Imaginative Discussions: Co-blogging: Is It Right for You?

Posted November 20, 2013 by Kara in Imaginative Discussions, Kara / 23 Comments

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Co-blogging is a team sport. A lot of bloggers say co-blogging isn’t right for them, and some of them are probably correct. But what many don’t realize is that I was one of those people that thought I could never give someone else control over Great Imaginations. You see, I am a control freak. So I’ve heard all your reasons why a co-blogger is not for you and your blog. I wanted to share my experiences–how I got a co-blogger and why–so you could see if this rising trend is right for you.
 
How I Got a Co-blogger:
 
Like a lot of things I do that turn out to be successful, I fell ass backwards into getting a co-blogger. I remember Lyn (who was a Goodreads’ friend of mine at the time) posted a comment on someone’s review saying she would like to post reviews on blogs for experience. I volunteered. I liked Lyn, and though I didn’t know her well, she always stood out to me because she stuck up for other bloggers–well and often.
 
She began guest reviewing on the blog. For a really long time, actually. So some of you may not really remember a time when I was blogging by myself. January 6th of this year was Lyn’s first post as official co-blogger. You can see it here. It’s a book haul post. Her first review as co-blogger, of Me, Earl, and the Dying Girl followed the day after. But before that, she guest posted an entire year, I think. So Lyn and I have taken a really long time to get to know one another. 
 
Why Lyn and I Work:
 
 photo GIF_zpscb83abce.gifCo-blogging is a joint effort. One of the reasons Lyn and I work like a well oiled machine is because we are basically the same person. We have a lot of the same real life issues, so when something goes wrong with me, she gets it, and vice versa. So when I need to take a break from blogging, when I need a few days to myself, when I am cranky and not in the mood, when I have a migraine and need to escape from all forms of social media, she gets it. She gets it because she’s been there. And the best part about having a co-blogger is having that person you trust there to rescue you and save your ass when shit hits the fan.

That’s the thing though. You can’t bring on a co-blogger if you can’t give up control. I thought that I would have issues with this. We don’t generally like change, but we learn a great deal about ourselves when we open ourselves up to new experiences, no? Trying new things usually results in a learning experience, and in most circumstances, a positive one. That was no exception here. I’m not as much of a control freak as I thought I was. Letting things go and opening myself up to this laid back approach has worked wonders on my life and my anxiety. I try new things now without fear. Like BEA. And book events I would never have gone to otherwise. And there are more things planned for the future. Like going to BEA again and finally getting to meet Lyn in person.

How We Plan:

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Usually we have set days to post. Normally, I will take Monday and Thursday for reviews. She takes Friday for a review, and does Top Ten Tuesdays. We alternate discussion post Wednesdays (or at least we are trying to). Saturday is book haul day. Whoever has books that weeks posts the haul, and sometimes we both do and post together. This is not written in stone though. There are blog tours and times when I have lots of editing work and I don’t have a post. So we are totally willing to switch this around. And now that we do a feature where we review a book together every other Friday, things have changed even more. So basically, be adaptable and willing to switch things up as need be. All that matters is content. And you know, if neither of us feels like posting, that’s okay too. I used to stress about not having a post every day, but honestly, no one is going to notice if there isn’t one. Those are pressures we put on ourselves, and that makes blogging not fun. The second blogging starts to be not fun, I take a step back and figure out what I need to do to change that and make it fun again. This is a hobby, not work. And I can honestly say, bringing Lyn on board has made this so much more so.

  • I have a sounding board to bounce ideas off of.
  • I have someone producing fresh, new content when my brain is not working.
  • She’s way more creative than I am. All that giveaway planning? She does it. I just help out.
  • I have someone to take over when I just absolutely cannot do it that day.

 

If you aren’t willing to give someone free reign over your blog to let their creativity grow, a co-blogger is not right for you. You have to be able to work with that person, respect them, and be willing to compromise and take risks when they want to do something you think might not work so well. If you can’t have full faith in that person, co-blogging is absolutely not for you. But if you want to bring a fresh voice and a fresh perspective to your blog, then it might be. I never would have been one of those bloggers that writes a post looking for co-bloggers and creates an application. It has to happen organically or it just feels forced to me. I couldn’t do it that way. To those that can, I think that’s awesome. Different things work for different people.

The number one thing that makes co-blogging work? Open mindedness. This blog isn’t just mine anymore. It’s half Lyn’s. And I feel like I have done everything I can at this point to make her feel at home and part of this experience, and I hope she does.

Great Imaginations wouldn’t be what it is without her.

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kara

23 responses to “Imaginative Discussions: Co-blogging: Is It Right for You?

    • I think you could. I bet you’d be surprised what you are capable of if you open yourself up to the possibility. I preached for so long that I could never have a co-blogger. And well, you see where I am now. 😀

  1. I’ve always enjoyed the way you two work together, at least from my perspective as a reader. You really come up with great ideas (the giveaways you do where the book is covered up and you have to guess, LOVE THOSE!) I always know that whoever is posting, it will be a fun post to read. And I’ve been reading your blog long enough to recognize who is writing a review before I get to the bottom and see a name!

    However, I don’t know if I could take on a co-blogger. I’m such a control freak, I think the internet would explode if I had to try and share!

    • We are so glad you love our giveaways *coughs* Lyn’s giveaways! We’re trying to plan something for Christmas but I am not sure yet where we are going with that yet. We are glad you recognize our differing voices as well! I think they are pretty distinct but you never know!

    • Thank you! Kara and I are two very distinct people, and I suppose it works for the better. I like to think I am her awesome secondary character.

      Thank you for liking our giveaways! I still take a lot of pride in the Blind Book Date. I am the thinker and Kara helps me make it a reality.

  2. I love stalking your conversations when you’re planning something for the blog. I love seeing the behind the scenes stuff! And I LOVE how good you two are for each other, and I love how this blog has turned out under two people, and I just basically love everything.

  3. I love hearing about others’ coblogging experiences and how it came to be! It’s great that this has helped make you grow and the blog. You ladies do a wonderful job!

  4. Um, at BEA, I’m going to need you and Lyn to wear matching outfits and snap your way down some stairs. :-p

    But, no, really.

    I remember when you blogged by yourself! And the guest reviewing. I may have missed the official coblogger post though. Haha. I DO remember that review though. Oh, brain, you’re random.

    I’ve seen you guys chatting on FB, and not that I would tell you otherwise if I disagreed, but I super agree with how well you guys understand each other and shore one another up during the tough times. If one of you is going through a rough patch, the other will be like “I’ll post. Don’t worry about it. Just get better.” If you’re both having troubles, you agree to take a break or split up the effort. You’re such a great emotional support system for one another.

    Having a co-blogger seems like it either cuts stress or increases it. It’s great that you guys are the former. I don’t think that I could do it, but I do get a ton of feedback from my bloggy friends, so I do have the emotional support and the sounding boards. So thanks for that. *hugs*

    • I think we might be able to make that happen. 😀

      We never actually had an official co-blogger post. I kind of regret that now, but oh well.

      THANK YOU so much for saying this. I think we do too. It’s awesome having that support system. I am so thankful.

      Yeah, we have a great group of people, I think. I love the way we all interact and respect each other’s opinions even if we don’t always agree. It’s a lot of fun. 🙂

    • Matching outfits…..we can make it happen, I think!

      I like that Kara and I can just be HONEST with one another, and it is weird how we just get each other. It is almost freaky.

  5. I loved reading this look at co-blogging-it’s something I’ve been thinking about as I find myself sometimes stressing about posting though I worry I might be too controlling for it to work (I definitely have to battle those tendencies in myself in a lot of areas.) Great food for thought!

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