Bloggers and readers, I’ve mentioned it before but reading is essential to having a successful blog. Here’s why: (And for those of you who don’t blog, keep reading because this post can apply to more than just blogging).
Reading is learning.
Whether you are reading a textbook or a sci-fi, you are learning each time you read. You are learning different writing styles, consuming proper grammar, and spelling, and most importantly, learning new things, concepts and ideas you had never thought of before. Even a sci-fi books pushes your mind to think in places it has never been before. Expanding your mind is learning.
However, we all know that in order to learn about a particular topic, you must read about that topic to learn about it. For example, if you wanted to learn why rabbits (told you they would come up again) live in burrows but squirrels build their nests in trees, you would have to read in depth about rabbits and squirrels.
Reading to Blog.
Therefore, if I want to write about food, recipes, and critiques, then I should read how other writers have approached these topics in order for me to derive my own unique style and branding. Some writers I come across I will like and some I will not, but there is something to be learned from each, regardless. Even to write a recipe, there are different styles. Some people (myself included) tell a story before beginning the recipe, others simply write out the recipe. The way the recipe is written to can be slightly different depending on the writer. Anyway, here are some resources I have found helpful since I started blogging:
Julie and Julia
Really, this whole conversation began for me when I watched the movie, Julie & Julia in which a young Julie in New York aspires to be like the renowned Julie Child. Young Julie begins cooking her way through each one of Julia Child’s recipes, blogging about her adventures in the kitchen in hopes of becoming a good cook, like Julia Child. I can’t tell you how many times I have watched this movie. I wanted all the information I could get on it so I went digging and found a book for both the story of young Julie and the story of Julia Child. I think this movie and these books have been so important to me because young Julie does almost exactly what I would love to do: Cook and blog about it, and eventually become a successful blogger. (Sorry, that was a spoiler).
First word that comes to mind: amazing! My first encounter with her was in her book Garlic and Sapphires. My mom had read it for her book club and I found it on her bookshelf one time when I was looking for something to read. Honestly, her book changed so many things for me. In short, Garlic and Sapphires is about Ruth Reichl being a food critic that goes in disguise in order to avoid being recognized and thus have a normal experience at a given restaurant. Her finding are amazing: the way she is treated based on who she is dressed as, the food she is served, and the acquaintances she makes. Furthermore, her writing ability and the way she tells stories is absolutely captivating.
That is how I moved on to another book written by her called Tender at the Bone, a coming of age story of her growing up years and how she was introduced to food, and eventually became an expert food critic. One thing she learns early on is that you can tell a great deal about a person by noting their food habits. This could not be truer. But like a said, it is also her writing style that makes her books so hard to put down.
Finally my most recent Ruth Reichl purchase was giant cookbook entitled The Gourmet Cookbook. There are more than 1000 recipes in this cookbook and the book itself is inches thick. You can find absolutely any recipe in it: pancakes, clam chowder, tortilla soup, muffins, cheesecake, etc. Mainly, I was excited about this find because it was by Ruth Reichl, but I also intend to try recipes from it.
What I learned
- Reading contributes more to your blog (and brain) then you realize.
- Ruth Reichl is my young Julie’s Julia Child.
- Writers need a writer to aspire to and greatly respect.
- No matter what your blogging niche (or field of interest), read about it and learn.
Especially if you are a food blogger, or cook I highly recommend to read/ watch all of these resources. I cannot recommend them strongly enough. Even if you are not a food blogger or cook, read them. Finally, if you are in a different niche, find amazing books in your own niche to contribute subconsciously to your blog, or your brain.
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Great blogs to read and follow:
elenaopeters Elena blogs about blogging tips and help. She also offers some helpful courses to help you get on track and learn about different topics to help your blog become successful. Elena’s blog has great navigation and layout, making it perfect to use as a resource for blogging help. She also has incredibly clear branding, making her recognizable.
anodetofood Frederika and Michelle have an absolutely gorgeous food blog. Their clear, rustic, photography make their branding. On top of that, their recipes are fresh, healthy, and they have seemingly elegant dishes consisting of dressings, pastries, breakfasts, and even tacos. I am also very impressed each and every time I visit their blog.
hellofoxyblog Emma blogs about blogging, lifestyle, fashion, and home decor. Honestly, Emma has some of the best blogging advice you will find. That is what I go to her blog for. I like her blogging advice because it is very straightforward and honest, in addition to being easy to read. So far, almost every blogging question I’ve had I have been able to find an answer for from Emma’s blog.
I will continue promoting blogs I like to help out my fellow bloggers. To be eligible for consideration you must:
- be a fellow lifestyle blogger
- and be a follower/subscriber