Discussion Time: What I’ve Discovered After One and a Half Years of Blogging

Today is a special day for me. You’ve likely already guessed why simply from the title of this post, but in case you haven’t today is my one and a half year blogiversary. Originally I wasn’t going to do anything special, was just going to let this day go by like any other, but I’ve started posting discussions so thought I’d do something along those lines to mark the occasion.

Every time I reach a milestone like this it’s cause for a celebration. I never in a million years thought I’d last this long, I had three failed blogs before this one that tell that story, but somehow I did so I thought I’d share some advice; things I picked up over the past one and a half years I’ve been blogging.

What I've Discovered After One and a Half Years of Blogging

What I’ve Discovered After One and a Half Years of Blogging


Work out early on what you want your blog to be.

This isn’t so much in terms of what you post, it’s your blog so post whatever you want, but what direction you want your blog to go in. It doesn’t matter to anyone else what your goal is. Are you blogging for the stats? For the books and ARCs? For the community of book bloggers? It’s completely up to you but if you work out what you want to get out of your blogΒ it will make it a lot easier to succeed, whatever your goal may be.

The main reason my first three blogs failed was because I didn’t have a direction. I didn’t know what I wanted to post or who I was posting for and in the end that was my downfall.


You Don't Need Social Media to Have a Successful Blog

Social media may be important to you, but it’s not necessary.

I’ve been blogging for a year and a half but I’ve only had a Goodreads profile for little over a month and a half, and I haven’t updated my Bookstagram account in at least six months. I don’t have Twitter, though it’s on my to-do list, and I wouldn’t know where to start when it comes to Bloglovin’.

The importance of social media to you and your blog is something only you can decide, but you don’t need a Twitter account to gain followers, you don’t need a Bloglovin’ profile to interact with other bloggers, and you don’t need Goodreads to request and receive ARCs. If social media isn’t your thing then don’t bother with it, focus on WordPress and dedicate your time to that.


Blog hopping is key, but you don’t have to follow everyone.

When you’re just starting out as a blogger it can be hard to gain the traffic that amounts to followers and likes/comments on your posts. The main way to get your blog out there is to comment on other people’s posts. It doesn’t matter if you go to the most popular bloggers you can find or others who are just starting out like you are everyone loves seeing comments or likes on their posts, and it gets your name out there.

For me building up my followers came from blog hopping. Putting myself and my blog name out there so people remembered it, and me, and eventually checked out my own blog in return.

However, as tempting as it can be, you don’t have to follow everyone who follows you. In fact I don’t recommend you do at all. It’s what I did when I first started out and all it meant was that I was following people who I had nothing in common with and whose posts weren’t what I wanted to read. It just resulted in me unfollowing most of them a few months later.


Be Willing to Spend Time Blogging

Blogging takes a lot of time.

This is the first piece of advice anyone will give when it comes to blogging, and possibly the one most people aren’t aware of when they first start out. I certainly wasn’t aware of how much time I would end up dedicating to my blog, and while it is 100% worth it in my opinion it is a lot of work at the same time.


It’s your blog so make your own rules.

You can create a schedule for your posts or not, you can comment and blog hope every day or not. No matter what you do you’re not likely to lose the followers you gain or the friends you make. Blogging is time consuming, like I previously mentioned, and everyone needs a break now and again, even if it’s just an odd evening here and there.

It’s OK to take time off, and I really wish this is something I realised earlier. People will miss you, your posts and your comments, but you’ll come back again and everyone will be waiting for you again. Life gets in the way and everyone understands that because it happens to all of us.


Have Fun

Above all, and most importantly, enjoy what you do.

There is no point in blogging if you’re not enjoying it, and I think this is partly what contributed to my first three blogs failing. The second you feel tired of posting or commenting or blog hopping take a step back. If you’re not enjoying what you’re doing people will realise it, and like with reading slumps blogging slumps are not something you can force yourself through through sheer force of will.


Now Onto the Discussion Part of This Post:

How long have you been blogging? What’s been your favourite part of your journey so far?

What advice do you wish someone had given you when you were first starting out, and what advice would you give to any newbie bloggers out there?

Let me know in the comments below.

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87 thoughts on “Discussion Time: What I’ve Discovered After One and a Half Years of Blogging

  1. Ahhh I’m so late on this ahah but CONGRATS ON 1.5 YEARS!! I totally agree with all that you said here, this would have been so helpful when I was first starting out ahah. ❀ Commenting on other blogs is definitely I think what helps give you the most blog traffic, and it's also one of the best parts of blogging too! And yes, for sure, blogging takes so much time—I hadn't expected the amount of time that's required for blogging at all but it's definitely worth it. πŸ™‚ Love this discussion so much!

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    1. Thanks so much Analee! πŸ˜€ ❀
      Well hopefully this will be a post that helps some other newbie bloggers, given we are definitely not newbie bloggers anymore. πŸ™‚
      I completely agree. I love talking to the friends I've made through WordPress, and probably spend the most time commenting on other blogs and replying to comments than I do writing and drafting posts.
      It takes a lot of time but it's all worth it in my opinion! πŸ˜€
      Thanks Analee! πŸ™‚ ❀

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  2. Happy belated 1.5 Blogiversary Beth!!!! these discussion post just keep getting better & better! I’m hoping to work up the nerve soon lol. I wish I had read this a year ago when I started & needed a little guidance. Thankfully this community is very welcoming to its newcomers. I think it’s great that you point out that social media is not necessary, I agree. Although I have Instagram & Twitter, the majority of my following has come from interaction within WordPress itself. Commenting regularly helps a ton, I have a set of bloggers (you are one of them lol) that I make it a point to visit even if it’s to play catch up with all their recent posts. So many great tips Beth but most of all like you said, “There is no point in blogging if you’re not enjoying it” πŸ™‚

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    1. Thanks so much Lilly. I have a few more discussion posts already drafted so there are going to more for quite a while as long as I have the ideas for them. I’d love to see what you come up with! πŸ˜€
      I think this advice could be helpful for anyone, no matter how long you’ve been blogging, but yeah I wish I’d been told this when I first started out as well. It would have lessened my worry about not having social media at the very least! πŸ˜€
      Commenting is the most important thing about blogging, more important than social media in my opinion. And yeah I have a few bloggers I always visit.
      Thanks so much Lilly, and it’s great to have fun with WordPress. It’s what keeps you going until we reach these milestones! πŸ˜€

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      1. Oh that’s awesome Beth! I’m going to have to sit down one of these days and just brainstorm ideas lol. It’s wonderful advice & I’m sure will help out plenty a new bloggers. Commenting is perhaps the most effective way to grow your following, at least that’s been the case for me. Although I have Twitter, it has not been a major source at all. I’m not very good at twitter anyways & tweet only on a whim lol. &&& hooray for milestones! πŸ™ŒπŸΌπŸ˜ƒπŸŽ‰πŸ“šπŸ™ŒπŸΌ

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      2. I should probably start writing down my ideas, at the moment they’re all just floating around in my head so I’m bound to forget one or two here and there. :/
        It really is, given I didn’t have social media when I first started blogging commenting was how I grew my blog. I don’t even have Twitter though it’ll probably be next on my to-do list! πŸ˜€

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  3. Happy Blogiversary, Beth! ❀
    Honestly, I adore your blog so much. I enjoy reading every single post on your blog and it shows that you're passionate about what you are writing. Keep up the good work! πŸ˜€
    Also, sorry for the late comment, haha.

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  4. Congrats on your blogiversary, and thank you for sharing your words of advice! I’ve been blogging now for three years, and each of your points has come into play at least once (read: a dozen times). Cheers to future blog endeavors! πŸ™‚

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    1. Thanks so much, and that’s all right. I’m glad you enjoyed this post. Wow three years is a long time, congrats yourself on sticking with blogging for this long. I guess it just goes to show this advice is something most people can relate to, no matter how long they’ve been blogging.
      Thanks again! πŸ˜€

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  5. Congrats on your year and a half! I hope I get there too, I completely agree with your thoughts about blogging, it really is a lot of work. I’m shy of a month doing it and I didn’t realise how much time I would invest in it, but it is worth it. I enjoy creating my post, my images and discussions and it gets me out of everyday hassle so for me it’s worth it 100%. And you really need a focus, because otherwise I don’t think you will continue in the long run. So, congrats once again and wishing you many more milestones like this.

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    1. Thanks so much, and I’m sure you’ll get there as well, it’ll probably come up before you fully realise it! πŸ™‚ That’s great to hear, and yeah it’s always going to be time consuming I think but as long as you love what you’re doing it’s time well spent. I’m the same, I love writing posts, selecting all the right images to put together, and then sharing it with the world.
      Thanks so much, and good luck with your blogging journey as well! πŸ˜€

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  6. I also had multiple failed blogs before this one, and now I’ve had this one for almost two years, so I know how you feel! But I think my reason was because those others weren’t things I was actually passionate about. And I didn’t have much of a niche, so I had no community, and it’s this whole community aspect that keeps me blogging. This is all fantastic advice though! You definitely don’t NEED social media in order to blog (hardly any of my traffic comes from my own social media accounts, and I rarely remember to share posts or anything anyway lol), but blogging does take lots of time. But having fun and doing things your own way is what’s most important!

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    1. Wow two years is amazing, especially considering you’ve had failed blogs in the past as well. I find that makes this one all the more special for me! πŸ™‚
      It’s the community that keeps me blogging more often than not so you’re right about needing a niche to keep you going. Thanks, yeah I worried when I first started that I needed social media accounts to be a successful blogger but I found I didn’t. I dedicated all my time to my WordPress account and it paid off in the end!
      Exactly, and I’m having loads of fun at the moment. πŸ˜€

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  7. First, congrats on your milestone Beth!! 😁 That’s so amazing that you’ve been blogging for a year and half. I swear wasn’t it just your one year blogiversary yesterday? It doesn’t seem like another six months has gone by already. But then again time seems to be going by fast this year.
    I seriously love and agree with all of your advice! Mostly about social media. I am SO HAPPY that you pointed out that you don’t absolutely have to have social media accounts to have a blog. I mean I have Twitter, Goodreads, and all of that but I’ve also not posted on Bookstagram in 6+ months and I rarely use my Twitter and GR is pretty much just me keeping up with what I’m reading rather than really interacting with others. πŸ˜‚ Whenever I first started blogging I felt like it was so important to have all of these accounts but then the fact that I rarely use them didn’t hurt my blog and if anything focusing just on blogging and blog hopping helped my blog. Although, to each their own I say. I just think it’s important to know they aren’t musts. And blog hopping is very important to blogging! I agree with that because the more you interact with others on the blogosphere the more they interact back and through that you create friends and get your blog out there. I also went through the whole follow everyone back phase that ultimately ended up in me unfollowing a lot of blogs later on, so I’m with you on that. πŸ™ˆ And same about taking breaks! That’s something I wish I had realized whenever I had my first blog because honestly not taking breaks killed my motivation. Kind of like this month I’ve been feeling a bit slumpy blogging wise so I’ve only been on every few days. Whenever you force something while you’re in a slump it can make you not want to do it at all and lead to blogger burn-out. I experienced that last year and it was not fun. And YES to just having fun with it! Because you’re right in the end the most important aspect of blogging is the fun you’re having. 😊β™₯

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    1. Thanks so much Melissa! πŸ˜€ ❀ I’m so thrilled to have reached this milestone because there were times when I thought this blog would fail like the others I had before it. Ha, yeah my one year blogiversary was in November but I does feel like such a short time from then until now! πŸ™‚
      That’s great to hear. Yeah I think most people think social media is important to be a successful blogger, it’s certainly what I thought way back when, but it really isn’t. I didn’t have a GR account until a couple of months ago, and I haven’t posted on Bookstagram in ages either! But really you don’t need them to be a successful blogger as long as you dedicate yourself to WordPress and your blog. That’s what I did and in the end it worked for me. It’s only now that I’m looking at expanding my social media sites. Exactly, some people may love all the different social media sites but others are probably more like you and me and can’t manage everything at once.
      The most important thing in my mind is blog hopping. More than anything else it gets your name out there and definitely creates friends as well. It’s definitely a thing at the beginning, you feel like you have to follow everyone who follows you but again you really don’t need to.
      Oh that sucks about nearly coming into a blogging slump. Here’s hoping taking a step back helps out with that a little because there’s no point forcing yourself to blog. Like you said all that does it takes all the fun out of it and leads to major blogging/reading slumps. Having fun is the reason we all started our blogs and it’s definitely important to remember that! πŸ™‚ ❀

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      1. You’re welcome, Beth!! πŸ˜πŸ’• It’s an incredible milestone. Just wait, before long you’ll be at your two year blogiversary! I know what you mean about having moments where you thought it would end up like your previous blogs. That’s been me a few times with mine too. I think we all have those moments of doubt.
        I completely agree. Honestly, it was when I came across your blog and started chatting with you that I realized you didn’t absolutely need a lot of social media to blog. I mean, like you said, some of us have a harder time keeping up with all of it and blogging so it’s easier to just focus on one aspect rather than both. Social media can be fun and it can get you interacting with authors directly but definitely not a requirement for book blogging.
        Same, blog hopping is definitely the most important. I think that’s why I always feel a little bad when I fall behind on it. πŸ˜‚ (which I’m so behind right now) I feel like the whole feeling like you have to follow everyone back in the beginning is because you want to gain more followers and find more blogs quickly rather than slowly searching out bloggers you have things in common with.
        Taking a little step back has definitely helped some. That and spending this week reading rather than blogging. Too bad taking a little break means having a lot to catch up on lol. Exactly! It’s all about the fact that we wanted to have fun and be a part of an incredible book community. Which really is the thing to remember. 😊

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      2. Ha, yeah my two year blogiversary feels like it could potentially be just around the corner. I know it’ll be here before I know it. I guess the important thing is even after those moments we still carried on blogging, we got through them and that’s the important part! πŸ™‚
        I was kind of determined to succeed without social media when I got past the first few months blogging on here. I wanted to have my WordPress account in a good place before starting more sites so I kind of needed to succeed without it you know? I need to create a Twitter profile soon but I’m going slow on that front because I need to make sure I can keep up with WordPress and Goodreads before introducing a new social media account! πŸ™‚
        I can guess while you’re a little behind on blog hopping. πŸ˜€ But I fall behind too at times, I guess it’s just making sure you can get back into it and catch up. Maybe following everyone works for people in the beginning, but after a while it just becomes unfeasible.
        That must have been a nice break, and yeah I guess it can be hard to catch up again but it’s always manageable isn’t it?

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  8. Congratulations on your latest milestone Beth! It’s definitely something that you should celebrate, since it’s not everyone who’s able to last that long!!! Oh, and even if you feel like you’re losing a desire to blog anymore, you can be certain that I’ll be there to stop you from doing just that! πŸ˜› That ain’t happenin’ on my watch! πŸ˜€ I definitely agree with all your points, and would say that the most important part of blogging is to enjoy it. What’s the point of doing something that you don’t like (let’s not talk about jobs here heheh), right? πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€ Great post as always!!

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    1. Thanks so much Lashaan. I was thrilled to make it to this milestone, and yeah I thought I’d be one of the people who didn’t make it this far when I first started out blogging. I’m glad that wasn’t the case. πŸ™‚ That’s very good to hear, I may need that support at some point in the future! πŸ˜€
      It really is. I know one of the main reasons I’m still blogging now is because I enjoy it so much. I want it to stay that way because yours right, we’re not talking about jobs are we?
      Thanks Lashaan! πŸ˜€

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  9. I’ve been book blogging since July, but my depression left me needing more time off than time on over the past year, so I really liked what you said about taking a break if you need it. I’m the same in that I’d a few failed blogs before this, and I always felt such pressure with them to post!

    I’ve only about 20 posts so I don’t think I can still really think of advice I’d give someone starting out, except to choose their host wisely as my site was down for about two months trying to switch over to my new host after something went wrong. It had me freaked. :/

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    1. Oh that sucks about your depression meaning you needed to take a break, especially if you enjoyed blogging, but yeah if you needed to take time off then you needed to take time off. You can’t force yourself to keep blogging or you’d go the same way as your three failed blogs. I know that’s what happened with my previous blogs when I stopped posting on them.
      Ohh that’s really good advice, and something I’d definitely recommend as well. I did a lot of research before I finally settled on WordPress for this blog. It helps to know the ins and outs of the system if you’re going to be spending so much time on it. Is your new host working better now? πŸ™‚

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  10. Fantastic discussion post, Beth! By mid-July my blog will be a year old and I’m so happy with how it’s turned out! At first my blog was meant to be a travel/writer’s blog, but two or three weeks after I created my blog, I noticed that books had once again become an integral part of my daily routine last summer, so I thought it’d be best to follow the thing I love most: reading. So now I’ve got a wonderful little book blog that grows a little every single day! It was hard for me to figure out exactly what I wanted from my experience as a book blogger, but a few months later, I noticed that I wasn’t gaining many followers through my social media interactions, yet I was having a fabulous time conversing with my fellow book bloggers, regardless of who I was following and who followed me back. So in the end, I figured my goal isn’t to gain followers for the sake of gaining followers but instead to reach out to the blogging community and discuss my favorite thing in the entire world. Books! As a result, I will naturally find more bloggers to converse with. This has been a recent revelation and so I’m still adjusting my agenda to match my newfound thinking. I kept thinking I have to manage all my social media accounts AND blog hop to be successful, but I have too many other interests to explore to commit myself fully to that type of networking lol. Blog hopping is possibly the most important aspect of blogging and so I’ve decided to try to focus on that in the next few weeks and see how that goes. Of course, I won’t be doing it everyday (I know my limits) but I’ll try to do it enough to the point where I’ve managed to keep up with all my favorite bloggers! You’re right, blogging is so much work, but it’s definitely worth it πŸ˜€

    Also, It’s really encouraging to hear that though social media is important but not necessary. I’m not very good at keeping up with my FB, Twitter, and Instagram accounts. I rarely post anything on any of them haha. Goodreads is the only one I try to put effort into maintaining because that’s the place where I find most of my book recommendations πŸ™‚ I’m so happy you’ve joined us over there btw!

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    1. Thanks so much Azia! πŸ˜€ Ohh, so not long to go until you reach you one year blogiversary then, that’s amazing and I reckon those remaining months will fly by as well. I’m certainly glad you started blogging about books, and yeah if that was part of your daily routine it would have made sense to focus on them as well. I guess direction can change as you gain more experience blogging in those initial weeks and work out what you do want, and you do have an amazing blog to show for it.
      My goal blogging is the same, don’t get me wrong I love that I have a lot of followers but my main goal is the interaction with the other bloggers more than anything else. Well in that case I hope your next few weeks of blog hopping go well for you. It does take a fair bit of time but in my opinion it’s worth it simply for the interaction and the people you’ll meet along the way. Start off small and see how you go from there! πŸ˜€
      Yeah I’m not good at keeping up with my social media, WordPress takes up so much of my time it’s hard to focus on Goodreads, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, etc. I don’t think it’s that important to the growth of my blog but there may be people out there who disagree with me. I think social media in relation to blogging is a personal thing you know? Ha, I’m glad I finally made the jump to Goodreads as well! πŸ˜€ ❀

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      1. Yup! Don’t know what I’ll do to celebrate but I’m thinking a giveaway and a Q&A, ya know, the usual LOL. We’ll see! And thanks so much! ❀
        It's wonderful to have so many followers, but I think interactions with our fellow bloggers is what enriches our experience as bloggers ourselves! And thank you! I'm still working on it, but I'll get there. Soon I'll be a blog-hopping master. LOL not really, but that'd be nice haha
        Honestly, I think WordPress is enough. There's so much to manage! And I agree. Social media isn't for everyone and is usually a personal choice for someone to invest in! It's helpful but not necessarily a must in the blogging game πŸ™‚ ❀

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      2. Giveaway and Q&A seems to be a common thing for one year blogiversaries. It does mean now I’ve passed that I need to think of something different for my two year blogiversary. Oh well I’ve got time to think! πŸ˜€
        Oh yes I definitely agree there. It’s really seeing the comments and posts in my feeds that brightens my day more than anything else.
        It’s take a lot of time, especially if you want to dedicate a lot of it to blog hopping. Social media, if you have it, will always come second to WordPress and I just don’t have a lot of spare time after I’m done with blogging for the day. πŸ™‚

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      3. Can’t wait to see what you come up with! πŸ˜€
        And it really does. I’m sure it’s worth it, but it’s just so time consuming lol. Rather focus my time on WordPress, which takes up more than enough time. Ain’t nothing wrong with that 😁

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      4. Nothing wrong at all. I think as long as you’re active on WordPress you’ll be able to carve yourself a decent place in the community and gain followers that way, without needing social media. At least that’s what I’ve found! πŸ™‚

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  11. I too have been blogging for a year and a half. I feel like that such an accomplishment so congratulations! I actually have had a lot of luck with tying my worldpress blog to Facebook and Twitter. When I look at the referrals outside WordPress, Facebook is the second highest and a Twitter third on getting people to my blog. It helps that my husband is a social media guru so he’s taught me a ton! I think if I were to give anyone advise I’d say to have fun and find your voice. Your voice is what connects you with other bloggers. Take the time to meet people, make comments and also write what you feel. Book bloggers sometimes get caught up in a blog Tour or blurb reveal that that sometimes colors their true feelings about a book. I like it when I hear a book Blogger give insight and their true recommendation or problems with a book. Always being respectful of the author, of course! I enjoyed your post, thanks!

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    1. Ohh, in that case congratulations on reaching your one year and a half blogiversary! πŸ˜€ Thanks so much as well, it’s definitely a great accomplishment. πŸ™‚
      That’s interesting about Facebook and Twitter, at the moment I barely have the time to manage WordPress and Goodreads so I’m going slow on creating additional social media sites.
      I think that’s great advise, definitely for when bloggers are starting out as well because people can try a lot of things before finding whatever suits them. Also yes, being respectful of authors is definitely important.
      Thanks, I’m so glad you enjoyed this post! πŸ˜€ ❀

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  12. Congrats! I’ve been blogging for a year, but it wasn’t until January it started to expand. I was like you: I had no direction and didn’t know how to get followers, and we had 20 by the end of 2016. Now we jumped to 200 with a lot of help! Definitely befriending bloggers and reaching out on blog hopping and Twitter gives you a good following! I now know it takes time! Great post!

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    1. Thanks so much. And wow that’s an amazing achievement, going from 20 followers to 200, and I’m sure your blog will continue to quickly grow as well. Direction helps, makes it easier to post, but the reaching out to the community part is what I think is the most important. Yeah it takes time, but it’s more than worth it in the end.
      Thanks! πŸ˜€

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  13. Great post! And congrats on the milestone! I also had a number of failed blogs before this one finally worked. I tell people who want to start blogging that the only thing that got me through the first few months was not telling any of my friends about it. I realized that one of the reasons I kept failing is because I felt pressured to impress the people I know. I decided to keep it to myself until I had a buffer of posts, felt more comfortable with the community, and knew how I wanted to write and share.

    And taking breaks is key. I haven’t been nearly as active as I used to be because life is crazy and I can’t keep up. I want to enjoy blogging, not feel like it’s a chore, so I do it when I can and don’t feel bad when I can’t post every day/week/whenever.

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    1. Thanks so much. Yeah I guess we can say those were practise blogs until we finally got it right with out most recent ones. That’s what I think anyways. πŸ™‚ Ohh, I never thought of that but actually I didn’t tell anyone I was blogging for like the first year I was on WordPress, then again I never told them about my failed ones either. If that worked for you that’s great, and yeah having a history of a blogger for a few months must have helped when it comes to telling people.
      No I need to take breaks every now and again as well, it does help because I never want blogging to feel like a chore, and I’m sure you don’t either. πŸ™‚

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  14. I’ve been blogging for…. FIVE years?!?!?!?!! I always gasp a little when I remember that I started my blog early on in high school and now I’m half way through college… it seems like just yesterday!! I completely agree with the advice you’ve given, especially about creating your own rules and making sure that whatever you’re doing, you’re enjoying it. Blogging can be time consuming, so there’s definitely no point in wasting time doing something that feels more like a chore than fun! ❀ Congrats on running such a fantastic blog!!

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    1. Wow that is an amazing milestone Holly. I’m hoping I manage to reach that one eventually but I still have a long way to go. The time must have flown by but I think it’s just amazing you’ve stuck with it so long. I can’t think of much I’ve continued with for five years!
      That’s great to hear, and yeah creating your own blog for yourself and not to impress other people is really important. If you try and do what you think other people want eventually you’ll fail because you won’t enjoy it as much. And yeah it makes all the time you spend on your blog worth it as well! πŸ˜€
      Thanks so much Holly! πŸ™‚ ❀

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  15. Such a lovely post, Bet, and great advice here. I have learned the same things after blogging for a while now, a bit more than two years. It is so important to have fun and always remember why we are blogging – and definitely take a breather at times feels good just as well. Blogging takes so much time, it easily can turn into something all consuming.

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    1. Thanks so much Marie, and yeah this is advice I think is important when you’re starting out, and advice I wish I’d had when I was starting out too. I think taking a break every now and again is definitely needed. When I first started blogging I was almost scared to take even a day off but eventually I got over that fear because non stop blogging is just impossible, especially when it comes more and more time consuming. πŸ™‚

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  16. First of all, Congrats! Thanks for the good advice. I’ve been blogging since november last year and I have experienced most of the things you talked about. However your post was really helpful. Sometimes you just need to hear someone say it before you really believe it!

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    1. Thank you so much Eva, and that’s all right. Oh so you’ve been blogging about half a year then. How have you found it so far?
      Yeah these are things you learn pretty quickly when you first start out but it can be hard to take them to heart, especially the part about taking breaks every so often. At least that’s what I found when I was first starting out! πŸ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

  17. Congratulations and good advice! My blogging goal has so far been to simply become part of the bookish community and already I’ve done that.

    I’ve only been blogging for three months now, but I’ve found a couple bloggers who I’ve had nothing but friendly conversations with and they’ve been supportive in my newbie endeavors so because of them I feel like my blogging experience so far has been an immense success. If I hadn’t found encouragement from other book lovers on WordPress I likely would have found myself not so much quitting my blog, but less encouraged to put myself out there and comment on people’s posts.

    The fact that this book blogging community is (from my experience) so genuinely kind, it really creates a positive atmosphere to discuss not only our favorite books but also discuss what we might not agree on. So I definitely agree and support the idea of blog hopping. If those two bloggers didn’t hop to my blog and make the decision to comment and to also tell me they enjoy my content so far then my goal to be a part of this community would have been a bit of a fail. Soo yea this was such a ramble-y comment, but people please don’t stop blog hopping and encouraging new bloggers because it seriously makes us so happy and means a lot to us! ❀ πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much Bridget. Yeah when I first started out blogging my goal was to become part of the bookish community as well and that was definitely something I achieved as well! πŸ˜€
      I bet those three months have gone by really quickly haven’t they? I can’t really remember much about my first few months blogging except that it was a blur of posts and comments and just general amazement people wanted to read what I was posting! πŸ˜€ Yeah everyone on WordPress is so friendly, I really got over my fear of starting conversations with new people on here quite quickly because everyone is just so welcoming. It’s great you found that and kept putting yourself out there as well, that’s so important when it comes to blogging and the community.
      It really is a positive atmosphere, and I’ve never been afraid to say anything in the community because I know, even if people disagree with what I say, I’ll never get hate for it. That’s an amazing thing to have in general and I’m so glad we have it here. I feel that way about the first few people who hopped to my blog and first started commenting on my posts! πŸ™‚
      I definitely, 100% agree that blog hopping is so important! πŸ˜€ ❀

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Congrats on 18 months of blogging! That really is quite the milestone and you’ve definitely learned a great deal and sharing that is a great way to celebrate!

    I definitely agree with not needing social media to have a successful blog! I don’t really use any of my social media platforms that I’ve had before I ever started my blog to do any kind of promo for the most part. I’ll share a link here and there, but that’s about it really. I feel like social media can be a different way for your followers to get to know you and interact with you!

    Sandra and I have been blogging for about five months now and I definitely think getting to know other readers has been the best part so far! I don’t really have friends in real life who enjoy reading and even less who read in English and read the same books as me, so getting to share my love for my favorite stories online and read about everyone else’s thoughts and feelings about different books has been so much fun!

    I think the best advice might be to allow for changes to happen to your blog and the way you run it. You might start out wanting to post every day and you might be able to do that for a while but know that if you feel like you’re running out of steam – it’s okay to change things up and try something new! Same goes for what you post – if you no longer enjoy it, try something new! Like you said, it’s your blog – do whatever makes you happiest!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much Swetlana, and yeah I’m beyond thrilled to have made it to this milestone because I honestly didn’t think I’d even make it to my year’s blogiversary, let alone past that! πŸ˜€
      When I first started part of me did think I would need other social media accounts but WordPress was taking up so much time I just never got around to it. Luckily it’s not something you need and I think how you use your social media is how most people use it. It’s simply another tool to promote your blog so in the end it’s not necessary to be a successful blogger. It can get you more bloggers but I managed well just with WordPress and I’m happy with that! πŸ™‚
      Five months must have flown by for you right? I feel like the past year and a half of blogging has flown by for me. And yeah getting to know other readers really has been the best part for me too. Like you I don’t have a lot of friends who read the same books as me/read as quickly as I do so I need to bookish community to share my love of books as well! πŸ˜€
      That is really good advice. I don’t think anyone, whether they’ve been blogging for one month or one year can say their blog is the same as it was when they first posted, but yeah changes happen and if it makes you happier and your blog better run with it! πŸ˜€ ❀

      Liked by 1 person

  19. Ah, I’ve been blogging for five months tomorrow (what???), and next month it’ll be my six-month blogiversary! I can’t wait to celebrate it; I have so many fun things planned for next month! πŸ˜€ I think my favorite part has got to be the community! I honestly thought I wouldn’t reach 100 followers within my first year of blogging, but the community is so nice, and it’s so crazy to see how much my blog has grown since those first cringe-y posts. πŸ˜„

    I can’t really think of anything I would have wanted someone to tell me as a new blogger just because I read so many blogs before I started mine, I knew what I was doing, in a way??? But I’d definitely tell new blogs to comment around to get out there, that original content definitely helps grow your blog, and that you will get ARCs – it might take a while, but you will. ❀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It seems a little insane to me you’ve only been blogging for five months. I know that is still quite a while but it does seem like you’ve been blogging for a lot longer than that. Six months is a fun milestone to reach, and I’ll be interested to see what you do for your half-year blogiversary. πŸ™‚
      Ha, I was the same, I didn’t think I would reach 100 followers in my first year but the community proved me wrong. Honestly talking to everyone I’ve met on WordPress so far has been my favourite part of blogging, I just love it. Oh I don’t go back far enough in my blog to see my very first posts, I don’t think I could handle it! πŸ˜€
      You could say doing research would be good advice then. It’s what you did and it obviously worked incredibly well for you and your blog! πŸ˜€ Yeah blog hopping seems to be what really grows blogs in the beginning, it’s important to make yourself a part of the community and put yourself out there as well. Great point. ❀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Same, Beth! I feel like I was just starting my blog yesterday, and now today is officially five months! It’s so crazy how the time has flown by! πŸ˜„ I’m hoping to have a new blogging series and a Q+A; very excited for the month of June!

        Haha, in already planning for my first blogiversary to look back at my January posts! It’ll be cringe-y, but fun! πŸ˜‚

        Liked by 1 person

      2. In that case happy five month blogiversary for today! πŸ˜€ It’s crazy for me as well because it does not feel like I’ve been blogging for a year a half already. June is going to be an exciting month for me too so I cant wait for it to arrive. πŸ™‚
        Ohh, that does sound fun, I’m going to wish you good luck because I don’t think I’d be able to do that! πŸ˜€

        Liked by 1 person

  20. This is some really good advice Beth! I feel like I’m a senior blogger over here haha, I’ve been with this blog for 2 years, and before that I had my blog for almost 7 years, and I had a great community of people there, as I do here. The only reason I left my old blog was because they forced me out by changing the direction of the website and getting rid of user content and pretty much the whole ‘blog’ aspect of the website and producing manufactured, pop gossip crap. I guess that’s what happens when management changes on a website. I hope nothing like that happens to WordPress I couldn’t take having everything wiped a second time!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much Meghan! πŸ˜€ Wow two years is great on this blog but seven years is just amazing! Even counting my three failed blogs I’ve only been blogging for a combined total of four years (with a lot of breaks!)
      Oh that’s sucky. I wonder why they would have changed that if it changed the whole blog part of the website, then again yeah new managers do normally bring some big changes. Still, seems like a weird change to make but at least you found another community to become a part of. πŸ™‚
      God I hope so too, but I can’t imagine anything like that happening. WordPress is a big blogging website, what we do at the moment is pretty much the whole point of it isn’t it?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You’re welcome haha yeah I’ve been around a long time, but I have faith you’ll get to be a veteran like me πŸ˜›
        Yeah it was just management changed and things went in a complete different direction.
        Yeah I have no worries about WordPress but you just never know right?!

        Liked by 1 person

  21. Aaagghh CONGRATS CONGRATS CONGRATS! πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰ One and a half year is an awesome amount of time to be blogging, and I’m so happy for you! πŸ˜€

    I definitely agree with these tips. Blog hopping is EXTREMELY important, because if you don’t show the support that commenters/followers do to you, you probably won’t get any more! And yas, you really DON’T need social media. It can definitely be helpful of course, but it’s never necessary!

    Blogging is SOOOOO time-consuming. I spend about 2 hours a day commenting on posts! (That HAS to change lol.) But I love it and will always be supportive — but I understand that if I need a break, I NEED A BREAK.

    I’ve been blogging for about four months now??? I’d say I’m a pretty lucky/successful/odd blogger. πŸ˜„ My favorite part of my journey so far would have to be all you fabulous people! I have so many amazing blog friends, and I love them all (including you) so so much! ❀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much May! πŸ˜€ ❀ Yeah I am so beyond thrilled to reach this milestone, and just any milestone that shows time past on my blog because when i was first starting out I doubted I'd reach even half a year blogging! πŸ™‚
      It really is, blog hopping is how I got my first followers, my first comments and likes on my posts, and now it's how I find new blogs to follow as well. Also yeah putting yourself out there in the community is the best way to get people's attention. In the end social media is just another way to promote your blog, but if you just have WordPress you don't need other accounts to gain followers. Again that's where blog hopping comes in! πŸ˜€
      Wow two hours a day seems insane but actually I probably do the same. You don't really realise how much time goes into commenting until you actually see how much time has passed. You are definitely a supportive blogger May, and yeah we all need a break every now and again.
      You're always a very successful blogger, it seems insane you've only been blogging for four months, and yeah the people I've met on WordPress have been my favourite part of this incredible journey as well. Everyone I've met is so wonderful and there's a lot of love for them all as well! πŸ˜€ ❀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You’re welcome! ❀ I'm glad you've kept blogging for as long as you have. You're a wonderful blogger! πŸ˜€ ❀

        Yes blog hopping is how I get others' attention, and vice versa! And social media definitely helps, but isn't necessary. πŸ˜›

        Yes, I was super surprised when I saw how much time I'd spent commenting! You never think that it would take so long.

        Aww, thank you! And yaaaas the people in the blogosphere are simply AMAZING. ❀

        Liked by 1 person

      2. It’s my aim to keep blogging for as long as I possibly can! πŸ˜€
        Social media can work for a lot of people to get attention onto their blog but I never had it so for me it was all about blog hopping.
        I certainly didn’t when I first started blogging, but it’s something I love doing! πŸ˜€
        They really really are. ❀

        Liked by 1 person

  22. Hi! This is such a great post with some great advice for bloggers… congratulations on a year and a half, that is a real milestone… I’ve been at this since 2014 but took a break in 2016… The best part of my journey was coming back! This time I put less pressure on myself. If I don’t feel the meme topic I don’t do it! If I run into real life interference I change my due date. You are so right about direction, know your direction! I just changed my blog theme because I found my original direction in 2014 was too broad. I already feel lighter from doing so! Thanks for the timely discussion!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much Dani. πŸ™‚ Wow since 2014 is a long time to have been blogging, I guess you must have deserved that break in 2016 right? I can imagine coming back must have been amazing, and it’s great you came back to blogging and WordPress as well! πŸ˜€
      Putting less pressure on myself is something I’ve been doing this year, and yeah changing due dates if there’s real life events that take priority, I know all about that! πŸ˜€ That’s great that changing your direction did that, just goes to show how important it is in the end.
      That’s all right, I’m glad you enjoyed this discussion Dani. πŸ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

  23. I’ve been blogging for about two and a half years, and I agree with your advice! Being willing to put in a crap ton of time and knowing what your direction is are especially important.

    In terms of social media, I’d say everyone’s experience with it is different. Bloglovin’ has more than doubled my follower count, but promoting my posts on Tumblr hasn’t done a thing. Pinterest is a mixed bag: some pins from my blog have gone viral, whereas others don’t get a single pin. If you approach it the right way, it can definitely help, but it’s certainly not necessary!

    Ellie | On the Other Side of Reality

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Two and a half years is an amazing acheivement, congrats on blogging for that long Ellie! πŸ˜€ Yeah direction is important, and so is being willing to put the time in because without those two things you won’t succeed as a blogger will you?
      I’ve heard a few people use Bloglovin’ and it’s a good social media site, I wouldn;t have a clue how to use it. I guess everyone’s social media experience is different, for me it takes enough time to update WordPress I don’t always have time to dedicate to other social media sites so I’m glad it’s not always necessary. πŸ™‚

      Like

  24. My first time here and what a great post to land on! I totally agree with everything you have written here. Especially about having fun! It’s so easy to get caught up with schedules, and other people’s expectations that you can forget why you started in the first place!
    Happy 18months, and really nice to meet you! πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh well in that case welcome to my blog! And thanks so much as well.
      Yeah these are thing I wish I’d known when I first started blogging way back when, but I know them now at least. Exactly, blogging should always be fun, and the fact that I really love blogging is a large part of why I am still on here! Thanks so much. πŸ™‚ ❀

      Liked by 1 person

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