5 Ways to Have a Productive Hiatus // Guest Post

Today, I’m going to talk about the book blogger’s greatest problem.

(No, not the TBR.)

(No, not staring at all the beautiful book merch on bookstagram, although I have a giveaway for you all … keep reading!)

*drumroll* The blog hiatus.

BUT. There’s no reason to be afraid of your blog randomly dying after hiatus — it’s not a character in a [insert preferred murderous author]’s books! In fact, here are 5 steps to turn your hiatus into an opportunity for a clean slate and a better blog.

It’s perfectly normal to go on hiatus — in fact, I just ended mine! Here are just some reasons your blog might need to go on hiatus:

  • you need to catch up on the TBR and all those exciting new releases
  • you need to take some time off regular blog content to give the entire
  • you just need a break, which you absolutely should not feel guilty for

So instead of desperately churning out blog content to prevent going on hiatus, here are five tips to ensure you make the most out of it!

1. Set a clear end date.

This is pretty much the most important tip. You HAVE to set a clear end date for your hiatus and include some buffer time. This way, you know when to get back to blogging and can stop your blog from shifting gently from hiatus to a black hole!

It’s honestly difficult to get back into the habit of blogging after getting out. Decide on when you’ll relaunch your blog — ideally over holidays where you have entire days to work on it — and stick to it.

It would be ideal to also include a start date for your hiatus to give readers notice. But hiatuses (hiati?) arrive suddenly, keep calm and plan your comeback.

2. Reflect on your blog.

Because making regular blog content takes so much time, it’s not easy to make dramatic changes. But a hiatus is the perfect opportunity to redesign your blog, complete with HTML attempts, new blog series, and the occasional sacrificial ritual to lure commenters—

Ahem! Here are just a few categories you might want to overhaul.
design: any tweaks or overhauls on your mind?

  • Design: would you like to make any tweaks, or even change your entire blog? Write down a few blog designs you love and steal/borrow elements from them. Join in a book blogging Twitter chat and ask people what they like or hate most in blog designs!
  • Content: Any series you’d like to start or stop doing? What post types would you like to focus on (reviews, discussions, recaps)? How long should your posts be?
  • Frequency: Don’t be afraid of blogging less. It is easier to get traction with more frequent blog posts, but while you can take advantage of hiati (official plural!), start off slow and consistent or your blog won’t make it out of hiatus for too long.

Ultimately, the answers to these questions are all just your choices! If you’d like to see what I’ve done with my blog, check out my relaunch post over at alyssacarlier.com where I share the direction I’m going with.

3. Keep reading other book blogs as well as blogging tips.

This really breaks down to two major subpoints:

a) Stay connected.

IMO, momentum is super important to maintaining a book blog. And when you resurrect your book blog, it’s basically a baby zombie—with so many book blogs on the Internet, not all of your previous readers will remember it or check back!

So stay on Twitter or Instagram or whatever media takes just a few minutes each week. Even if you don’t post anything, replying and commenting means you don’t just drop out of blogger friends’ lives on hiatus!

Besides, it’s definitely wise to keep your finger on blogging and book trends, so you don’t end up staring blankly at the latest Twitter debate.

b) Stay inspired.

The thing is, even if you don’t dedicate the necessary time to book blogging, you don’t want to forget that your blog exists!

In fact, a hiatus lets you dream about all the things your blog could be without the hustle of actually implementing them right away. This motivation is super important for step 4 in

If you’re not sure where to look for blogging tips, Pinterest is fabulous for tutorials and design inspiration. I’ve also compiled a resource library which you can access by heading over to bit.ly/takeoutarmy!

4. Plan changes and chip away at them.

Allow me to introduce: 2 + 3 = 4.

*drumroll fades to awkward silence* All right, all right. But after you’ve thought about how to change the blog and let inspiration trickle in through your hiatus, don’t think of the most fabulous idea and then FORGET IT.

(I think showers are magically enhanced to boost our creativity. It’s a cruel invention.)

So keep a document or a list for any ideas or plans that come into your mind! You might even experiment with any design tweaks on a test blog — it’s super easy to set one up on a free platform like Blogger which I still use.

5. Make splash with relaunch!

I mean, in the end, blogging is just about having fun. (Unless you’re monetising your book blog as well, in which case, that’s awesome!)

So celebrate when you have the free time to get back into this hobby. Chat with your blogging friends again, and don’t be shy about sharing that blog link online. You might not be a newbie blogger, but the book blogging scene moves quickly, so everyone should visit your no doubt awesome blog.

In fact, thank you so much to Alice for letting me guest post here as part of my relaunch over at alyssacarlier.com. For more bookish tips and guides, you can join my takeout army for access to a resource library AND monthly tips and tricks!


Giveaway!

Win 1 of 3 bookish prize packs, incl V.E. Schwab swag, Society6 gifts, and more! (INTL) + free gift for joining!

Enter here!


About the Blogger

Alyssa Carlier writes (and more often rewrites) novels about girls in worlds of magic, madness and murder. Sometimes she remembers to blog about books and shares her best book blogging tips with other booklings. Alyssa hasn’t noticed Jedi mind tricks work better in second person than third.

 


Have you ever gone on a blogging hiatus? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!

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10 thoughts on “5 Ways to Have a Productive Hiatus // Guest Post

  1. This is a super cool guest post! I adore it– plus, the guest post is another great way to push the momentum.
    I personally am just returning from a hiatus (officially tomorrow!)– but I was on a two week vacation. That said, a lot of these apply! I will need to ponder some of this for tomorrow. Have you ever taken a hiatus, Alice?

    Let us know how your return goes, Alyssa!!

    Like

  2. I love reading tips like this–similar ideas can apply to other areas of my life too, such as my own writing. Thanks for posting this–the one I always have the most trouble with is the guilt.

    Like

  3. This is actually extremely helpful, considering I just went on and came back from an extremely long hiatus, and I did a lot of these things! I established a summer blogging schedule, did a small design tweak on my blog, and started to come up with post ideas so I wouldn’t be posting useless nonsense that makes people think I don’t care. The only thing I’ve been contemplating is getting social media accounts so I can connect with more readers, just because I feel like no one reads my blog regardless, much less when I come up off hiatus.

    Thanks for the post!

    -Cec @ Yellow Eccentricity

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’m going on a blogging hiatus at the moment, one that I didn’t plan but happened, and you’ve no idea how helpful I found this post. I’m a newbie, but I do not want people to forget my little blog 🙂 So, thank you for the tips!

    Like

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