The third Aussie Book Bloggers’ Link-up
I’ve talked ad nauseam about my love of reading. Most weeks I read 3-4 books, depending what I have on. I only read at night and only in the bath. (Yes, weird I know!)
I also love writing, so book blogging is kinda perfect.
But occasionally I get behind in the reviewing process. And before I know it I’m having to force myself to not-read until I catch up on reviewing. Which has been happening of late. A lot!
I’ve been struggling a bit and I’m not quite sure why. I’m still only working part-time but I’ve been letting things slide a little.
** I’ve talked before about the ‘signs’ – my broken windows, my unopened mail and unstacked dishwasher. **
Emails that need a response have gone unanswered and tasks needing to be actioned have been ignored.
And it’s not like I don’t care as I struggle with guilt and that gnawing feeling one gets in the back of their head when there’s stuff you don’t want to think about.
Fellow book blogger Suz, recently asked how others organise their reading and reviewing and suggested it as this week’s #ABBlinkup topic – which is extremely timely.
Reading and reviewing
Although I had a spate of hard copy books delivered in September the flurry is over and I’m back to just requesting ebooks (received for a short period) via NetGalley. Once (if) approved I sort them in order (by publication date) and add them to my reading list. (Downloading each as I go.) It sounds pretty straight forward, doesn’t it?
As I’m usually in the bath when reading and using my iPad, I use a reader which allows me to ‘bookmark’ pages and add notes. Unless the writing is particularly funny or beautiful I rarely provide quotes in my reviews, but I’ll mark a page if I have something to say.
Ideally I then remember to check the bookmarked pages as I’m writing the review. Often the electronic note will say something like – WTF?! – and I’ll have to read over the page to get an idea of what was frustrating me.
I ‘try’ to do the review as soon as possible. Twice I’ve left it so long I’ve had to scour the book to remember what it was about. And once I started reviewing the wrong plot!
My biggest challenge is writing reviews to publication dates – most publishing companies prefer reviews be released 2 weeks either side of the book’s release. I MOSTLY read advance copies of books. In fact I’m currently reading some books due for publication in January and March 2015.
I now try to write the review straight away and schedule it in my blog (for some future date). I’m a WordPress user and I have the Calendar plugin (pic above) so I can coordinate my schedule if there are a lot of books coming out at once and I can see what’s scheduled down the track.
Sharing and promoting reviews
Scheduling reviews in advance and using the calendar for my blog have been great but I still struggle a little with remembering to go onto Goodreads and The Reading Room when my blog goes live to add summaries and links to my blog posts. In addition, to the best of my knowledge Amazon doesn’t allow reviews until AFTER the release date so I need to remember to later add my summary and links there.
I’ve started using sheets of paper to track it all (above). A tick when read, date released, date published in my blog (Goodreads & Reading Room), crossed out when added to Amazon. Oh yeah… definitely high tech!
And as for social media shares – I tweet links to my post when it gets published on my blog but then never really think of it AFTER the book’s been released.
It’s actually all a bit exhausting. I’m sure there must be an easier way…
I’m keen to hear from other book bloggers how they manage their reading and reviewing processes. (Feel free to share your link below if you like!)
And for non book bloggers – anyone else want to share your danger signs: how you know things are spiralling out of control?