Tuesday, 6 July 2010

Blogger Inquest - Kristi (The Story Siren)

Over the next few weeks I will be probing the minds of a series of YA bloggers that cover the bounds of our booky love. Today I am going to kick off this series of interviews with Kristi from The Story Siren.
If you don't know about The Story Siren then I am guessing you haven't really stepped inside YA bloggerdom. I would also ask why you chose to start here at PSnark :)

The purpose of the Blogger Inquest is to delve into their minds and experiences online. To be up front, I presented each of the interview subjects with 21 questions to choose from and they took it from there.

Kristi has been blogging since 2007 and has been the recipient of the 2009 BBAW Awards for Best YA Blog, Best Design and Most Extravagant Giveaways as well as being nominated for a host of others. She's a great facilitator of community with the In My Mailbox meme and promotes debut authors with gusto with the Debut Author Challenge the past two years.

It is with great pleasure that I welcome Kristi to Persnickety Snark!

How has your approach and attitude altered from the early stages of your blog?
I'm a lot more worried about content now. When I started I only really did book reviews. I'd read a book, post a review, read another book, posted a review.... you get the idea. But now.... it's all about something new and shiny and interesting and fun to get new readers and entertain the readers that you do have. It can be a little stressful at times. I miss those carefree days sometimes!

Blogging can be unbelievably supportive and sometimes catty environment – what three guidelines do you find to be good rules to live by in the blogging world?
So very true.

My three guidelines....
  • It's your blog, post what you want to!
  • Not everyone is going to like you or your blog, don't stress about it.
  • Don't be afraid to say no.

Characterise yourself as a blog reader – monogamous, flirty or promiscuous? Lurker or commenter?
I am definitely a monogamous lurker. And it has a lot to do with the fact that I'm horrible at time management, so I don't have a lot of extra time to visit dozens of blog and comment, but I'm also apprehensive...... Because I don't want people to think... 'oh she left a comment on this blog, but not mine... she must not like me/my blog/my reviews... etc' When that's totally not the case. So as to avoid that.... I just don't usually comment. It might be a lame excuse, but it's something that really bothers me.

What are some of the best and worst incidents of an author contacting you after a review?
I can honestly say I haven't had any bad incidents with authors pertaining to reviews. Granted I don't do a ton of negative reviews and I try not to make a negative review a personal attack on the author, so perhaps that has something to do with it.

The best times are just when an author takes the time to thank you for a review. I've had one particular author go out of her way to send me a thank you card after a review and promotion of her book. (Like I really had anything to do with the sales!) The author is a huge advocate for book bloggers as well, so that is always nice!

How aware are people in your everyday life of your blogging?
Not many people know about my blog in my real life... I guess that's not entirely true, my family knows... and the people I work with. My 'real-life' usually doesn't overlap with my 'blog life.' While my husband tolerates my blogging addiction, I don't know if I'd go as far as to say he supports it. Lol. He likes to use the term 'nerd alert' when I get overly excited or start talking about blogging. He means it in the most endearing way! But if I have a blogging problem, there isn't anyone that I can go to in my everyday life. No one understand that aspect.... they just don't understand it, and it's not their fault. My mom and my sisters think my blog is awesome though!

What word is most overused on your blog?
Oh geez.... AWESOME... WOW..... FANTASTIC. I really overuse those types of words.... but what can you do!

How long do foresee yourself blogging for?
I don't see myself stopping as of right now. But you never know. I have no plans to quit anytime soon, but if life gets in the way so be it. You have to do, what you have to do. As much as I love and cherish blogging, it really isn't my number one priority in life, although it seems like that a lot of the time!

Book tours – effective marketing or blog flooding?
If done the right way, I think the can be effective marketing. I subscribe to a ton of blogs in my google reader and when a blog tour has fifty some stops on various blogs, you can guarantee that I am annoyed by the twentieth one I see and it makes me so bitter that I don't even want to read the book...... I don't want to SEE the book ever again!

If it's a tour with around ten to fifteen stops, has entertaining and interesting content on each stop (more than just interviews) then that usually piques some sort of interest to me.

Personally, I'd rather a tour be split up, instead of having a blog host everyday for three weeks straight.... split it up among three months. That is going to keep your novel on everyone's radar and hopefully not burn anyone out.

Blogger envy – do you get it and what over?
Of course I do! I think if anyone says they don't, they are lying! What do I do to get over it. Give myself a little slap in the face! Honestly, I just think about my reading pile and about all the followers I have...... And think to myself.... "really Kristi.... you do not have anything to complain about, stop feeling sorry for yourself! Geez."

I've been much better with blogger envy as of late. I think I've made it over this emotional hump where it's more about having fun with what I'm doing and not worrying so much about what everyone else is. It's so much more enjoyable that way.

She's right on the money there, folks. I think sometimes we worry too much about what is happening on other people's blogs rather than being happy with the opportunities that we've been given with interviews, ARCs and the friendships made.

Now if for some chance you've been hiding under a rock the size of the Grand Canyon you can find Kristi at the following places:


Nomes said...

great interview. Kristi's blog is the superstar of all blogs and so very professional and good :)

I love some of the questions - especially the one about blogging and ppl in your real life :) Non-book ppl just dont get it... :)

And, yeah, sometimes AWESOME, WOW and FANTASTIC are just the best of words in relation to books

Chachic said...

Great interview! I think it's an awesome idea that you're interviewing book bloggers and asking questions so we can get to know more about their blogging life. I'm already a follower of Kristi's blog and I enjoyed her answers here. I'm looking forward to the other bloggers that you'll feature. :)

Cate said...

Awesome, awesome interview! So much insight packed into one post. :)

I can't wait to read other Blogger Inquests!

Chapter Chicks said...

I love Kristi! What a great interview!

Kathleen said...

That was a great interview! Much better than the average interview about fav books and what they do outside of blogging. It was interesting to see the blogging side of a book blogger.

Lisa_Gibson said...

Kristi is awesome! Great interview. :)

Emidy @ Une Parole said...

Loved this interview! Kristi's blog was one of the first (of course!) that I discovered when I started blogging.

Charlie said...

I'd never have thought Kristi to be a lurker, though I understand where she's coming from. I love her Dear Story Siren posts, they're so useful. She's too humble - but then that's very endearing!

Emily said...

Great interview! I can't wait to see who else you have on in the next few weeks.

CeeCee said...

great interview-Kristi is amazing. She is a lurker like me though not for the same reasons as hers are much nicer. I want to know the other questions you offered. Looking forward to hearing about bloggers I have yet to come across.
Very good idea.


Sas (Tea Mouse) said...

Great interview! I'm looking forward to reading more of these insights into blogger's lives. :)

Unknown said...

Love blogger interviews! Kristi is obviously so successful, so it's nice to get a glimpse into what her journey has been like. Plus, she just sounds like such a sweetheart. Might we get to see interviews with the1stdaughter from There's a Book or Vanessa from Today's Adventure? I hope so :)

April (BooksandWine) said...

What a fab interview. FYI I would much rather read an interview with bloggers talking about blogging than an author interview.

I like what she says about posting what you want to on your blog.

Some surprising things are that she gets blogger envy! She is like the gold standard, like half the time if I see a blogger get something that she didn't I'm all like WHAT? No way. Because, if a book just gets mentioned on her IMM, it instantly goes on my goodreads. Especially if it looks pretty in the video.

Oh and the time management surprises me too, since it seems like Kristi is really on her game with posting things!

I swear I'm not a creeper, just a huge fan of The Story Siren!

Mari - Escape In A Book said...

To use one of Kirsti's words - what an AWESOME interview. I really enjoyed reading it and I'm looking forward to the next one. Great idea, Adele.

Unknown said...

I love Kristi's Dog! and of course her blog!

Love your blog to, i am a bit of a lurker :o)

Michelle said...

Great points. Once something loses the fun factor what is the point, right?