Hey friends! I’ve been reflecting on my time on bookstagram and here are 5 things I really wish I knew when I first started blogging about books. P.S. If you picked up on that Hilary Duff reference, we need to be best friends.
- Take pictures of what you love.
Too often it feels like you need to post what other people want to see, but honestly that’ll burn you out so quickly. Plus, it just feels kind of fake. Find a way to blend things that you love with good content. I love cats, tea, and natural light so I usually try to incorporate those things with elements that are aesthetically pleasing.
2. Don’t just enter rep searches for free things.
When I first started bookstagramming, I saw people getting boxes, free books, and pretty candles. My first reaction was ENTER ALL THE REP SEARCHES. I even spent some time exploring #repsearch, but here’s the thing, I never actually knew that much about all the companies I repped for. Sometimes I just entered because I wanted to be sent free stuff, which hey I still love free stuff, but I usually focus on companies that really interest me. Right now I’m repping for Storiarts and it’s been the most amazing experience because the people who started it are incredible and the products are something I truly believe in.
My best advice for rep searches would to 1. Get to know the owner and the products before you jump head first into a rep search. 2. Make sure the product fits your style. 3. Make sure the company is reputable(ships out things on time, good communication, etc.).
3. It’s okay to take a break.
This one is hard because I’ve noticed my engagement goes down when I take a break for even a day, but if you don’t take breaks when you are creatively blocked, you will burn out. There was a point where I was trying to come up with photos, but definitely not in love with them. I just kept trying to produce images because I wanted to be consistent. The problem was I was starting to get frustrated because of the pressure to always post. Taking a weekend off is not the worst thing. After taking a weekend off, I felt recharged and inspired to take more photos!
4. You don’t have to say yes to everything.
When I first started, I wanted to collaborate with anyone and everyone. It’s not a bad thing to put yourself out there, but it can be difficult if you don’t 100% vibe with the people you’re working with or you don’t love the things you are promoting. When people started offering to collaborate with me I was so excited and was constantly saying yes. However, I soon figured out that it’s hard to tell other people to read a book or use something when you don’t even LOVE it.
5. Bookstagram can be such an amazing community!
Bookstagram can be such a great place to meet people who love the same books as you! I’ve had conversations for hours about books and there are some people I talk to almost every day! Obviously, sometimes there are downsides to the community, but when you surround yourself with good people, you get a lot of good back.