Becoming A Better Blogger is a new series at Once Upon a Prologue; it's a combination of my feature If I Could Writer A Letter To Me, (inspired by Jamie at The Perpetual Page Turner) and my own thoughts on a chilly winter night. Becoming A Better Blogger is about the things I've learned while blogging, the advice I've received, and about shedding lesser versions of myself - from the first growing pains of becoming a new blogger, to where I am now, and all the growth I hope to do. As always, discussion is encouraged and welcomed!
Becoming A Better Blogger - Stop Running, Start "Being"
How many of us started our book blog out of a bone-deep desire to share our love of reading with the world, and to meet like-minded readers and bloggers? *raises hand* Now, for the harder question, and the one that no one likes answering: how many of us, at some point - be it for an hour, a day, or a longer stretch - got caught up in the stats/galley/fame game, and lost sight of our original blog goals? *raises hand*
That's right, it happened to me. It's happened to others, too. The lure of galleys, blog tours, followers, notice from publishers, credibility in the blogging community...it's shiny. It's TEMPTING. It's worth being winded after that long climb up to say "Look at me, I'm HERE." But "here" stops mattering when you're always focused on what comes next, and you don't give yourself time to appreciate it.
"Here," is different for everyone. If that galley matters THAT MUCH to you, then let that be your "here." Your plateau. But don't spend so long admiring what's on the next level up that you can't appreciate the moment you're in.
I don't think I know anyone who started their book blog to become famous. So when and why did it become about that? 2012 was a year of so much negativity for bloggers (and for authors, in some ways.) Let's make 2013 a year for growing as readers and bloggers, and less of a popularity contest. Let's geek out together over an old book we all enjoyed, and not JUST over the next big thing. Let's "wait" less on Wednesdays, and have more tea time to come together as book bloggers.
Let's get off the happiness treadmill. Let's stop running to one stage, then the next, then the next before we can realize what we have. Let's stop worrying so much about setting new, higher goals, and just BE. Be a reader. Be a book-lover. Be a writer. Be a blogger. BE YOU. Be aware of where you are, and stop to appreciate that. If you have one follower, or a thousand, or ten thousand...be thankful.
Be still. Be classy. Be awesome. Be loud. Be original. Be someone that reaches out, not to gain followers, but to gain READERS, and friends. Be happy when your numbers go up, but be happy that you HAVE numbers.
Stop racing toward more and more, and JUST BE. Don't seesaw frantically trying to gain the edge, get on that blog tour, or score a dozen galleys a week. Find your balance and BE.