Hello everyone! Since we’re getting close to another wrap up for the year I figured a behind the scenes post was in order. This is sort of a mash post of everything I’ve learned so far and all the extra stuff like apps and websites that have been helpful. Let’s go back to basics, shall we?
More often then not the first theme you choose for your blog will not be the one you’ll end up having throughout. Don’t be afraid to change, as you build your blogging experience, you’ll need a blog that can you can adapt easily after your needs. Tip: Create another free blog, under a tester URL preferably private where you can test themes and features before you choose a final one for your main blog. It may sound like too much work but it will save you time especially when you don’t want your subscribers to be subjected to the constant back and forth of the testing process.
Be careful of the images you save and use on your blog. I used to do the dfdfdhhf naming and then I had to spend about two days to delete and re-save the first images I used. Also, use a disclaimer.
The million dollar question. How do you get Advanced Reading Copies? I don’t believe there’s a timetable to requesting an ARC, I requested one pretty early, and in fact it was by e-mailing directly the author, she was a delight to talk to! So, don’t be afraid, be as polite as possible and do not be pushy. ARC websites like NetGalley, Edelweiss, PR blog services (see on the sidebar for my hosts) that have sign up links or even from the authors themselves as they often post sign up links on their social media. Good luck and remember to always give feedback!
Blogging takes time. SO. MUCH. TIME. So whatever you can do to make it less time consuming, the better. Find a schedule that works to write your posts and just schedule them to go live during the week or publish them from the wordpress app (see below). Easy and less stressful than having to put together a last minute post or blog tour for example. Tip: Even though blog tours come with pre-made HTML as well, taking that extra time to put together your own post instead of just copy pasting the same one goes a long way and it makes your blog look better if your posts have the same format.
No matter how many online calendars and planners you have (I have about a billion, each one set with another billion reminders, I’m crazy) I have found that a physical planner and notes is the best way to go, it even helps me if I have a visual of how my week will look like and what days are the busiest. Side note: Bullet Journal rocks!
I don’t even have to explain this. I love Goodreads. I know it’s not everyone’s favorite but I love it, it’s like an online journal for my reading journey and I love it. By the way, have you voted yet?
Oh sweet negalley, where would I be without you. I admit it took a while to get into it, mostly because when you’re new there’s not a plethora of books you can request, but the more you request and give feedback, always give feedback, the more books you can request afterwards! And I’ve been amazed with the authors I’ve managed to request and read.
Everything on my blog is made on PicMonkey. I love it and it’s awesome even with the free features on the website. You can download your own fonts and use them on there as well for more original material. See above pic for font placement. Get creative!
I don’t have a Kindle. Mostly because I don’t like to carry stuff around other than my phone and I think the Kindle is huge, so the Kindle app for my phone is a lifesaver, I don’t know what I’d do without it, it’s not a huge app for a phone and it doesn’t drain my battery, considering the app stays open almost 24/7. It has the most helpful text features and stuff, so I don’t think I’ll ever buy a Kindle now. Ooops!
I’m a control freak. I can’t stand the thought of having a new comment on the blog but not being able to reply to it ASAP. The wordpress app is handy when it comes to the basic features a blogger needs, a quick edit of a post, replying to comments or leaving a comment, even posting from the app when you don’t have access to your laptop, assuming the post is already written.
The previously mentioned fonts. It’s like shopping for shoes online but for nerds and fonts. I can browse for hours and end up with so many new fonts, it’s insane!
I rarely use it, it’s for more complex graphics but for non Photoshop users like myself, it’s the perfect go-to site for those cool graphics once in a while.
Codes! When I first started this blogging thing I knew absolutely nothing about coding. Zero. But it was a necessity to learn especially when you work on a free platform like wordpress that doesn’t have all the cool add ons, you need HTML to make the sidebar look nice and professional but also functioning with text widgets instead of heavy widgets (think about the functioning of it on mobile as well). Quackit has every code I’ve needed so far for posts, sidebar, blogroll, everything. All you have to do is devote a little time and test out the features. Tip: WordPress has the text button in which you can write in the code or paste and then switch to visual to see it properly. That’s where I made the blog button all on my own, yay! I wish someone had pointed that out when I first started, it’s right there and it took a while to figure it out. Fail.
I think I covered pretty much everything, let me know if there’s something you want to know and I might do a follow up post, maybe a how-to about pic monkey? ♥