Solace in Reading 2.0: Addressing the Blog

Hello everyone! Happy Friday! I once again decided to restart my blog for the second and final time. “But Isabella! You had a lot of posts! Did you just delete all of them? How are you going to address what happened with HOV?”

Yes, I deleted all but four. I even deleted my drafted posts. The four I kept are all related to The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang. I will be publishing those over time since my Rin Analysis post got me the second highest amount of views ever. (Rin’s power knows no bounds.) It was easy for me because I didn’t care about these posts. Of course, I want to promote books I love. However, my book blogging experience was tainted when I did not proof-read my post for HOV, where I stated incorrectly that the protagonist of a book was Taiwanese American. She is Thai American. I’m not going to say “oh, I am a teenager, so I didn’t know” because I even wrote in my notes for the post that Winnie is Thai American. From now on, I will be re-reading my posts multiple times before publishing.

I am remaking myself while still acknowledging when I messed up. I also didn’t really think about whether I trusted HOV Tours or not because it was the first time I worked with them. After my mistake, I saw that other bloggers/online book people were negatively impacted by HOV (ex. not getting ARCs on time and a lot of other issues). From now on, I will only be working with tour companies that I 100% trust and also know the leaders of these companies. For example, I’ve been following Shealea @shutupshealea for a little over a year. I have always had great experiences with Caffeine Book Tours. (Watch out for my posts for Iron Heart and Spell Caster!) Also, Shealea is super kind and does so much work for this community.

Also, Colored Pages Book Tours: I know and follow two of their team members, who I’ve always had great interactions with. Fanna @ Fannatality and Rameela @ Star Is All Booked Up are both amazing bloggers, bookstagrammers, and people. They are always kind and transparent. I am on their tour for We Are Not Free, so also look out for that post! Even though I just started following them this year, I still trust them 100% because their website is very clear about their privacy policy AND the representation included in books.

One person who I’d like to shoutout is CW @artfromafriend, who recently said in a Tweet that “from now on, i’m going to stop calling my book recommendations ‘diverse book recs’ and just call them ‘book recs’. you may correctly assume ALL my recs are for diverse books.” I agree! It’s so important to be specific, and also to “normalise recommending diverse books because they’re good books, not just because they are diverse.” ALL CREDIT TO CW!! I need to start doing this, and instead of saying “This book has x rep” first, I will mention that I liked the plot, characters, more specific info, etc. And then I will mention the representation at the end.

Switching to another fact: I am an adopted Asian American (Filipino American, specifically). Therefore, I sometimes feel like an imposter when reading books with Asian American mcs’ because my parents who adopted me are white. I am still learning about my Filipino heritage, and started in sixth grade because I wrote an essay about the Philippines during World War II. In freshmen year, I did a project about Filipino women during WWII, and in sophomore year, I did a project about Filipino immigration to the U.S. from the time of the U.S.’ unjust colonization to the 1970s. While I may not have the same experience as first generation Asian Americans, I can still teach myself about my culture. Also, do not ask me if I think I was “stolen.” Do not ask any adoptee that. Adoptees are not a monolith, for example, I was born and adopted here in the U.S., which is different from being adopted from another country. For personal reasons, do not ask me about my adoption “story.” Families are not a monolith. Thanks!

Ok. Let’s get to the point: I need to make some changes on my blog. Here are five changes in a short list that I will expand on in another post:

  1. Post 3-4 times a week (or at least twice). I have one Dual Enrollment class and 3 AP classes. I do not have time to post everyday.
  2. Write more reviews.
  3. Re-read my posts before publishing them!!!!!
  4. Follow more blogs that I actually like. I love the blogs I follow!
  5. Be myself. For a while, I tried being someone I was not: I am a teen! I have a lot of my life ahead of me, and spent a lot of time in school worrying about grades. No more,

Ask me a question? I want to do a post where you get to know more about me that will go up in late September!

14 thoughts on “Solace in Reading 2.0: Addressing the Blog

  1. I love this post, especially how you set goals and expectations that are realistic seeing as you are still a student, I wish you the best during this journey 🙂

    Question: this may be a bit cliche but I always enjoy learning this about other bloggers/book lovers: What book introduced you to reading?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I sometimes get jealous of those my age who have everything together and have been at this for over 3+ years, but unlike my bookstagram which I’ve been active on for nearly two years, blogging is definitely a slower paced endeavor, which I like.

      Also, it was probably Year of the Dog by Grace Lin for middle grade and Red Queen (which I no longer enjoy). However, The Hate U Give really inspired me to read more of a variety beyond the “popular” authors at the beginning of my teen years, and I will always be grateful to the friend who loaned me a copy.


  2. Just take it one step at a time and I am sure it will be fine. 🙂

    There have been many voices lately suggesting what CW also said and I totally agree. If we want to show that A) diverse books should be the normal for books and B) these books have fantastic qualities besides being diverse; I think we should not focus too much on it.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. hi, isabella! my blog is also my final attempt, so i can relate a bit. i wish you all the best in your life and in your blogging! i can’t wait to hear more thoughts from you about the books you read! and thank you for introducing colored pages book tours to me! stay safe!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi, Isabella. Glad you’re back. Only read about the incident and I’m glad that you’re taking steps to improve on the things you listed. Hoping to read more of your insights in the future. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m so excited to see upcoming content from you. I think it’s really cool how you handled the HOV issue and I’m very glad that you’re back with clear goals and promises.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Mistakes make you human & I believe everyone can learn from their own mistakes and become a better person out of it. I’m glad you’re back and starting off fresh, can’t wait to see what your blog future holds!

    Liked by 1 person

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