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Confessions of a Common Blogger

March 14, 2011

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On my Sunday Salon yesterday, Karenne left a comment asking:

Can you write a post discussing how you compose your posts? Do you write the post over a period of days? Do you write one review at a time and then combine them into a single post? 

And since she included a sweet compliment at the end, of course I felt the need to oblige her right away. Flattery will get you everywhere, especially when a request ties in to a broader topic I’ve been mulling over. ;)

Ages ago, I was bloghopping and came across someone (I really can’t remember which blog it was, which is why I’m not linking) with an annotated blog roll. I was delighted to find my own blog amongst her selections; then I read the annotation, which said something to the effect that I don’t write book recommendations rather then reviews. That gave me a pause, and at first, to be honest, it stung a bit. Was that a polite way to say my posts about books were too subjective or flimsy? Ouch. After a few minutes of angst, I moved on, although it stayed in the back of my mind. Then, in January, I was editing my About page and came across this line:

I don’t consider myself as writing book reviews so much as recommendations. 

I immediately began to laugh at my silly self; that blogger hadn’t been passing judgment on me. She’d just been describing my blog in my own words! Words that I had apparently forgotten. Last year, I outlined my bloggy interests, and looking over that list eleven months later, it’s still almost spot-on (I have opted out of challenges, read-a-longs, and tours, because with my unpredictable health and cranky laptop, I’m too afraid I’ll miss my posting day). So I don’t want to write about blogging as a whole today so much as how I approach writing about books.

To answer Karenne’s question, I generally write a post on the same day that I publish it. I’m trying to get better at doing posts ahead of time so that I have a reserve in case I get sick or have laptop troubles (ideally, I’d like a ten-day cushion), but so far that’s remained a dream rather than a reality. I do jot down potential blogging topics when they come to me; I just keep a draft post that I add to and consult when I’m in need of inspiration. I’d say I spend an average thirty to sixty minutes on most of my single-book posts, which includes formatting (finding a cover and inserting it, adding any appropriate links, typing out/inserting passages from the book, etc.) and a quick read through before posting to make sure I haven’t left a paragraph hanging. I try to remember to spell check as well, but I’m not a natural editor! ;) That being said, I often find that when I sit down to type out my thoughts on a book, my brain has already mentally composed at least half of the post! While I’m reading a book, I can ‘hear’ my post start to take form at the back of my head; I almost always know my first few sentences at least by the time I’ve closed the back cover. So sometimes the act of writing the post is more of a process of transcription than creation; those posts get done quickly.

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My Sunday Salon posts I generally write all at once, although once again I’m hoping to develop the habit of writing a paragraph about each book as I finish it, so that I can then collect those together for TSS once a week. Every Sunday, as I’m trying to type as quickly as possible to get through the titles on my list, I reproach myself for not planning ahead. ;) A TSS post from start to finish takes me anywhere from ninety minutes, if I’m just focused on that, to almost three hours if I’m also on Twitter and doing a bit of blog reading to break up the writing. That includes formatting, which always takes longer since I have more covers to add and also use internal links. Most of my other posts I spend no more than an hour on; Library Loot ones are the exception, since in addition to the vlog stuff (setting up, recording, editing, uploading) I also have to track down all of the covers and edit them into collages, format all of the titles and find the links to the books on the publishers’ sites (let me tell you, most publishers have horrible search engines). My new Saturday tradition of a quote and photograph are the quickest to make, unless I get distracted admiring all of the photos. ;) The only posts that I write ahead of time and then let sit, with me making substantial revisions and possibly multiple drafts before publishing, are ones that are a bit political, like Reading in Colour. I don’t write those kinds of posts very often, but when I do I’m acutely aware of the need to be precise and mindful about my tone. Usually, I’m more of a haphazard kind of blogger! ;)

So that’s the more practical aspect. But there’s also the question of how to write about books, and why I consider myself to be more of a recommend-er than a review-er. Quite frankly, I enjoy writing about my personal reaction to a book. It’s more fun for me to ooh and aah about a lovely passage of writing, or talk about a character I fell in love with, or explain that I forgot to eat lunch because a plot had me turning pages to the exclusion of all else. Gushing comes naturally to me, which is why I began the Assembling My Atheneum series and why most of my posts devoted to a single book are about ones that I enjoyed. Yet I also find it easiest to talk about the flaws in a book if I frame it as ‘aspects that don’t work for me.’ My pet peeves are not going to be someone else’s pet peeves, and often times even if I didn’t like a book I can imagine the type of reader who would. I also write more personally, because it’s my only option. I simply don’t have the background to be able to put a book in its wider literary context, which is what I think of when I imagine reviewers. I greatly admire the book bloggers who have deep roots in literary theory, whose posts bring their intellectual powers into such stunning relief. I look forward to reading their posts and sometimes I work up the nerve to comment. ;) But I am a common blogger, just as I am a common reader. And if someone on the street were to ask me why I blog about books, I’d reply that it allows me to be a bit of a book pusher and benefit from other book pushers out there. When I begin writing about a book I adored, I’m hoping to convince my blog readers to give the book a try. When I’m reading other bloggers’ posts, I’m reading in large part to decide if a book should go on my TBR list. And for that purpose, I enjoy bloggers who write in a subjective, emotional way; once I’ve gotten to know their taste in books, I can compare it my own and judge accordingly. I hope that my readers feel similarly about my own style! Sometimes I’ve tried to add more analysis to my posts, but inevitably my writing ends up a bit stilted. My blog is a record of the relationship between myself and the books that I read, books that engage my heart at least as much as my head. And I have found that embracing myself as an enthusiastic amateur with fangirl tendencies is, to be honest, one of my blogging strengths.

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So what about you: how do you go about blogging about books, both on the practical and philosophical levels? Do you have neat rows of pre-scheduled draft posts just waiting for their turn (if so, I’m jealous!)? Do you regularly edit your posts or just type whatever comes into your head? Do you aspire to any particular ‘style’ when you’re writing about books? If so, why? And if you’re a blog reader rather than a blog writer, what kind of approach do you enjoy most?

73 Comments leave one →
  1. March 14, 2011 10:03 am

    I had to smile when you described feeling a bit hurt by a blogger’s description of your posts and then finding that they were your own words. You are not alone. I’ve done the same thing and then have to remind myself not to assume someone is judging me when they say something.

    I love your reflective posts, Eva. I read a lot of reviews in journals and, quite honestly, reflective reviews by bloggers I visit often are a lot more helpful to me. I get a sense of what a blogger likes and why and, like you, I can compare that to my own likes/dislikes and it tells me more accurately whether or not I will enjoy a book. Keep up the reflection!

    • March 30, 2011 5:33 am

      I’m glad I’m not the only one that needs that little reminder too. :)

      And thanks so much for the compliment Terri!

  2. March 14, 2011 10:09 am

    I think I’m a recommender rather than a reviewer as well, and that’s just fine with me, because frankly, I’d rather read recommendations. I want to know how a reader reacted to a book.

  3. March 14, 2011 10:24 am

    I loved this post; it was very informative. These days I would describe myself as a blogger barely able to keep it together. I find that I am thankful for posting at all. Ideally, I would have a cushion of posts and be inspired with ideas and have time to write all of them. However, that is not very practical these days ;)

  4. March 14, 2011 10:24 am

    My blogging philosophy is to pretty much just open up the brain and barf out a post. Not the loveliest image, but a pretty accurate description of my blogging style. :-D

    And it’s good to have you back, Eva!

  5. March 14, 2011 10:45 am

    I love your style Eva. You’re so widely read and yet your posts are so approachable and enthusiastic, not a hint of the weary reader or the snobbish type of comparison about them. Props for finding all those long ago ladies working on their laptops btw, I’m sure your time machine petrol bill is through the roof, but well worth it ;)

    Haha I wish I had pre-scheduled posts just hanging out! I am a bit to blame for that though, because once I finish writing something I want to put it out there NOW, cuz I’m impatient.

    • March 30, 2011 5:35 am

      Thank you Jodie, what a lovely compliment! And yep, I’ve used up all of my time travelling for the next decade. ;)

      I’m impatient too! When I manage to write a post even a day ahead of time, I get antsy waiting to publish it. lol

  6. March 14, 2011 10:54 am

    I’m pretty much a “common blogger” too- I don’t often go into deep analysis of the books I read, just manage to say how I felt about it and why. I really admire the bloggers who can write lengthy thoughtful posts but somehow that is just beyond me. I like reading both styles- the ones that make me think a lot more, and the ones that just tell me someone’s reaction (which is closer to letting me know how I might react to a book myself).

    Love all the images you included!

    • March 30, 2011 5:36 am

      I like both styles too! And I’m with you re: the admiration.

  7. March 14, 2011 10:54 am

    I tend to just type. When I reread posts later I often think how terrible they sound, but at the time it is fun! Sometimes I am very good about having posts done ahead a time, but more often than not I wind up throwing something together… I did a post today and included lots of pictures because it was non-fiction and the pictures were the real people. I might try doing a lot of pictures for the next few reviews and see what I think…

    • March 30, 2011 5:36 am

      I try to avoid rereading my posts later, due to my just-typing approach too! I love including photos, although sometimes I waste way too much time trying to find just the right one. ;)

  8. March 14, 2011 11:21 am

    I think I’m a bit like you, Eva–I like to read the blog posts by those with a depth of literary background, but I don’t think I’ve once worked up the nerve to comment on one! My own posts tend to be whatever most strikes me about a work as I read. I also tend to be more of an edit-as-I-go type blogger, and may spend quite a bit of time on a post, because I spend a lot of time thinking about how I want to word what I’m trying to say. (I do try to skim for obvious errors, but I’m very grateful for built-in spellcheckers as I am terrible with typos!)

    • March 30, 2011 5:38 am

      You know, when I have worked up the nerve, they’re always lovely people. lol

  9. March 14, 2011 11:47 am

    I like how you describe your blogging style.. I’d say I fall somewhere between a recommender and a reviewer, and I prefer blogs that are fairly personal so I can get a sense of what about a book a blogger liked. I don’t need literary analysis, I just want to know what so-and-so liked about a book and why.

    also, for the first time i have a cushion of posts stretching all the way into early april. i’m used to writing posts the day of or maybe a few days in advance, so this is weird for me and kind of unsettling in that i’m seeing posts go up about books i read weeks ago. enjoy not having a cushion – my goal (my backwards goal?) is to work this down till i have about a week cushion instead of nearly a month.

    • March 30, 2011 5:38 am

      Thanks Ellen! I very much admire your cushion, but I can see how it would be disconcerting for your blog to be a month behind real time.

  10. March 14, 2011 11:48 am

    I’ve got those neat little rows of posts; otherwise, I simply wouldn’t be able to balance blogging, school, work, and theater. The only one I really do on the spot is Booking Through Thursday, as it’s a meme, but I managed to create a two week buffer over the holidays that I’m quite pleased about.

    I aspire to a casually academic style when I review, which I’ve picked up from fandom; able to both gush over Michael Chabon while pondering the deeper implications of something in a work. I hope that comes across!

    • March 30, 2011 5:39 am

      That’s a good aspiration, and I think you strike a good balance Clare! :) Also, go you, for having your posts lined up.

  11. March 14, 2011 11:58 am

    I feel like, you can find “objective” reviews of books anywhere on the web (Publisher’s Weekly, NYTimes, etc) — but the really interesting stuff is a reader’s personal reactions to a book. I say, go with the emotions! Tell us how it made you feel, what you liked and didn’t like. That’s the good stuff.

    • March 30, 2011 5:39 am

      That’s true: I don’t read professional book reviews regularly, but I love my book blogs!

  12. March 14, 2011 12:59 pm

    I’m new to blogging so I’m still finding my style, I think it will be definitely more recommender than reviewer though.

    • March 30, 2011 5:40 am

      Welcome to book blogging Joanne! I think it took me a good year to find my style, hehe. :D

  13. March 14, 2011 2:07 pm

    I love your reviewing style! I also think I’m more of a recommender than a reviewer – a lot of my “reviews” are about me and my reaction to the book. I just find it easiest and to be honest, I like to read that the most too. I don’t mind a New York Times style book review on occasion, but I prefer to read about how an individual thought. I do enjoy literary criticism and bloggers who can look a bit more deeply into books than I normally do, but I think I gravitate more towards bloggers whose personalities turn up in their reviews, who I can connect with and relate to.

    I actually do manage to pre-schedule reviews most of the time, but mainly for practical reasons. If I don’t write posts on the weekends, they don’t get written, and that’s really the only reason why! I do tend to stick to a bit of a format as well, with my own (poorly written usually) summary to start my mind going and remind me of what the book’s about, then I can go into my own thoughts. I used to have a much bigger “cushion” before I worked, but I read less now and have less time to write so it evens out.

    • March 30, 2011 5:41 am

      Thank you Meghan! I think having a default format is so helpful when writing posts: I have yet to find one that always works for me though. I’m awful at trying to summarise books, so half the time I don’t bother!

      I agree: I prefer the personal feel of blogging to the professional feel of newspapers.

  14. March 14, 2011 2:33 pm

    Oh I love this post. You write so well what I would like to do!

    Also, as Carl Larsson is one of my favourite painters I have to say I love that picture :D

  15. March 14, 2011 3:35 pm

    I too enjoy your reviewing style. You give me enough information to help me decide whether a book is likely to be for me, which is what I like in a blog and what I aspire to do myself. I do think of myself as a reviewer, but I figured out a while ago that I define the term reviewer way more broadly than a lot of people do. Some of this perhaps has to do with my general skepticism about objectivity in book reviewing. :)

    I pretty much write my posts on the fly within a day or two of finishing a book. If I get too far into another book, I’m in a different head space and the review doesn’t come so easily. When I’m writing, I focus on what interests me about a book–sometimes my reaction is more emotional, sometimes more intellectual–it really depends on the book and my mood at the time.

    Because Jenny and I try not to post multiple reviews on a single day, we do sometimes have posts scheduled ahead of time, but we don’t plan ahead unless we’re co-writing a review.

    • March 30, 2011 5:43 am

      Thank you Teresa! I love your style. And I have a lot of skepticism about objectivity in book reviewing too. ;)

      I try to write about books pretty soon after I’ve finished them, but w my fibro, sometimes that just doesn’t happen.

  16. March 14, 2011 4:01 pm

    Really good p0st, Eva! I’ve missed you! Let’s see: I recommend more than I review. I tend to mix the styles – and that’s what it is for me, because I have a English degree, I know how to analyze a book and what works and why. However, when I graduated, I had to re-learn how to read for pleasure only. So I made the decision that unless something really strikes in a book, about its style or characters or how it’s written, I won’t review a book. I prefer the personal recommendation, because for me, I – we – read for love, for connection, and I want to read books that will reach in and stir me. Sometimes reviews will point me unexpectedly to a book, but most often, it is personal recommendations that find me those wonderful treasures. So when I post about a book, it is with the hope someone else out there will find it through those words, too.

    • March 30, 2011 5:44 am

      Thanks Susan! I love your blogging style, so it’s working great for me. And you always expand my TBR list. :p

  17. March 14, 2011 4:43 pm

    Great post! I love this. I don’t do blog tours in part because I’m miserable about keeping deadlines; I do schedule posts when I can but not always. Sometimes I have content saved up but mostly I fly by the seat of my pants! I rarely edit more than a little but I wish I had the patience to do more. If I’m writing a longer opinion post I’ll edit a lot but for reviews I pretty much just wing it!

    • March 30, 2011 5:44 am

      Thanks Marie! I’ve learned that I’m awful at blog tours too, hehe, so no more of those.

  18. March 14, 2011 6:56 pm

    Oh if I could keep my reviews ten days ahead of real life, that would be the greatest thing. Sometimes I get posts scheduled well ahead of time, and then I feel ever so proud of myself, and I decide I’m going to keep ahead of the game forever, but I always lapse.

    I do the “didn’t work for me” thing too, and I’m sometimes afraid it sounds wishy-washy — you know, why can’t I come out and say “X was bad”! But it really is an issue of personal taste, that I don’t enjoy X but I recognize that other people do, or at least that other people could. So yeah, recommendations is a good way of describing it.

    • March 30, 2011 5:45 am

      I do the SAME THING! I’m like ‘oh, I’ve got a post scheduled today, so I don’t have to write anything.’ So my cushion then runs out, and I’m all confused. hehe

      Yeah, it’s pretty rare for me to come out and just say a book is awful. Sometimes I do, but usually because of something other than the writing, like, say, the way female characters are portrayed.

  19. March 14, 2011 7:07 pm

    So this will probably sound weird from someone with a book blog, but I don’t really think of myself as either a reviewer or a recommender. I started my blog to remind myself of why I liked/didn’t like a book. It really was more of a book diary for me. Sometimes I forget that other people are reading it! :D So I just write down any thoughts that are going through my head at the time, things I want to remember etc. If other people enjoy it and find it useful then even better! But really my ramblings started out for me. I’m glad people come by and read though :)

    • March 30, 2011 5:46 am

      That doesn’t sound weird! I love the personal aspect of blogging too. :)

  20. March 14, 2011 7:28 pm

    I sometimes am able to plan and have one post set up ahead of time. But it is rare…. :) I like to write about my feelings with the book as well because it explains what I liked or didn’t like about it. And I find that I tend to ramble at times :) Thanks for sharing this!

  21. March 14, 2011 8:29 pm

    I’m proud to be a book recommender instead of a book reviewer :) I’m an English teacher so I had enough literary criticism in college to last me a lifetime :) Like you, when I read a book review, I’m trying to decide whether or not to put the book on my TBR…I think of my own reviews as “book talks” kindof a book commercial…give someone just enough information so that they will pick up a book and read. I also like to talk about books with other people who like to talk about books…and a book conversation usually has something to do with how the book affected its reader. Each to his/her own though…as long as we’re all talking.

    I do try to work ahead on my review posts…sometimes that works out for me and sometimes not. I read faster than I compose though so if I don’t start my posts as I’m reading or immediately after I’ve read something, I will forget important details. I read through several of the Stephanie Plum series while traveling recently and have been struggling with finishing even mini reviews of those bc I can’t remember what happened in which book :/

    Other posts, personal, memes, etc. are usually done in a much shorter period of time and sometimes the topic is decided 15 minutes before I post. Just depends on what kind of day its been.

    Glad you’re back :):)

    • March 30, 2011 5:47 am

      I agree re: talking with other book lovers! And I always have a backlog; I read more than I blog, apparently.

  22. March 15, 2011 5:50 am

    great post eva ,I just write as it comes but that does show lol ,all the best stu

  23. March 15, 2011 7:41 am

    I was actually just thinking about this the other day. I usually write my “reviews” right after finishing the book so they are kind of like softdrink described her’s — word vomit.

  24. Jillian permalink
    March 15, 2011 7:43 am

    I think that annotated blog-lister was me!!! :lol:

    I’m so sorry I hurt your feelings, Eva. I just went and reread the description of your blog over at my place, and it does sound ‘off” unless someone knows you wrote it. I was initially just trying to describe people’s blogs in their own words (rather than presume to do it for them.)

    But of course, only I know that. I’ve just removed the line, lest others misread it. ;-)

    About my blog:

    I’m more a journaler than a reviewer or recommender. I love talking about books with commenters, but my posts are written for myself, to journal my progress from 100% “commercial fiction-reader,” to an “English lit graduate who has read countless classic poems and 300 works of classic and modern literature.”

    My plan is to print my blog as a keepsake for myself when I’m through my 300 List, so I’m always writing for myself, and perhaps, for the children of my family. I want my descendants to know what I thought of literature, and why I chose to read it. And perhaps to be inspired to try it…

    I think for a few days before I post, usuck time to write immediately. My posts about books are usually just what I might say if a friend was listening, rather than literary analysis. And often, rather than discussing the book, I discuss how it inspired me or why, in life. You can see how that wouldn’t be much use, to someone looking for a recommendation or a review. :-)

    • Jillian permalink
      March 15, 2011 7:46 am

      Forgive the typos above! My keyboard skips letters, and I forgot to double-check for edits before I posted…

      *usuck time to write immediately* = usually because I lack time to write immediately

    • March 30, 2011 5:51 am

      Lol: Jillian don’t worry about it! I didn’t remember it was you, and you’re in my Google Reader, so obviously I didn’t take it too personally. ;) I’m sorry I didn’t realise it was you or I would have e-mailed you before publishing the post!

      That’s fun that you see it as such a personal keepsake. And that you have an end-goal in mind!

      I think inspirations and reactions to a book are exactly what other book bloggers enjoy reading. :)

      (No worries abt the typos!)

  25. March 15, 2011 9:06 am

    Hmmm, interesting question. I think I blog more about my personal responses to books, and am all over the map in terms of preparing posts in advance. As for reading posts, I enjoy the ones I respond to on a personal level, whether they be recommendations or reviews!

    • March 30, 2011 5:51 am

      I react more to the personal stuff too!

  26. March 15, 2011 12:30 pm

    I take several weeks to write a review. I start by posting a bunch of notes which I then expand into a review. Then, after it’s sat for a day or two, I go through it and delete at least 10% which is the rule I learned from Stephen King’s book On Writing. I like to give my posts some time to age before I send them out into the world.

    But I also like the wide variety of the book blogosphere.

    • March 30, 2011 5:52 am

      That’s a good approach CB! I try to make sure most of my posts stay below 1500 words (except Sunday Salon), and sometimes I end up cutting out a paragraph, but half the time I write another paragraph that’s even longer. lol

      I like the variety of the blogosphere too.

  27. March 15, 2011 2:12 pm

    Thanks for the chance to think through, and discuss, some of these same comments for myself – see my post in which I answer your questions. :)

    • March 30, 2011 5:52 am

      Glad I could inspire you! I’ll go read your post. :)

  28. March 16, 2011 5:55 pm

    I sometimes schedule posts but what usually happens is that I write a bunch and schedule them for up to a week in advance, then all of a sudden it’s 2 weeks later and nothing has been posted on my blog in the last week and I just now noticed. So I”m still working out the kinks.

    I basically just type and edit, type and edit and then post. I rarely write a post and then go back to it before it’s actually published.

    I’d really like to get in the habit of writing reviews right after I finish a book so that it’s more fresh in my mind but I never seem to do that.

    • March 30, 2011 5:53 am

      I want to get into that habit too, but like you it eludes me! :)

  29. March 17, 2011 6:33 am

    I’m the same way… I spew my blog posts right then & there ~ if they’re like the Sunday Salon ones. My memes are a bit different, ’cause I’ve found that I get complaints from my readers if I don’t have the posts up early. And, since I’m busy in the mornings, I’ve now started trying to put up the posts the night before, and have them scheduled to show up the next morning.

    Either way, I’m still blogging in real-time. I couldn’t blog a week ahead of time, mostly, because I want my stuff to be “current”. ;)

    And, I think I’m like you, too, in that I’m more of a recommend-er, most times. I hate using formulas to write book reviews. I have to write what I FELT. I have to write whatever comes out of me emotionally, after I finish a book. And, I think that’s why I review my books immediately after finishing them, too. I rarely let it sit, as I need the emotions & such to be fresh. And, I think it makes my reviews better.

    I love reading your stuff! I sometimes prefer the way you do your book synopsis’ because it gives me more of a feel for the book than a general review will. And, honestly, if a fellow book-lover gushes over a book, I’m more tempted to go look it up, even if it isn’t something I’d normally pick up. I rely highly on other bookworms’ opinions!


    • March 30, 2011 5:53 am

      Readers complain to you about not having the posts up early?! I’d be flabbergasted if someone did that to me, lol.

      And thanks for the compliment!

  30. March 17, 2011 2:34 pm

    First of all, I absolutely love love love the pictures you’ve chosen for this post. They made me giggle a lot. :)

    Second of all, I’m so glad you did a post on this. I haven’t written a book review in a while and, to be honest, now that I’m not doing it professionally, I find that the way I write them can become a bit stilted. It doesn’t feel natural anymore and all seems too forced and professional.

    I absolutely love the way you write about the books you’ve read. It’s all your opinion and your enthusiasm for the book comes through so amazingly well. I’d love to be able to write more about the books I read like you. Rather than writing something that someone else has written you outline paragraphs that meant something to you and what subjects touched you. That’s why I like reading your reviews. I can imagine which books I’d also enjoy reading through what you’re saying and that’s exactly what I look for in a book review. :)

    • March 30, 2011 5:55 am

      Thanks Ceri: aren’t they fun!? And thanks so much for the compliment. :D I don’t think my early posts were anything like my current ones, so I think you’ll find your voice if you just keep at it! I understand feeling frustrated, though.

  31. March 17, 2011 6:58 pm

    I tend to write in order to find out what I think. So it’s rare for me to have most of a blog post written in my head already before I actually do the writing. Sometimes I’ll have themes I want to touch on, but often I just start writing and see where it takes me. I often have to go back and rewrite my first paragraph because I’ve started one place and ended up another. It’s a haphazard method, but I like the sense of discovery it brings.

    • March 30, 2011 5:56 am

      Love this comment Dorothy! It made me actually think, and I realised that half the time, I get to the end of my post and end up changing some of the stuff I wrote at the beginning, or deleting a few sentences, because my opinion has changed.

  32. March 18, 2011 3:47 pm

    I used to plan ahead but I never have a chance any more. I have a hard time keeping up as it is now…

    I like to read both types of blogs (both analytical and more recommendations) and I think — hope — I tend to write a blend of both types. Although I love the analytic side of literature, my reading blog is primarily about my reaction and favorites bits for a given point of time.

    • March 30, 2011 5:56 am

      I think you blend both perfectly Rebecca!

  33. March 21, 2011 2:35 pm

    I’m kind of like you in that (though I call them reviews) I tend to focus more on what I liked and what did or didn’t work for me. No literary theory for me, as I’ve never learned it! But I do try to have posts scheduled in advance! (Oh, and I love love love your reviews!)

    • March 30, 2011 5:56 am

      Thanks Amy! I love your posts too, so keep them coming! And I admire how regular you are; such a responsible blogger. :D

  34. Adam Stone permalink
    March 23, 2011 4:39 pm

    I just tend to write what I feel about the book at the time and then try and write at least 250 words.

    • March 30, 2011 5:57 am

      I’ve noticed once I get over 250 words, things become much easier!

      • Adam Stone permalink
        March 30, 2011 7:12 pm

        The first 250 are the hardest to write in a review I find.

  35. April 3, 2011 8:59 am

    I think how I blog varies quite a bit. The only consistency is that I try to post three times a week. Sometimes I have the posts written ahead of time (I usually have a few book reviews sat on my hard drive for when I’m reading a longer book but still want to post something) and occasionally I schedule. I try to write a review as soon as I finish a book, sometimes on paper, sometimes in Open Office, sometimes straight into the blog tool. I always re-read a few times – I’m an editor by profession! What I have to say about the books I read varies from brief description and my personal response, to an in-depth analysis. It just comes down to how I feel when I finish the book. All reviewing is personal, literary analysis or no.


  1. How To Blog (I’m still learning, myself) « Pagesofjulia's Blog

Thank you for commenting! For a long while, my health precluded me replying to everyone. Yet I missed the conversation, so I'm now making an effort to reply again. It might take a few days though, and there will be times when I simply can't. Regardless, I always read and value what you say.

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