3 Year Bloggiversary! Things I’ve Learnt as a Blogger

3 year bloggiversary

Hello all! Well, according to the powers that be over at WordPress, this just so happens to be my third bloggiversary! (well the anniversary of when I got the domain name- we’ll get to what a lousy blogger I was when I started out in a mo 😉 ). To mark the occasion, I took inspiration from Laura @LFBook‘s fantastic “Things I’ve Learnt as a Blogger” series (really recommend checking it out) and decided to share what I’ve discovered about blogging in the last three years!

thoughts orangutan

Don’t be afraid to speak your mind. Before I even started, I made a promise to myself that I wouldn’t hold back. Aside from being a pretty frank person, I will admit that a lot of this came from being told what I could and couldn’t say IRL. Because I’m a contrarian I decided to stick two fingers up to the busybodies who wanted to tell me what to do 😉 And you know what, even though I’ve touched on some controversial topics over the years, some of which have made me nail-bitingly nervous, I’m glad that I did it. Granted, sometimes I have had to deal with people less than pleased about what I have to say- and you know what? That’s okay. I can deal with it, I’m a big monkey 😉 (also, I have bananas and I’m not afraid to use them 😉 )

On the flipside, I don’t regret the things I didn’t say. Yes, that’s right, I can actually bite my tongue sometimes 😉 As I mentioned in my Drafts, Drafts and More Drafts post, there are posts I’ve decided to shelve for various reasons. It can be good to weigh things up- for instance “will this gripey whiny post about some schmuck annoying me make me feel better?” If the answer’s no, I might just leave it.

Another thing I’ve learnt is to expect the unexpected. Not a lot of people know this, but the first three months of blogging this site was like a virtual graveyard. I’m pretty sure we all go through that at some point tbh. And it’s not like I was expecting anything to grow out of it- frankly the whole project started as a way for me to *shout into the void*. But man, I have to admit that when I started interact more, it became *so much more awesome*. Massive thank you to Zezee for being the first ever person to tag me in something and consequently share one of my posts (yes, I remember that sort of thing 😉 )  I was staggered after that when people started reading, commenting and actually enjoying the content. Which leads me onto…

Blogging is only as fun as you make it! Like I said, I was a lousy blogger when I started and while I had fun writing the posts, it got SO MUCH BETTER once I started to relax and try out new things. I really love making people laugh and if I can make just one person crack a smile, then that’s a good day 😀 I realised how much better blogging is when other people can get something out of it.

Speaking of my early days as a blogger, people are not lying when they say consistency is key. I mean, of course I started out doing that wrong as well 😉 And I may sound really thick for stating the obvious, but I took a while to figure out that when you post more, more people are likely to read *mindblown* 😉

Now I have to say to take that last one with a pinch of salt- because obviously IT IS OKAY TO TAKE BREAKS. (And yes, I’m writing that in capitals, cos I still sorta need to learn that one!) The thing is, blogging can be stressful, we all have lives beyond our blogs and heaven knows we can’t be online as much as we’d like to. In fact, I know that I’m going to have to take a break soon. And that’s *okay*. I still have to keep reminding myself not to apologise at the start of every blog for some misplaced guilt, cos contrary to what my British-brain thinks, constantly saying “sorry!” can be a bit of a pain.

Also, ARCs are not the be all and end all. I can’t be the only person that didn’t have the faintest idea what an ARC was when I started. But when I found out, it would have been easy to get swept up in the allure of *advanced review copies*. That said, I’m really glad I didn’t immediately jump on the ARC train. And, when I found out, I didn’t immediately jump on the ARC train. I let myself think about it for a whole year, before deciding that, yeah, I could fit about one a month into my schedule. Everyone does ARCs differently, which is cool, but I’m very selective cos of that. Even with this small number of requests (combined with how often I get rejected lol) I *still* manage to fall behind in the reviewing side of things, so I’m glad I have this strict rule in place. Especially cos it means that I do a happy dance every time I get an ARC 😉 Which brings me to…

Celebrate every milestone. Sure, I may not shout about everything all the time on here, but I guarantee that I’m SCREAMING WITH JOY INSIDE. Watching this teeny corner of the internet grow has been amazing and I so appreciate each and every one of you that’s makes the blogosphere the most wonderful place to be! And I wanted to say a personal thank you to everyone who nominated and voted for me in the Annual Book Blogger Awards. I’ve been too busy to get involved but it made me feel very honoured. And with that, all that’s left to say is…

party on dudes.gif

What have you learnt from blogging? Let me know in the comments!

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191 thoughts on “3 Year Bloggiversary! Things I’ve Learnt as a Blogger

  1. Janereads says:

    Great post and congratulations on your blog anniversary. Your blog is always entertaining and insightful to read. I totally get it about having a break. I started my blog in 2012. I blogged faithfully for a couple of years and then had a break for more than three years. The break coincided with me working in marketing for a major book publisher and not feeling like I could be completely unbiased in my blogging. Now I am finally back to it. It feels great but life does get in the way. I hope you continue to love what you’re doing and take time out when you need it 😁.

    Liked by 4 people

    • theorangutanlibrarian says:

      Thank you very much!! That’s really sweet of you to say that! And I totally get that- it makes a lot of sense. And I’m really grateful that you shared that because it makes me feel less guilty about having to take breaks- it’s so true that life gets in the way and there’s no way round that. Thank you vert much!! 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  2. MichaelK says:

    Congratulations! Sadly I was not around since the beginning but your blog has quickly become one of my favourites! You are so right in what you say (and frankly I am such a poor example of a blogger that I don’t know if this is praise). A fellow contrarian, huh?

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Norrie says:

    Happy blogiversary!!
    Such great advice 🙂 I find it harder to stay consistent with posts now that the weather is nicer and i just want to do more stuff outside the house.

    Also agree with celebrate the little things. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Marie says:

    HAPPY BLOGIVERSARY! This is such a great accomplishment, I’m so happy for you and I can’t believe I’ve been reading your blog posts for so long. Maybe not the entire three years, but I know I’ve been following you for a while haha. Your posts always bring a smile on my face ❤
    You're so right, celebrating the little things is important and.. taking breaks, too. I have the hardest time with that one hahaha, but we're trying! 😛 x

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Beware Of The Reader says:

    Congratulatsions! I hope to still be enthusiastically blogging in two years as it will be around my third anniversary. Sound advices too but not always easy to follow (overachiever here) 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Beth (Reading Every Night) says:

    Congratulations! Three years is such an incredible achievement so you must have been so thrilled you’ve reached it. I’ll be celebrating my three year blogiversary in November and I’m really excited because I never thought I’d make it to one year let alone three! 😀
    This is great advice as well. The taking a break thing is really important, and it took me a while to actually wrap my head around it I have to admit, also I feel like the longer I’ve been blogging to more I’ve realised ARCs aren’t the be-all and end-all of blogging,
    Great post, and again congrats! 🙂 ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Naty says:

    Congratulations!!! To many more years to come! 🙂 Very good advice! I also had no idea about ARCs when starting blogging and, while it’s a great plus, it’s definitely not the best reason to get into blogging.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Christopher says:

    Happy (belated) Blogoversary! And you’ve learned some fantastic lessons.
    The one thing I’ve learned in a little over two decades of blogging, or rather the one principle I consider most important, is that other peoples’ blogs are their space. If someone wants to discuss or debate something I’m happy to do that, but I always want to keep it respectful, and I’ll never tell anyone else what they should do with their blog. That would be like offering unsolicited comments on how someone should decorate their house. To paraphrase a line from Daniel Pinkwater’s The Big Orange Splot, “My blog is me and I am it. My blog is where I like to be and it looks like all my dreams,”
    If I have a specific idea of what a blog should be, well, I’ve got my own, and if I didn’t it would be easy to make one.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. PerfectlyTolerable says:

    Congrats on 3 years!! That is awesome 😀 I think the thing I see most on “What I learned from blogging posts” is that you need to be careful with ARCs and don’t let yourself get overwhelmed. And of course I am so good at following advice, guess what I did! I have 3 ARCs I promised to read haha and I don’t have time to read any of them! Oops! 🙂 Great post and congrats again!

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Kat says:

    Congratulations! Totally agree about blogging being as fun as you make it. Only recently am I starting to see blogging as fun, rather than a pressure – as I once used to, anxious to post something every week – and since then it is so much more enjoyable. I also agree about taking breaks. Breaks are always healthy!

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Winged Cynic says:

    Congrats!!! I love that you speak your mind because those are the only bloggers worth following in my opinion (what’s the point of a blog if you can’t be yourself online?) and you do a fabulous job of being yourself but keeping to creativity. Keep it up, because your blog is great fun to follow. 🙂 Many cheers from a fan! ❤

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Kaylena says:

    I’ve only made a concerted effort to blog for the past few months, and I’m always surprised by who stops by, reads thoughtfully, and responds in kind. I’m still learning and getting the hang of this, though 😉 Congratulations!

    Liked by 2 people

  13. Sophia Ismaa Writes says:

    Congratulations on three years! I can’t believe I only found this blog like a few weeks ago because I saw you were nominated for the best overall book blogger… and yes, finally, somebody who posts about books AND game of thrones. Also, on a side note, I think it’s incredibly wonderful and kind the way you interact with other bloggers, so I want to give you a quick shout-out in the comments for that just so you know we appreciate it.
    I get overwhelmed when I get a few comments so I usually reply at night when I have time to take a breath so I can’t imagine how you must feel. And yes, take breaks when you need it, health comes first.
    ❤️

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Carrie says:

    Happy Bloggiversary!! Three years seems like such a long time and while you’ve learned tons over the years if you are like me there are still more to learn which makes it even more fun coming back every day. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  15. Nel says:

    I’m super behind on some of your posts but Happy Blogiversary! Three years is quite the milestone indeed considering it’s a strugle for most people to blog for even just a year when you’re sitting in that graveyeard wondering if anyone will ever like or comment on your posts. You give great as usual orangutan and cheers to another three years my friend! 🙂 ❤
    Also, I hear you on the breaks! I'm pretty much on one myself even though I haven't said anything officially. It's just necessary sometimes and we shouldn't ever feel guilty about that!

    Liked by 2 people

    • theorangutanlibrarian says:

      Aww thank you so much!! And yes, I do understand that it’s like that for a lot of people, but whether it happens in a few months or a year or longer, I do firmly believe that things will eventually start going well, so I just hope people realise that. Aww thank you! 😊 ❤
      I do understand that- at some point we all have to take breaks and I know you've got a lot on at the moment- you really have no reason to feel guilty! I'm sure everyone will just enjoy when you can be online 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Never Not Reading says:

    I am so glad you’re say-what-you-think attitude is in my life. Honestly, you make me feel brave enough to do it too. In real life my add gets kicked in a big way once a year or so because I didn’t know when to keep my big mouth shut, so having a safe (ish) place to say what I think is a BIG deal for me. Thanks for being so amazing!!! ❤❤❤

    Liked by 3 people

    • theorangutanlibrarian says:

      Aww thank you!! You have no idea how grateful I am to hear that- cos I’ve certainly got in more than enough trouble for not keeping my mouth shut irl, so I more than relate 😉 hehe don’t worry, you can say what you like on here- I have thick (furry) skin 😉 Thank you so much for your amazing comment!!! ❤ ❤ ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  17. lucindablogs says:

    Three whole years and we still don’t know your name!!

    Congratulations lovely. Yours is my very favourite blog and you’re the first person (animal) to regularly comment on my waffle so thank you. I love how honest you are and it’s definitely made me braver with my opinions (I *think* that’s a good thing). I also love that one day you’ll be reading Chaucer and the next some YA fantasy and you’ll be equally insightful and enthusiastic about both. You get five bananas from me x🍌🍌🍌🍌🍌

    Liked by 3 people

    • theorangutanlibrarian says:

      hehehe! Thank you very much! hehe I love your posts!! And thank you so much!! (it is a good thing! At least I *think* so 😉 ) hehehe thanks!! LOL! Thank you so much!! You’re so sweet!! 😀 😉

      PS my name’s not a state secret, if you send me an email over at theorangutanlibrarian@gmail.com I’ll give you my goodreads details (it’s my personal account, so alas, no pictures of monkeys 😉 ) Sorry about the jumping through hoops, I just don’t connect it with my blog.

      Liked by 1 person

      • lucindablogs says:

        I’m disappointed. I really wanted your name to be secret for a reason, like you were in witness protection or a famous celebrity or something 😉 (still not entirely convinced you’re not Stephen Fry). I totally get why you wouldn’t connect your name to your blog (horrifying fact: my name isn’t technically Lucinda, although it’s pretty close) so no pressure to out yourself if you don’t want to 😊

        Liked by 1 person

        • theorangutanlibrarian says:

          hahahahaha 😂😂😂 Is it wrong to say I wish I was Stephen Fry? (although I’m sure a lot of people say that they wish they were Stephen Fry). hehehe I get that, and yeah, obviously I have reasons, but nothing too exciting 😉 But I’m okay with a few people knowing as long as it doesn’t link back. And no worries- I totally get if you would rather not too (I meant to say that before) don’t feel any pressure! 😊

          Liked by 1 person

          • lucindablogs says:

            Hey, remember that time you decided to be less British and stop apologising so much? I don’t think it’s working. This conversation is literally;
            “Sorry, I don’t know your name”
            “Sorry, I’ll tell you if you email me. Sorry about the hassle!”
            “Sorry, I didn’t want to force you into telling me”
            “Sorry, I didn’t mean you had to!”

            😂😂😂😂😂

            I will email you xxx

            Like

  18. LizScanlon says:

    Party on, dudes!!!
    So lovely to read this post and mega hyper super duper congrats on the anniversary… I think the anniversary is actually more of a happy even for me than for you… no, really… because I am so glad I found you in this mahoosive blogosphere in the first place. You’re my blogging role model! 😉 Keep going good guns and don’t forget to take that deserved break 😉 ❤

    Liked by 2 people

  19. Uzma says:

    Congrats on three years in blogging!
    You did well to keep the interest for this long. I am new to blogging, less than a month old you can say, so pretty new. While consistency is not an issue, the correct timing to come up with creativity and to sustain it for a long time is a goal. For the time being, I am enjoying new blogging horizons and learning gradually. Your insight will go a long way. Thank you.

    Liked by 2 people

  20. Nicola @ Thoughts on Fantasy says:

    Happy blogiversary!! Lots of great advice. I admit, I sometimes struggle with the first two points you mentioned (I’ve got a few rants in my drafts folder and I sometimes wonder if it’s cowardice or good sense that’s keeping me from publishing them), but they are important ones to work at 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  21. wanderlustwookies says:

    ACR means nothing to me (new blogger in the house!), and I’m ok with that. 🙂 Love your posts, and I look forward to following. I’ll have to study up on the banana rating system – how many bananas to hit Top Monkey rating?

    Liked by 2 people

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