Chai break

Chai break: Why reviews just won’t cut it anymore

Chai break is a periodic feature on This is Lit to discuss concerns that every book blogger has. This is meant to be a lighthearted discussion that you’d have over tea and the only reason for it not being called Discussion Post is that the site’s author thinks that would be too mainstream. Pfft.

Have you had your tea yet? Are you sitting down? I have some painful information for you, if you hadn’t figured it out by yourself already.

Book reviews are just not enough anymore.

Remember when you first started blogging? You had all those ideas about how you’ll keep reviewing your way to become a famous book blogger. HAHAHAHA. None of that is happening now. Your views are down and your stats maybe lower than a weekday warrior 9 to 5-er’s mood on a Sunday night.

This is probably when you hit the search engines and looked at posts such as “99 evergreen blog post ideas”, “21 things to blog about instead of reviews”, and “10 tips to keep your book blog relevant”. Can I get an ouch?

To demonstrate, we are going to be using the post stats of a posh, aesthetically negative, minimally talented brat– me.

*waves*

Anywho, I write 2 kinds of posts mainly–book reviews and listicles. Let’s take a look at the stats for my best book review, a review of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany, Jack Thorne. This did well because I reviewed it the morning after it released.

Views: 73

Likes: 26

Comments: 11

My best listicle on 9 things you should NEVER say to a bookworm has these stats.

Views: 105

Likes: 54

Comments: 31

My worst book review was Seven Hanged by Leonid Andreyev. Do you see it? Do you see the problem? I had 9 views and 12 likes. 12! Thanks for that, easy-liking-through-dashboard.

Views: 9

Likes: 12

Comments: 0

My worst listicle was 7 things only crime fiction fans will understand. This list, with all 17 of its views, was written on my second day of blogging. Wow, people really do love their lists.

Views: 17

Likes: 7

Comments: 4

Let me say it again–book reviews are just not enough. My belief is to still push out book reviews, while at the same time, mix it up. I write listicles every other week. It’s a good thing that something I already love doing also has a lot of followers.

Why don’t people read our reviews anymore?

I usually love reading book reviews. When I first started blogging, I used to read everyone’s book reviews. I’d always leave a comment, too! But I also discovered that the book blogging community is filled to the neck with book reviews. After a long day at work, I found that I’d rather read a discussion post or a think piece than a book review. I went through a phase were I read the reviews only by bloggers I had a good rapport with.

After this phase, I did some blogging related self-exploration. Some of the best books I’ve read, I discovered through book reviews. I’ve once again started checking out everyone’s book reviews. But my reviews’ stats are just a little bit better than before. I’ve discovered that when your audience is majorly reviewers, they only care about your thoughts on books they’ve read or have already heard a lot about. It also depends on whether or not it is a full moon day, but we’ll talk about that later.

But, this doesn’t mean you have to stop reviewing books. You do you, you book starved nut! Put up your reviews! Let us all encourage each other and hear what each of us has to say about books!

…also put out a list when you can because lists are easy to read and readers love the GIFs you put in them. 😀

What did you think of my opinion? I’d like to hear yours too! Tell me what you think about book reviews in the comments section!

~ Shruti

 

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29 thoughts on “Chai break: Why reviews just won’t cut it anymore

  1. I post links to all my Goodreads reviews at the end of the month. I don’t have too many lists on my blog anymore but rather more original content and discussion type posts. I’m also not too concerned with stats, being too concerned with stats takes the fun out of blogging.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The thing about stats is so true! I don’t change my content because of my stats. I know which posts do well and which don’t but I still put out the kind of content I’d like to read on other blogs as well. Ultimately, we should write what we love. Although, looking at stats is a good way to know your readers and their preferences a little.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Insightful post. I feel like I’m cheating by not writing more… Uhh.

    I like reading lists, but I also value some of those longer blog posts I find where you actually have to take a breath, clear your head, and concentrate on what someone is sharing with you. It is also my way of giving our fast paced to-go culture the middle finger. 😛

    Liked by 1 person

  3. As you said lists with gifs and all are obviously more attractive, people are looking for something quick and fun. But honestly if I was looking for a book recommendation I’d prefer it be from someone who’s opinion I valued. I love reading book reviews sometimes to get an insight on how it might be and I love when people tell post their take on something (like your Riverdale post) I always come back to it after I’ve read it or watched it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. True! And I’m grateful for all the people who still read our book reviews. Because all the book bloggers here, including me, obviously love reviewing books. Readers don’t seem to think that way, though, and that’s painful to watch. You’re here to give your honest opinion about a book and there are very few people who appreciate it. Initially, I felt bad about it. I was ignoring other people’s reviews too. But I got over it and still write reviews. I’m not going to stop doing something I love doing just because only 10-20 people value it.

      Oh and it’s so cool that you follow up on posts when you’ve read or watched the recommendations.😊 I always want to do it but I’m Neville Longbottom when it comes to memory.🙈😂

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Hi Shruti, I feel the same. I’m despairing of ever seeing my blog take off. I was all srutinizing my stat until the day I thought: What the Heck? Just do what you like and the rest is not important. So I’m doing book reviews (and I read others reviews), some easy meme, opinion piece (love doing them and I just published one about reviewing yesterday) , cover reveal and what I also love: author’s interviews. And if I never become the Oprah Whitney of the book bloggers, so be it! Whatt’s important is having fun and exchanging with other bloggers (like I’m doing now) 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes yes yes!😁 I’m so glad all bloggers have reached this consensus! I went through this phase where I used to ignore book reviews too. Now, I (try to) read everyone’s reviews and I also end up reading the ones with good reviews! I should make a post out of this- how I went from a stats watcher to an all-posts-are-equal-and-you-do-what-you-love-person.

      …obviously I’m not that great in coming up with post titles..😂

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I think k it’s good to have a focused approach to your blog. That said, I sometimes stray from relationship vignettes to write about movies or short fiction. I write because my heart says I have to–and so we do.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. OMG SHRUTI, YOU JUST HIT THE NAIL RIGHT ON THE HEAD!❤ Bless you, and of course, bless this post. I love posting book reviews but recently, I feel that nobody seems to be reading them. Take, for example, my To Kill A Mockingbird Study. I wrote a lot about plots and themes and lots of other stuff that I felt when reading the book and it just didn’t do well. It was definitely disappointing to me, to find that, a post I had worked so hard on, was not entertaining to people. On the other hand, I’ve found that book tags are received well by my readers. I’m still not giving up reviews though, because I feel that summing up your opinions about a book helps you remember the details of that particular book. 🌌

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Right?! You work so hard on a review and no one really cares. On the other hand, you do a tag/meme that’s not very cerebral and everyone reads it! I’m not being judgemental here–I’d probably react better to an easy read like a tag, too.

      But, I’ve learned now that if you like reviewing books, you really should continue to do so. If I understood anything from the comments on this post, it is that there are a LOT of people who’ve realised reviews don’t work but they still take the time to read other people’s reviews. That’s what we’re all here for anyway; to give and receive honest opinions on books. We should continue to do so because there could be at least one person who picks up a book because of our high recommendations.😊❤️

      Like

  7. The digital marketeer in me would like to tell you that 50% likes and 30% comments on a post.is phenomenal! I’d think that it is to do with the reach than reviews as an art/content 🙂 Keep reviewing. Helps lazy people like me to quickly decide on whether or not to pick a book!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s great to hear, thanks!😊 It also helps that I actually like reviewing books. I’ve also found some wonderful books because of other bloggers who reviewed them. I guess reviews are still golden, irrespective of the reach.😊

      Like

    1. Haha true. But after reading all the comments on this post, my hopes are up again. Bloggers still want to hear other bloggers’ opinions. I’m reading a book now because another blogger said it was great. Don’t get discouraged, we still want to hear what you have to say!😊😊

      Like

  8. I TOTALLY LOVE THIS POST HAHAHA. Ive been very busy with my school that the onl posts i have on my blog are reviews and almost nothing more. Listicles is a cute term. Haha ill writing some! Thank you for the insight and inspiration! 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wait, don’t give up on the reviews, though! People still want to know what we think of books, and that’s amazing. I’m just worried that they don’t like our reviews as much as they like the other stuff. Please do write more! I’ll definitely read them!😊

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I only started book blogging in July, and then my mental health caused me to need a lots of breaks lol, but this is good to hear as someone who’s still relatively new. I think I’ve only got about 20 posts, most of which are reviews, and I actually felt bad for posting other content without a review recently because I thought they were necessary. 😅 In saying that, I’ve a BookTube channel and don’t intend on ever posting reviews because they do so badly. The thing about YouTube is you can always tell what does well and what doesn’t on other people’s channels so you know what to avoid if you’re just looking for views. 😂😂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wait, I though Booktubers had good views for reviews? Dayum, I did not know this. But, do take a look at the other comments on this page! Everyone kept pointing out that they still read our reviews and that really inspired me. I still put up reviews, unfazed. And after reading the other comments, I’ve started reading and commenting on other bloggers’ reviews too!

      That’s what makes book blogging beautiful. We have a very supportive community. Keep reviewing and writing, Jessica! We’ll read ’em!😊❤️

      Liked by 1 person

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