Book Blogging: Relax, It's Just not that Important

Hold on. Just hear me out. Give me a second. I know my target audience is, well, book bloggers, and here I am insulting their craft. Dick move. I know. But just hold on.

[Cue the follower drop off]

Lately there have been some "outings" of plagiarism here in our little community, and while I'll spare you the lecture on how stealing content is a huge sin, the explanation from of at least one of them made me chuckle. She felt too pressured to post. In fact, I hear that resonating on many blogs, that people feel genuinely overwhelmed with ARCs, publishers, book "tours," challenges, memes, guest posts, commenting, and whatever else this hobby entails.

You guys. Did you just read that word? Hobby. For most of us, that's what this is. A rewarding, fun hobby that lets us do something more with our other hobbies, reading and writing. Hobbies are not supposed to stress you out, but instead be something that you can enjoy to escape the things that do cause you anxiety. You know, like work, taking care of families, nurturing relationships, illness, financial woes, or various forms of personal loss. The really, really important stuff. Not that hobbies aren't important, because they are, but, again, they're not supposed to make you feel anything but positive.

Most of our blogs aren't going to pay the bills, and never will. They are an outlet that should fulfill a creative need or perhaps one that craves interactions with like-minded individuals. Our blogs will never cure cancer, bring peace to the Middle East, or solve the poverty crisis.

They do make us happy, though, and happiness is really important to being sane, healthy, and having a balanced life. They make us feel warm and fuzzy, whether we're writing, reading, or commenting on posts. They make us feel validated when we see new followers, complimentary comments, or shout-outs from others. We get on our soapbox when we see people insulting books we love or knocking down our favorite authors (but in a fun way, right?).

I get wanting to do what you do the best you can, since I run that way about 80% of the time. I love that people value their audience, which I see paid-bloggers in other areas totally not do. I even get a little bit of competition.  

So, relax. Calm down. Have a glass of whatever makes you feel better. Read your books. Write when you can. Comment when you have time. Remember: this is supposed to be fun.


  1. Amen! I have never understood this pressure book bloggers place on themselves. And I've known a few to quit their blogs because of said pressures. What?! No one's making you accept more ARCs than you can possible read, no one's making you write a book blog, no one's making you post 5 times a week, etc, etc. If it's your hobby, you enjoy reading and you also enjoy writing about books, then isn't that all that matters? Or do people secretly want to be the next big blog?

  2. You are so right. I sometimes see bloggers stress over all kinds of stuff; they want to reread books but don't have the time, because they have to read books for their content, they don't have a post scheduled yet, they haven't posted 700 times a week, etc. It's important to realize it's a hobby and that you aren't being forced to do anything. Sometimes it's good to take a step back, breathe and let go.

  3. I LOVE THIS POST. Thank you for writing it. I'm 100% on board - once you learn how to say 'no'... life is good. :)

  4. Ugh, didn't hear anything about the recent plagiarism issues. That sucks. On another blog I run I've had people plagarize things a couple of times, and mostly people have responded well and have just taken down the posts. But one women said "Oh I never finished editing that." As if every article starts with a copy that you then reshape? I think she has a different idea of the meaning of editing than I do...

    I also agree...don't get stressed about blogging. As soon as you notice it's not that fun or is somehow effecting you negatively, just stop, take a break, rethink your strategy. Same goes for just about everything in life though I think.

  5. The idea that someone would plagiarize because of pressure was one of those eye rolling moments for me too. But I do also understand the way that a blog can sort of spiral out of control before you quite realize it. And if there's any interest in monetizing or shifting the blog from hobby to something more, those pressures can feel like a lot more. There's lots rolled into these conversations, but we do all need to reminded that, in the end, this is all supposed to be fun :)

  6. Blogging totally isn't worth getting stressed over, but I can understand why people do. Sometimes it becomes more than a hobby and people forget it's meant to be something we do for fun!

    :/ plagiarism though, ugh, why? Feeling pressure is no excuse for that, it's just laziness.