Favorite plugins of 2015

One of the most fun things about self-hosting a WordPress blog is that you get to use plugins! I always like seeing what other people are using for their blogs, so I thought it might be fun to post about which plugins I’m currently using myself. The last time I posted about plugins was back in 2013. They’re almost entirely different from what I’m using today! Here’s my current plugin roster: Admin Columns and Admin Read More …

Fellow book bloggers: be kind to yourselves.

Every few months somethin happens in the book blogging world where there’s this zeitgeist of panic that bloggers aren’t “doing enough.” People worry they’re not posting enough, comment enough, they don’t have the right social media outlets, a whole bunch of worries. And I understand where they’re coming from! I have worried about those same things, over and over again, until finally I figured out the secret. Here it is: I am not obligated to Read More …

2014 LA Times Festival of Books Survival Guide

The LA Times Festival of Books is coming up next weekend! This will be my third time going and I’m expecting to sweat a lot and have a lot of fun. Want to do the same? LATFOB Newbie Survival Guide Before you go: check the website for schedules of author appearances and signings. You can also get panel tickets for $1/ticket (on sale tomorrow!); this helps when you want a guaranteed seat for a big-time Read More …

How to freshen up a stinky blog

There’s a discussion over at BookBlogging.net about keeping your blog’s content fresh and unstinky, particularly when there’s so much of the same sort of content (promo blitz cover reveals, for example) on dozens of blogs. I started off writing a little comment in response, and then it bloomed into this… I don’t think it’s necessarily the promo stuff that’s the problem; it’s the lack of spirit in them that sucks all the interesting out. If Read More …

Blogging tip: Update your old posts

Once you’ve written a post, don’t just fling it onto the internet to be forgotten and ignored. Blog posts live longer than butterflies do, so here are some reasons why you should (occasionally) go back and update old posts: 1. The internet never dies. You may THINK people aren’t reading your posts from three years ago, but they totally are. My biggest hitters are posts I wrote back in 2009. In internet time that’s practically Read More …

Blogging Tip: You need a review policy, so make one already.

Everyone needs a review policy, even if you’re not accepting books for review (or you’re so new you think nobody’s going to send you anything anyway). Why? Everyone looks for one and if you don’t have one, it could annoy lots of people. Spread good vibes! Have a review policy. Also, it’ll save you a ton of hassle later on when people DO start sending you review requests– because they’ve read your policy and will Read More …

How to confidently talk to people at conventions and whatever

Prelim: read these two articles at XOJane. TL;DR: You need to a. know that you’re awesome and that you have value to contribute to relationships/conversations/etc. None of that “I’m not worthy” crap! b. go in prepared for the conversations you’ll be having. So my advice is: 1. Take a deep breath. I know! It’s scary. Lots of bookworms are also introverts, and meeting new people can be terrifying. Having to then establish a tentative working Read More …

How to be awesome at commenting: part 2!

How to be awesome at commenting, part 2! Part 1 is here, btw. (I am NOT saying you have to do all these things to be an awesome commenter, fyi. These are just hints and tips that’ve worked for me, and which might work for you if you’re so inclined. If you don’t do any of these things? You’re still awesome! And I love you! Okay? Okay.) 1. Comment with more than just your name. Read More …

How to Blog Without Internet Access: A Short Tips Post

Now that I’ve only got internet access on the weekends (again), I’ve gone into my “offline blogging” mode. I don’t like rushing to get everything done during the hours I DO have time to be online, nor do I like to spend my entire weekend formatting posts. So! I’ve come up with a little system to get things up in time, and it’s working out well so far. I hope that my tips can help Read More …