Am I a YA Blogger? A Mini Identity Crisis

18:30 Cilla P 14 Comments

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I read a lot of YA. I love the genre and practically everything it encompasses. When I started blogging, the YA bloggers community is the one I gravitated towards, and I love it. The longer I blog though, the more hesitant I am to label myself a YA blogger. In fact, I'm hesitant to label myself with any genre.


Why? Once, I joined a chat about YA and found myself referencing books that are most definitely not of the genre.  (Side note: I've heard the discussions that YA isn't so much a genre as a marketing strategy and I quite agree, but to make it less of a mouthful, I'm using the word genre for it here) Looking at my reviews, YA makes up about 50-60% of them. The other half is... kind of whichever book struck my fancy at the time.

Is that a problem? For me, I see three answers to this question:

Yes, 

when there's a call specifically for YA bloggers. I tend to then flail around trying to decide whether I qualify. I think 50-60% is a fairly good number to say I'm a predominantly YA blogger, but is it? So I suppose the question becomes: how do you define which genre of a blogger you are when you read a bit of everything?

Maybe,

if my blogging trademark rests on what genre I read. (For an excellent discussion about defining your blogging trademark, read Alyssa's post here). A lot of people state clearly that they're [insert genre here] bloggers, and that's awesome. I feel that my trademark (though I haven't really worked out what it is) doesn't involve a particular genre, but is it necessary to specialise in certain genres to stand out?

No, 

'cause that's the kind of reader I am - while I have my favourites, I'll read most genre (with a very definite exception of horror) if the story catches my eye.Why should blogging be any different?

So?

Having mulled over this while I write this, I think the point is: I favour YA above other genres, but it is not the only thing I read. At the moment I feel okay applying this to my blogging, though I do wonder if it makes it more difficult for me to fit in in the blogging community. 

Let's talk!
Do you identify as a blogger of a certain genre? 
Do you think it is necessary to stand out or fit in a blogging community?

14 comments:

  1. I’ve also been thinking about this recently because I have no idea what type of blogger I am. I read and review whatever interests me. I don’t know how to label myself, or if I even need to.

    Aj @ Read All The Things!

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    1. I'm glad to know I'm not alone in this boat! Your blog is called 'Read All The Things!' So it makes sense that you read and review whatever interests you, I think :D

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  2. Interesting thoughts. I also read about 50-60% YA, but I haven't labeled myself with any specific genre. I read the books I want to read, and then I write about them. I think there are many people who read a mix of YA and adult fiction, like I do. I'd burn out too quickly if I only read YA. With that said, most of the blogs I follow are more YA oriented, but it's just because it seems like that's what's out there. I had to really look and find some adult book bloggers - and I found some of them through the She Reads blogger network after I was asked to join. They didn't seem to mind that I also review a ton of YA books, so I'm not sure how much it matters. :)

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    1. I agree, I would burn out quickly if I only read one genre. And it does seem like a lot of the book blogs out there are YA-oriented, doesn't it? Perhaps it doesn't really matter in the end, it's just a matter of being comfortable. :) Thanks for the comment, Kate!

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  3. I don't think it's overly important whether you identity as a YA blogger or not, and I don't think you should limit yourself to reading only YA books! Read and review what you like to read. No need to label yourself!

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  4. I too have a hard time identifying with a particular genre. I read a lot of New Adult and Young Adult novels but I do read some Adult novels as well and so I have a hard time labelling my "genre". I review book series in those genres but not one genre in particular. But "series" isn't an option when selecting "genre" ahaha

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    1. Haha I think it's cool that you have a blogging identity with the series though!

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  5. I actually really like reading blogs that review a mix of types of books, since that's what I read. I suspect there are a lot of specifically YA book blogs because there are a lot of teen bloggers. As a middle school teacher and mom of elementary school kids, I read about 50% YA, 20% chldren's and MG, and the rest adult fiction and nonfiction. I read graphic novels, memoirs, historical fiction, mystery series, poetry, fantasy, sci fi, contemporary fiction, tear-jerkers, humor, classics, essayists, snark, sagas--pretty much anything besides horror, Christian fiction, and straight-up romance novels. And I'll make exceptions for really well written examples of those too. So that's what I like to see represented in a blog!

    I'm actually finding that the blogs that keep my interest the most are the ones that mix up genres and types of posts.

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    1. Oh wow, you really do read a a good mix of genre! That makes sense - now that I've thought about it, I like reading blogs that write about different genres as they would introduce me to a wider range of books. Perhaps I'll keep doing what I do and not worry about specialising in any genre. :) Thanks Wendy!

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  6. Well, to be honest, I've never particularly worried about fitting in or standing out anywhere, I just do me lol. And in the process, I usually find some other people who tend to fit with me or at least accept me. And that has seemed to also hold true in the blogging world. So I don't define myself as a genre blogger, but I do mention on my blog that I review mostly fantasy and sci-fi. I've never called myself a SFF blogger though because I do, on occasion, review other genres. I also review a mix of YA, NA, and adult. And M-F and M-M romance. So I'm all over the place lol. I know I'll never become one of the super popular bloggers by doing things this way, but that's ok with me because this is what makes *me* happy. So I think whether you should define yourself depends on your goal :-)

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    1. I like your philosophy! :D I guess part of my problem is I've never really defined my blogging goals, but I think for now I'm happy to just keep doing what I do and not really put myself in a box.

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  7. I seem to gravitate toward YA as well, but I definitely occasionally review other genres. Sometimes I worry about this because it seems weird to review a YA book and then review a book with adult content in it (because I know I have some younger readers), and I've also wondered if it sometimes makes it harder for me to get publisher attention - because they want blogs who focus on their genre - but I haven't cared enough to actually change what I'm doing. Who knows, maybe that will change one day?

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

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    1. Yess, I think finding readership and getting publisher's attention are the two times I feel like I need to have a clear-cut genre preference. After this discussion and some thoughts, I don't think I'm bothered enough to change my reading habits yet!

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Thanks for reading! It makes my day to hear your thoughts and I will respond asap. :)