As much as I've taken steps to lessen my own feeling of being burdened, I know I still took on more books than I should have this past year. There were too many books I raced through in pursuit of a looming release date, and too few that I took the time to enjoy. In addition, for every shiny new must-review title that caught my eye, another want-to-read title gathered a bit more dust on the shelves.
I can certainly see how some bloggers begin to feel like it's a job (and an unpaid one, at that). It's very easy to get sucked into the hype around new releases, to buy into the very same excitement we work so hard to generate ourselves. At the same time, it can be tough to turn authors away, to quash their hopes and decline to generate the same excitement around their latest releases.
So, for 2016, I'm going to take some preemptive measures to read less and enjoy more:
- Be far more selective in stacking the shelves, only requesting/accepting those titles that I would have eagerly purchased for myself before I began blogging.
- Strive for a better balance between those shiny new releases begging for reviews and those dusty shelves of books that I want to read for my own entertainment.
- Offer more opportunities for guest posts or interviews to those authors with review requests I don't have time to read, but who have me excited enough to host and share.
- Embrace my inner weirdness, engage my fellow freaks, and really let loose with my WTF Friday theme of twisted, bizarre, or otherwise odd reads.
- Share more news of my own writing, and use the blog as a means of holding myself accountable for making progress and moving from hoarding those pages to actually submitting them.
Hardly earth-shattering news, I know, but if I set expectations and put my thoughts out there, I can hopefully keep myself on track and look back this time next year on a successful 12 months. :)