Saturday, December 4, 2010

Busting the Newbie Blues!

The awesome blog Small Review is hosting a cool event to help new bloggers get established in the book blogging community! This event runs from December 3-31. If you want to join up you can here.

When did you start your blog?
I started my blog about 2 months ago. My first post was on October 2nd! I had entertained the thought of having one for about 6 months before I actually made one though! I even sat down at the computer several times trying to think of a name for my blog. Haha. It wasn't until September that I thought of the name That Hapa Chick. Then I didn't actually make the blog until I was able to make a cool header graphic. I know lame, but I wanted to make sure my blog looked all professional before I posted it to the world. Haha.

Why did you start your blog?
Well I have wanted to have a book blog for a long time now. My mom was the first person to suggest it to me. I love to read and she can only withstand so much book talk from me! Haha. I drive my family crazy with my book talk. So I started this blog so I could share my love of reading with others. I've also found its a great way for me to keep track of what books I have read, since I read so much that sometimes I forget.

What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?
Well I guess the biggest challenge was when I first started and I was trying to find out how to get people to read my blog. Then I found things like the Waiting on Wednesday meme and most importantly the Book Blogger Hop and Follow Friday. These things were what made me discover the wonderful book blogging community!

What do you find most discouraging about being a new blogger?
Probably looking at all the other really successful book blogs and thinking "Gosh I don't think I'll ever have as many readers as them." I know I shouldn't compare myself to them because I've just started, but its hard not to.

What do you find most encouraging?
How welcoming the whole book blogging community is! Just the fact that they have things like the Book Blogger Hop where its especially for people to find new readers and get established is really cool. Everyone is so nice! Getting a nice comment from someone on one of my reviews brightens my day. I love it!

What do you like best about the blogs you read? Have you tried to replicate this in your blog? 
I love book reviews where the person reviewing the book doesn't just give you a rundown of the plot and the characters. They tell you what they enjoyed about the book. What their favorite elements were. What they didn't like. I think that makes a review more interesting and it also helps me because then I get a better idea of why I might like or dislike the book. I've tried to replicate this by just writing something that I would want to read. If I think its interesting or funny then I'll post it!

What do you dislike about blogs you’ve read? Do you try to avoid this?
People who post reviews that are kind of just lists of facts about the book and less about their own opinion on it. Or they do post about their opinion but I have to wade through the facts before I can find it. I also don't like really short reviews. Just a person saying "This book was awesome you should read it!" is great, but it doesn't help me decide whether I really want to read it or not. WHY was it awesome? WHY should I read it? So I try not to post short reviews or generic reviews. I try to really give my opinion.

Any advice for other new bloggers?
Try not to compare yourself to other book bloggers. Quality is way more important than quanitity. And let your personality shine through! People want to know YOUR opinion! They want to know what YOU think! And most importantly don't be so worried about how many followers you have and stuff like that. Of course thats an important part about blogging (having readers) but the most important thing is posting quality stuff. If you write quality reviews and really try hard to make your blog the best it can be, then the readers will come!

Anything else you’d like to share about your experience? 
Its been great so far! I love each and every follower I have, especially the ones who take the time to leave a thoughtful comment! You guys are the best!

Is there anything you’d like to tell us about your blog?
Ummm... Well I just got a Twitter account for it! So if you're reading this you should follow me! There's a link to it on the left.

Julia :)



  1. I'm so glad to have read your answers for this feature! Small Review did a great job with this, eh? It's definitely a process to get established, but once you are into it, it's a great community, a fun hobby, and something that's actually really fulfilling. Plus, you can meet some amazing people! Love your blog :)

  2. All your comments make perfect sense to me! I think we all struggle with the 'they have more followers' thing early in our blogging career.

    This meme is actually turning out to be quite a fun meme to read!

  3. Thank you for participating! I found your blog through this event.

    I don't know if it's lame or not, but I spent a ton of time on my blog's header, too. I kept playing around with all sorts of designs but then after about a month I finally had to tell myself, enough, this is good enough. I like the header you decided on. The balloons really compliment the cloud background you picked and it gives your blog a light and happy vibe.

    You've given some really great feedback on reviews and what you like to see. I agree. I'm now off to check out some of your reviews!

  4. I love that your mom suggested blogging to you. My parents would simply say "What's blogging?" and then things like "Why do you want to blog?" and "Aren't you worried about strangers?"

  5. My answers were very similar to yours on the "What do you like/dislike most about the blogs that you read?" Unfortunately, I'm not such a great writer myself, so I'm not sure I'm too successful in writing truly great reviews. Anyway, I'm looking forward to reading your reviews in the future!

  6. My grandpa was actually the first person who suggested that I make a blog! Haha, I loved your answers and how honest you were! Oh, and I saw The Enemy in your TBR pile widget. I actually reviewed that one on my blog, and I saw you had Sister's Grimm. I love that series!


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