New Trends in Book Blogging for 2015


I woke up this morning and realized it was 2015. Yes, I realize I posted something to that effect roughly a week ago, but that was just because everyone else seemed to be doing it. It hadn't really sunk in. Being perpetually behind the times, I am just now catching up to the rest of you. So this morning, as I was pouring my first cup of coffee, I suddenly looked up and said, "Holy crap. It's 2015 already." 

That's me. Always ahead of eight-ball.

Anyway, this led me to thinking about all of the changes we've been seeing in the book blogging world in the last year. Mostly good ones. Because, allow me to just say this out loud here, book blogging could use some fresh changes. It's been nearly a decade since book blogs became common place throughout the interwebz and up until recently the basic format really hadn't changed. (Snooze.) 

But all that's been changing. In fact, you might even want to call these changes....dare I say it?....new trends in the book blogging world. They're pretty exciting. Check it out...

Old School: Book blogs as commercial-like ventures.   
New Trend: Small, independent book blogs that are as quirky and individual as the owners themselves. No more flashy ads, gimmicks to gain zillions of followers, daily commercial-like reviews. Book blogs are trending towards the more personal, with a small-town, indie-bookstore feel to them. It's pretty awesome.

Old School: Daily/weekly reviews of the newest book releases.
New Trend: More focus on backlist books, favorite authors, opinion pieces, and essays. This is a very encouraging trend as there really were few things more irritating than opening up a feed reader and seeing fifty reviews of the same new release any given week. And if it was boring for a blogger, just think of how readers must have felt. (Mark read, mark read, MARK ALL AS READ, GAH!) 

Old School:  Book Blog Awards. The rules? You must pass this on to at least five other bloggers!
New Trend:  Laughing at Book Blog Awards. (Okay, some bloggers may not remember these, but trust me, they were very popular at one time. And holy crap....they multiplied like bunnies on Viagra.) Today's Blog Awards aren't as superficial but most blogs don't clutter up their sidebars with things like this anymore. Visual trend on book blogs for 2015? Less is more.

Old School: Posting nothing but book reviews.
New Trend: Diversification. We really saw this take off last year with the increase in popularity of webcomics, but now we're seeing things like podcasts (Serial, anyone?), BookTube, long-form journalism, Lit Journals, and other mediums that have been around quite a while really being embraced and used to their full-potential. We're seeing them featured on more and more book blogs and this is quite encouraging. It showcases the individuality of blog owners and really gets us away from the ho-hum of the generic book review.

Old School: Reviewing as many books as possible.
New Trend: Quality over quantity. We're seeing more and more established book bloggers cutting back on the number of books they are reading and reviewing each year. This is an encouraging trend as more bloggers are making the move towards quality reading and posting over sheer volume. Bravo!

Old School: Book world drama.
New Trend: errrr, nevermind.

I'm pretty thrilled to see these new changes taking place in our online book community. Every time I see a book blogger challenge traditional blogging conventions, I find myself encouraged jumping up and down with glee and immediately wondering how I can apply my own take on the trend to my own blogging (or lack thereof, depending on the week, the phase of the moon, or whether Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow that year). Because after all these years we need fresh perspective, new format, and a formal ban on the words "lyrical prose" in all book reviews. Okay I just made that last part up, but do you think we can at least take it under consideration? 

Please?

Now go forth and be creative! Oh, and Happy 2015!

38 comments:

  1. I just love this so much. It's all true and it's all awesome. Happy 2015 to you as well!

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    1. Happy New Year - hope it's a wonderful year for you. :)

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  3. I am so glad I am actually part of the trend this go round. Snicker.

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    1. I've been told that if we wait long enough, trends will come back around. We waited long enough. High five to us.

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  4. This is great! I've fallen a bit out of love with my blog and my writing voice recently, and I'm working on retooling everything so that my writing sounds like I do when I'm talking. I had no idea that the changes I've been trying to make fit in with these new trends, so that was an unexpected (but very pleasant) surprise! Thanks for this, you just made my day!

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    1. Being YOU is in! I love this new way. And I am so drawn to blogs like that...just your own voice. So I'm glad you're doing that with yours -- I'll be there to read it. :D

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  5. I feel like I started blogging when some of the old trends were starting to fade out, but it's still been nice to see the shift. I'm so glad I don't feel like I "have" to review a book every day (or even every week) to keep my blog going.

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    1. Right? Deep relief. It's cool that the competitive-type stuff is fading away. Not sure where that even came from to begin with, but it needed to disappear FAST. Awesome blogs are timeless, even if you only post once a week (and as I always say, my feed reader especially appreciates that).

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  6. I've been doing this long enough (almost 8 years) to see that some of the "new" trends in book blogging are old ones coming back around, and it really makes me happy! Book bloggers seem to have learned that 1) "free" books aren't, and 2) they're not the only things we have to talk about.

    "Book-world drama," however, will probably always be trendy. But since it plays nicely into #2 by giving us other things to talk about, maybe that's not really all bad.

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    1. I completely agree. Sometimes it does feel like our original blogging tendencies are making a comeback and it's nice. I'm hoping some of these changes extend into things like "who cares about followers" and "who needs stinking arcs anyway"....but I suppose I can't have it all in one year, can I? But hope springs eternal, ha. (You're probably right about the book drama, though. Here to stay.)

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  7. I consider myself a newbie in book blogging (almost 2 years) and definitely still a small, small blog. I don't think I would've even started my blog with the "old" trends. A review a day??? Who can even keep up with that?

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    1. Gah, I have a difficult time with the 3x a week, Helen. And I laugh in the face of pre-planned posts, let alone pre-written posts. Good grief.

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  8. I love what you're saying here. I beat myself up about some of these things and I love taking a look at that as being part of a new trend (I've never been a review or day or even three reviews a week kind of blogger but I've always aspired to be). Let's here it for backlist titles and general content! I like the idea of being a trend setter, if a lazy one. :)

    Blogger drama gets old after so many years. After being a part of this community for 8 years, each new drama is really just a rehash of something that's happened in the past. But, like Florinda said, it gives people something to write about even if it makes me head in the opposite direction.

    I look forward to spending more time visiting other blogs in 2015. Pressuring myself less on my own blogging frees me up to do one of the things I enjoyed most about blogging when I first blogged - reading them.

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    1. I honestly think that we've been far too hard on ourselves for years. And like you, I'm tired of the drama. I used to think it made for interesting conversation that broke up the monotony of Book Review of the Day in my feed reader, but now that blogs have become so much more interesting than just staid boring book reviews, the blogger drama needs to go.

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  9. I love every one of these. I had completely forgotten about blog awards! What silliness those were.

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    1. Now you need to post this on your blog and award it to 10 other blogs you feel are worthy of the BookWorm Blogger Award! Go forth! ;)

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  10. I agree with so many of your thoughts. And I even bored myself to tear with my own blog! Blah blah blah same old stuff.. same book as everyone else, etc. No wonder no one commented any longer! Of course I have not been trying very hard in the past year and a half due to career changes and volunteering, but if I was having fun with the blogging I probably wouldn't have turned to the volunteer opportunities. Happy New Year to you!

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    1. Happy NEW YEAR, Marie! Oh my gosh, I think we've all been there. I think I once slipped into a temporary coma after reading a review I wrote. Truth. And then I was so depressed I didn't write a damned thing for at least 3 weeks after that. Frankly, I think it's our own restlessness and dissatisfaction that is leading to all these en masse changes in the blog world. I think bloggers have just *had it.* They're tired of feeling that way and are just going to blog in a way that makes them happy and screw everything else....they result is awesome. The most important part of the whole blogging thing is your happiness and contentedness. (And it takes a while to find that...I think people forget that it can take months to break old blogging mindsets and find your new happy place).

      Whatever that is, I hope you find whatever it is that makes you the happiest, because you truly deserve that, Marie. :) Happy 2015...I hope it's a fabulous year for you.

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  11. Well that is refreshing, and a little bit of a relief from my perspective. OMG, those damned awards! But hey, I was a part of the machine at the time. I think most of us have taken the pressure off ourselves for that daily crap. It is over the top and I know I don't have time to read them all, let alone someone to write them.

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    1. I know...sigh. I felt bad enough I couldn't write that much. I felt worse that I couldn't even read those who could right that much. It was a bad cycle.

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  12. I'm also heartened by the trends we're seeing in book blogging. It seems like we're individuating and becoming more interesting. Hot damn!

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    1. Individuating...now stop that, you're increasing my vocabulary already and it's only January. Pffft.

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  13. Not sure how I missed this new post, but I agree with this so much! We should celebrate the diversity in our blogs, or reading preferences and get off the hamster wheel of "have to read the newest best book, have to write a review, have to post daily..." I've been up and down this blog circle, over six years and only in the past year do I feel I'm doing it more my way. It can just get so formulaic and boring, and insincere! I do wish the drama would end, so much of it is jealousy and in mean spirited. Here's to a new year, chances for fresh starts and making it better!!

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    1. Exit the hamster wheel here....thank goodness. And yes, someday I hope for the drama/competitiveness to end, too. Here's to a better New Year!

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  14. New trend! I can do this! Yaaayyyy...

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    1. Right? Finally some trends we can handle....I'm down with that.

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  15. As someone fairly new to book blogging (last 2 yrs), it's interesting for me to see what was going on before I entered the fray! Before I started my blog, I never read book blogs...not a single one, so I had no idea what was "normal" and what wasn't.

    I'm with you on the reviews piece...my reviews tend to underperform other kinds of posts and one of my resolutions for 2015 is to write more mini reviews and less full ones.

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    1. As someone new to book blogging, then YOU are one of the folks responsible for these new trends....so thank you so much from all of us! We are loving what new bloggers are bringing to the table, it's fabulous. :D

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  16. I'm so happy to have hopped on the blogging train right as the times were a-changin' for the better! :) Cheers to more positive change in 2015.

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    1. Let's just usher in a Golden Age, shall we? Happy times!

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  17. Diversification FTW! And also, OMG Book awards! I totally forgot about those little pass-them-along awards! Wow, that takes me back. I hope that more people trend towards small-time indie blogs because I am not happy upon hearing about certain bloggers buying followers and stuff. BUYING THEM. Wtf? And I, too, am liking more backlist books. I have said it before and I will say it again, everyone having the same books up is BORING AS ALL HELL.

    Once again, you and I just GET each other, my friend.

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    1. Yeah, we're not sisters, we're fucking twins. Separated at birth by some twisted story. Someone should probably write that book. ;)

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    2. We need that on a bumper sticker or something.

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  18. I love every single one of these trends (and okay, I confess, I'm kind of glad the book world drama one isn't really changing because every now and then I need something to spice up my life). I've been seeing these changes too and it's been lovely reading all the diverse posts.

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