I’ve been MIA during the last weekends. I foresee more of that happening until like October maybe, because sometimes the authoring part of my life just has to have priority. I’ve been pretty adamant about not letting the author part of my life invade my book blogging time, and things have been going well so far. Right now though, damn, there’s just no way to have my fun little RAWBL weekends. Titles that were scheduled for the weekends I’m MIA will be redone, mainly because I so wanna read them and I’m sure I won’t get to it unless I stick to a schedule.
Today’s post is brought on by Lizzy’s awesomesauce 10 Things that the Organizers of Book Tours Should Do post, because it made me think about things I need as a book blogger. So here are my book blogger needs, cause I’m just a sucker for lists 😀
1. Stop obsessing about the blog
I’m not gonna lie, I’m kind of on the OCD side. I make lables for my emails and sort them in order of importance using funny characters or whatever, personalize the labels to color-code importance/topic and do the same on my schedule. I plan ahead for like a month of posting, feel the urgent need to write a week’s worth of posts the week prior and fret about having nothing scheduled. I obsess about my sidebars, relevance of title for posts and best format for all posts – yes, I have a post format for each kind of post I do.
There’s no problem with obsessions unless they start to freak you out. As long as they’re wheaved into a functional system, I say obsess like crazy and be loud and proud about it. Obsessing is part of who I am, I go mental when schedules aren’t followed – that includes me not following anything I’ve scheduled for myself or committing to some event. Which is why I’m totally angry with myself because I haven’t been keeping up with my weekend RAWBL reading.
So my first book blogger need is I gotta stop obsessing so much. If anyone has any idea how you’d achieve that, lemme know, lol, unless it requires pills or shrinks.
2. Optimize my online time
Ever feel like Twitter and Facebook become this black hole of your time? Like you’ve just fired up the PC, you’re checking out some Grumpy Cat (For The Win!!!) pics and sharing them and book blogger issue cards and stuff, and then it’s 4 hours later, you’ve written no post, are behind on your reading and you’re already tired? That’s me, all the way. But then of course steering clear of FB and T means being so less social than I’d like, which sucks.
Time management is one of the toughest things we’ve gotta pull off, and I think as active book bloggers we may give off the wrong impression that this shmit is easy to pull off. It ain’t.
I’m already scheduling, labeling, prioritizing, organizing things to doom. What more in good God’s name could I do? I’ll let you know if I find an answer to that, but if you did, lemme know too deal?
3. Control everything I can, deal with the rest
Obsessive much? Lol, yeah, I know. But in order to make sure my format for posts will be respected, I sometimes gotta come off as a control freak. I’ll ask questions, harass for answers and find the info myself to make sure I have the shmit down when I’m posting about whateverz. When I can’t have my way about something, I need to learn to let go. If the tour organizer/author/assistant/publicist only sent me the bare bones, I’ll run with those and flesh out as much as I can on say one online search. And it’s okay to go with that, as long as my post format gets what it needs. Cause I’m an OCD-er like that, lol.
4. Accept the no-post day
Lizzy has also mentioned this in an awesome post of which I can’t remember the title (sorry!). It’s okay to have a life outside the blog, to not post on some days, to be away sometimes. As an OCD-er about daily posts I find I have the most issues with this point, but I’m working on it with or without my will. When I’ve got some major author thing going on, as in I’m writing, I have to let go. I will schedule my stuff just as I always do, and the next point will touch on having stuff ahead of time, but the ‘live’ events like RAWBL is for me can be skipped. My world won’t tumble down on my head, though I will be frustrated about it.
I blog out of a passion for talking books and bookish things, and whatever I tell myself, I will be stressed out when I can’t exercise this muscle. But I’m slowly trying to get my head around the fact that it’s okay to do the other thing when it has to have priority.
5. When I’m quit on, quit on them
This is a lesson I totally still have to learn. I’ve volunteered with a couple tour organizers and featured authors via direct contact with whatever bloggy appearance. I’m almost religious about making notes in my schedule about things we’ve planned, including the when and what and possibly how with whom. I expect the other party that requested the thing to begin with to keep up with their end of the deal. Late materials for posts aren’t cool, especially because we’re all busy people. Don’t send me materials for a post 24 hours prior to the post date, man, that sucks. I may not have time during those 24 hours to do some Internet-ing. My computer might break down, my internet connection might R.I.P. or I might just be busy doing something else.
And this is where Lizzy’s 10 Things post really kicks in, because authors, tour organizers and personal assistants or publicists, keep in mind we want to hold up our end of the deal, but we do have lives. We’re not getting paid to blog, which means we’re doing other things to get paid. We have other things going, just like you do. Respect our time by getting us the materials when asked to or as soon as you possibly can. Let me worry about that guest post getting to me too early, it’s way better than it getting to me way late.
So the toughest lesson I gotta learn is to say NO the next time. I shouldn’t feel guilty about saying NO, I’m only saying it cause you’ve committed to something and didn’t follow through.
6. Say NO more often and be cool with it
I’m not big on saying NO to requests. It’s an effort, and I really hate to reply to that review request saying it, despite the fact my review policy is easy to access and spells out in bold red letters the review requests section is closed. Despite the fact, some will email requesting. I feel bad about saying no but there’s a reason the request section is closed: I don’t have the time to keep up with reading requests. I still have titles from like 1 year ago that I never got to, I don’t want the stress of adding yet another one in the line of titles I never seem to get to. This isn’t a power trip, it’s a simple fact, there’s one of me and a gazillion of books out there.
I’ll often reply offering other options, which again are listed in the review policy, and sometimes they don’t even reply to say “Thanks, but no thanks”. I’ll admit it’s gonna be very easy to say NO the next time those ones contact me.
But generally, I need to learn how to say no and be cool with it.
I think these are my biggest book blogger needs. Do you find you have the same issues? Did you solve them? If you did, how did you pull it off, lol?