As I approach my blogoversary marking three years blogging about books, I’ve decided to make a few changes here at Fiktshun… well, a few more. I’ve already started making changes – design, types of books I’m reading, et cetera – but I have a few more changes that I’m hoping to make.
For the past three years I’ve thrown everything into blogging about books, leaving little time for other things in my life. I’ve invested not only my time, though, I’ve put everything I had into it. It’s been my obsession. And in many ways it still is. But I need to make room for other things, too.
So I’m going to try and take the occasional day or two off if I have nothing pre-scheduled on the blog. More importantly, I’m going to try not to worry about having an empty day on the blog. That, to me, is the bigger challenge.
Also, I’m going to retire Fiktshun After Dark. I’ve already closed the Facebook page. But I’m going to delete the Twitter, too. It doesn’t mean, though, that I won’t be reading and reviewing paranormal/urban fantasy. I’ll just be posting those reviews and posts at Fiktshun.
Fiktshun will still be a mostly YA book blog, but I am now starting to read a few NA books, too. And instead of trying to keep everything separate I’m just going to post it all in one place.
And finally, I’m going to be making a few changes in how I review. I tried this last year, but it didn’t quite work out, so this is “take two.” The few people I have spoken to about this have suggested I make them shorter, but it’s not about the length. As anyone who has stopped by my blog knows, I could go on and on and on. It’s about the style. Trying to come up with just the right words each and every time while following a specific format isn’t something that comes naturally to me.
When I read a book I come away from it with either a gushing ramble or a more clinical observation. Sometimes both. Usually both. While my reviews have always been in my voice, they’re my voice tailored to fit a format that feels foreign. Over the years I have gotten used to organizing my thoughts in that way, but it has never quite fit me right.
Which is why I tend to think that my reviews are dreadful, repetitive, boring. And which is why I find myself reviewing fewer and fewer of the books I read.
Though I still often wonder if that’s in part due to the fact that there are so few words that will adequately describe my feelings. Most of the books I read to their conclusion are “awesome” or “amazing.” A few “blow my mind” or “tear me apart.” As I love books that are “heartbreaking” or “heartrending” or “gut-wrenching” most all of the books I read are one of those.
And most, if not all, are “suspenseful” and “nail-biting,” have a “cliffhanger ending” and a “love triangle,” and are “shocking” or “surprising.” So following the format that I do to lay out my thoughts makes me feel like I’m being very redundant.
So I’m desperately hoping to be able to make a change that makes sense, that doesn’t feel like a cop out, or makes me feel like I’m a quitter. My biggest problem, I think, with this particular change, is that sharing my thoughts about books feels just like that, thoughts, which are not what I would consider my review.
Even if these changes mean that my audience will dwindle to zero, these are changes that I have to make for me. There are only twenty-four hours in a day and between work and sleep it leaves very little time to do much else.
Reading will forever be a top priority, as will blogging, but I want writing and sailing and spending time with The Dude to be equal on that list. As far as I know I only get one of these things called lives and I don’t want to miss out on anything.
Besides, I am just one small voice here in a very crowded blogosphere, I hardly matter, but in my real life my voice needs to be heard, it needs to matter. I need to matter.