It’s time to talk about an issue that loads of bloggers run into at some point.
We’re talking blogger burnout. It can happen for different reasons and happen in different ways. You might find it’s harder to summon up the enthusiasm to write new content. Or you struggle to think of new topics to share with your readers.
Most book bloggers start out with huge amounts of energy and passion. But somewhere along the way they lose that energy. It might happen within the first year. It might take a few years.
Several bloggers who were very active when I started out just over eight years ago, are no longer around. Either they just weren’t as enthused about writing reviews and chatting about what they were reading or looking forward to read. Or their circumstances had changed and they simply didn’t have enough time to do justice to their blog.
How can you stay fresh and inspired with your blogging?
One way is to share the load of blogging with other people. Instead of struggling all alone, maybe you could find a partner, like the duo behind paperprocastinators blog. Or you could go further and do, as Rosie Amber has done – and recruited a team to help make sure you always have new content to share with readers .
As part of my A2ZBookBlogging series, I asked Rosie to share her experience of running a blog with multiple contributors.
How It Works
I started my book blog eight years ago. For the last six years I’ve successfully run a review team alongside my own reading list.
The team idea came about because I was getting many submissions for books in genres that I was less keen to read. Also, I wanted to encourage more readers to write reviews. I created a book review challenge project, which was a great success; I then asked several of those who had taken part if they would like to join a team. Happily, most of them said yes!
The team consists of an international mix of fellow book bloggers, writers, editors, creative writing tutors and people who just love reading.
We focus on indie and self-published authors and mainly use e-books which can be sent as mobi or e-pub file to us. This involves little or no cost to the author. Once a month or so, I send a list of accepted submissions to the team, and they pick which one(s) they would like to read. I ask that they review the book within 4-6 weeks, but I don’t give deadlines.
The reviewer will post the review on at least two sites; Goodreads and Amazon are where most authors like to see a review, but some also post to other sites like BookBub. Most of the team have their own book blog (though this is not a requirement) where they post any team review; they will also send me a copy to post on my blog at a later date, with full credit to the reviewer.
How do I do it? Lists! I have lots of spreadsheets and a desk diary. I try to answer all book submission requests within 48 hours, either with acceptance or a decline. My team know I will always try to answer their own messages the same day. I enjoy what I do, so it’s never a chore.
The Benefits of Team Blogging
From the author’s point of view, the benefits of submitting to my review team are many. Often, a book will be chosen by more than one reviewer, which saves them having to apply to multiple book blogs. Once read, an author will have the review of their book posted on up to six sites. As for the team, I am delighted to say that we all get on so well, and some of us have met up a few times in real life. I never anticipated that running my book blog would make me some great new friends – this was an unexpected bonus!
I won’t deny that it’s a lot of work, but I enjoy the contact with my team and the reward for all of us is seeing readers discover a new favourite author through our reviews. The positive responses from some of the authors we’ve featured makes it worth while too. When we got this message from Lizzie Lamb, author of romantic comedies, for example, we all went around smiling:
Rosie Amber and her team of reviewers/bloggers are professional, dedicated and fair minded. As an author, I know that I will receive a fair critique of my novels from them. I am happy to use them as go-to reviewers for any new novel I publish. I am also happy to recommend them to other authors.
Professional and fair is exactly what we all try to be.
The team is constantly evolving; over the years members have come and gone; sometimes life gets in the way and a person may not have the time or headspace to review for a while, but obviously I understand this and there is never any pressure. I am lucky to have a core of supportive, reliable reviewers who have read for me month in, month out, over the years.
Have you ever thought about partnering with other people to build content for your book blog? Share your experience and your tips by adding a comment below. Don’t forget to check out the other articles in the A2ZofBookBlogging series page.