Posted February 1, 2016on:
How things were in my life until January 2015:
Most days it was easy to find a half hour to read slush and at least an hour (and sometimes 3) to read a book. I had a super cushy job that mostly involved waiting around. If nothing was happening at work, it was totally OK for me to sit around and read a book. Finding a few hours here and there to write long and passionate reviews as also pretty easy. I’d spend Saturday mornings catching up on my RSS feed, commenting on other blogs, arranging author interviews, plotting and planning read-alongs with other bloggers, requesting ARCs, and all those other fun things that come with being a passionate blogger. For four years, I was in book blogger heaven. I was ridiculously spoiled and I no concept of how good I had it.
Things changed, as they do, and in Oct of 2014 my employer reorganized and downsized, which resulted in me having a
nice and relaxing depressing and terrifying 3 month vacation from working. In January of 2015 I landed a job with a very large and very stable company. They wanted to pay me a lot of money to do something I truly do enjoy: field management. The hours are long, and the job is incredibly intense and challenging. Finding time to read and blog has practically disappeared, as you can see from the drop in my published reviews and general online presence.
I’m not giving up my blog. She’s my labor of love, my baby. She’s not going anywhere. But, if I’m going to keep her alive, I need to change gears. But I only have so many spoons.
I still read plenty, that’s never going to change. I’ve been loving short stories, as I can read them in the morning over coffee, or at night to wind down. I’ve been
suffering through reading Neal Stephenson’s Quicksilver, 10 pages at a time, for what feels like weeks. I’ve been picking my way through The Bestiary edited by Ann Vandermeer, and Jonathan Strahan’s Meeting Infinity anthology, I’m about 100 pages into a Robin Hobb novel and I have a short stack of novellas sitting here that I want to read (Hmm, that’s quite a bit of book ADD). The pressure I put myself under to get all of this stuff read and reviewed to my satisfaction is just about killing me. But I still want to talk to all of you about what I’m reading and if I like it, and if you might like it.
So, here’s the plan – My goal is still to publish blog posts as often as I can. But instead of my typical reviews, they’ll be more along the lines of a “reading diary”. What short stories did I read this week? What chunks of novels did I read this week? Did I spend way too much time on Deviant Art looking at artwork by a new favorite artist? How’s my new cosplay coming? Is there a cool new anime on Crunchyroll? Have I got an upcoming author interview at Apex Mag or SFSignal that i want to brag about? stuff like that. Because spoons, I think this is a blogging plan that I can actually pull off, without putting myself under lots of stress. Blogging is supposed to be fun and not stressful, you know?
Will I still write reviews? holy shit I hope so. In fact, I’ve got one coming up in a few days for Will McIntosh’s Burning Midnight. However, that review was actually written in December, and has been sitting in the queue all this time. Sometimes the conversation I have with a book is that I absolutely must, must write 1200 words about what I thought about this book. Burning Midnight was one of those books. Sometimes my conversation with a book only requires a few paragraphs, and sometimes the book is so dense, so intense, and takes me so long to swim through (Baroque Cycle!!) that it makes better sense to talk about it as I’m reading, instead of attempting to boil my thoughts down to a few hundred words. And who knows, maybe these reading diary posts will make the reviews that much easier to write and be satisfied with.
So that’s where we are folks. Here’s to 2016!