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The Blog Squad: A Blogger Collaboration Part XI


We are a group of three book bloggers situated on different continents but brought together by our love for books and a penchant for talking about them. We’ve joined our forces to create a collaborative series of posts about book blogging and we hope you’ll enjoy the discussions.

BOOK REVIEWS BY DI - Di Hewlett




What is the best blogging advice you have ever been given?


Uma says...
I’ve received loads of advice from my fellow bloggers ever since I started my blog and most of them have been extremely useful advice that have helped me a LOT. To state the best, I think one of the advice that MOST bloggers gave me was to stay true to who I am and not try to copy or imitate any other blogger. This is VERY important. There are so many bloggers who are extremely inspiring but it’s never okay to imitate their blogging style. It’s important to be true to yourself and keep doing what you love. Don’t do something because someone else is or jump onto a bandwagon because everyone else is; do it only if you believe you will enjoy it. And don’t refrain from doing something because it’s not the ‘it’ thing in the blogosphere; go ahead and start something new if you enjoy it!
Amy says...
IT IS HARD TO CHOOSE JUST ONE. LIKE REALLY HARD - MY BRAIN ISN’T WORKING RIGHT NOW.

I agree with Uma, though. Don’t imitate! It’s hard and it can make you sick and you feel like rushing around the house screaming it’s not fair (I’m an example of this, yes) but trust your own creativity. Look at the bloggers you admire and learn from them without copying. Be inspired, by all means, but don’t steal their ideas. If you trust yourself and trust what you love, then go wild. There’s an AMAZING feeling that comes with creating your own unique piece of art/writing/blogging, etc etc. Learn and be inspired and push yourself to create something you’re proud of. And chances are, you’ll grow to love your work more than any other blogger’s .


What’s the worst/most misleading blogging advice you’ve ever been given?


Uma says...
I don’t think I’ve ever been given ‘bad’ advice but like Di, I want to talk about something that is seen often in the blogosphere. Following blogs just so they will follow you back and unfollowing them when they don’t. This follow only to unfollow phenomenon is very common in

Social networking sites especially Twitter and Instagram and has now infiltrated the blogosphere too. It’s a popular belief that following as many blogs as you can will help increase your followers as at least 50% of them will follow you back. While no one gives this ‘advice’ outright, this is something many do. I am NOT saying don’t follow blogs. I’m all about making wonderful friends in the blogosphere. I’m saying don’t follow blogs just for the ‘follow back’

Follow a blog you truly think you would be interested in. I admit when I first started my blog, it felt like it was all about the numbers - followers, pageviews etc. But truly it’s not. Ask yourself, do you want someone to follow your blog just because you followed theirs or do you want someone to follow your blog because they truly enjoy the content you post? I love it when I get a new follower ; I love it even more when a follower reads my posts and interacts with me; and that they will do only if they enjoy my content. So don’t get caught up on follower count but focus on doing what you love and trust me you’ll end up making wonderful friends through your blog!

Amy says...
I feel like I’m echoing Di and Uma’s answers, but I also don’t think I’ve ever really received bad advice. But….if I have to choose, I’ll go with the issue of blog design.

A lot of people seem to think that cluttered sidebars and lots of colours is the best way to go, but I don’t think that’s quite right. Choose two to three “theme” colours and don’t go all rainbow. They might look pretty at first, but they can also REALLY hurt the eyes and distract from content.

As for sidebars, keep them simple and only add the gadgets you need to share. I find that simple is the best way to go when designing your layout; simple doesn’t mean unprofessional - it means clean and attractive and easy to navigate. And the number of gadgets or plug-ins also affects your loading speed, so keep them sparse if you want people to stick around.

If you could only give one piece of advice to an aspiring book blogger, what would it be?

Uma says... 
Remember to be yourself and keep blogging because you love to - NOT to get more followers, NOT to get more pageviews but because you enjoy doing it. And interact! When you find a blog post on the blogosphere you enjoy, leave a comment saying so; if someone comments on your posts, reply to them. Most of all, have fun! Don’t get so crazy about blogging that it feels like work.

Amy says...
Do NOT beat yourself up if you don’t post often or if you struggle with creating graphics, etc. Every blogger has bad days, and sometimes taking a break is an excellent thing to do. If you planned to write a review on Thursday but when it comes to Thursday you can’t gather your thoughts or you’re stressed because of school and can’t focus, DON’T WRITE THE REVIEW. Give yourself a chance to breathe and relax. Blogging is supposed to be fun. Don’t stress about losing followers if you don’t manage to post for three days. First and foremost, it’s your blog and you’re blogging - hopefully - because you enjoy it. Remember that <3


To see my answers make sure to visit the other collab posts!

We hope you’ve enjoyed our discussion post! Please talk to us and let us know YOUR answers below. What do you think of our responses? If you have any specific questions you’d like us to address in the future, please let us know in the comments section below. Stay tuned for next week’s questions!