For our second Beneath the Surface of Blogging guest post, I am very excited to introduce Becky, a 20 year old cat obsessed psychology student who loves books. She's relatively new to blogging, but is slowly expanding and reaching more people. You can check out her blog Becky's Babble and also follow her on twitter, add her on goodreads and follow her on instagram!
How did you start blogging, were there any blogs you followed that got you thinking this was something you wanted to do?
I actually had a youtube channel at first, but I wasn't very good at it, I was shy in-front of the camera as well as self conscious, but I still wanted to get my views out there, I wanted to write about the kind of things I searched the internet for, the reviews, the makeup swatches, the random little psychology nuggets, so I thought to myself, why not write a blog! And that's how it all started really!
What do you hope you achieve through your blogging?
I just hope that my posts help people with their decisions. Whether it be if they should buy a certain book, or try out a certain make up brand. I want my posts to help people and more importantly I want them to enjoy reading! I also hope to make lots of friends, which I have already started to! :D
What are the most rewarding parts of it for you?
When people comment saying "Your review made me want to buy this" or "your review made me add this to my tbr" it just makes me think that its worth while, that people do care about others opinions and they want to know whether you think something is worth reading or buying. As well as making new friends from it.
And the most frustrating?
When people use your blog as a means to advertise. I don't mind if someone leaves a comment and then has a link to their blog at the bottom, but I don't want the comment to purely be "Check out my blog!" or "Check this out!" it frustrates me because it makes me feel like they haven't bothered to read my content and have just used it to advertise for free! Hence why I've now turned on comment moderation!
Have you had reading slumps/insecurities/times when you felt you weren't good enough and wanted to quit, and how did you pull yourself out of them?
Slumps happen to me all the time, because for university I have to read scientific journals for hours upon hours I just get tired of reading and just find it hard to pick a book up. So, whenever I feel this way, I either pick up a short book or pick up a book I've really really been looking forward to! And I do often feel like I'm not good enough, especially when I'll have spent hours on a post and it gets barely any views, or I go on a blog and they have loads of followers and have been doing it for less amount of time than me, but I just think, I'm writing my blog to get my view out there and I know I wouldnt be happy to write a post that I wasn't proud of. So if even one person reads it, or one person gets something out of it, I'm happy with that!
Have you taken a break from blogging at any point and if so how did you get back into it?
Yes actually, when I had piles of university work, it always gets in the way! But I got back into it when I had a full day free, I was ahead of all my work, I wasn't doing anything so I just sat there and scheduled posts for the day, I was inspired, I planned out what was going up and when (because I'm an organisational geek) and I just wrote, I've caught up with them now though so I really need to get back on it!
Any tips for dealing with the self imposed guilt that comes with a blogging and reading slump?
Take your time, I know that reading slumps can be hard and you feel bad for not writing reviews, but you don't have to always write reviews! You can write TBR posts, places you want to visit, hauls, stuff you are waiting to be released, so just take your time with the slump, don't force anything because you won't enjoy the book as much as you might've done if you hadn't forced it!
How do you manage to juggle life outside books and blogging?
I have to say, it can be hard. But If you just designate a day of the week where you write your blog posts for the week and schedule them then you're all set, some people schedule posts for a whole month or maybe even longer! I just do a week at a time so I'm not being entirely lazy and I'm still getting involved.
The blogging world is constantly evolving, any changes you'd like to see start to happen?
I'd like to see older bloggers helping out newer bloggers more. My blog is only 8 months old (well I've had it for a while but hadn't posted anything until 8 months ago) and if anyone wants to get into blogging or is new to blogging and they ask me questions, I'm more than happy to answer them. I also love when blogs to guest posts (like yourself ;)) because if gives a chance to share the love and share the blogging websites!
Any advice for new and old bloggers alike, particularly if they are going through a down slump at the moment?
Don't worry about it. You should write your posts for you, you should be happy and enjoy what you're doing because if you don't, what's the point?