Who is Debdatta Dasgupta?
Listen, in her own words…
“I am a constant learner. I have already achieved two Masters Degree and I am currently studying Psychology &. I have 6 years of work experience in Human Resources and Administration and have been working as a freelance digital marketer exclusively for books since 2013. Although a reviewer and publicist by profession, I am a reader and book lover first; reading for the love of printed words.”
Can you tell our readers about yourself and your blog?
Bookish Indulgences is a book blog that has thrice been part of the Limca Book of Records for most book reviews. It has been listed as Indian Top Blog since 2016. The blog also won IndiBlogger Awards 2013 in the books category.
The website has an audience that's spread across the globe, and has featured both Indian and international authors and their work.
Describe how you first get into blogging?
On an impulse. I knew very little about blogging when I started my blog back in 2012. I just wanted an outlet for my bookish rants and hopefully make friends I could talk about books too.
How would you describe your blogging style?
Simple and laid back even when I am putting out my opinions.
What type of networking do you think is better to enhance your traffic to the blog?
Being an introvert, I prefer online networking over personal networking. I share & crosspost my posts on multiple social media platforms, engage in bookish communities and collaborate online.
What do you think is the best service a blogger can provide to their readers?
Irrespective of their chosen niché, I believe that a blogger should always provide detail oriented and honest opinions. Always disclose when one is doing a sponsored post.
How do you manage time to run your blog efficiently?
It's been a bit difficult since the pandemic hit, and I am trying to get back my original groove. But I suggest everyone to have a realistic goal in mind and never over do when you have time on your hands. Choose a number of posts per week that you think is doable in the long run and stick to it.
How do you want to improve yourself in the next year?
Get back to my original groove and stick to the schedule I had made for myself when I originally got into blogging. And, maybe try offline networking too.
What was your greatest failure and what did you learn from that?
When I started, I had absolutely no idea about anything to do with blogging. SEO is something I learned much later in my blogging journey and I want to continue implementing the bits that I know I can continue in the long run.
Tell me about your proudest achievement?
I have not monetised my Book Blog intentionally as I wanted it to remain as something that ‘I want to do' rather than something ‘I had to do'. But thanks to my blog's performance over the years, I have been able to meet and interview some of my favourite authors like Alexander McCall Smith, Markus Zusak and Ann Cleeves.
What is your greatest achievement outside of blogging?
My book blog helped me network enough to be able to quit my corporate job and start freelancing in the publishing industry too. So now I earn my living doing what I am passionate about.
What do you do in your spare time?
Read & Travel.
Where would you like to be in blogging five years from now?
I did not start the blog with any goal in mind and so I do not have any other goals for my blogging life than the hope that it keeps fuelling my passion for reading.
What was the most challenging moment in your blogging journey so far?
When the pandemic hit, I lost the momentum I had with my blog and I am still struggling to get it back.
Can you name some of your favorite bloggers and explain why they are your favorites?
Anuradha Goyal of Anu Reviews & Sarika Patkotwar of The Readdicts
How do you motivate yourself to keep the blog up and running?
The blogging community helped me make friends who constantly motivate me to keep going.
Can you tell me about a few sources from where you get products for review on your site?
Publishers & Authors usually approach me directly.
What do you find the most frustrating aspect of blogging?
Graphics. I really have no artistic bone in my body and always struggle with creating graphics.
What is the biggest difference in your life post-blogging?
I have a lot of people in my life now who I would have never met if it wasn't for blogging. I wouldn't have the career I have now either if it wasn't for blogging.
Did you have any professional help or did you create the blog yourself?
Merril Anil is a graphic designer who designed my blog banner. Everything else, I handle on my own.
How active are you on a weekly basis? How often do you communicate with your followers?
Once a week on my blog, but I am always available on my social media.
How much time do you spend blogging?
About 3 to 4 hours a week at the moment. I hope to double that within the next couple of months.
What do you think is the best social media strategy for getting more visitors to a blog?
Focus on quality – of content and engagement.
Is blogging your profession or just a hobby?
For me Bookish Indulgences is a hobby that helped me launch my professional career.
A lot of people think that blogging is an easy way to make money online. Do you have some tips for those people who are interested in making money from the blog?
It is anything but easy. If someone wants to make a regular steady income, it will take time. You need to build your brand and network first. Create quality content. Engage. Repeat. And remember that shortcuts that make quick easy money doesn't translate into long term income source.