How to dismally fail at Book Blogging

Exactly one year ago, I've decided to follow my husband's advice and start my own book blog. I guess that means I should have had at least 300 or so posts on my blog. Right? Uhhhhmmmm, nope. My blog is like my marriage - absence makes the heart grow fonder. If I see my husband for 7 consecutive days, it's normally a holiday. You also don't very often see me posting for 7 consecutive days. It's not quite the same? Oh, okay. Will really try my best to do better in the next year. But it truly is a good recipe for my marriage.... 

After a year of sailing around the Blogosphere, I've learned a number of things. Mostly I've learned that you really, really need to be ridiculously bad at blogging to fail Book Blogging 101. So instead of a anniversary post, I've decided to share all the knowledge I've gathered during the past year on How to dismally fail at Book Blogging.

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1. Have a really terrible and difficult name

That will have to be your first step. Try something like OR OR Apparently it is also a good idea to get your own domain. I haven't done that. Yet. Should I?

2. Be completely illiterate 

Bad spelling and grammar is bound to get you a number of boo's and ehw's. Unless it is intentionally. Remember, you are dealing with people who make those squelly little thingies we call letters into words into sentences into paragraphs into chapters into books into series' for a living. If you want to fail at blogging, never, ever check for spelling or grammar mistakes. And de-activate your spell checker on Google. Just for good measure. 

Image result for psychotherapist cartoon

3. Never never never never never reply or comment

Not on your own posts and most definitely not on anybody else's posts. That is just going to gain you some traffic. Stay clear! Make sure that you do not have a comment section or even worse - a comment plug-in on your blog. If you don't comment and don't reply, you will be on a rather safe path to Book Blogging Failure. But if you have to, just be rude and critical. Never ever compliment someone on a great post and never ask or reply on personal stuff. Or the absolute worst - show interest in a book they have just featured. That will get your stats up. I repeat - stay clear!

4. Do not link any of your posts to social media

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest ..... they are all connected. Make sure you do not link any posts to any social media. Avoid those plug-in thingies that just pulls everything through. Your post will spread like wildfire. It's a World Wide Web out there my friend. A spider's web. If you enter, they will pull you in and you will get tangled up. And if you are not really careful, those spiders will ask you to tap dance. Honestly, be aware. 

Image result for ron spiders tap dance

5. Only read the books you already have

Okay, this is a difficult one to explain. We as book bloggers only read what we want and have, because we want to read all the books and we buy all the books (or at least we beg, steal and borrow all the books). So how can you fail at this? Easy! Only read what you have on your bookshelf. Do not get a Goodreads or an Amazon account. That will just tempt you to see what other books are out there. And lo and behold, do not read about the books featured on other blogs. That is just a bad, bad idea. You need to cling to the books you have on your shelf for dear life. Do not buy new ones, and for Goodness sake, do not buy a Kindle. 

Image result for Books it's mine gif

6. Write nothing but reviews

If I was on the path to failure, I would really like to know how this is a fail. Isn't the idea of book blogging to write reviews? Yes, of course it is! But it is only part of the whole. You need to get people to know you and for that you have to network. You know, tap dance with the spiders. If your whole blog is only book reviews and no features or interviews or challenges or discussion points - uhmmmmm, you might not make it. So sorry. 

7. Do not use gif's, memes, book jackets or photos

Image result for gifs are stupid gif

Really, that is just stupid. You don't need it. Nobody ever comments on them. It doesn't keep readers interested in your posts. No, they do not spread like a mass of infectious flu and cold viruses. Of course the biggest percentage of people read the title of a book and remembers it instantly. The cover has nothing to do with it. You really don't have to share or showcase it over and over again (try 7 times). All these weekly cover features, they are just a waste of time. It doesn't get you any traffic. And photos - sooooo overrated. Who cares what the author looks like? Or research material photos, nobody is interested in that. Or are they? Think about it for a moment.

8. Do not participate in any weekly features, challenges, book tags or giveaways 

This is a very important point. You need to pay careful attention to this. This is the most dangerous path to a successful book blog. So if you are still set on failure - stay clear from the following: 

Cover characteristics - hosted by Sugar and Snark
The Sunday Post - hosted by The Caffeinated Book Reviewer
Friday 56 - hosted by Freda's Voice
Book Beginnings - hosted by Rose City Reader
Top Ten Tuesday - hosted by The Broke and the Bookish
Book Blogger Hop - hosted by The ramblings of a coffee addicted writer
Make me read it Readathon - hosted by The Innocent Smiley
Thursday Quotables - hosted by Bookshelf Fantasies
It's Monday! What are you reading? - hosted by The Book Date
Book Travelling Thursdays - hosted by Goodreads Group

Seriously. Don't go near any of those sites. They are the spiders. Turn around and walk away. Remember to switch off your computer. Slowly now.

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9. Seize to exist

Once you've started your own book blog and wish not to do it anymore, you need to seize to exist completely. No, you can't simply die. The dead and the un-dead are way to popular on the Bookish section of the blogosphere. Dying might be one of the most dangerous things you can possibly do. You need to disappear from the face of the earth and the buttons of cyberspace. Or somebody (one of those spiders) will find you. They will lure you back and tempt you with new books and lovely comments and great new weekly features. Or challenges. Or book tags. Or reading groups. 

There you have it. My fail-safe strategy to fail Book Blogging 101. Can you think of anything else to add?

Note: I don't think I'm being rather successful at all. Yet. 



  1. Haha! Love this!

    1. Thank you! Lots of fun with this. Thanks for stopping by!

  2. Great post! Here I am not commenting...

    1. LOL!!!!!! Thank you Sue.... And for sharing!

  3. Fun way to celebrate your blogoversary! Congrats.

    For What It's Worth

    1. Thank you Karen! I had lots of fun doing it.

  4. Too funny! Yes to all. Commenting is definitely not what you want to do. Just a waste of time! You wouldn't want to actually converse with any of the awesome book bloggers! The only thing I didn't understand was reading the books you have. You say that like it's a thing that someone might actually do? I mean that's crazy talk. You must acquire new books. It's like breathing!

    1. Ooh you will be amazed at how many people get stuck in their own bookshelf. I actually know one or two. You are absolutely right, new books are like breathing. Fresh oxygen....

      Glad you enjoyed the post!

  5. Hahaha idk, I think is actually pretty memorable :-P

    Oh this post is fantastic. You have cracked me up so much lol. But happy blogoversary, even if you don't have all those 300 something posts you were planning on!

    1. Halloo!!! Okay - I'll change my name to!!! It was fun to do something "fun" again.

      Maybe I'll get to 300 posts in the new year.

  6. Perfect! I started out just doing reviews pretty much, and not going and really commenting on too many other blogs. It definitely didn't get me out there. Great post!

    1. Thank you Lisa! So nice of you to visit me again!

  7. This is a great post, Mareli - thank you!

    1. Whoo hoo!! Sarah likes my post! Now life is perfect. xoxoxo

  8. 300??? No no no! Why would you have 300 :D I mean, you probably have full time work anyway... At least I do, and anything more than 2 posts per week is just impossible. That gives you at best 100 posts :) And it's always better to put out quality content than just keep putting it out, right?

    BTW I started my blog like... roughly a half a year ago? :) Either way. Congrats on your full year!!!

    I am lucky to have worked in marketing for over 2 years... So before ACTUALLY starting a blog, I worked on a 300 people Twitter audience first and, of course, coming up with a blog name :D so I didn't have to deal with that first problem. A blogging nightmare though, let me tell you... THEMES AND FORMATTING. That is a nightmare for me. Ugh.

    Good Psycho illustration, BTW :D hilarious!

    Haha, I do pretty much write nothing but reviews. That is annoying me, but meh. Too busy with full time work to really come up with discussion posts. But I'm hoping to get there one way :)

    Hilarious post, this was great :D

    1. Thank you for your kind words and conversational comment! I've seen your blog for the first time last week and you are doing great.

      Let's don't talk about Themes and Formatting.... I.CAN'T. DO. IT. Full stop.

      I don't work full-time no! I give extra classes in Maths, English and Afrikaans (my mother tongue). But I am married and I have one of those dear husbands who like to make me run around for him! I don't really mind.... And yes - I love my blog and reading and he does give me time to enjoy them as much as I want to!

      I think it's great to be able to have a full-time job and an upcoming blog. Good for you Evelina! You should be very proud of yourself.

      Hope to see you around and have a good week!

      PS: Try some of the "quick" weekly memes. Like Cover Characteristics or Thursday Quotables. The type quickly and normally gets you some good traffic.

  9. Oh yes, I am well on the road to failing due to my lack of gifs. If only I used them, then maybe the spiders will come say hello. ;) Fabulous post!

    1. Ag, Gifts are so over-rated.... Says she who has never ever done a giveaway....

      Thanks for stopping by and have a great week!

  10. Very good post! I've had my blog for many years and, sadly, I have some of these failure elements. Maybe if I didn't have three 'real life' businesses I could do better. *Sigh* Maybe I'll retire someday and have more time. *Sigh* I love your gifs. Maybe I'll try adding one or two...
    Anyway - Happy Anniversary. Here's to not Failing at Book Blogging!

    1. Hi Martha! Sorry for the very late reply.... Been struggling to juggle 'real life' and blogging a bit this past week! But I don't have to tell you about it...! I only have one 'real life' job and a marriage. Enough to disrupt my reading and blogging life dismally.

      Thanks for your kind words and hope you at least had a good Easter Break!

  11. Happy Anniversary! Making it to a year and deciding to continue is a success in and of itself!

    Great advice, Mareli. :-) I am always forgetting to share on social media (and I only share on Twitter when I do).

    1. Hi there! Aaaah, thank you - coming from you, I really do feel honored. Need to spent more time on the blog and especially on "development", but gosh - there's just so little time to get to everything.


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