80 Bookstagram Reel ideas for bookstagrammers and Authors

Do you have a bookstagram (on Instagram or Tiktok) and want some new reel ideas? A great way to always have new ideas flowing in is to follow a wide range of bookstagram accounts – Whether you like the books they read or not. The bookstagram community is great at sharing tips and tricks to make your reels stand out, you just need to have an open mind. Here are a few accounts to follow to help your creative juices flowing:

1. Shannon from @the_reel_bookery always does fantastic reels on book characters and humorous parallels.

2. Leah from @Leahslittlepleasures offers a wonderful round-up of different books from every reading trope you can think of.

3. Maggie from @busymomsreadtoo has some great character cosplay and humorous bookish things.

4. Ella from @thehungrybookworm_ is someone I look forward to seeing reels from all the time she is very creative and makes me smile.

5. Jaysen from @ezeekat is great at making you see things from different perspectives with helpful humor and sarcasm along the way.

*Plus, if you follow me @travelerswife4life, I share a lot of bookstagrammers posts in my stories that will help inspire you too!

A few of my favorite ideas for creating reels are ones that you can duplicate over and over, just make sure to pair it with some great audio that is currently trending that week on whichever social media platform you choose to post it on; It will help you reach a wider audience. Plus, most of these ideas do not take a lot of time to film.

Sharing bookish tips and recommendations can be immensely helpful to your followers. Whether it’s a reading hack, a creative way to display your books, or suggestions for overcoming reading slumps, providing valuable content will keep your audience coming back for more. Additionally, recommending diverse and lesser-known books can help broaden your followers’ reading horizons and contribute to a more inclusive bookstagram community.

80 Bookstagram ideas

Quick and Easy Bookstagram Ideas

Here are some ideas to get your creative juices flowing, if you need tips on how to format your videos best you can skip to the bottom of this post to see the settings I recommend for both iPhone and Android devices. The printable list is at the bottom of this page.

  1. I’m sure you’ve seen this one, but monthly wrap ups are a great way to have something new to share and it helps you keep track of what you read which month, and why YOU liked the books you read. It can be very simple, just hold up a book and say if you liked it or not.
  2. Star rating. This idea is always easy, you just take a video looking at the book cover and add stars above it. No need to do anything else, you don’t have to explain your rating.
  3. Last, Current, Next. This is one I try to do every week; it shows off a wide array of books and is not complicated to do. Just stack your books in order (Last read, Current Read, Next Read), point the camera at it, and film your hand taking off the top book to reveal the one underneath.
  4. Book Reviews. While written book reviews are valuable, many people just skim book reviews, so to better engage your audience ask thought-provoking questions and encourage them to share their opinions in the comments. This type of interactive content can generate discussions and add depth to your book reviews. It can also be a great way for you to get book review requests.
  5. End of the day. This one is what they call a B-roll film. You can film yourself doing anything – from washing the dishes to going on a walk. Then overlay words on it saying something to the effect of can’t wait to read____ when I’m done for the day!
  6. New Book. Everyone loves to look at pretty new book covers. So, when you get some book mail take a little video of you getting it out of the package and showing the cover to your audience. If you want to get fancy with this one use the mirror effect in Tiktok/Instagram to show the cover off in a way that your audience can read it if you use your front camera on your phone.
  7. Favorite genres. This one can be endless. I always love genre roundups because there are simply SO many different books being published that I cannot see them all and I usually end up finding something new to add to my list every time I see someone make a genre rec reel. Just grab a stack of your favorite books in a specific genre and hold them up in front of your bookcase, you can get fancy with the transitions on this one. I’ve seen some totally awesome ones done.
  8. Past year. For this one grab a few of the best books you’ve read in either the last 6 months or last year (really do both!) hold them up and show them off. You can also do a mini review of each as well.
  9. Last book. An aesthetic reel of the last book you read. This one can be so fun! Especially with the Instagram templates that allow you to insert images to predetermined musical intervals.  Just be sure you use FREE public images from places like Pixabay, Unsplash, or Pexels; If you just grab images from places like Pinterest or Canva there can be licensing issues.
  10. Best Thing ___. This idea is straightforward, take the Harry Potter series for example. I’ve seen several people hold up the books and say this is the best thing about Harry Potter ___, i.e. It started my reading addiction, it was the first book I remember reading, etc.
  11. Next Book. This one can be fun and help you interact with your audience. Grab three books you would like to read next set them down in front of you then show them on camera and ask your bookstagram friends to choose your next read for you!
  12. Closer look. This one is especially good if you have a physical copy or special edition, it’s a way to capture the audience’s attention. Show off the front, back, and any cool inside details of your book (like maps or authors notes that are presented in an interesting way).
  13. Lots of Images. I LOVE this one when I don’t have a ton of time to film videos that week, I just snap a dozen photos of the book I’m currently reading (or going to start, or even the one I just finished). Then find a template on Tiktok, Instagram, or Capcut that’s ready-made and place the images.
  14. Bookstore photos. This one is a great way to support your local bookstores. You can take your followers on a bookstore tour of your favorite bookstores in your area!
  15. Children’s books. I know not everyone reads them currently, but what ones did you enjoy growing up? This is a great way to find common ground with your followers. You could also do this idea with middle school or Ya books as well.
  16. Book Swap or Book Giftting. Consider organizing a book swap or book gifting event among your followers. This interactive initiative encourages bookstagrammers to exchange books they love and wish to share with others. These acts of kindness can create a sense of community and build connections among your followers.
  17. Funny. One of my favorite things to do is to make people smile. So, I found a bunch of Bookish puns on Book Riot and Books Beans and Botany and made a series of videos with them and you can too!
  18. Book Hauls and TBR lists. Book hauls and TBR (To Be Read) lists are classic bookstagram content that never gets old. Whether you’ve just returned from a bookstore or received a stack of new books in the mail, sharing your hauls and lists can generate excitement among your followers. Additionally, creating TBR lists for upcoming months allows you to keep track of what books you plan to read and when your goal of completing them is 😊.
  19. Seasonal. Select your book recommendations to coincide with the seasons or holidays that are upcoming. For example, curate a list of spooky reads for Halloween or heartwarming stories for the holiday season. Seasonal book recommendations are not only relevant and engaging but they also show your personality.
  20. Bookish DIY & Crafts. Get creative with bookish DIYs and crafts that reflect your love for reading. You can create bookmarks, book sleeves, or bookish-themed decorations. Sharing your craft projects in reels can be a fun way to connect to other readers and inspire them to create too.
  21. Books that make you Cry or Laugh. Create a reel featuring books that stir strong emotions in you, whether the books made you cry, laugh, or experience any other intense emotions. Sharing vulnerable moments with your audience helps establish genuine connections and encourages them to share their own experiences. Because admit it we’ve all been on a roller coaster of emotion for one reason or another just by reading a book.
  22. Bookish Bucket List Adventures: Create a reel showcasing your bookish bucket list adventures. This can include visits to bookstores, libraries, literary landmarks, or attending book events and author signings. Take your followers along on these journeys and inspire them to create their own book-related bucket lists.
  23. Bookish Discussions: Start bookish discussions in your reels by posing thought-provoking questions or sharing your opinions on literary topics. For example, ask your audience about their favorite book-to-movie adaptations, book cover designs, or bookish pet peeves. Encourage engagement and interaction by inviting your followers to share their thoughts and experiences in the comments.
  24. Book Recommendations from Non-Readers: Collaborate with your best friend, family members, or followers who aren’t avid readers and have them recommend books that they enjoyed or found impactful. Capture their honest and refreshing perspectives in a reel, showing that books have the power to resonate with diverse audiences.

Social media managers over the past several years have had a lot of trial and error on the type of posts that are working. Is it truly reels? Static posts? Carousel posts? A combination of all three? New accounts pop up all the time and become overnight successes, but what makes a bookstagram account memorable? It’s not just reading all the popular new releases, it’s the bookstagrammers who show you themselves and let you a little bit into their lives in a vulnerable way.

A fun way to show off your sense of style and build relationships with your audience is to show your obsessions or fandoms by starting conversations about why YOU liked (or Didn’t like) a book.

Bookstagram reel ideas to Start conversations

  1. Dress up as your favorite character. Jane Austen is a popular historical fiction character I have seen depicted all over Instagram reels. You can share your favorite book or quote dressed up as your character.
  2. Similar Reads. This one is a good one for book comparison. Take your favourite author and find books in the same genre or trope and say, “If you liked this book then you’ll love this one because___”. It’s an easy one to fall back on and repeat.
  3. Contemporary Fiction. This one can cover a LOT of ground. So, I tend to break this one down by sub-genre or trope specific. Show off your favorite genre that you could read repeatedly or a trope you can’t stand.
  4. Friends’ Posts. This one is a way to show your friends you care and a way to create more of a community (it helps open the door for conversation and collaboration). Share your friends’ posts in your stories or stitch their reel showing your reaction or use their audio as a reference for your reel.
  5. New Readers. This one is great for showing off your style to new readers. Show off your favorite bookshelf and say something to the effect of “if you liked these we should be friends.”
  6. Reading Journey. This one can be a compilation of your past bookstagram posts/reels, or you can show how your style of reading has evolved, i.e., show your favorite books from when you were in school to now.
  7. Comment section (FAQs). This is an interesting one, I’ve only seen it done well a few times. With this prompt, you go back through your comments and create a video based on a person’s comments (both Instagram and Tiktok have this feature now). Now you won’t have these starting probably, however, you WILL get them. Create reels that answer frequently asked questions from your followers. Address questions about your reading habits, favorite genres, or how you organize your bookshelves.
  8. Engage your followers with bookish games and trivia. For example, you can play “Guess the Book” based on brief descriptions or cover images. This is always fun to do and encourages participation and foster a sense of camaraderie among your followers.
  9. Free Time. Show people what you do in your “free time”. Do you go to bookstores? Organize your shelves, or rearrange your tbr pile? This is a way to show your audience YOU. This is best done off the cuff and unrehearsed.
  10. Pinterest Pins. I’ve done this one a couple of times; it is a quick one to do. Just do a screen recording of you scrolling through your Pinterest! Share it with your followers to show what your aesthetic is.
  11. Bookish Quotes. Sprinkle your reels with bookish quotes or inspirational messages related to reading and books. These simple yet impactful reels can resonate with your followers and foster a positive bookish community as your followers will get more insight into what resonates with you.
  12. Collage & Aesthetics. Experiment with collages and aesthetic reels to create visually appealing content. You can compile images, quotes, and book covers to craft reels that tell a story or evoke emotions. Aesthetic reels can showcase your artistic flair and set your bookstagram account apart.
  13. Mental Health. Many readers struggle with their mental health, myself included, and they use reading as a coping method. This is a great way to be open with your followers, if you are going through something you can be honest and show your followers how you cope. Do you go for a run? Read a book? Go shopping for books? Talk about how this helps you cope with your mental health. Promoting books that tackle mental health topics sensitively and authentically sharing these recommendations can provide valuable resources to your audience.
  14. Book events. If you can attend book events or author signings, document your experiences and interactions with guest authors. These reels provide unique and exciting content for your audience and demonstrate your involvement in the bookish community as well as helping your favorite authors.
  15. Monthly Challenge. Motivate your followers to read more by creating reading challenges specifically for them. Compile monthly or quarterly prompts, such as “read a book written by an author from a different country” or “try a genre you’ve never read before.” By encouraging your followers to read outside their comfort zones. It helps you promote diverse reading habits and spark meaningful conversations about books.
  16. Book-to-Screen Adaptions. Book-to-screen adaptations are a hot topic among bookstagrammers. Leverage this trend by creating reels comparing books to their movie or TV show adaptations. Engage your audience in discussions about which version they prefer and what elements of the story translated well from page to screen. This approach can spark lively debates and bring in new followers who are fans of the adaptations.

One way to share your authentic self is through behind-the-scenes reels. Show your followers what goes on behind the camera – the process of setting up for a photoshoot, organizing your bookshelves, or the excitement of unboxing book mail. These glimpses into your bookstagram journey can be endearing and instill a sense of community with your followers.

Another way to get video ideas for any platform is to look for bookstagram challenges! They are so diverse and there are entire accounts that just do challenges. Some of them do monthly prompts, weekly prompts, or just random book challenges where you must search your shelf to find a book that fits the verbal prompts; they are an easy way to have more ideas on what to post and when to post.

Take advantage of interactive features on platforms like Instagram and TikTok to create engaging reels. Polls, quizzes, and Q&A sessions are excellent ways to involve your audience and get them invested in your content. Ask for their opinions on books, reading preferences, or favorite authors. This interactivity fosters a two-way conversation, making your followers feel valued and connected.

Prompts That Are Just Plain Fun!

The following is a list of prompts, but just know there are always new ones popping up, so I suggest following the hashtag #Bookishchallenge or #Bookchallenge to keep up to date with them.

  1. Rainbow book challenge. This is one of my favorites 😊 You go to your shelf and try to find a book in every color of the rainbow.
  2. Put your finger down. This challenge asks a series of questions, and you must put a finger down on each one you associate with.
  3. Here is My Book. This challenge asks a series of questions that you show in a book to fit the questions answer.
  4. Pretty Cover Book Challenge. This one was so fun. You must search your shelves to find your favorite book covers in every color.
  5. Show us a Book. Another challenge is answering questions that someone (usually with a British or Aussie accent) is asking and you just show a book to the camera that fits the specific prompt.
  6. 54321 challenge. Show 5 books you love, 4 auto-buy authors, 3 of your favorite genres, 2 of your favorite reading spots, and 1 book you plan to read soon.
  7. How tall are you? This challenge asks you to make a book stack as tall as you and pose next to it.
  8. Bookish Scavenger hunt challenge. This one was really fun for me and a bit of a challenge to find books that fit the words.
  9. I don’t ever really give books five stars. For this prompt, you just need a few 5-star books and one that was NOT a 5-star read for you.
  10. One color Three Genres. This one asks you to find a stack of books all the same color but completely different genres!
  11. Your name is in a stack. This challenge asks you to find books where the first letter matches one in your name and then to make a stack showing your name spelled out in the titles.
  12. Couple Trope. This one asks you to get a picture of yourself and your significant other and add trope labels to it.
  13. A Pink stack. This one is usually done for Breast cancer awareness month in October. You just find all your pink books and post a picture of them.
  14. A challenge of authors. This one you can easily make your own to fit your style. You pick indie authors and show off several books from your shelves that you recommend from indie authors.
  15. Turn to page ___. This one is where you go to your shelf grab a book randomly turn to a certain page (there are several that have different pages mentioned), and the page you turn to the first word describes you or your love life. There have been some very funny ones that have come out of this.
  16. Different Language Stack. Encourage your audience to explore books in different languages by creating challenges that focus on books that have been translated into a different language. This can broaden their reading horizons and showcase an author’s impact! Plus, it’s just cool to see the covers of translated versions.
  17. Guess the book title. This challenges you to read the first line from a book and have your audience guess the title.
  18. My favorite authors vs my favorite books. This challenge usually involves classical English literature books, though I have done it without including them. You show your favorite modern author and a few of their books and your favorite classical author with your favorite books of theirs.
  19. Another bookish scavenger hunt! There are so many of these and I love the ease of using them.
  20. Your favorite tropes Challenge. This one asks you to show your favorite books in a specific trope.
  21. Book you haven’t read yet. This one is great for making a bit of humor at your TBR shelf.
  22. Banned books challenge. Show off your banned books with this reading challenge.
  23. Bookish Bucket list. Present a bookish bucket list and encourage your followers to create their own. This list can include reading goals, book events they want to attend, or literary landmarks they wish to visit. Encouraging your audience to set book-related goals fosters enthusiasm and motivation in their reading journey.
  24. Bookish Transformations: Show off your creative side by transforming into characters from your favorite books. Use makeup, costumes, and props to bring the characters to life, and reveal the result in a captivating reel. This prompt allows you to showcase your love for literature while displaying your artistic talents.
  25. Genre Swap: This fun and imaginative prompt involves switching the genres of well-known books. Pick a few popular titles and imagine how the story would unfold if it were written in a different genre. For example, what would “Pride and Prejudice” look like as a sci-fi thriller or a fantasy adventure? Playfully showcase your genre-swap ideas in a reel, sparking curiosity and excitement among your followers.
  26. Social issues. Now this one I don’t recommend doing this often as it can be very controversial.  However, if there is a social movement you feel strongly about, find books that share your standpoint and showcase them. It can be a way to show your support for a great many things.
  27. Bookshelf Organization Time-lapse: Take your audience on a journey through the organization of your bookshelf. Capture a time-lapse of rearranging your books by color, genre, or any unique system you have in mind. This visually pleasing reel will not only entertain your followers but also inspire bookshelf organization ideas.
  28. Bookish Doodles and fan art: Share your artistic flair by creating bookish doodles or fanart. You can draw scenes from your favorite books, design book covers for imaginary titles, or even sketch bookish quotes. Display your artistic process in a fun and engaging reel that highlights your creative talents.
  29. Reading in Unusual Places: Showcase your love for reading by filming yourself reading in unexpected and unconventional locations. Whether it’s on top of a mountain, inside a treehouse, or by a waterfall, you can demonstrate your passion for books in fun settings. This prompt adds a sense of adventure to your bookstagram and invites your followers to think outside the box when it comes to their reading habits.
  30. Bookish Time Travel: Take your audience on a literary time travel journey by featuring books from different time periods. Create a reel that showcases a selection of books set in various historical eras, from ancient civilizations to the distant future. Add a touch of creativity by incorporating vintage filters or animations to transport your followers through time with you.
  31. Bookish Confessions: Open up to your audience with a reel of bookish confessions. Share your guilty reading pleasures, book-related quirks, or unpopular opinions about beloved books or authors. Embrace vulnerability and encourage your followers to join in by sharing their bookish confessions in the comments.
  32. Literary Locations: Take your followers on a virtual tour of literary locations. Compile images, videos, or even animated scenes inspired by the settings of your favorite books. Whether it’s the magical world of Hogwarts or the bustling streets of Victorian London, immerse your audience in the rich atmospheres of these fictional places and ignite their wanderlust for bookish destinations.
  33. Bookish Bookshelf Tour: Take your followers on a comprehensive bookshelf tour, showcasing your book collection, how you organize your books, and any special bookish items or decorations on display. Use creative transitions and background music to make the reel visually captivating.
  34. Book Spine Poetry: Create book spine poetry by stacking books in a way that their titles form a poem or tell a story. Use a mix of genres and titles to craft unique and meaningful poems that reflect your emotions or current themes in your life.
  35. Literary Travel Vlog: If you’re traveling to a location featured in a book you love, document your journey and connect it to the story. Share clips of the real-life settings from the book, and include voiceovers discussing the connections between the book and your travel experiences.
  36. Bookish Recipes: Combine your love for books and cooking by sharing bookish-themed recipes inspired by your favorite novels. Create visually appealing reels that demonstrate how to make book-inspired dishes or treats, and invite your audience to try them out.
  37. Bookish Anticipations: Make a reel of your most anticipated book releases of the year. Highlight the cover art, share a brief synopsis, and express your excitement for these upcoming reads. Encourage your followers to share their own highly anticipated books in the comments.
  38. Book Character Outfits: Dress up as your favorite book characters and showcase their iconic outfits. Have fun with cosplay and incorporate transitions to reveal different character looks. This playful and creative reel will resonate with fellow book lovers who share your favorite characters.
  39. Bookish Unboxings: Film yourself unboxing book subscription boxes or book hauls, sharing your genuine reactions to the contents. Talk about the books and bookish items you received, and discuss your excitement to read and explore each item.
  40. Bookstagram Bloopers: Compile funny and candid moments from your bookstagram photoshoots and reels. Show the behind-the-scenes process and the not-so-perfect moments with a touch of humor. This reel will humanize your bookstagram account and connect with your followers on a personal level.

***Bonus: First Line Friday! Read the first line of your current read!

Expand your bookish challenges beyond Instagram and incorporate other platforms like YouTube or TikTok. Cross-platform challenges can introduce your bookstagram account to new audiences and extend your reach beyond your existing follower base.

Apart from participating in bookstagram challenges, consider hosting your own reading challenges or book clubs. By curating reading lists or themes and inviting your followers to join, you can create a sense of community and encourage discussions about books; not to mention the graphics would have your handle on them so they are great for brand recognition. This engagement not only strengthens your bond with your audience but also introduces your account to new bookstagrammers who might share your interests.

Remember though, in a sea of bookstagram accounts, what sets the most successful ones apart is the authenticity and vulnerability they bring to their content. While it’s fun to explore different reel ideas and participate in challenges, don’t lose sight of what makes your bookstagram unique: you! Share your personal experiences, thoughts, and emotions related to books and reading. Let your audience see the real you, and they will connect with you on a deeper level.

Technical how to’s

Now I know you may be here for just the ideas but, here are a few tips that will help make your video editing EASIER for you:

iPhone: Use the 4.6 ratio for videos and the 1.1 ratio for static posts. Life will seem so much brighter. Another helpful tip is to use portrait mode to take your video cover photo, which will focus on the main subject for you and blur everything around it.

Android: Make sure you go to your settings and select the 1.1 ratio or square (depending on which update you have installed).

Bonus: You could also use this as a reel idea for your followers. Share your photography tips and tricks for creating eye-catching bookstagram photos. From lighting techniques to composition ideas, these reels can be valuable resources for fellow bookstagrammers looking to improve their photography skills.

Final thoughts

With the rise of Tiktok and YouTube shorts, Instagram has seen a roller coaster of engagement rates. One new thing that has risen out of it is collaboration. Collabs are way underused because not everyone knows what they are, or how they work. They are NOT just for paid promotions. You can use collabs to reach a completely different audience than you currently have. The way collaborations work between two people is that the post or video is posted to the other person’s page and their audience will see it! It can be a huge bump to a small account.

Collaborating with fellow bookstagrammers or hosting guest features on your account is a win-win strategy. You get to introduce your audience to new voices and perspectives while expanding your reach through exposure on your collaborator’s account. Consider hosting interviews, guest takeovers, or joint discussions of a book you both enjoyed. These collaborations can lead to lasting partnerships and increased engagement.

You could also consider creating bookstagram merchandise and swag that your followers can purchase. This can include bookish-themed shirts, mugs, tote bags, stickers with your logo, or favorite book quotes. Not only does this offer a unique way for your audience to support your bookstagram, but it also serves as a fun and stylish expression of their bookish interests.

With these additional ideas and bookstagram tips, you now have an extensive resource to keep your bookstagram account fresh, engaging, and authentic. Remember to infuse your creativity, personality, and love for books into every reel and post. By continuously seeking inspiration and connecting with your audience, your bookstagram journey will continue to thrive and grow. Happy bookstagramming!

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Travelers Wife 4 Life
Travelers Wife 4 Life

Quiet, Quirky, and a Lover of Adventure both indoors and out.

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