Last day, last day of BBAW 2016!! It's been a fun week and I hope that you all feel the same way. If this has not been to your taste necessarily, well, next week we'll return to our 'regularly scheduled programming'. Today's topic is about burnout - in reading and in blogging. Here's the question:
One of the unfortunate side effects of reading and blogging like rockstars seems to be a tendency toward burnout. How do you keep things fresh on your blog and in your reading?
The dreaded burnout or reading slump!! We've all been there, right? I have. I had another blog before this one. Back when I began (2008), the book blogging world was growing rapidly. Everyone was friendly and cheerful and excited. It was fun to meet people who loved reading and there was the whole 'advance reading copies' phenomenon - aka FREE BOOKS!! So amazing!
Time passed and then the drama trickled in. There were squabbles and upsets. Also, everyone was trying to figure out the 'rules' and how to ramp up their reading to comply with what we 'thought' was expected by our audience and by the publishers and authors. So then came the burnout and not enough time and 'no fun at all'.
I wasn't completely caught up in all of that, but I will say that there came a time when I was weary of writing reviews and weary of expectations (most of which were in my own head). So, I dropped out. Ended my blog and deleted it (so I couldn't change my mind).
Eventually, I did change my mind and began again. Some differences this time though. Here were my goals and maybe some of this will help if you find yourself hitting the 'burnout' time:
1. Your blog belongs to you. It reflects you. And only you. Make it what YOU want it to be. Talk about what you are interested in. Share books or life events or puppy pictures or random lists of things or whatever. Again....about YOU!
2. Don't compare to others. Their blogs are about them. Some have been around for a long, long time and so they know more people. Some work harder to 'network'. Each of us is unique.
3. If you want to get 'advance reader copies', join Netgalley or Edelweiss. That being said, it seems to be a slippery path for many bloggers. A lot of 'expectations' (mostly self-inflicted) to read every one and review every one you accept. Here's a clue - you don't have to read or review every advance book that you accept. If you feel like it could get away from you, don't accept ARCs. Oh, and you don't have to answer every email from a publicist or author that is pitching a book to you. It doesn't mean that you are rude if you don't answer.
4. Don't worry too much about your number of followers. There are ways to increase the number, but it's hard work. And if the hard work becomes too much like a job - there's the burnout.
5. Read what you want. Maybe scheduling your reading from now to the cows come home works for you. It feels rigid to me and like being in college. Hence - burnout. I'll say it again - READ WHAT YOU WANT. And if you hit a reading slump - maybe, don't read for a little bit. I know. Sacrilege. Try it. Ha!
6. Make your blog your Zen place - a relaxing pursuit - not something that will have your shoulders up under your ears and your head hurting. And take breaks when you need to. I do and I think giving myself permission to step away when it feels right is what keeps this ol' wheel turning.
Thank you so very, very much for stopping by here and sharing this Book Blogger Appreciation Week!! I've had a fun time. Again, you are most welcome to pop in occasionally or more often to share 'kay's reading life'.
Here's hoping that your blogging time is an easy swing in a hammock with a cool breeze and good book!