Today I’m looking at blogging slumps. When you think about blogging and end up asking yourself WTF am I doing?! Questioning, why do I even bother?! And, wondering who cares about my opinions and reads my guff anyway?!
You just want to turn and walk away from your blog, the sight, sound and thought of it are repugnant to you. Making you come over all queasy and gag at the thought of blogging. You lack any motivation to blog, enthusiasm for blogging and that little voice in the back of your head tells you to delete, delete, delete.
I think slumps are something that a lot of bloggers go through at one time or another. So, let’s look at the reasons for a blogging slump:
Life gets in the way as everything takes time. Work, marriage, a relationship, kids, a job, chores, other hobbies and boring mature adult stuff that all need doing all take time and there are only 24 hours in a day.
Blogging also takes time, in some cases a lot of time and while you might want to keep blogging you may well find that time and life is against you. As blogging is a hobby (for most) you then end up having to put your blog on the back burner to keep up with all the other things. Then, when you do have the time to blog you might decide that you really aren’t bothered about it after all.
No, not the (crappy) Good Charlotte song that I had the displeasure to hear on music TV the other day, shudders!
You might have gone through changes in your personal life and now find that you don’t have time for blogging. That due to your circumstances changing that blogging isn’t important and just isn’t a priority to you. Or, that you simply (if something bad happens in your life) can’t be bothered to blog anymore.
If you are ill (anything from a cold and a virus to the deadly man flu to a genuinely serious illness or accident) then you won’t be thinking about your blog only your health and getting better. Your recovery = important, your blog = unimportant and when you are better you might find that you aren’t as bothered by blogging as you once were.
Inspiration, inspiration, where for art thou inspiration?
Not everyone is a fountain of inspiration who can churn out blog post idea after blog post idea after blog post idea and write blog post after blog post after blog post.
Yes, that dreaded word stats! Well, if we are getting technical then it’s a dreaded abbreviation and statistics is the dreaded word!
Stats are something that we really shouldn’t bother about but predominantly, at some time or another most of us will. I personally think it’s the sort of thing that can’t be helped and even if you do your best to ignore them. On occasion, you’ll glimpse them or curiosity will get the better of you and you’ll check them out and see how your blog is doing.
Unfortunately, if your stats aren’t as good as you thought they were going to be or you think that they should be then that can lead to a slump in blogging.
You put effort into a post (or posts) and hope it will do well and then, when it doesn’t it sucks and you find yourself asking what is the point in blogging if no-one is reading your posts.
Lack of recognition and relevance.
It can get tiring when you see the same blogs referenced by people over and over again and repeatedly praised. The blogs that are established and whose name people know (even if they hardly ever put out content or don’t blog anymore but they always get acknowledged as a great blog by their fellow bloggers, peers, authors and publishers) massive congratulations to them, they got their name out there and they made it, but! There’s no reason not to allow the smaller blogs the chance at the same just because they have fewer followers.
Regardless of size, we are all relevant and a small following doesn’t make you a bad blogger or your view on a book any less relevant than those of the larger blogs.
It often feels like those few same blogs have a monopoly and you and your blog stand no chance of being recognised. You just want someone to write ‘yeah, that blog is great‘. Or ‘that blog is well worth checking out‘. Or ‘it’s a fantastic review‘. Or ‘that blogger is really good‘. Or to see your blog on a list of the top blogs. Or to see a quote from one of your reviews used in a book a press release or a promotional graphic. Or just something as small and simple (it’s often the little things that can alter your perception) as an author or publisher sharing your review on their SM but no, alas, it’s often the same blogs time and time again.
We don’t do this for recognition but when you put the work into maintaining and running a blog sometimes, being recognised would be nice and would make you feel good about your blog.
Yes, becoming established takes time but even after putting in that time many blogs aren’t what you would call established and remain unknown to most.
I’ll also mention new bloggers too. Those blogs that come out of nowhere and absolutely kill it with follower counts and stats becoming mega popular in a short space of time. Massive praise to them (they are obviously doing something right) but when you’ve been blogging for a while (years) and you struggle to achieve anything, languishing with low numbers and no recognition then it can feel like you aren’t relevant, that you are getting left behind and that you are lost in the maelstrom of forgotten bloggers for the cool new blogs.
You’ve spent a ton of time on other people’s sites, liking, commenting, sharing and being involved in the community and the bloggers don’t respond or reciprocate. In return for you supporting them they don’t repay the favour. They don’t read your blog, share your posts or acknowledge your blogs existence like you’d hoped. They ignore you and you never get anything back.
They have their own clique and stick to it. Or, if you don’t like that term then you find that bloggers have their own groups because they all started around the same time, have been doing it longer or those that seem to think that they are ‘better’ than others.
Sure, everyone has their blogging friends and blogs/bloggers that they prefer over others (due to the personality of the blogger, similar reading tastes, etc) but there are also cliques in the community too. If you want to be popular and you try to ingratiate yourself into the cliques and fail then this could lead to a slump as you find yourself ignored.
Everyone always goes on about the blogging community but what if you don’t become part of it? Say, try as you might that you end up on the outside looking in. That you hoped to make some genuine friends from blogging who you can email and DM and that when you don’t you find blogging to be far more solitary than you had imagined it would be.
Blogging isn’t fun anymore.
Blogging is a hobby and you have a hobby because you enjoy doing it. If you don’t enjoy it then you don’t do it, simples. Instead, you either move on to something else that you do enjoy (gaming, TV, film, sports, etc) or you try something new.
If you lose your blogging smile and the enjoyment that you once found in having a blog then you will lose your motivation to blog. Blogging should be fun and if it isn’t well, you won’t want to do it.
A blog is hard work.
Having and running a blog is hard work. You have to read, you have to write book reviews, you have to write various other blog posts, you have to draft up your reviews and posts, you have to have a blogging schedule (yeah, that doesn’t happen for me), you have to post regularly, you have to have an SM presence, you need to blog hop, you need to create graphics, you need to take photos (if you are on bookstagram) and, of course, there are deadlines for ARC’s too (yeah, that doesn’t happen for me either, if I read a book before the release date then cool, if not, the world won’t end) and it is all pressure involved with having a blog.
Issues with authors (and/or other bloggers).
You have a book blog because you love reading and you want to share that love of books. You blog in your free time and as the majority of blogger’s don’t get paid for it either, you do it for free. If you (sadly, it happens) get hassle from authors (or other bloggers, not really happened to me apart from a few taking offence to a few things I’ve written but I’ve read about it happening to others) then you could get into a slump as you might well question what is the point in giving up your free time to blog, to help authors out and to promote them if there’s a chance you’ll get hassle over it.
Let’s be honest, it’s just not nice to get hassle over something when it is unwarranted. Now, in the interest of fairness, I will say that the majority of authors are all fantastic to work with so it’s only a very small minority who treat bloggers poorly and don’t value them but they are out there. If you do get treated like crap, then, from personal experience it does make you feel like you can’t be bothered with blogging and running your blog.
You think your writing sucks.
If you lack confidence in your writing and you find that you are constantly questioning the quality of your reviews, your posts and what you write then it could get to the stage where it goes from something that you are simply ‘thinking’ to something that actually affects your blog and your blogging.
You tire of thinking that everything you post is poor quality, reading, re-reading, editing, changing, editing and changing again and even after posting you still aren’t happy with it and that compared to others what you write just isn’t good enough.
Yes, I’m fully aware that you shouldn’t compare yourself to others but as night follows day it happens. If you then find your own content lacking it will make you feel crap about your blog and you won’t want to post.
Hell, if you do struggle with confidence in what you post then comparing yourself to others is irrelevant as you already think you post crap without including or worrying about others in the equation and thusly, you are your own worst enemy anyway and no-one wants to feel like that.
If you’re not reading then there’s a chance that you won’t be blogging. Obviously, the two aren’t mutually exclusive and many people who are in a reading slump will still be blogging (possibly even more so) as they won’t be spending their time reading and ergo, they will have more free time for blogging.
But, if you aren’t reading then you may not want to blog either as the reason you have a book blog is that you are a reader.
You can’t be bothered to blog.
Maybe there is no discernable reason for your blogging slump. Perhaps, it is simply that your motivation to blog has gone AWOL and it can be summed up in the single sentence ‘you just can’t be bothered to blog‘.
Thoughts?? Agree?? Disagree?? What reasons do you think there are for blogging slumps??
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