Jan 3, 2012

Busting the Newbie Blues: 2012

The awesome gal at Small Review has created an event called Busting the Newbie Blues. This year is it's second time running! This event is designed to (Taken from Small Review's post): 
  • Put new YA bloggers on the map
  • Increase Blogger interaction
  • Start a discussion by sharing our experiences as new bloggers
  • Learn about what it was like for established bloggers when they were newbies
To learn more information on this event, go to her original post here. Now onto the questions! I picked Established Bloggers questionnaire, even though I still feel like a newbie sometimes. I've been book blogging on and off since 2008, but The Vintage Bookworm is still fairly new. 

  1. When did you start your blog? The Vintage Bookworm was created in December of 2010.
  2. Do you ever still feel like a newbie? Definitely! Like I said earlier in this post, I've been blogging on and off since 2008. My first blog was called Reader's Sanctuary, which I am pretty sure the blog is still up (Oops!).  But this blog is only a little over a year old. I'm always learning new stuff, so I still feel like a newbie at some points. Especially since The Vintage Bookworm is still getting out there, if that makes sense.
  3. What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far? Did you make any mistakes new bloggers can learn from? I think the biggest challenge I've faced so far, and I'm still struggling with, is finding my own voice for my blog. Also, one thing I've noticed since I was gone from blogging for a bit is that starting a whole new blog is hard. I was used to a lot of people knowing my blog and getting myself out there and now I'm still fairly new. I've made a lot of mistakes, but the main one I can think of right now is trying to do too much. I freak out a lot when I shouldn't about not posting every day. I'd like to post every day, but sometimes it just can't happen.
  4. What did you find most discouraging about being a new blogger? How did you deal with this?I think the most discouraging thing I've always dealt with is feeling like an outsider to all the circle of friends that everyone has around here. I'm the type of person who likes to be friends with everyone. I'm a friendly person, but I'm shy. I'm still dealing with this. But I know I need to just throw myself out there and try and interact more. I've been interacting more than I normally would, but I still need to do more.
  5. What do you find most encouraging? The most encouraging would have to be the community as well. It's a HUGE community full of people like you. Who love books and get the craziness dealing with them. Also, when you can share your reviews with authors and sometimes get to talk with them. =) It's amazing.
  6. If you could go back in time and speak with your newbie self, what five bits of wisdom would you tell yourself? I would tell myself to just find my own voice and not worry about other people's blogs. Just be yourself and enjoy those other awesome blogs, but to not dwell on it and feel bad because yours isn't that established yet.
  7. What do you like best about the blogs you read? Have you tried to replicate this in your blog? What I like best about the blogs I read is that a lot of them have amazing reviews. They all have their own voice in their reviews and they go into so much detail. I try very hard to replicate that in my blog, but sometimes I have so much strong feelings about a book that I just can't describe it. You know what I mean? Those times where all you want to say is "Omg I love it! Omg I love it!" over and over again?
  8. What do you dislike about blogs you’ve seen? Do you try to avoid this? The only thing I can think of at the moment that I dislike about some blogs that I've seen is sometimes their layouts are REALLY hard to to see anything. Sometimes they have a black layout with, like, a purple font. And it's really hard to read. Also, sometimes I'll go on a blog and they will have a VERY loud music player and it'll scare me and I have to search to figure out where it's coming from. It drives me crazy. I try to always have a white background with font that everyone can read. I also don't put things on my blog that has music or something to it and if I did, I'd have it off with the option for them to listen to it if they want to.
  9. How did you bring your blog to the attention of so many people? I'm not really sure to be honest. I try and comment on other blogs as much as I can, and interact on Twitter. I also post the links to my blog posts on Twitter, which in return posts it on Facebook. I also put up my reviews on Amazon, Book Depository, Random Buzzers, Goodreads and Shelfari and I put up a link to my blog in each review in case they want to see more reviews from me.
  10. When and how did you get your first ARC (or first few ARCs)? I can still remember the first ARC I ever received back from when I was blogging on The Reader's Sanctuary. It was an ARC for Tom Tancin's The Man in the Moon. I was SO excited I printed off the e-mail and ran around the house showing my parents. Who just stared at me like I was an alien. Tom Tancin e-mailed me asking me if I would review his book on my blog. I think the first ARC I received on The Vintage Bookworm was one from the BookDivas website.


  1. Hi Amanda,

    thanks you for stopping by at my blog. :)

    Me too, I would love to make friends in the blogging community - not numerous ones but a couple close ones. I envy the relationship Small and Ruby seem to have.
    So I'll keep looking for the "right one" *lol* ... (Sorry, that all sounds like online dating ... *gg* - but that's definitely not what I mean)

    Great questionnaire with a lot of interesting tips.

    Anne (from Living in a Fairy World)

  2. Great answers. I feel ya. Some blogs are just too busy and finding your blog voice is tough.

  3. Hi, thanks for stopping by at my blog! ^^

    Don't worry about being shy. I'm a very shy person too, but blogging has helped me to be more open towards people I don't know. You'll get the hang of it soon. (:

  4. Thank you so much for participating!

    I think the easiest way to find you "voice" is to write as you speak. That's what I do (and then I go back and remove all of the excessive "reallys" :P)

    I know what you mean about the strong feelings. Books that I LOVED are the hardest for me to review. I just (finally) read The Hunger Games and I don't know how I'm going to review that coherently!

    Wow, you post your reviews everywhere! I'm very impressed. That's one area I always slack off in.

    I like your blog design a lot, btw. It's very easy on the eyes. :)

  5. Hi There! I'm a new follower. I already followed you via goodreads, but now I'm officially following your blog. I totally agree with you on finding a voice for your blog. This is something I continue to struggle with also. I think you are doing a great job. I was following on GR because I find your reviews insightful. I'm excited you run a blog too. Looking forward to reading your 2012 content.

  6. Ahhh yeah I know about the "voice" thing! I tend to be really enthusiastic and use a lot of capslock. I've had to reign it in though because otherwise, I sound like a hyper 12 year old. I agree with what you found encouraging and discouraging. The blogosphere being such a large community is both a blessing and curse. I really liked your answers to these questions and you can count me as a new follower!

  7. I've followed your blog for a while, so I just want to let you know I love reading your reviews! I really suck at comments though; I apologize about that and I'm working hard on improving for 2012!

    I think the biggest hurdle I'm facing is also figuring out what my reviewing "voice" is. I want to be distinct from the crowd, but it's really hard.

    And I shall chat you up on Twitter one of these days! I'm one of those people who randomly responds to other people on Twitter when they've posted something I can relate to. It'll be happening soon :)

  8. You are totally my new best friend -- we answered these questions very similarly!

    Clear and honest voice, yes! I think that developing your voice takes time, and a certain amount of trial and error. Mine's way better than it used to be, but I'm still learning.

    Bad design and auto-playing music, gah! It's like torture, and makes my inner marketer die a little inside. Fortunately the really awful blogs are few and far between.

    The book blogging community is awesome, isn't it? One of my favorite things about blogging. :)

  9. hahah! I can totally picture my parents' faces if I ever did that too (hopefully, I will :) .
    You sound like someone who I'd discreetly (or so I'd think) check out the cover of the book you were reading. If that makes any grammatical sense. Going to your reviews now.

  10. Yeah, it's always fun to have some great blogger friends. =) I wish I had that as well! 

  11. Yes, it definitely is. Especially when there are so many amazing bloggers out there. 

  12. You're welcome! And I hope so, I've been blogging on and off for 4 years. I'm still shy. =| 

  13. Ooh, THG was one of the harder ones for me as well. I love that series! And yep, I try and have Amazon & Goodreads open so I can put it on there and then go back and put it on Shelfari, The Book Depository & Random Buzzers. I try and do it as soon as I finish a review so I don't forget. =)

    Glad you like my design. =) I made it and I actually just opened up a blog design blog to create custom designs in trade for books instead of asking for $100 for a custom design, lol. 

  14. Thanks for following! I'm glad you like my reviews, comments like that really make me smile and glad that I'm doing a pretty good job. I always worry when I'm writing reviews. I'm glad you're running a blog now! =D Welcome to the blogosphere!

  15. Thanks for following! Glad you liked my answers. 

  16. Don't worry, I suck at comments as well! I have so many blogs I follow that when I try to go comment it takes me forever and a lot of times my list discourages me. I also lurk a lot and forget to comment....Oops. 

    Ha, and bring it on! I always love chatting on Twitter! 

  17. Yes, it is torture. I hate having to squint to see text or feeling the need to wear sunglasses when I'm on someone's blog. Plus, the music comes out of no where and scares me. 

    Got to love the blog community. =D

  18. Ha ha, yes. I peep at people's book covers too to see what they are reading and then go home and Goodreads it. Hope you like my reviews! =D

  19. I don't think I've ever come across a blog with a background that I've liked, even if the font color was something that stood out. Something doesn't work for me visually that way I guess.

    It's funny how everyone mentions that they feel like outsiders and yet feel like the blogging community is also very kind, generous and willing to help. What is it about us as a community that makes people feel that way? We're all over the place!

  20. It's funny because the thing you find the most encouraging is what I find the most discouraging XD I guess it's all do do with perspective, right?

  21. Great blog :D new follower!! I found you on Busting the Newbie Blues and I just did a post on it aswell :)

  22. Im an old follower , just making my rounds on the BTNB :). BTW I think your background suits your blog perfectlyhas for some reason - the green and white flowers has provided your page with a somewhat 50's look or what I imagine what Vintage is like.
    www.thephantomparagrapher.blogspot.com. Thanks for the BookDivas recommendation have just joined up :)

    1. I'm glad you like it. =D And I'm glad you joined! It's a great website.


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