Random Musings

Amping Up The Blog

Hello, dear readers!

Happy New Year! I don’t think I’m alone in the excitement of surviving 2018 and 2019 arriving. If you read about my latest quest, you know that last year wasn’t necessarily bad for me, but it certainly was busy. And I have no intentions of stopping that momentum this year. So I wanted to take a moment to talk about some of the goals I have around this here ole blog, specifically, even though I’ve already done the traditional goals post for this year.

You see, this blog serves as a lot of platforms for me. It’s my online journal, my outlet for pretty much anything I’m going through (sorry for the oversharing, but if you’ve read my posts for any amount of time, you know how it goes). It was really hard to be on that hiatus these past few weeks, because I didn’t have this outlet and I wasn’t able to read the posts of those I follow, either. And I really love reading everyone else’s posts. More than just an outlet, though, my blog is also where I post my reviews, which allow me wonderful opportunities and privileges like ARCs and participating in contests like SPFBO, as well as connecting with writers and readers about series I love. It’s also my platform for writing and, as I continue to dig deeper and deeper into the querying trenches, that aspect–my “brand”–will become even more important.

disney princess GIF

There’s a lot of parts that make up Thoughts Stained With Ink, so it’s no surprise that running this thing, posting on average six times a week, feels like a part-time job in and of itself. It’s also no surprise that I have quite a few goals this year specifically tied to this blog. Namely:

Updating Goodreads and Cross-Post to Amazon: Since shutting down Erlebnisse and merging all the content created there with Thoughts Stained With Ink, all of my Goodreads links back to my reviews are now out of date. I’m sure there are also some missing, so I’d like to go through and make sure every review I’ve written is posted there, with working links. But I also want to finally also post them to Amazon. I never buy anything from Amazon and you have to in order to be able to post reviews *grumbles*. Since I’ve recently started getting into some really wicked self-published fantasy, I have a few books I want to buy that will unlock my Amazon review posting rights. As such–and with how helpful those reviews are for authors–I’m going to work on getting all of my existing reviews linked there, as well. I also need to just update my Goodreads in general: profile picture, bio, book lists, etc.

Learn Graphics: I have a couple of graphics I made a long time ago, but they don’t really tie into the new theme that I created, after I merged. So I’d like to try and learn how to create graphics, prolly using Canva, so I can amp up aesthetically how my posts look (because I’m definitely a sucker for any blog that looks pretty, fight me). It’s never been a really big skill of mine, so fingers crossed I can figure it out!

oh yeah thumbs up GIF

Truly Launch Bookish Breakdown Series: So, one of my favorite posts to read from other bloggers are their monthly wrap-ups. I like how I can find posts that I might of missed, I love the infographics (charts/graphs) and there are even a few who share posts they enjoyed from around the blogsphere. I tried to do that last year, but was never quite organized enough to make it happen. I’d really like to do that this year, creating a post that details the books I read that month, some of my favorite posts, favorites from blogs I follow, those kinds of things.

Clean Up Follower/Following Count: This one is one of my more minor goals, but I’ve found that I have quite a few bots following me and a few inactive accounts (+1 years without a post) I’m following. I’d just like to clean those up so that I can start following more blogs (particularly writers, women and minorities), continuing to build up that community without feeling like everything is clogged up.

Make Bookish Inventory and Wishlist: Over the holiday break, my boyfriend was kind enough to help me inventory the 220 books I own with the basic info (title, author, publisher) into a spreadsheet. Now that I have the all inventoried, I’d love to go and make those details a little deeper: if I’ve read them or not, hardback versus mass market, series order, genre, etc. Then, my boyfriend is going to help me learn how to do some metrics and charts so maybe I can add in some fun charts and stats to those Bookish Breakdown posts. After, I’d love to make a wishlist of books I’d like to own, especially as I own quite a few sequels in series after reading the first book at the library and I’d love to continue working on building my own personal library.

Catch Up On ARCs: I was so hopeful that I’d catch up on all my ARCs by 2018’s end. Of course, I hit a reading slump and then had to spend any time I did have to read to finish up SPFBO books, so I’m not even close, still a little over a dozen books behind. My plan is to try and stay current with any new ARCs I get but also slowly work on that backlog. But I also want to read quite a few books just because.

the muses yes GIF

It’s not a lot of major changes, really. Just a lot of little things that I want to do, either to be more organized and efficient or continue building my brand as a writer and a blogger. I’m really proud of this space and I’m really excited to be back, officially off hiatus and looking towards the future with it. I mostly wrote this post so I’d have a place to reference back when I inevitably forget I was working on this post to begin with, so thanks for reading! Do you have any blogging, reading or writing goals this year? Pit, or even any general goals? Let me know below what they are and if there is any way I can support you throughout 2019!


12 thoughts on “Amping Up The Blog”

  1. You have excellent, detailed goals!

    My goals are pretty simple (not easy, just simple). For writing, I want to write two novel drafts (one of them during NaNoWriMo) and edit two existing drafts. For reading, I want to read 36 horror novels and 12 nonfiction books. I’m already having trouble coming up with a nonfiction book for this month that sounds interesting to me. Hmm, maybe a biography . . .

  2. I hope you’ll be able to achieve all these goals, Nicole! Good luck!

    My goals for reading are to read 120 novels just like the past two years. Start and finish A Song of Ice and Fire, Wheel of Time, and all the physical books I own (I have 11 more unread! Took me years to do this)

    As for life… I’ll just do my best in everything. But I’m trying to lower my alcohol intake! No liquor for me this year! Just much easier drinks like beer, soju, and wine 🙂

    1. Thank you so much, Petrik!

      Those are some fantastic goals! I definitely want to try and start working towards reading the books I own, too, though I keep getting distracted by all these new releases! I wish you luck on lowing your alcohol intake, too! I’m sure that’s not the easiest goal, but I have no doubt you’ll achieve it! 🙂

  3. I’ve said it before but I honestly love the journal format of your blog. It’s so cozy. ❤

    And I hope you get to all your goals! I guess one of mine is to find some way to remove the review-ban on my Amazon account? LOL Sigh. Amazon, why are you like this?

    And I want try to do more collabs this year. Speaking of which…if you're interested in doing any with me–buddy read discussions, game discussions–do hit me up! I started on my first collab a couple of months ago, and I think I've become addicted now. 😀

    Happy New Years, Nicole! All the love and best wishes ❤

    1. Oh gosh, you are just a gem, you know that!? ❤

      It is honestly the most annoying thing. Like, I kinda understand why they do it, so you don't have spammers…but you could also just monitor and remove said spammers? But there are a couple of self-published books I plan on buying as paperbacks that looks seriously good, so if you want recs, let me know!

      Ohhhh, okay, confession time. I've never really done a lot of collab stuff on this blog, but I would LOVE to do something collaberative with you (mostly because I admire you so highly and I think it'd be a lot of fun!?!). But I also have no idea how to do it or what you'd be interested in doing. I also wish I could do more discussion-like posts, but I can never come up with ideas to write about. *facepalm*

      Happy New Year to you as well, Kathy! Wishing you a wonderful year of happiness, love and dreams coming true! ❤

      1. I think manual monitoring might be considered too much work for them? 😛 Some people apparently emailed Jeff Bezos directly and had their ban removed so I think I’ll try that next.

        And I’ve done ONE collab in my long, long, long *mumbles* one-year’s stint as a blogger, so I’m totally new at this too! I love posts where two people buddy read the same book and ask each other discussion questions about them, and then they post the answers on their blogs with ratings. So that’s one idea!

        And I have so many half-solidified ideas for game posts, I don’t know where to start XD. We could do the same thing with the books, I guess? Play the same games and then discuss the themes, the characters, what worked for us and what didn’t?

        Do you have discord? You should totally add me. 😀 (Keladin#5243)

      2. I mean, I *guess* it would prolly be too much work, but I also think it’s totally possible. But maybe I’m just too optimistic. 😛 Hey, maybe you could try that and see if it works!

        I still can’t believe you’ve “only” been blogging for a year. You seem so well grounded and post awesome content regularly and I always enjoy your stuff! But, I’m definitely willing to try it. I’ve never done that kind of thing before, but perhaps if we could find a book that’s already on both of our To Read lists, we could try it?! 😀

        Also, I’m definitely intrigued by the gaming collab, too! That could be a lot of fun, though I only play on a PS4 and I think I plan on playing Assassins Creed: Odyssey until Anthem comes up…so it might be a bit trickier? I dunno, I’m totally down with trying something, though!

        I do have one, but I hardly ever use it. *facepalm* I’ll try to remember to add you next time I log on! 😀

  4. Ahh best of luck for the whole goodreads updating! I really should do that as well, I’ve been thinking so for months and months, but… I’m just too lazy and there is so much to do haha. I hope I’ll be able to do it a little bit as well though 🙂
    Best of luck for all of your goals, Nicole and I hope you’ll have a wonderful 2019! ❤

    1. Right? I see it and I’m like, “I really need to do this,” but for some reason, it’s so exhausting to do? *shrugs* Still, I’m hoping to kick myself in gear and get it all organized!

      Thank you so much, Marie! I’m definitely rooting for you, too! ❤

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