in the numbers game.

The popularity bug will gnaw at you and you’ll start out believing that followers are the end all and the “way to the ARCS” but remember that you have a library to get “free” books, that fellow bloggers will share and getting ARCs can be a double edged sword (Your TBR pile is going to look like HOARDERS). Being polite and gracious to publishers and working hard to write reviews that are helpful to readers will eventually come together to give you the honor of reviewing books from publishers. Don’t ever take that foregranted. You’ve always lived life with the “quality over quantity” mindset so don’t let blogging be any different. You’ll struggle at first but you’ll quickly learn that there is a big difference, for YOU, between blog followers and blog readers and that will change your outlook on blogging.

Blogging can be hard work.

You’ll initially start blogging thinking that it’s easy — just read and write reviews and talk on Twitter. You’ll see bloggers  who make it look easy but you’ll soon realize how much time and hard work it is. Sometimes you’ll feel like it’s a second job and you’ll feel obligated to do things but remember the fact that it is a hobby. If you don’t want a hobby that requires that much thought and time…take up bedazzling t-shirts. Don’t try to take the easy route on anything. You’ll feel better about it even if you feel like sometimes what you are doing doesn’t pay off as well as things others are doing.

Blogging might be hard work but don’t set yourself up to “fail” by putting unrealistic expectations on yourself and your blog.

You are going to be high strung at first. You’ll panic, stress and be the perfectionist that you are. Meltdowns and threats to quit will abound until you have a blogging epiphany of sorts and you’ll be more chill and relaxed about your blog. You’ll find that what works for others doesn’t work for you and if you don’t feel like posting 7x a week then don’t. If you want to post about your upcoming wedding  (yes it’s coming!) or be completely silly and random…do it. You’ll be way happier when you realize there is no formula to being a book blogger. You do not have to post X amount of times or do anything else that other bloggers do. DON’T STRESS about it. It’s not the end of the world. Do what you can or what you feel like. I promise you that your blog won’t suffer and you’ll be a lot happier when you try not to emulate the way you think blogging has to be done.

Do YOU, girl, DO YOU.

You might not be the best review writer or the funniest person but your readers will truly appreciate who you are. They will love that you are random and silly and they will also love when you are sentimental and share deeply personal things. It’s what will help make your blog stand out. You’ll try at first to emulate other bloggers and their style but very quickly you’ll learn that you aren’t them and it doesn’t work for you. You’ll have way more fun with your blog when you let go and be yourself. And heavens to Betsy, don’t compare yourself. Read the things you want. Don’t read what you don’t want.

Don’t pet the drama llama.

Sidenote: Use that term in your daily life because it ROCKS. DON’T PET THE DRAMA LLAMA. You are going to not like things that people do but keep yo trap shut & leave the snarky comments to the pros.  Yes, you’ll see lame, tacky things that you’d NEVER do but…you don’t have to do them. Find your blogging bffs and have a good bitch session with them. However, stand up for things that you believe in strongly — plagerism, censorship, really bad behavior and bullying. Just think before you speak. Sometimes you’ll just simply want to state your opinion but sometimes you’ll be doing it out of anger and it doesn’t suit you well. Nothing good ever will come out of the times you were being petty. Say something when you need to but don’t engage in every petty thing that happens in the community. You’ll sleep better at night.

Embrace the audiobooks

Listen to April already and get into audiobooks. You’ll stop being such a raging biotch because of your sucky commute and mindless tasks at work and cleaning the house will become bearable.  You’ll also feel like a champ when you can finish more books.

 Lastly,

You’ll stumble and learn along the way but, baby, you’re new. That’s what you do to learn. Be gracious to other newbies and cut them some slack when they do horrifying things because they just might NOT know. You’ll change the way you blog, the things you do on your blog and the way you think about blogging but as far as I can see you’ll be true to yourself. There’s a million things I could tell you to do or not to do (start out with WordPress, don’t eff around with your code, don’t follow for a follow, write a few week’s worth of content before you even begin, etc. etc.) but you’ll figure it all out. Enjoy the journey, enjoy learning from your fellow bloggers and just be yourself. You’ll be proud of how far you’ve come.

Love, 
Your Older Book Blogging Self, At 1.5(ish) Years Old

What about you? What things would you tell your younger blogging self? Things you learned? Things you wish you would have known? I’m sure they will all be different for everyone as we are all different people! I hope maybe this is helpful advice for new bloggers.

Loving Authors You’ve Never Read

Oh just some random thoughts on this nasty Friday before my birthday tomorrow…which probably should be a holiday and I should probably not be at work. I’d like a holiday for the day after my birthday too.

I was looking at my calendar of book events recently and started feeling super nervous and anxious because I haven’t read the author’s books yet and DAMMIT I want to have those books read before I go.  I started thinking about it and realized HOW many authors I’ve met that I haven’t actually read their books yet. My thing is..mostly all of the time I PLAN to read their book in the near future but I am not going to pass up a chance to meet an author or go to something fun and bookish. But sometimes, I’ll admit, I feel AWKWARD. I sit there like, “Hmm I can’t say OMG I LOVE YOUR BOOKS!!!! BIGGEST FAN EVAHH” but I don’t want reallyyyy want to admit I never read their books before..particularly if they have lots of books. I’m sure most authors would be happy that you are coming to support them either way but I just always FEEL bad…but seriously, attending their events mostly pumps me up for their books!

But sometimes I am a complete weirdo. I am kind of obsessed with a few authors I’ve never actually read their books. I’m not naming names because I will be mortified if they read this and think, “OMG what a sham! That girl knocked over the elderly and small children to meet me.” But seriously..I will sit there and say I LOVE THIS AUTHOR. And I realize that I shouldn’t say it because I’ve never read them!!. Even though what I really mean is that I follow them on Twitter, I probably own all their books (but haven’t read them!), I read their blog religiously, I think they are awesome people and lots of other people tell me how good their books are! I get GIDDY to meet some of these authors and I am kind of obsessed with them….on a basis that has nothing to do with their books. Is that not weird?!

So, what about you? Do you feel crazy compelled to have read the book prior to the author event? Have you ever gone to an author event without having read the book?  Do you feel awkward or bad..or is that just a weird Jamie thing? Because let’s be honest..I am weird like that. Also, have you ever been obsessed with an author you’ve never read? Or is that just me…because I AM BIZARRE like that!

I Think Amazon Is Spying On Me….

Amazon has some really creative videos for the Kindle in the past (LOVE the stopmotion one…because I love the song, the background..and um I’m obsessed with stopmotion) but they’ve also been ragging on physical books lately. I know, I know..they need to market their product and show why the Kindle is “better” than physical books and offer up all the benefits of it. I’m in marketing…I get it. And while I love my ereader (NOOK!), I have to stick up for my first true love….physical books!

But anyways, their latest commercial made me giggle a bit.

Amazon must be spying on me and taking inventory of my purses and how I measure up purses in the store to see how many books I can hold in it. Seriously. My boyfriend refers to my purse as my “luggage” or my “traveling library”….and there are quite a few bloggers who can attest to the hugeness of my purse. I do believe Frankie said she would love to be near me during the apocolypse because of all I could fit in my purse. You KNOW I’d have loads of books in there along with Starbursts and a Snapple. You know. The essentials. You can kind of see the enormity of one of my purses above…but not really well. This thing opens up really wide and it’s like the bottomless pit. I can never find anything in it…but the important thing is I can always find multiple books in it.

I can’t be the only one who buys their purses based on how functional it will be to fit books in there? Or gets made fun of for their huge purse? Anyone else feeling like the girl in the video? haha. Because I honestly feel like the president of the Big Ass Purse club…and I totally don’t care. 😛

Sometimes When I Can’t Read I…..

….have impromptu photo sessions with the love of my life. What was just supposed to be snapping one picture for something for Ginger (which you should watch out for on Thursday I believe) turned into fun times and grass fights.

But really, as most of you know the past week or two has not been full of very good times for me with my dog being put down and Mothers Day and my brain just can’t even slow down enough to read. When this happens I know I must do things that bring me the simplest moments of joy — like silly photoshoots, laying in the grass and just listening to music and just BEING, or take a warm bubble bath with an insane amounts of bubbles and a glass of wine.

Months ago I would have never have been ok with my lack of reading or my posting deliquency….I would be two steps away from having a full blown panic attack. But I’m at a place right now where I’m just trying to enjoy things. I’m going to enjoy blogging and the wonderful community…not stress myself out over it. When my mind is ready to focus, the books will be there and so will all my amazing readers. No pressure blogging is seriously rocking my socks off right now.

What things do you find yourself doing when you just can’t sit down and read?

Naughty Naughty Authors…

Three Cups of Tea: One Man's Mission to Promote Peace . . . One School at a TimeWith the whole Greg Mortenson debacle that has been buzzing on Twitter and everywhere else on the interwebs, I’ve found myself feeling wary of ever picking up Three Cups Of Tea despite how excited I was when I bought it last year (we’ll move on from the fact that I buy books and don’t read them until decades later).

This is something that happens to me often when I see similar controversies or authors behaving badly. I owned two James Frey books and I couldn’t bring myself to read them after he lied about his supposed “memoir” and the whole “Fiction Factory” thing. It doesn’t matter how badly I want to read it…when I see an author lying or acting like a straight up asshat it just makes something inside of me feel like I don’t want any part in that. I feel almost disrespected as a reader. I mean..if your memoir isn’t true, please don’t label it as a memoir. Fiction sells..clearly…so don’t trick me or manipulate me.

I know that a book like Three Cups of Tea still DOES have value to it and teaches some great lessons whether or not he fudged some details. But I don’t know, I just feel conflicted and think it would mar my perception of his work. I understand that authors are people and they make mistakes but there is something within my being that won’t let me get past REALLY bad behavior enough to read the book.

Even on a small scale, I’ve heard of authors being nasty to reviewers or saying something really offensive on Twitter/blogs. I’ve never experienced it personally but I see how a bad encounter with an author it might leave a bad taste in my mouth toward the book. I’ve never dealt with it so I don’t know. I can handle that an author might have a bad personality or have different beliefs than me. I think I can separate that from their work. Some of my favorite authors, musicians or actors are McDoucheys (and McBitches) but I can still appreciate their work and separate their less than stellar personality.


What about you guys? Does something like the Greg Mortenson controversy dissuade you from picking up a book by that author? If you’ve already read it, does it affect your feelings toward it? Have you ever had an encounter with an author (no names, please!) that made you think differently about them or their books? Can you separate the authors actions from their work? Or does it depend on WHAT the action is? Authors, how do you feel about this when you see your peers doing things like this? Do you think your actions affect readers? Let me know your thoughts!

And I’ll just have you know that my Naughty Naughty Authors is said in the same tone as the end of this.

The Book Blogging Balancing Act: Part Two

 I’m doing a little series since I’ve started a new job recently (after not really working for a while which meant I had TONS of time for reading and blogging) and have had a horrible time trying to balance reading, my blog and well….real life. I decided to ask some blogging friends how THEY find that balance..because after all…blogging is NOT a full time job for most of us (and we don’t get paid for it) even though it sure could be.

Last week we talked about finding TIME to read..this week I asked some bloggers how they find time to create consistent, quality content. It’s easy to post a ton of memes and giveaways..but it really does take some time to put together reviews, discussion posts and all sorts of other content unique to your blog.

Schedule! I try and schedule out posts in advance. I’m not great at this, in fact I’m a bit behind now, but even jotting down what’s coming up on a calendar helps me plan it out. I use Firefox as my browser and the add-on “ReminderFox” to give me pop-up reminders of what’s coming up. That way I know what’s coming up, even just future releases. Also, if I find extra time while I’m tweeting or watching TV I’ll draft up posts with titles and basic info ready to go for reviews. That way when I sit down to write reviews I don’t have to spend all that time on the details. It works well for features and memes as well, which all you have to do is add content. Templates basically. — Danielle from There’s A Book!


I try to keep up with my e-mail as it comes – there are a few that hang out in need-to-reply territory, but for the most part I attack these as soon as I can – which means any sort of interview or feature I’m cooking up gets going right away.

Reviews I write when I’m feeling particularly strong about a book – and this usually happens halfway through another book I am reading. If at any time during the new book I start thinking about the one I just read, I stop and go write the review.

As for *really* creative content? That is something that I let just go with the flow. If I’m talking to someone and we talk about how cool something would be, I go for it and see if it really would be cool. These are last priority for me, though, since reviews are the reason I made my blog.  — Shanyn from Chick Loves Lit

I schedule all of my blog posts at least a week in advance.  I feel like I’ve set up a consistency with my daily posts that I know ahead of time what to write (IMM, Daily Dose Monday, Tune in Tuesday, Waiting on Wednesday, etc.)  But every now & then I will throw in a post off the top of my head.  They are usually random & it’s a hit or miss.  I love to talk – so it’s sort of like my own social platform, haha. — Ginger from Greads!

I have OCD with my blog and I feel weird if I don’t post. So, I normally take one day out of the week, mostly on Sunday to schedule everything for that week. Yes, it’s really time consuming but I do feel good knowing my followers will have new content for the week. — Eleni from La Femme Reader

Creating consistent content is probably the hardest thing to do, so I actually map out a schedule of my ARCs and review copies the month before so I have a plan of what’s going up and when. Then, I try to read as far ahead of schedule as I can, and then write up the post and just schedule them to go up on a specific day. That way, the reviews are fresh in my mind when I write them, but they’re still relevant when they post. — Melissa from I Swim For Oceans

I don’t do a lot of features, I did one or two when I first started  blogging but the one thing I always have hated is feeling like I have to blog. I just write whatever I feel like in whatever time I have available. I try to write a review the second I put a finished book down, even if I just save the document for later and I don’t have time to post. I also keep a little notepad on my PC open and when I think of a topic that I might want to blog about I add it in there and if I have time write the first paragraph or two. I have been known to carry a journal and write out blog posts by hand and type them out when I am near a computer later on. –Pam from Bookalicious

I do most of my blogging on the weekends. The week tends to be filled with my full-time job, friends, boyfriend, family, and everything else. I try to relax as much as I can on the weekends but also schedule out my blog posts so that I’m not adding to the stress of the work week. I also write down any ideas that pop into my head immediately so I can hash them out later. — Tara from Fiction Folio


I dedicate a large chunk of Sunday afternoons/evenings to getting my blog ready for the week. I know I’ll be way too tired on a weeknight after a long day of work to write a great review or think of an interesting topic for a discussion post. On Sundays, I’m usually fresh and able to knock out 5 or 6 posts to keep my blog updated for the week. Jess from Cover to Cover

How do you find time to write reviews and come up with quality content?  Any tips/tricks you want to share?

Next week we’ll talk about finding time to interact and comment on other blogs!

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