Welcome to Book Blogging 101, a weekly feature on Parajunkee’s View that answers your questions and strives to share great book blogging tips and some helpful hints to help you on your way.

Hey PJ. I know this isn’t about “Blogging How To” exactly, but I was wondering if you have some tips for blogging burn out (if you’ve been there). I’ve been blogging for two years and have really enjoyed it, but now I’m going through a phase where I’m burnt out. I still love to read, but I really don’t want to review every book I buy/borrow. I am at the point where I write reviews when I’ve run out of content for the blog, not when I finish the book. – Aimee

Like in anything in life, every now and again we hit a wall. Sometimes that wall seems so massive there is no way that you can foresee getting past it. I find that like depression, or lack of motivation you literally can train yourself to break out of your slump.

Being a creative person, I tend to be two steps away from being bipolar — high on creative thoughts one minute, in a complete low point the next. When I’m high on it I’m producing like a freight train, writing, drawing, designing…when I’m in a low I find myself watching re-runs of Buffy The Vampire Slayer. It’s a common problem and it runs rampant with those of us that operate at accelerated paces. From what I’ve heard from “those knowledgable types” burn-out is your mind telling you to settle down and stop pushing yourself so hard or maybe find a less rigid pace to operate on.

So, what to do about Burn-Out?

First, things, first. Take some time off. It doesn’t need to be a trip to Bali, just an extended weekend that you don’t get on your blog, or twitter or anything that has to do with blogging. I might even suggest not to read, because that will make you think about blogging. Maybe hit those Buffy The Vampire Reruns, or go see a movie or two. Go shopping, (just not a bookstore) or meander through some flea markets. Maybe a hiking trip. Something to get that oxygen pumping. Get a lot of SLEEP! Eat at your favorite restaurant with something mouthwateringly good. Just don’t think about blogging until you’ve had a few days of moving around, eating good and lots of rest.

When you get back to your computer work on something new and exciting. Try to revamp your review style. Think of a cool new meme, something you’ll get excited about. Bring it back to what you love about blogging and not the meticulous boring parts. But, evaluate yourself when you do get back. Is this something you enjoy or are you forcing yourself to do it? Has blogging become a job with very little rewards? If you keep coming up negative and can’t shake the burn-out I would seriously consider maybe taking an extended hiatus. Maybe you are just over it. Or, hopefully after a nice restful weekend you’ll come back with renewed vigor and show us all up!

Q: So Ive been being hounded and spammed by an author for a few months now and really concerned about the tone of the emails as of late. Is there anything legally I can do if things become threatening? – Scared Blogger

First I would try blocking the email. Then if the emails are threatening I would report the person to their ISP. There is a way to set up email filters or auto-responses to this person’s emails that says, you are being blocked etc. etc. This might give them the message. But, mainly I wouldn’t respond. Ignoring is the best response. You can’t do anything legally unless they threaten you physically or send you sexually explicit messages that translate into harassment. If this happens then I would go to the police. They are becoming more savvy with cyber crimes, depending on your market.

Q: How do you feel about bloggers sharing ARC’s?  Is this wrong since the ARC was given to you for review or do you think it’s OK? – Nereyda

The best response is that before you share an ARC you should get permission from the author or publisher, but really only before the publication date. If it is after the publication date it shouldn’t be a problem to pass your ARC along. Bloggers that share their ARCs with friends, there is probably some wiggle room their. Are they supposed to do it? Not really. But, they will do a review on it, so that is publicity right? It’s not like it’s just being passed around so that person doesn’t have to buy a book.

Q: I leave meaningful (ie. not the generic, “Hey, old follower here! Stopping by your blog!”) comments on a ton of blogs all the time (ie, almost daily), but I almost never receive any comments back- what’s the deal? If I can take the time out of my busy schedule to do so, why can’t other bloggers?  – Anon

Well, maybe you are choosing the wrong blogs to comment on. I’ll tell you honestly about me. I might be one of those people. I follow twitter posts — it’s my way of doing things. I see a tweet, I follow it to the post and I leave a comment. It’s just my way of scheduling things. I KNOW I should take time out of my busy schedule and comment back to my commentors on their blogs, but I haven’t worked that into my routine yet. I’m sorry, I apologize and I’ll work on that. But, I do have to say, I comment on other blogs because I want to comment and voice my little two cents, not to get people to come back to my blog.

Q: What are your feelings about reciprocating comments?

I am constantly commenting on a blog (a blog which belongs to whom I would consider to be a close friend), RTing her Tweets, befriending her fellow blog friends (who have since become my friends as well) , regularly commenting on their blogs, etc. and they NEVER comment on my blog. I can recall maybe 5 or 6 occasions that my original friend has commented on my blog and our other friends not once.

I know that it isn’t a matter of them not having enough time  to do so (which would be completely understandable) because they are constantly promoting the other in various ways.

I don’t think that I am asking for much (but maybe I am? I look forward to your opinion)- it’d just be nice to receive an acknowledgement every now and again, as opposed to feeling like the black sheep out of the group.

So, what do I do? Stop worrying about such inconsequential things? Stop commenting on their blogs? – Sad Sheep


See first question that explains how bad of a commentor I am! LOL And your friend could be like me (or are you talking about me??) I’m so bad about this and so I’m sympathetic with your friend. I read the blog posts and I choose to interact via twitter, it’s just my way of doing things. Maybe this is how your friend does it too? Like in any friendship if you feel like you are giving giving giving and nothing is being reciprocated, maybe step back and give them a little space. You never know what you had until it’s gone, right?

Q:Hi
I know you said that BB101 wasn’t providing many challenges for you so I thought I’d pose this for you…
I’ve been sent an email and I have no idea what to do with it, do I ignore it as possible spam, do I claim ownership of my blog name or do I not need to do anything as it won’t actually affect me. If I do nothing could this company tell me I can no longer use my blog name? I’ve copied the email below. Thanks – Louise

Email details:-
Dear Manager:
We are a Network Service Company which is the domain name registration center in Anhui, China. On March,19th,2012, We received TianHua Company’s application that they are registering the name “book-bliss” as their Internet Trademark and “book-bliss.cn”,”book-bliss.com.cn” ,”book-bliss.asia”domain names etc.,It is China and ASIA domain names.But after auditing we found the brand name been used by your company. As the domain name registrar in China, it is our duty to notice you, so I am sending you this Email to check.According to the principle in China,your company is the owner of the trademark,In our auditing time we can keep the domain names safe for you firstly, but our audit period is limited, if you object the third party application these domain names and need to protect the brand in china and Asia by yourself, please let the responsible officer contact us as soon as possible.

Thank you!
Kind regards
Angela Zhang

– Book Bliss


This SAYS scam all over it hun. I Google searched it and found this article, I hope this helps, same email and everything: http://www.austintechnologylawblog.com/2010/07/articles/internet/trademark-and-domain-name-scams-from-china/

XO – Happy Thursday, Talk Less, Read More.

I can’t get to all the questions, but please ask your BB101 Questions here…bring it on.