In less than three months I’ll have been blogging here at Fiktshun for three years. While I have taken a day off here and there – I think I’ve missed seven days total – I’ve been posting fairly consistently during that time. And that’s not going to change.
I’ve come to realize that I’m not someone who can take a blogging break. And most of the time I don’t want to. I like knowing that my blog has fresh – if not always exciting – content each and every day.
But – and I don’t know if you know this about me – I hate routine. I hate doing the same exact thing day in and day out. The idea that life is passing by and that each day feels like one big déjà vu is depressing.
Which is why I like to change up my environment – a lot – or blog about different things or read different books from different genres.
But in the past couple of years here on the blog I’ve started to see myself settling into a routine. I have three weekly features, I have tour spots, I have giveaways, and I have a few Random Thoughts posts and review posts in between. And while I have the occasional guest post, participate in the occasional annual event, things are pretty much the same each week.
I post once a day. I post some features on specific days. I add my thoughts into each and every post I have on the blog, but after 1,350 published posts I am starting to wonder how repetitive that voice is.
I like to think I’ve always run my blog in a way I consider to be professional. While I have fun with many of my posts, I keep the crazy side of my personality in check. And that, too, is not going to change. While I’ve let loose a bit more on The Annex, the reality is, I am a fairly reserved person unless I’m surrounded by the closest of my friends. And while I do consider many of the people I’ve “met” through blogging friends, this is the internet, and my friends are likely not my only audience.
That said, I am going to strive to be a bit more casual, have a bit more fun. And I am going to add in a few features that I’d run – or plan on running – on some of my satellite blogs. I may even start posting more than once a day.
This is not a job and I don’t want it to feel like one. I don’t want to check a box that says “blog post for tomorrow completed” and move on to something that doesn’t feel like work. And I don’t want to feel like I’m censoring myself because what I have to say may not live up to the standards I set for myself here on Fiktshun.
Not all my posts have to be in excess of 800 words. And not all my posts have to be about me or the books I’ve read. Which is why I’m trying to incorporate other bloggers, readers and authors into my blog. Not to fill a void. And not because I’m too lazy to write a post in my voice.
This is a community. One I am proud most days to be a part of. One I am grateful that has accepted me with all my flaws. And because of that – and for so many other reasons – I want to feature some of those voices here on my blog.
My “Epic Fail Moments in Blogging” feature was my first step toward making a few changes here at Fiktshun. It was one of the hardest things I’ve done, not because it pointed out some of my flaws, but because it had the potential to feel gimmicky, attention-grabby, unprofessional. It also had the potential to be an epic failure.
The jury is still out about its success, but it did break through a barrier. It allowed me the confidence to make some other changes.
One of which is the “Why YA?” feature I just launched here on the blog. This one is a bit more of a challenge in that it requires that I reach out to bloggers, readers and authors and ask them to write a guest post. And while the question each week will be the same, it lacks that “routine” I so dread because each participant’s voice is different, their reason for reading (or writing) YA is personal to them and it gives me the chance to share someone else’s voice other than my own here on the blog in a non-interview format.
Another upcoming feature is one I have taken the title of from my former blog, My Reading Pile. I have completely revamped it, though, so the only thing in common with that feature is its name, “Boys on the Pile.” And it is another feature that requires that I reach out to bloggers for a guest post. So its success is definitely TBD.
And finally, something I’d planned to do on The Annex, is start “Blathering About” posts here on Fiktshun. I love talking about books in ways that aren’t so formal. My reviews tend to be uber formal, even my Book Thoughts posts tend to adopt a formal tone. But, in reality, when thinking about the books I read and love, my thoughts tend to be all over the place and sometimes I just want to gush rather than review. I want to share those spoiler-y “Oh my gosh!” moments with readers who feel exactly like I do. I want to talk about how a particular love triangle filled me with all sorts of angst.
I want there to be conversation about the books versus just polite curiosity about my review-ish thoughts. I want to hear about readers’ squeals of excitement, exclamations of “WTH!!!” and “Did that just happen?” as opposed to a simple nod of agreement, a polite golf clap. I want to know when someone prefers the best friend to the bad boy or can’t stand the fact that I love love triangles, cliffhangers, villains.
I love books. And what I mean by that is that I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE books. I am swept up by them. Carried away. Those worlds become my own. Those characters become real to me. And when reviewing books that connection, that emotion is stripped away. Which is sad, to me, because that emotional connection is exactly how and why I connect to books.
Anyway… so much for this being a Random Thoughts “Lite” post. I still think I’m going to have to work on being a tad less verbose.
The point is that I plan on making a few changes. Getting myself and my blog out of its repetitive rut. Add in a few posts that may be a little less me, me, me. And maybe create a few that reveal more of who I am as a reader. I may even bring back to life a few more features from my other blogs like “A New Pile Add,” “What’s On [YOUR] Reading Pile” or “Choosing Sides.”
Fiktshun has been my labor of love. I’ve been very protective of it. Very cautious. It’s also made me a bit greedy, allowing only the closest of blogger friends to share their thoughts here.
That’s going to change… well… if I can get over my fear of outreach, that is.