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Things I want: books, bookish candles, book inspired tea, dozens and dozens of bookmarks, character dolls, limited covers, a room with only my bookshelves and a reading nook. Oh, and a bookish dragon for company.
Things I don’t have: money.
Let’s be honest here, all of us bookworms have made our wallets (and parents) cry with the amount of books we buy. Our Amazon wishlist consists mostly of books which outnumbering the people in your family tree. Money needed for book blogging is no joke. My wallet cries every time I go into a bookstore, I cry, the book cries, and the staff thinks I’ve caught a case of the loony; the closest I come to the book is touching its transparent cover. Oh, and let’s not forget the part where we look at the price and then sink into an existential crisis. Something similar to Ryuk going a week without an apple.
The bibliophile in me is reckless and wants to either steal that book or splurge, but I always have to sink my teeth into her neck to keep her in line. Being a bookworm is hard enough but a bookworm blogger, now that’s…crazy.
Let’s all get off our unicorns and admit that when we started book blogging we imagined being shipped crazy tons of ARCs. We imagined lounging on our bed, the scent of our favorite books lingering in the air, teasing our senses with a world we can only enter in our mind. Invitations to books expos, book to movie first screenings, and author events litter our tables.
That’s years away, darling.
So without more chatter, here are some “tips” for bookworming on a budget.
Is bookworming even a word? Who cares. I’m a writer and if Shakespeare could come up with his own words, I think I very well can too.
- Ebooks are still books. No matter what anyone tells you. Whether you read on a Kindle or a Tablet or your phone; in fact, if you look hard enough there are some websites which provide you with free books in exchange for honest reviews. Take note that it’s much easier for authors and publishers to send in ebooks than physical copies.
Subscribing to an author’s newsletter will allow you free access to some of their books. From here you can build relationships with authors or publicity managers.
- Social media can be your greatest ally. Forget about paying for advertisements! Pick either Instagram, Twitter, Youtube or Tumblr, and then focus on building your blog following through that. I know networking can be hard for an introvert but trust me, if you ever want to get up on a panel speaking for “INSPIRATIONAL BOOK BLOGGERS”, you got to start now. I know there are those who advice getting account on ALL of these social media but, I think, you should pick whichever suits you. If you feel posting everyday on bookstagram is overwhelming, then don’t compel yourself to make an account. Go for whatever works for you!
- A lot of people get overwhelmed when it comes to book photography. Especially when comparing our baby bookstagram pictures to veteran bookstagrammers. Fret not, dear one, because let me tell you – merchandise isn’t the what makes a book picture awesome. Sure, maybe the pretty book covers. BUT – and I cannot stress this enough – what’s more important is creativity. It doesn’t matter if it’s just pages of the book or the same cover. Scour pretty locations, if not, beautiful patterns whether they’re walls or your bed or simple fabric can make a lot of difference.
- Go old school with your equipment. There’s no need for the latest cameras for you to take a great photo – like I said, creativity, darlings! Don’t waste that bookish brain of yours! You create entire worlds in your head from words, so don’t complain that you can’t take a simple photo.
- So what kind of props can you use?
- If you have pets, train those little critters to pose. Just be careful they don’t chew on your precious books.
- Old jewelry
- If you’re an artist, pair your books with an artwork or a calligraphy.
- Your bookshelf!
- Your other books!
- Your guitar or your trumpet or your piano
- You legs – with or without socks on!
- A pretty hairstyle!
- The garden, if you have one!
- Posters you own!
- Stuffed toys!
- People. They’re awesome. Bribe them with sweets or something.
You can create your own unique theme with your props.
- Learn some editing skills! Play around with the brightness, the color balance, or whatever. Give some life to your photos! Make them colors pop, or tone them down. Your pictures are yours, so don’t be afraid to infuse them with a bit of your personality.
- ALSO, who says you can’t talk about old books? Don’t let people lose out on the chance of rediscovering old loves. Whether it’s a book you enjoyed as a child or your first romance novel! Don’t be afraid to blog about what you love. When it comes to blogging, there’s a need to balance what you love and what people want to hear.
Don’t ever, ever lose your voice! I promise, your voice and your style WILL make you standout. If you love something, don’t hesitate to talk about it. Make yourself memorable.
Those are six things I’ve learned since starting this blog. Don’t worry about having to get every merchandise and every popular book to be a book blogger. Remember, you started your blog to share your love for books. In time, you’ll be able to get the things you want but for now, build your content, make friends and enjoy the journey!
Is there a tip you think I missed out? What was your fears when you started your book blog?
If you’d like to help support, you can also find me on Patreon