Hi friends, happy Wednesday! I hope you’re having a lovely week so far. I feel like changing things up lately, mixing up my usual schedule and, well…chatting when I feel like it, basically. And there’s a question that’s been on my mind, so… I’ll just ask it right away.
Fair warning, fellow book bloggers… It will sound weird, but…
Do you still love to read?
I know. I’m asking a super weird question here. Obviously, if you are a book blogger, your sole purpose – well, one of your main purposes anyway – is to talk about books, fangirl about books, shove books into someone’s face and just scream at them in a very gentle way to JUST READ THE DAMN BOOK because it’s the best thing you’ll ever read. Until a next great book comes around.
Yet, somehow, I’m going to say something that might be a teensy bit unpopular. Or just maybe, shine a light on some issues book bloggers and other ardent readers might have. That issue being: BOOKS. The source of our love, what we are here for, well… sometimes it just doesn’t work between us anymore.
I have been reading from the very beginning of my small little life. I’ve been reading in my crib -no, seriously-, I’ve been reading under my desk in class, I’ve been reading in the hallways at university, now I’m reading at work. (On my lunch break, not during hours, even if it’s very tempting at times). I can’t remember a time where I haven’t been reading. Yet, with blogging, everything changed and, sometime, it has happened that… reading wasn’t so much my first love as it was a chore.
When I slowly started to immerse myself in the book blogging community, it was incredible. So many book recommendations, so many new friends to fangirl with, overall, JUST, ALL THE BOOKS. Yet, behind this shiny light, came the pressure, the questions, the interrogations. Instead of becoming a refuge, books became a bit daunting. As my TBR grew and grew and grew, as my wallet could not follow to read all the books I had to in order not to feel left out….I love my books, don’t get me wrong but… somedays, I just did not want to be reading.
I’m the kind of person putting tons of pressure on myself, in every single thing I do. Obviously, time had to come where I put myself pressure on my reading as well. There were just so many questions, questions I did not expect to come, turning inside my brain all the time.
Do I read enough?
I’m a book blogger. I should be reading. Like, all the time. What if I don’t feel like it anymore? What if I need a break? What if, one time, I just read one book a month instead of five? DOES IT REALLY MATTER?
Do I read the books I SHOULD be reading?
The book blogging community is beautiful, yet it’s also…confusing. Dramatic. It puts tons of pressure, especially when you have a bad fear of missing out and can’t / haven’t read the most hyped books of ever in the community. Slowly, reading wasn’t as fun as before. It was an obligation. We lose what we came here to do. Fangirl. Talk about books. We want to do all the reading challenges and read all the books, putting unecessary pressure on ourselves. I’m not saying reading challenges are not FUN, just saying that you have to be ready and want to do it. Not because everyone does it.
Do I talk about books enough?
I’m not even sure this makes sense. I mean, of course, we are book bloggers, we talk about books enough. But should we be talking about them ALL the time? Should we write more reviews, tweet about more books and everything else? This is a question I often ask myself, because I’m seeing everyone talking about books 24/7 especially on twitter and… I’m not. Does that make me less of a book blogger?
Thing is: if you do too much of anything, the dreaded burn out isn’t too far. Too much of blogging, too much of reading. With the added pressure of book bloggers, reading often, reading more books, reviewing them, getting through all of the ARCs if you are into asking a lot of them and are very lucky, and so on….well, sometimes, book bloggers aren’t into reading anymore.
Sometimes, we just need a break.
If you remember – or if you weren’t here before -, I went on holidays this summer. I took a break from blogging and I only read, like, one book in three weeks. IT WAS GREAT. I didn’t feel pressured to read tons of books, afar from my community. I didn’t feel pressured to take notes and write the best review ever.
I fell in love with reading again. Pure love for the written words, the world, everything reading brings me. Without thinking about the complexities of the book, the way I should be writing my review, how I should recommend it, and so on.
So, I just came to wonder. Do we sometimes forget that we are here for the love of books? Do we sometimes let ourselves be influenced by the hype and end up giving into it? Do we sometimes feel like we can’t take any kind of reading break because…well, what kind of book blogger are we, then?!
I’m really writing this long rant to remember, for myself, and hopefully to give you something to remember, if you’re feeling a bit like I am, sometimes. There is nothing wrong with reading less, some times. There is nothing wrong with not reviewing everything. There is nothing wrong with not asking for ARCs or not tweeting about every book you read. There is nothing wrong with taking a break from what we love, to come back loving it even more.
Do you, as a book blogger – or an avid reader – sometimes feel like you just don’t want to be reading anymore? Do you feel guilty about it?
Do you feel guilty when you’re in a reading slump, not to be reading anymore? Silly question, but… you know, I do.
Do you sometimes, when you read, overanalyse everything and forget the love you have for, just, READING?
What do you do to fall in love with reading again, if you’re just not feeling it someday? Do you turn back to a favorite book? Do you stop reading altogether for a while and take a big break? Do you eat chocolate and it makes everything okay? (Universal solution to everything) Let me know in comments!