How to give your book blog posts that extra spark

I love reading book blogs.

I love their diversity, the shine of everyone’s personality making this community an incredible melting pot of people I want to squeeze together and hug always because I adore them all. And you know, in a community of a million, it’s hard to stand out. It’s hard to have that extra spark, that little thing that make you stand out and make you feel remembered in the sea of book blogs you read.

I read over 20 book blogs some days and there are some that always, always make an impression on me. They add their personality, their shine, their little spark to every single one of their blog post and I love it.

Today, I thought I’d talk about that extra spark.

If I’m being completely honest, personally I’m not always certain I have that extra spark. That being said, after reading tens of thousands of blogs over the course of over four years, I have noticed that there are things I love. Bloggers I love for that little extra spark they add.

So if you’re looking to read about book blogs and their content, these little things that, for me, make a blog post good, stand out and, most of it all, makes me want to keep on reading, commenting on a blog, follow them and make me remember them, keep on reading.

Side note: obviously, these little personal notes are what works for me, they could be slightly different for everyone else.

πŸŒͺ Best blog post practices: what makes me NOT want to read your blog post

When it comes to a blog and a blog post, first impressions matter. The biggest thing that make me automatically want to turn away, or just really discourage me to read any blog post, is if there is just one huge block of text.

I read books, a lot of books, so what’s the matter with one big block of text, right? Well, on book blogs, I don’t feel like reading them. I like paragraphs, ideas clearly stated out, bolded text and bigger and smaller texts. I like small separators, images, GIFs or whatever strikes your fancy. I like to breathe when I read.

My personal advice whenever I finished typing a blog post, or whenever I’m brainstorming ideas, or drafting a blog post, I always ask myself that question: would I read my blog post, would I want to comment on it, would I want to chat about it, share it and more? If I wouldn’t, it means that there’s something missing.

β˜‚οΈ Related post: How to: write a great blog post

πŸŒͺ Content ideas: types of blog posts for book bloggers

There are some typical blog posts you will find on any and every book blogger’s blog and, obviously I’m going to miss some particular things, but today I’m just focusing on 4 types of content we most often see on blog posts.

Some basic advice applies to all of these ideas and personal thoughts, obviously, like making clear paragraphs, leaving your text room to breathe, putting in some images, graphics or GIFs or things to make your blog post great to read and not to discourage your readers.

πŸ’§ Book Reviews

Book reviews are the heart and soul of book bloggers. Okay, maybe they’re not that popular at times, maybe they are a little bit forgotten, maybe they are the black sheep of the community, at times. Yet, book reviews are, for me, always, one of the biggest parts of book blogging, Hell, they’re why I wanted to blog about books, after all. If you’re stuck for content ideas, why don’t you review books? You don’t necessarily have to review books you’ve just read. Give yourself a challenge and try to review books you’ve read ages ago.

How to make your book reviews shine

There are many things that make, for me, book reviews shine and stand out.

  • My first advice here is to not tell me the entire book story, because this bores me (and HELLO SPOILERS mark your spoilers if you do people). I have the synopsis, more often than not directly in your review, so I don’t need you to tell it all to me again. I’m here for all of your feels and screams and rants about a book.
  • The little things like being inclusive, mentioning trigger warnings and diversity in stories that make me happy and are SO very helpful.
  • Your reviews can be small or big, lists or texts. Don’t be afraid to play with it, according to your mood and inspiration. It’s refreshing to read different formats of reviews.
  • Make moodboards, playlists, take pictures of the book to make your review pop. Tiffany gives out recipes or moodboards with her reviews and it gives them this very extra spark I love.

β˜‚οΈ Related blog post: How the hell do you review a book?!
β˜‚οΈ Lovely resource: the wonderful CW put together an incredible guide to help you review books.

πŸ’§ Discussions

Discussions are some of my favorite blog posts of all times to read. If they had their moment of glory in the community and, lately, they’ve been a little less frequent, they are still such incredible posts that allow me to reflect, make me think and really, really give me an insight on the blogger. Honestly, they’re some of the blog posts that make me fall in love with bloggers, too.

How to make your discussions blog posts shine

Before getting into the advice-part of this, there’s something you need to know. Every discussion has been done once at least. There’s nothing new, original or unique in this world no matter how you might think it is. I know, this is very depressing, when you think about it, but, for me, no matter whether or not your idea has been done before, there are still ways to make it pop.

  • Put bits of yourself in your discussion posts. This is what I wanted to do here. I’m giving advice yes, but also giving my personal thoughts on what I personally adore, trying to put bits of myself to, hopefully, make this blog post stand out. You can take any discussion post on any matter: if you share your own personal thoughts and frustrations, you will make it unique, because you are unique.
  • Don’t be afraid to tackle the hard topics, your blogging struggles, your blogging truths, your reading struggles and more. There might be some controversial topic that you have an opinion on, or something that might scare you to share. Be honest, let us know your frustrations and your thoughts, give us an insight on your mind. This will bring you traffic because people are curious, and this will bring your opinion to the table, raise interesting discussion for sure. Caitlin has been doing a fantastic job of it lately, talking about blogging statistics and genuine commenting.

πŸ’§ Bookish lists, Book Memes, Book Tags & Book Recommendations

These are some very, very popular blog posts on the blogosphere, for many reasons. If you ask me, the main reason is that they’re fun. I personally love writing and reading book lists and recommendations. Yet, given that they’re so popular, there are so many of them and it’s hard to feel like you can do something different. As often, though, the answer here is YOU.

β˜‚οΈ Related blog post: Why are book tags and memes so popular?

How to make your bookish lists & recommendations shine

  • Don’t JUST give me a book, tell me WHY you picked it out. I want to know you. You don’t have to write a 1000 paragraph for each book you picked out, especially when you’re making a list of ten books or more, but…. when I read a list, I’m looking for something. Like “WHY is this a contemporary that will make me cry”? Or WHY did you pick it in your 10 favorites books of the year so far list? I need to know. Nothing more frustrating than to see a book list without any comment on it, for me. This advice goes for any type of book list, memes, Top Ten Tuesdays, Waiting on Wednesday posts, book tags and recommendations as well. Give me something more to think of. Cait wrote excellent bookish lists lately.

πŸ’§ Author interviews, spotlights, cover reveals, blog tours

This is a moment for me to reveal the truth: I’m not usually a fan of author interviews and spotlights and little things like that on book blogs, because I find them a little…. well, a little boring, at times. But, Marie, you’re doing author interviews on your blog, so are you boring yourself?, you might ask. Well, no, I’m having an absolute blast with it all and here’s why: because I feel like I’m doing my best to make them shine.

How to make your author interviews, spotlights, cover reveals and blog tour posts shine

  • I’m a fan of interviews digging deeper with interesting questions or fun questions, especially like fun questions. I’ve been doing a lot of interviews on my blog lately and it’s been a blast, especially because I sometimes spend a long, long time trying to think of an interesting questions readers will love and that, hopefully, will make my interview stand out. We’re all a little curious and I want to know what kind of food my favorite authors adore or what they’d do stranded on a deserted island.
  • When we’re talking about spotlights, whether it’s an excerpt of a book, a cover reveal or some extra quotes or something…I’m going to say the same thing that I said for book lists, which is to give me something more. I love discovering a new book cover, for sure, but I also love to hear the blogger’s thoughts on it all. Same goes for the excerpt, quotes, etc. Give me a little bit of yourself and what you think of that exciting excerpt! Vicky writes excellent author interviews, spotlights and excerpts always.

πŸŒͺ How to make your blog posts stand out: MY TOP 2 ADVICE

  • Bring yourself into the blog post. No matter what the blog post is, give me a little bit of yourself, give me more of your personality, your brand to make it stand out. I’m not saying that you should give me your social security number and credit card number here, I’m saying that I want to hear your voice. Honest, unapologetic, unique. What do you think? What do you like? What makes you happy? Let it all out.

β˜‚οΈ Related blog post: How to find your book blogging voice.

  • Invite us to participate to the conversation. When I’m reading a blog post, I want to feel like I’m welcome to chat with the author in the comments. I want to feel included in what they’re saying when it’s a discussion post or a list, I want to feel, not like a guest, but like a friend already. You can invite us by finishing off your blog post and giving some questions prompts to answer, this works well and always makes me feel like I can participate in the conversation more. I’m here to be in the community and a big majority of the time, I’m here because I want to talk with you.

Extra resources:

What makes a blog post stand out, for you? What do you love seeing more on book blogs?

Do you have any tips and tricks to make your blog posts unique and unforgettable? I’d love to hear your advice in comments!

 

 

 

 

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Book blogger, travel blogger, writer. πŸ“š |🌍 | πŸ’ž Writing & Communications Graduate. French. Living on love, wanderlust and ya books.

136 thoughts on “How to give your book blog posts that extra spark

  1. I feel like you do have that extra spark ! Your blog posts are visually really great, you put so much images, and gifs, and the content is really really amazing. To me, your blog posts are really special, they make me smile and laugh and they always make my day better. You also talk about so many different things and that’s so great ! No matter what you write about, it’s always beautiful and interesting ❀️
    I hope you’re having a great day Marie ❀️❀️❀️

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I found myself nodding along to everything you mentioned! I am the same way when it comes to large blocks of text! I automatically love a blog 10x more when I see they intersperse gifs throughout their posts. And while I was reading through this post, I found myself thinking about the blogs that I feel have a spark. I think a lot of it has to do with how much a recognize it to be a *specific* blog. I frequently will have 7 tabs open and read several blog posts at once, and I love when I can immediately tell which blog I’m reading when I switch back to the middle of a post.

    I also find that I love blogs that invite conversation. As you can probably tell, I love leaving long comments, but I find I on;y do that when I find a blog inviting. Whenever I feel that a blogger is starting a conversation with me instead of just presenting facts, I’m much more inclined to leave longer (if slightly more rambling) comments. It’s part of the reason why I love when bloggers leave questions at the end of their posts. I find it’s a great way to invite people into a conversation and turn the reading experience into something more interactive!

    Great post! It definitely had that spark for me! 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh this this this I agree so much with what you said, Malka!! I always have way too many tabs opened when I blog hop and tend to wander from blog to blog and some of them just always stand out to me that way, too! πŸ˜€

      YES. I so agree with that, I always, always worry about making my blog inviting and I always want to leave comments, long ones, and chat with bloggers whose platform and posts I find inviting. I agree, leaving questions at the end and things to start a conversation always make me happy, too πŸ™‚

      THANK YOU so much Malka for your sweet comment, I love how we feel the same way about this all! ❀

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Amazing blog post, Marie!

    I am with you 100% on walls of text, but have to actively force myself to break up my paragraphs. For some reason I am so overly verbose and feel the need to include everything, which is why I try to stylize with bolding and italics as well.

    I love the special spark though, for me it is almost always the personality shining through! I love getting a feel for the person behind the blog, especially when their passion shines through. It’s really special to read!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh same here, I…. I tend to write my blog posts with huge paragraphs, at first. I drafted a blog post today and I had to remind myself to just press that damn ENTER because otherwise I just write too much and too long and ughh haha.

      I so agree, I love it when you can see their passion shining through ❀
      Thank you so, so much! ❀ ❀

      Like

  4. Wonderful post, I love all of what you said here and you definitely have the spark that you’re talking about, your posts are always fantastic. I love book lists (: but I do agree, I much prefer them sharing a bit of info too. I find it hard to believe that you found author interviews boring as yours are always so intriguing. Some have been with authors whose books im desperate for but even when it’s a new book and/or author to me I always end up loving the posts. I think in those cases the book always ends up on my TBR.

    I find discussion posts the hardest although I haven’t really tried any from the fourth category. I just guess I worry a lot over what to say. Plus I find them the hardest to stop from becoming text heavy.

    Anyway fantastic post, as always (:

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ohhhh thank you Charlotte, you’re too sweet, thank you so much ❀ ❀
      I get what you mean, it's hard to find your "footing", when it comes to discussions, I know I tend to talk A LOT and write a lot haha, but sometimes when I think this through, I realize that I have enough to divide all of my thoughts in different themed posts, for instance. And honestly, worrying is always, always part of my process, even after the post has been published haha, but I'm certain people would love to hear your thoughts. Speak from the heart πŸ™‚
      Thank you so much!! ❀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It’s fine, it’s all true (:
        That’s a fantastic idea for how to split them up. Plus like you said in the post paragraphs definitely help. One endless block would definitely be daunting, even if you know it’s content that you want to read. You have nothing to worry about, your posts are fantastic (: And aww thanks. I’d love to write about social anxiety one day but atm I’m way too nervous to. It just seems such an awkward topic to discuss.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. More often than not, the awkward topics to discuss are the ones that bring people in. I know I’d 200% rush to your blog to read about social anxiety and mental health as it’s something that really personal and deep to my heart, too. No matter what you feel and want to write, write from the heart and you will do great ❀ ❀

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Thank you so much ❀❀ hopefully I’ll post something about it soon it’s just hard knowing where to start. Plus I guess anytime that I’ve tried talking about it before has felt somewhat awkward. But I’ll try soon hopefully.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. What makes a blog post stand out, for you? What do you love seeing more on book blogs?

    Excellent how-to post Marie!

    Like you, I like to see some pizzazz on the blog posts I read. As far as the format goes, I like to see small paragraphs, bold/underlined main ideas, graphics, and images. Like you mentioned, I am not a fan of just a big chunk of text. With so many blogs to catch up on, it is hard to focus on a large amount of text only. I need these things to keep me focused.

    Since most people are very visual, I think attention grabbing graphics, pictures, and layout is very important to grab attention, BUT personality and unique content will keep attention.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh thank you Amanda, so, so happy you enjoyed it ❀
      I'm with you, I need paragraphs and separators of some kind to keep my attention and to make me want to read the post, but what will make me stay really is the blogger's personality and the way they write their posts, too πŸ™‚
      thank you so, so much!! ❀ ❀

      Like

  6. Hey Marie!
    I really love this post! I definitely agree that having some white space and images/GIFs in a blog post makes a big difference. I also love discussion posts the most, and it makes me a bit sad that they aren’t as common as they had been before.
    Thanks for your tips and for your blog recommendations as well!

    Liked by 1 person

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