Welcome back to my discussion feature, Freadom Speaks!
I’m a little hesitant about this one mostly because it’s just me rambling about a specific topic that has been a struggle for me since I became a bigger part of the book community. Original content has eluded ever since I started my Booktube channel and I kind of wanted to talk about what that means to me and why it’s such a hard thing for me to accomplish.
SO let’s get started!
Back when I still had my Booktube channel, one of the hardest things for me to create was original content. In fact, I never had any at all. I just did the same kind of content that the majority of people were doing: memes, reviews, wrap ups and tbrs. But I always wanted to try and do more. That desire transferred over to my blog and since I started it, I’ve been on a quest to try and do things that no one else has done before.
BUT IT’S SO HARD!
Let’s be honest here, there are only so many things you can do with books. And most of them have already been done by someone else before. The majority of my features are variations of things that are common in the blogging community: recommendations, discussions (like this one) and a personal feature. My Looks on Books feature was inspired by two other bloggers and the only thing I did was change up the way my own post is structured. But that’s not enough for me. I want something that I can call my own, that sets my blog apart and makes it special. But it’s very hard to think of what that elusive thing could be.
I’ve thought of combining my different passions in life with my passions for books but I feel like they’re not the best of combinations. I love music, it’s a huge part of my life and while I have a feature with my friend Gervan that combines music in books, it’s a duo kind of thing. I thought about trying to do something else but there are so many people who have posts like this and I don’t really see a new angle that I can bring to it. I am a huge animal lover, I have a cat and a dog and wish I could have more, but is there a way to combine books and pets without it being completely weird? I don’t think so. Photography is also a love of mine but unfortunately, that’s kind of hard for me to do right now. My camera is indisposed and I don’t own a lot of physical books so even if I could come up with something, it wouldn’t be happening right now.
Recently Ari @ The Daydreaming Bookworm shared a post thanking about this topic in particular and I have to say that it made me very angry at the time, but I can’t help but think that she may be right! She talks about how originality doesn’t actually exist, that we are always influenced by the outside world and how it’s not about the idea, but about the execution and representation of it. This makes me so mad because part of me feels like it’s something to strive for and work hard for because it makes you kind of special and I am not ashamed to say that I want my blog to be more special than all the other special blogs haha. But at the same time, it’s probably such a hard thing to do because it may be impossible. Most books are variations of the same basic story, and most authors take it in and make it their own and add things and so on. So I kind of agree with Ari but don’t want to completely.
Cait @ Paper Fury also shared a post pertaining to this that highlights one of my biggest fears about original content: when do you know if your blog post is “inspired” or “copying”? If what Ari says is true and you can only be inspired by what’s already been done before, how do you keep it true to you? No one wants to be labeled as the copier or plagiarist, specially if you’re not doing it on purpose. It’s always been one of my fears that I won’t correctly credit the person who inspired me on a post or a feature. The great thing is that she highlights some of the ways you can catch if you’re doing it or not! I’m definitely going to keep this post in mind if I ever feel inspired by a fellow book blogger.
I know this post is kind of all over the place but that’s also because I’m not really sure how I feel about this topic. I’m still going to be working on trying to be original. One of my resolutions for this year is to create a tag so maybe that’ll be my contribution into original content.
So that’s it for this discussion! Let me know your thoughts about this topic. I’m still on the fence and I would love to know what you guys think about this. Thanks so much for reading and I’ll see you on my next post!