When Whitney Richardson’s library closed due to the pandemic, she was at a loss. She missed her supply of free books and book recommendations.
“I looked at my husband and said, ‘What do I read now?’“ said Richardson, a speech therapist from Evansville, Ill. “My librarian and I have a good relationship. She usually suggested books for me.”
She started searching online for book recommendations, and that’s how she discovered the bookstagram community.
Bookstagrammers — people who post reviews and photos of books on Instagram — say their hobby provides a creative outlet and connects them with other readers.
It also gets them free books.
Richardson was inspired, so she started her own Instagram account (@whitfulreads). Two months later, she’s already acquired greater than 30 books from publishers.
Megan Putnam has been a bookstagrammer for for much longer — nearly 10 years. The mom of two and psychological well being counselor began her bookstagram as a result of she needed a artistic outlet. Her Instagram account (@_popreads_) now has greater than 5,000 followers.
“I began bookstagram throughout a time in my life after I desperately wanted a artistic outlet,” she stated. “I used to be a keep at residence mother with two small children, an avid reader and was typically at residence.”
We requested Richardson and Putnam to share their greatest suggestions and recommendation for aspiring bookstagrammers. Right here’s what they advised us.
Make Your Opinions Stand Out
Whereas many bookstagrammers publish the overview that the writer or writer has supplied on Amazon, Richardson writes her personal.
“I feel that sort of units me aside,” she stated. That additionally helped her develop her viewers.
“I posted my critiques and was actually trustworthy and uncooked about them,” Richardson stated. “After I first began I had about 100 followers, and in a matter of two months that was as much as round 1,100 followers.”
Richardson additionally stated she solely writes critiques for books she actually likes: “If I don’t prefer it loads, I’ll use the overview from Amazon or Goodreads.”
Join with Publishers and Authors
Richardson has gotten on lists of publishers like HarperCollins, each by actively reaching out to them and by making her contact data accessible on her Instagram account.
“I’ve had fairly a number of up-and-coming publishers contact me simply via Instagram and ask, ‘If I despatched you this e book, would you be prepared to learn it and share your overview?’” Richardson stated. “I stated, ‘Completely, ship it my approach.’ I at all times wish to find out about new authors on the market.”
Putnam additionally talked about bookstagram tour teams as a method to get free books whereas additionally supporting authors and publishers. Bookstagram excursions are organized by publishers and authors, who ship free advance copies of books to bookstagrammers. In return, the bookstagrammers are anticipated to publish in regards to the e book on agreed-upon days. The top objective is to generate as a lot pleasure and curiosity within the e book as attainable.
And at all times be sure to tag the authors and publishers in your posts.
“I normally attempt to tag authors and publishers in my posts to make connections,” she stated. “I additionally obtain direct messages and e-mails from publishers and authors about reviewing or selling their books.”
Along with tagging the writer and writer, bookstagrammers use hashtags like #booksofinstagram and #bookbloggers to get their overview in entrance of different bookstagrammers, they usually’ll additionally choose hashtags concentrating on area of interest teams that may have an curiosity within the e book.
You too can comply with authors on Instagram and attain out on to them.
Interact With Different Bookstagrammers
Bookstagrammers typically do giveaways, so partaking with them is a method to get extra free books. Be certain to comply with them and go away feedback and likes on their posts, they usually might do the identical for you.
You will discover bookstagrammers by following a few of these hashtags:
#books #e book #bookmail #booksharks #bookish #booknerd #bookworm #bookworms #booksofinstagram #Bibliophile #bibliophile #biblio #studying #booknerd #learn #readersofinstagram #booklover #bookbloggers #bookblog #bookbloggersofinstagram #bookphotography #bookreviewer #bookcommunity #booklife #furrentlyreading #studying
Take Good Photographs of Your Books
Instagram is a visible platform, so to face out, you’ll wish to guarantee your images are on level. The following tips may help:
- Accent your images with vegetation, a cup of scorching espresso, material, lace, candles, pinecones, and so forth.
- Hold your images contemporary. It’s good to have your personal fashion, however don’t at all times use the identical location or accents.
- Give your e book a background. Set the e book on prime of items of wallpaper or on scrapbooking paper that appears like hardwood flooring or clouds.
- Be certain your images are nicely lit with pure gentle or lamps.
- Take your books outdoors for a photograph shoot.
Bear in mind: Your objective is to make your followers image themselves studying that e book.
Most Importantly: Have Enjoyable
Putnam reads extensively throughout a number of genres like mysteries and science fiction, however she avoids genres she doesn’t like, akin to romance or horror.
“I wouldn’t say that I make myself learn genres that I don’t like,” she stated. “Bookstagram is a interest for me so it needs to be enjoyable and gratifying.”
No matter your style of selection, Putnam stated she recommends e book lovers look into bookstagramming.
“If you happen to like to learn and wish to speak books with different e book lovers, join Instagram, comply with different bookish accounts, achieve inspiration in your personal images and create,” Putnam stated.
“Don’t let it turn into a chore. It’s about studying the gorgeous books we love and sharing them with others.”
Katherine Snow Smith is a contributor to The Penny Hoarder.