Happy Saturday, everyone! 🍂
It’s been a while since my last discussion post, and I’ve really come to love them, because they always result in so many amazing conversations with you all.
I have to confess that I’m extremely nervous about this one, though, because I share a lot of my fears and worries with you, so … please be kind.
Something I pride myself on is always being completely honest with you, and always speaking out on things I believe in—and while that has certainly been true, and will always be true, there are also things that I haven’t talked about all that much, or even mentioned.
Mostly, because I’m a very private person, and it takes a lot of time until I really open up. But also, simply because I primarily—with exceptions, of course—talk about bookish things on all my social media platforms.
I 100% lack Michelle Trachtenberg’s sass, though, I mostly just … hide in the confines of my introvert-bubble.
I think those of you who chat with me outside of blogging, can oftentimes read between the lines, and also know that in-between my little (blogging) successes and achievements that I share with you, and my never-ending love and enthusiasm when it comes to blogging, my (blogging) life isn’t solely made up of rainbow and butterflies.
The beginning of October was pretty exciting for me; I talked about ARCs and blog tours I was approved and picked for, as well as other events in my life that made me really happy. I received so many wonderful emails and news, and I couldn’t be more thankful about them, as well as feel incredibly lucky.
But to be completely honest with you, they are the rays of sunlight that just barely permeated a darker, murkier, and cloudier sky right beneath, leaving glimpses into what could be, if only (I didn’t still struggle with my mental health so much [and didn’t live internationally?]).
Because while I work very hard on my blog—yes, I invest a lot of my heart, and a considerable amount of my time, and sometimes, I’ve even neglected my mental health (120% do not recommend!!), to make my blog into what it is today—and as amazing as it might seem that I and my blog are doing (I’ve received a lot of messages about my “blogging success”, ever since my blog post on ARCs) … it’s definitely not the whole picture.
And to be honest, I don’t really feel all that successful.
While things looked absolutely “amazing” from the outside, I’ve never told you about all the times things didn’t work out for me. Which, in hindsight, I probably should have, because I want to let you know that blogging isn’t a linear experience, especially when it comes to things like ARCs, and other opportunities you get through blogging.
I’ve been rejected for so many eARCs from both NetGalley and Edelweiss, sometimes even right away, or didn’t even hear back from them at all—but that’s not what I mainly want to talk about. Because sometimes, the reason behind that could simply be that my blog is barely half a year old (which is actually the sole reason I was rejected for one particular book, as stated by a publisher in an email).
What I want to talk about is that “blogging success” is relative.
Because no matter what I’ve “achieved” so far in the eyes of one person, it could be barely anything in the eyes of another person (me); there’s always that nagging feeling in the back of my head that I should, and could be doing more.
Since my classes started this semester, I haven’t had the time to visit so many blogs that I love, or leave comments; I haven’t written as many blog posts as I wanted to write (about topics I’m very passionate about), and—ever since I started requesting books from publishers directly—I’ve been stressing out about my stats a lot.
Thinking, “am I doing enough?”, “why did this post only get x comments, when I used to get x²?”, “do publishers think 4000 views in a month is a lot, or nothing at all??”, “my blog isn’t growing as fast anymore, does that mean I’m not writing as amazing blog posts anymore?”, “should I make a bigger effort to grow my blog/Twitter*/Instagram?”.
*I only just joined Twitter about a month ago, and I’ve noticed that oftentimes publishers want you to have a certain amount of followers there to even consider you, and … it makes me so sad that I’m excluded from some opportunities from the get-go—which is in no way any kind of criticism, because obviously, publishers want their books to go to people who have a wide reach! I totally understand. Still, it stings.
Just … in general, feeling “less than”. And I don’t know if I’m alone in this, but if some of you sometimes feel this way, I do want to say this:
You might get “rejected” a lot of times [by publishers, blog tour organizers, &c.], and then one day, the stars line up, and you get exactly what you wish for. Or … maybe you don’t. But if you truly love blogging, please keep at it. Because it’s such a wonderful and rewarding experience, no matter how many other opportunities present themselves to you as a result.
I guess I just have to remind myself of that; of how I started blogging without even knowing about physical ARCs, or anything like that, but simply because I wanted to connect with others, and share my love of books.
Because I’m so happy I did, seeing as without blogging, I wouldn’t have made all these amazing friends, I wouldn’t have had so many great conversations, been able to talk about issues I’m not bold enough (yet?) to talk about in real life. And I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to voice my thoughts at all, not like this.
Not about depression, and how it has shaped my life in ways I still can’t quite articulate.
Moreover, I just want to thank each and every one of you who’s following me, who’s reading my posts, and interacting with me, and who is sending me the sweetest and most encouraging messages when I’m feeling down, because it really means so much to me.
Thank you, from the bottom of my heart.
What are your experiences with (book) blogging?
What are some things that keep you passionate about blogging, always?
Do you struggle with feeling like you should be doing more?
I’d love to hear about your blogging journey! 💗