ArmchairBEA: Experts Say…

Today is the last day of ArmchairBEA.  It flew by!!  Today’s post is a chance to ask the experts anything about blogging.  (or if you’re an expert or have learned a few things along the way, a chance to share your tips, hints and tricks).

I’m certainly no expert, but I do have a few things to share that I’ve learned in my 8 months…

1. Visit, read & follow other blogs!


3. Use tags!

4. If your blogging platform offers a “draft” feature, use it!  Especially if you post multiple times a week; you can work on your posts a little bit at a time.  If you’re reading a book for review, you can also add notes to remind you of certain points you want to mention in your post.

5. To get more traffic, join challenges (if you have specific topics for your blog, like books) or weekly memes.


Now for my questions…

1. Do you think it’s necessary to eventually monetize the blog?

2. How do you partner up with local libraries/bookstores/etc.?

3. How do you turn down a review request tactfully?

4. How do you manage to keep your passion for what you write?


I’ve really enjoyed participating and only wish I had more time to visit more blogs and get my posts up earlier!  I would love to attend the BEA in NYC at some point in my lifetime and maybe meet some of you there!

Also, I was a Twitter Party #3 winner and was able to fill out the Giveaway form for one of the prizes: Super excited! 🙂

The Twitter parties were fun and I figured out it was way easier to join them from my computer as opposed to my phone.

12 thoughts on “ArmchairBEA: Experts Say…

  1. I’ll try and answer #3. What I usually do is say that I’m not accepting any books for review at the present time. Most of the time, the requester is satisfied with that. If a book is really something that I don’t think I would like, I’ve also said that I don’t think I am not the right blogger for that particular book. Also, sometimes the subject matter is something that’s too close to home and I’ll decline to review the book for that reason. Hope that helps.


  2. Congratulations on winning a prize! I swear, everyone I was chatting with in the Twitter parties won. I was like a golden ticket. But I didn’t win. Oh well, participating was fun anyway!

    I honestly don’t have answers to your questions, except for how I decline a review request. I’m just honest, i.e. I simply don’t have the time right now, the request doesn’t fit into my accepted genres (which is easy to say, since I have my accepted genres posted in my Review Policy), or that I need to pass based on the summary not grabbing my interest. Just always be polite and respectful, and I always thank them sincerely and ask them to keep me in mind for future titles that fall within my accepted genres.

    Good questions! Here’s my Ask the Experts post!


    1. Thank you for the congratulations! I didn’t think I was going to win either, so imagine my surprise when I saw my twitter handle!

      And thank you very much for your advice! (I’ll definitely be checking your post out when I’m done writing this comment)


  3. I’m really interested in your question about local networking but can’t advise there. Like Lauren, I take review requests pretty seriously and try always to answer respectfully but honestly (generally that I don’t have the time due to other requests, and/or that the genre is not one I’m interested in). If a book falls in the maybe category, I do a little research on the book if I can, either looking at Amazon/goodreads if the book is out already, and even downloading a sample to read. I’ve discovered some great books that way! I also appreciate when a request is personally addressed to me and suggests the writer/publisher has read my blog. I make an extra effort for that person.

    On question 4, I just try to read what I love, mix it up a lot, and don’t pressure myself so it doesn’t turn into a chore. I have a demanding job so one or two reviews a week is plenty for me. I try not to compare myself to other bloggers who might have more time.


    1. Thank you so much for your thoughtful comment; that’s some really great advice. I appreciate it. 🙂

      I think my biggest thing is to not let this run ahead of me. I’m starting to re-think some of my plans as far as posting, etc. because it can definitely feel “required” if I want to join all the weekly memes I do all the time (4 days of the week!). I need to make sure I’m having fun with it more than feeling like it’s a chore, like you mentioned. And comparing to other bloggers is definitely a great call-out because I know that’s something I do sometimes.


  4. I am by no means an experienced blogger, but question #4 did pique my interest. Passion for writing…I think comes from the subject matter. And it probably ties in to question #3 – if you read what interests you, you’ll want to write about it. If you write about what you love (since you also blog about knitting), then the passion will come through. Sometimes, I also find, that you just have to sit to write (even if you’re feeling lazy), somehow, magically, the words perk you up and you find you’ve written something better than expected. I’m rambling now…great post.


    1. Thanks for your advice. I think you’re right, sometimes if you start to write even if you’re not feeling it, you’ll start remembering the story and things you want to say about it. 🙂

      And rambling is always welcome here (I do it all the time!).


  5. You are right about reading other people’s blogs. It’s so easy to just get on with your own and not be part of the blogging community. Keep up the good work!


    1. Yes, I always try to take the time at the end of every day (if I don’t get a chance throughout the day) to sit and read any new blog posts from the people I follow.


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