09 April 2010

Renewing my (blogger's) vows

I read this interesting post yesterday on the Presenting Lenore blog, about the Do's and Don't of polite blogging, and--even more specifically--about interacting with authors. The post was particularly directed towards YA book bloggers, but they were tips that are certainly applicable to all. For me personally, the post was enlightening, because it showed me just how naive I am about my own blogging. It has never crossed my mind to actually approach an author in the hopes of drawing readers to my blog. I've never run any sort of competition. In fact, other than cross-posting to a few social networking sites, I do pretty much zilch in the way of promoting my blog. While I'd love for Team NJFK to take off, I'm admittedly relying on the "write it and they will come" philosophy. And my mom, of course.

That post got me thinking about my own blogging behavior. When I started this blog back on 3 August 2007 it was done mainly because I couldn't afford to return to graduate school, but I wanted to join the conversation about great books for kids. I was also trying to bring an adult reader's perspective: these are great books for kids, but grown-ups will find a lot to appreciate, too.  From the start I've been an inconsistent blogger (sigh,) and I post far more reviews than I ever intended, mainly because I've realized that reviews and recommendations are what the random browsers--those readers I've hoped to catch in my world wide web (ha ha)--are looking for.

Anyway, the point is, I'm sure I've made some mistakes as a blogger, and I will never have a readership of millions (hundreds?) because I'm catch-as-catch-canning it here at Not Just for Kids. But all the same, this is a good time to reiterate what you can expect to find here:

--my commentary and opinion (let me repeat: MINE. Not my employees or anyone else's) about books, trends, controversies, and news in the world of childrens literature;
--positive book reviews. If I didn't like a book I won't blog it. Plain and simple. If I have something negative to say about a book, I'll do it at goodreads.com, and it will be short and (not so) sweet. This space is for the stuff I love;
--lots of spelling mistakes. I can't spell for you-know-what, and I can't get the spell check on the new format Blogger to work;
--vigorous campaigning for the rerelease of the Church Mice books!
--booklists (note to self: post more booklists)
--shameless adoration for M.T. Anderson.

There. I think that just about covers it. Comments are always welcome. Unless you are a bot of some sort, of course.


Pam T said...

We are soooo alike. Lovers of kidlit and YA and that's what comes first and foremost. AND maybe that's why we link to one another.

I love your blog. I love that - like us- you only cover the good stuff. That means that when I see a book here I know that we'll enjoy it.

Keep it up, girlfriend.
Back to coffee now... Pam

jaydubblah said...

Must admit I started blogging so I could communicate more with some of my Twitter friends, but then they drew me into some challenges and I realised that I had to comment to get comments. But blogger crashes on me a lot so I don't do as much as I should. Am now finding out who M.T.Anderson is

Kara Schaff Dean said...

Thanks for the comments, Jaydubblah and Pam T :) This might be obvious, but I think our blogs say a lot about the type of people we are. Mine says that I am enthusiastic, often distracted, and hesitant to say something toooo mean, lest the subject of said mean post is reading (you never know!)

Gayle said...

Well Darn Kara!

How come I didn't think to make blogging vows? God knows I need them...but then again, I may have to pay penance! Great blog, you rock!


Kara Schaff Dean said...

Thanks, Gayle. No penance necessary :)

Playing by the book said...

I'll join your campaign for the rerelease of the Church Mice books!

Kara Schaff Dean said...

It really is a fantastic series!

Kate-Declan/Aidan mom said...

Hi Kara, I have been following and sharing your blog with my neighborhood parents group in Philadelphia.

As for the book lists, yes please. My neighborhood parents group was looking for recommendations for early chapter books to be read to a 4 or 5 year olds.

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