Happy 6 Months, Sparkling Letters ♥ (+Freebies!)

HAPPY 6 MONTHS ANNIVERSARY, SPARKLING LETTERS!

Hello peeps! I’m in an extremely happy mood because today, I’m celebrating my 6 months blogversary! ♥♥♥ I believe congratulations are in order, my friends 😛 anyway, I didn’t realize I’d actually make it this far, especially since I had no goals whatsoever when I started this blog :’) now let’s pretend I have celebratory food and drink for us and let me talk about my blogging journey, what I learned so far, and a little celebration at the end of the post (spoiler: freebies!) 😛

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I started this blog on March 2 under the name of Unboxing My Thoughts. At that point, I absolutely had no idea on where I wanted to take my blog to. I didn’t even plan it to be a book blog. All I knew was that I needed a place to spill my thoughts. I changed the name of the blog to Sparkling Letters 2 months ago because I wanted it to be more personalized and… representative. Like, I want people to have an idea of what my blog is about only by hearing its name.

These past 6 months have been super amazing! I was just messing around at first, randomly writing anything I had in mind. Book reviews, discussions, makeup reviews, personal stuffs, basically all the random things that pop into my head. It wasn’t until after two months that I finally started to blog more seriously. I realized that I wanted to commit fully to book blogging, because I never ran out of things to talk when it comes to books. I started to carefully plan my contents and be more involved in the book blogging community.

I used to run out of ideas so quickly! I ended up posting reviews after reviews and that was when I found the joy of doing meme, especially Top 10 Tuesday. Top 10 Tuesday gives me something to work on, ideas, and more importantly, it brings A LOT of traffic. My blog was super lonely so traffic was everything 😛 TTT also allows me to discover other awesome bloggers out there. I think I found most of my current favorite bloggers from TTT. So, big thanks for Top Ten Tuesday! ♥

But you may or may not have noticed that I don’t do meme as often as I used to anymore. I did TTT every week until around a month ago. That’s because I finally found my direction. I have so many post ideas that I want to work on and I can’t keep up with TTT as often as I’d like to anymore. Between book talks, book reviews, tags, and memes, I’m afraid I’ll end up spamming :’)

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Blogging is surprisingly time consuming!

I know you’ve probably experienced or heard this often enough, but I thought it was worth mentioning 😛 When I first started, I thought I’d just work with my blog on my spare time but WHAT A JOKE, right? I spent probably half my days blog hopping, commenting on people’s blogs, taking pictures, creating header images, and actually drafting my posts. I never run out of things to do though :’)

It’s not always about stats. 

Confession time, I’M OBSESSED WITH STATS. Or I used to be (actually I still am). BUT, I used to spend my time obsessing over page views whilst recently I’m more obsessed about comments. Page views are page views. A hundred of page views don’t necessarily mean that a post is golden. It means that the post is popular. Comments, on the other hand, are proof that people actually read my posts. I can’t tell you how much I’m grateful to receive comments, especially the really thoughtful ones. You guys are so precious ♥♥♥

Quality contents are #1.

I spent so much time trying out ways to bring more traffic to my blog. Pinning images, promoting contents on social media, using stumbleupon, optimizing SEO, you name it. None of them works better than the content itself. I found out that every time I write a thought-provoking, slightly personal, bookish contents, I got more engagements. A really good review of a popular book brings a lot of traffic as well. But that doesn’t mean you should stop promoting though… I still get one or two visitors from social media.

Book bloggers are some of the nicest, funniest people on earth! 

I’m serious! I don’t think I’ll get this amount of friendliness from any other niche! (I might be wrong). We book bloggers could easily bond over a book and the next thing you know is we’re fangirling together. Isn’t that amazing?!

Blog hopping is actually really FUN ♦ 

I admit… the first couple of months into blogging, I was more focused on my own blog and didn’t dedicate enough time to visit other blogs. What an amateur. At first, I blog hopped only to ‘steal’ some inspiration and quite frankly, treating it as an obligation. I had this mind set “Visit other blogs so people would visit yours. Comment on others’ posts so they’d comment back on your posts.” I did start commenting out of the hope of getting comments in return, BUT as I went along, I actually enjoy reading others’ post and giving them some pieces of my thoughts. I began looking forward to certain bloggers’ post and I always comment on them because I want to. They’re so thought provoking and I just can’t help it. At this point, getting a comment in return is more of a pleasant surprise.

Blogging improves my ability to express my opinions in English.

English isn’t my first language. It’s not even my second, but I’ve been learning since I was little. I knew my English was pretty decent, but using it to fully express my opinions, especially on tough subjects, is definitely a whole other level. I was struggling at first. I even have this board on pinterest consisting of pictures about adjectives, adverbs, and tenses. Haha 😛 but we can safely say I improved though. The words flow more freely and I don’t struggle as much anymore (I still do sometimes :P)

Blogging makes me learn new things.

I think everybody knows this already, but blogging is a lot more than just writing a post. There are photography, designs, coding, and basic SEO for example. I’m always a bit into design so working on my blog only nurtures my interest. I started using various softwares and it was fun! And useful. I also started learning photography and I’m now proudly using manual settings on the DSLR 😛 I’m still a goner for SEO and coding though… but I’d like to assume I at least master the basic 😉

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In order to celebrate, I’m giving away some freebies here! 😀

I wanted to do a book giveaway, but since I’m currently unemployed, I could barely afford books to myself 😛 This is something that I’ve been planning to do for a while but haven’t really got to it because… well… I’m shy. I’m afraid my design isn’t good enough and all that but then I thought, why not? I’m still learning and it’s not like I charge people anyway hehe so here you go!

Six printable bookmarks inspired by my favorite books ♥♥♥ 

To download the PDF version, click here. There’s also a little directions to use it in it 😀 and I obviously tested it first! 😛 Also, if the size is too big for your taste, you can also download the JPG version here and print it to your preferable size. Hope you like it! ♥

P.S. Suggestions and critics are always welcome! But please do it nicely? 😉 I’m scared :’)

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So those are my recaps of six months blogging! I’ve learned a lot, but I’m sure I’ll be learning so many more stuffs along the way 😀 During your blogging journey, what lessons do you learn the most? Share with me! ♥ also, what do you think about my bookmarks? 😛

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26 thoughts on “Happy 6 Months, Sparkling Letters ♥ (+Freebies!)

  1. Congratulations on six fruitful months!!! I’ve only started following you recently but I am in love with your blog’s layout and content. 💕 The colors in particular are stunning!

    Anyway, I can totally relate to what you mentioned in your post. It took a while before I started taking blogging seriously (as evidenced by my recent relaunch). It’s been extremely time consuming and exhausting so far, but blogging gives me a sense of fulfillment that cannot be compared to anything else! I imagine you feel the same way. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much that is so sweet and means a lot to me <3<3 I love the color too! Haha obviously, I picked it 😛 Yes I was immersed in this blogging world and I really take the time to work on it! Sooo satisfying 😀 thank you for stopping by 🙂

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  2. Ahh huge congratulations! I hope you’ll have another incredible six months, and years and years to come of blogging and fun! 🙂 None of us really know what we are doing at first, and it’s quite incredible to get the feeling when everything comes into place and you know what you want to do of your little corner of the internet 🙂

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  3. Congratulations on six months! Your blog looks so pretty and professional!

    My stats were literally the worst my first year of blogging because I wasn’t doing any kind of promotion, so I’m sure you’re doing better than I was! I agree that comments are more meaningful than numbers, though. It’s hard to know whether readers enjoyed your post, or whether it was really what they were looking for when they clicked through from a search engine, unless they comment.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you! That’s very sweet ❤ well honestly, I don't think I'm doing good with promotion because most of my visitors don't come from it? Most of them actually come from other blogs so I have to work on it too 😛 I know right! Comments help me decide what to write next 🙂

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  4. Happy 6 month blogoversary! And don’t worry, I’ve been blogging for a year and still don’t have goals lol. It is definitely time consuming, but worth it. And I also much prefer comments to pageviews! And I’ve definitely learned a lot about related things like coding and all that. Your photos are gorgeous by the way! I recently got my DSLR out again, but I’ve totally forgotten how to use all the settings, haha.

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  5. Pingback: Sparkling Letters Monthly Recap: September 2016 | Sparkling Letters

    • Thank you! ❤ it is, it's amazing to see what I've learned and accomplished so far, especially because I never planned to blog seriously. It's such a delightful surprise 😀 ahhh thank you, I'm hoping to improve my designing skills tho hehe 😛

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