Honestly, as I’m writing this now I have no idea where I’m going with this discussion. It’s just something that seems to have popped up a lot lately – especially on twitter – so I thought I’d see what you guys think.
So let’s talk – has book blogging & booktube become competitive?
Maybe book blogging has always been competitive. Maybe it’s just me who has noticed it more, or maybe it’s just been brought to my attention.
Though I’ve only been blogging for just over the year, even I can tell the times have changed. Blogs and YouTube have become more popular, meaning publishers and authors are relying on bloggers more to get word out there. Not only will we review books, more often than not we’ll continue to talk about them in other posts, helping to build that hype.
I feel like this has a lot to do with why book blogging seems more competitive lately. With so many generous publishers combined with anticipated releases, bloggers are being sent more books and ARCs than ever.
The ridiculously huge hauls – and no, not the ones with people like me who literally spend every spare bit of money on books and excessively hoard them without even realising. But the huge hauls where the majority of them are sent by publishers…and it was entirely planned. Now don’t get me wrong, a lot of the time it’s not a competitive thing. If you’re offered to be sent a free book – especially when it’s one of your most anticipated releases – you’re not going to say no, are you?
But sometimes, there’s a limit. Sometimes, it gets to the point where people are requesting books and ARCs just as a sort of trophy, to prove how good a blogger they are. But here’s the thing – having ARCs sent to you doesn’t make you any better a blogger than someone who doesn’t. It’s not something to aim for, and it doesn’t raise you to a higher status. It’s just a bonus of the hobby.
Sure, request ARCs if you’ve seen requests are open for one you’re genuinely interested in. I know I do. And even then, I can’t help but feel greedy because I know I’ve been sent a lot already throughout the year. But free books don’t make you any better. And to go around snatching them up at every opportunity to make yourself feel more worthy as a blogger is just a bit daft, in my opinion.
I’m pretty sure we all follow those bloggers who seem to just be the queens/kings of blogging. Everyone loves their blogs, everyone knows their name, all their social media has thousands of followers, and they’re always working with publishers. And we love them. We aspire to be as successful as them.
But again, it’s turning more into a competition. Of course you can promote your blogs and celebrate the follower milestones, but when it gets to them stage of constantly follower-counting, it’s a bit excessive. The constant countdown’s to the next milestone, the tweets saying “50 followers until 1000, can we get there by tomorrow?!” Again, it’s perfectly fine to do it sometimes. But you’ll all know what I mean – the people who ALWAYS seem to be aiming for a higher follower count rather than just appreciating what they already have.
I feel like it’s a very fine line. So this is my disclaimer.
It’s completely fine to receive freebies and ARCs from publishers, no matter how many you get. If you want to read them, and you happen to get them, then of course it’s fine. That’s what they’re there for. And as long as you acknowledge how lucky you are to receive them, rather than immediately go in search for more, then that’s great.
If you have a lot of followers, congrats to you. If you like promoting your account and doing little countdowns or targets to aim for, of course that’s fine! It’s exciting!
Everything is exciting about blogging when it comes to the benefits. I’ve tweeted things like “only 10 more followers until I reach 500!” I’ve recieved what I believe is a lot of free books and ARCs, especially considering a few of them were on my anticipated releases list.
This is not to be confused with the people who excessively try to gain more, just so that they look better.
I feel like I’m really messing up my wording today. I can’t get my point across properly, but I hope you understand what I mean.
So now it’s your turn!
Do you think book blogging has become competitive? In what way?
Do you think there are anything other aspect to blogging that I’ve not mentioned that are competitive?
Has the competitive feeling grown over the years, or has it always been there lurking in the background?
Join the discussion in the comments!
Until next time…
Come and visit me!