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A Beginner’s Guide to Bookstagram

Maybe you’re new to Bookstagram, our little corner of instagram, and maybe not, but here’s my beginners guide. I can’t claim to be an expert at Bookstagramming, but I figured that I know enough to help others out. When I started my account, I would have appreciated having somewhere to look for guidance. This beginner’s guide will give you some tips and explain some tags.

Some tips:

When starting a bookstagram account, pick a name that you can stick with. It’ll get confusing to your followers if you switch names often. I changed my name once but I informed my followers and promised it would be a permanent name change.

Talk to others! Comment on posts, interact with your own followers. Follow other bookstagram accounts and start conversations. Join a monthly post challenge and talk to other participants. Make a goodreads account and talk to people about the books they’re reading. Tag people in bookstagram tags and when you get tagged, put up a post. There is so much you can do.

Quality over quantity! Make sure you’re posting pictures you actually like. Bookstagrammers are smart people and they’ll know when a picture was just thrown up to meet a quota. Personally, I feel that there is such a thing as posting too much or too often so I try to limit myself to 3 posts per day.

Participate in some Shoutouts-for-shoutouts. Give other accounts a shoutout and they might be inclined to do the same. Some users will post actual “S4S” posts in which you promote them and leave a comment and then they’ll promote some of those people. This is a great way to gain some followers.However, don’t be in it for the followers. The whole point is to share your love of reading with others, talk about books, discover new reads, etc…

Use some hashtags such as #bookstagram, #bibliophile #book #books #reading #lovereading #booklover …but don’t go overboard. Pick one or two per post.


Most tags are pretty self-explanatory but I’ll include them here in case you want some ideas for posts.

  • Bookstagram Buy – A book or some books you bought because of Bookstagram
  • Bookish Rainbow – A collection of books stacked together to form a rainbow
  • Photogenic Books – Books that look great in pictures. You might also see this as Beautiful Covers or Beautiful Spines
  • Creepy Reads – Exactly what it sounds like. A creepy book or two
  • Bookish Letter – The person tagging you will give you a letter such as “C”. You post a picture of your books beginning with a “C” and then tag other people and give them a different letter
  • Became a Movie – A book or two that was adapted into a movie
  • Mapped Books – Books with maps in them. Fantasy novels are usually great for this
  • (Colour) Books – Like Bookish Rainbow except if it was “Red Books” your stack would just be your red books
  • Book and Music – This one is up for interpretation. I like to post a book with a record that might relate to it. You could also have the soundtrack to the film adaptation, maybe just an instrument and a book. The joy of bookstagram is that really there are no set rules. Mostly it’s all up to you
  • Books and Nature – Take your book into the great outdoors and snap a picture. This can be somewhere like a gorge or waterfall or simply the walking trail you frequent.
  • More Than One –  Do you have more than one copy of a book? Let’s see them!
  • Book in the Sky – This can be hard to do but the most common way I’ve seen it done is to throw your book in the air and snap a picture. Just make sure not to damage your book. They’re precious, you know?
  • Late Night Reads – Something you want to read late at night. Maybe it’s erotica, maybe it’s a horror or thriller. Either way, nobody’s judging.
  • Book and Necklace – A book and a necklace. Sometimes they match and sometimes not. I posted an illustrated Harry Potter book with a Deathly Hallows necklace (to give you an idea)
  • Must Read Book – What book struck a cord with you? What are you recommending to everybody? This is your must read book. Now share it with all of bookstagram!
  • Book and Bag – Like book and necklace, maybe you have a bookish tote bag. Put them together and you’ve got a post
  • One Word Title – Carrie. Eragon. Room. There are plenty of books with one word titles. Pick one or two and share them with the world
  • Books and Flowers – Like Books and Nature but more specific. Bonus points if the book has flowers on the cover
  • Book and Mug – Sometimes you’ll see “Book and Beverage” and you can use this for that too. Just a book and a mug. Though if you fill the mug with tea and find a good hashtag, you can read the tea people too.
  • Where I Read – What’s your favourite place to read? Show us
  • Just Started – Did you just crack the spine on a new book? Guess what, you can post with this tag
  • Longest Book Title – What book of yours has the longest title? I count anything hyphenated as two words but that’s up to you
  • Latest Book Purchase – What was the last thing you bought? Did you receive #bookmail or maybe it was your most recent #bookhaul. Either way, let the world see all the books you just added to your collection
  • Books with Faces – Books with faces on the covers, sometimes they’re attached to heads, sometimes not
  • Intimidating Book Tag – What book are you scared to read? It can be scary because of length, content, high hopes.
  • Unread Books – What books are sitting in your TBR (To Be Read) pile ?
  • Over The Ocean – If you’re in the eastern hemisphere, what books do you own by authors in the West? If you’re in the western hemisphere, what books do you own by authors in the East?

Remember, some people don’t like to be tagged in posts. If you notice people keep untagging themselves from you posts, it might be a good idea not to tag them anymore

That’s all I’ve got. I hope this guide is helpful and maybe you’ll have a better time at bookstagram


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