I have been blogging on Rebecca Reads for more than four years now, but I still feel like a newbie when it comes to my new blog, Line Upon Line, which focuses on my homeschooling and education journey and promotes products, both free and paid, in the blogosphere. I found Born to Blog by Mark Schaefer and Stanford Smith (McGraw Hill Professional, 2013) to be helpful in recognizing that a blog cannot do everything. Rather, blog writers must find their style within their niche category. By using their own strengths, they can write stellar and interesting blogs.
I have been reading. I have many thoughts to share on the following books: Hereville: How Mirka Met a Meteorite by Barry Deutsch (YA graphic novel); The Perfect Hamburger and Other Stories by Alexander McCall-Smith (middle grade short stories); Mr. Popper’s Penguins by Richard and Florence Atwater (children’s novel); Founding Brothers by Joseph Ellis (nonfiction); and many, many more Cybils picture books. (more…)
I’m finding that summer is just not a good time for blogging for me. I’m reading a ton, but I’m certainly not feeling the blogging groove. I want to read and then move on to the next book. Writing about the awesome books I’ve read just feels like it will be painful. It probably won’t be, but I just can’t bring myself to do it.
Has this happened to you too?
As a result, my responses to the books I’ve read will be a bit brief in the next few weeks. I won’t say “goodbye” to blogging like I tried to do last July; I’m just going to take it easy and not post if I don’t feel like posting.
I have a post ready for tomorrow about two wonderful graphic novels I enjoyed. Here are the other wonderful books I’ve read in the past weeks but have yet to write about.
- The Summer Book by Tove Jansson. I loved this! I keep staring at it and wondering how to respond to it. Definitely one to reread and savor next summer.
- Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe. A reread for me. I found it a fascinating read (I really hadn’t remembered it very well) and wish I could pull together thoughts on just why.
- Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stow. I read this for my book club, which meets tomorrow night. I still need to pull together discussion questions about it. I can see why it was a classic of it’s time, yet the book was very sentimental and left me feeling rather manipulated. An “eh” book for me.
- Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand by Helen Simonson. A perfect summer break read about an aging retired British general who is lonely and looking for his place in the shockingly modern world.
Also reading or need to read:
- The Scarlett Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne. I was listening to the audiobook via library’s Overdrive, but it expired on me before I could finish it. Twice. So I really just need to read my hard copy. This is getting old. Good book, but surprisingly long when listening to it on audio.(OK, only 10 hours, but I really have a hard time remembering audiobooks, I guess.)
- Why Jane Austen? by Rachel Brownstein. Review copy via Netgally. It expires in 8 days and I’m not sure I can download it again. I really need to find time to finish reading it, as it gets me excited about Jane Austen. I read it on my netbook, which isn’t the most comfortable.
- My Business is to Create by Eric Wilson. Review copy via LibraryThing Early Reviewers. About William Blake. I’ve started it. I’m hoping this gets me in the mood to read some of Blake’s poetry — or other poetry. I have lots of poets awaiting my attention.
- The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck. For the upcoming Classics Circuit. I haven’t started yet.
- The Paris Wife by Paula McLain. My hold just came in.
- Caleb’s Crossing by Geraldine Brooks. My hold just came in.
- Tolstoy and the Purple Chair by Nina Sankovitch. My hold (placed first) just came in.
Why do holds all come in at the same time?!
I have a few other review copies to get to as well. I’m starting to remember why I never before accepted review copies. It’s hard to find time to read all I want to read.
What are you reading this summer? Is blogging harder for you too come the nice weather?
I’ve been procrastinating on blog maintenance issues for a week now, saying that “I’ll do that during Bloggiesta” so I really should get started on doing something now that Bloggiesta is here! I’m back from work at the library and ready for a weekend.
I haven’t slowed down my reading, but I have felt intense burnout this week from blogging. Is this the beginning of the end of Rebecca Reads?
I certainly hope not. I’ve just started The Classics Circuit, which I’m very excited about. I’m still hosting The Spice of Life Challenge (which I haven’t given much energy to, I’m so sorry to say) and in November I’m to host The Really Old Classics Challenge with Heather J.
Like Amanda said the other day, I too am a compulsive “finisher.” My Google Reader needs to be at zero every night in order for me to feel like I’m finished. But as I’ve added many blogs in the past weeks, I’m finding it impossible to catch up and get to that “finished” state.
This week, I’ve been avoiding Reader because I know there are so many unread posts in it, and because I know that reading your blogs will make me want to read the books. Since I started tracking it a few months ago, I’ve found I add at least 15 books to my TBR each week, while I only read 2 to 4. Reading what I want to read has begun to feel like an uphill, impossible battle.
I started reading some posts (via Google Reader) yesterday. I’ll try to get back to them. I don’t want to mark all as read, because I feel this is a deeper issue: if I can’t keep up, I’m subscribed to too many blogs. I have to find a way to enjoy the process and stay caught up. Marking all as read does not solve the deeper issue. I’m going to experiment with a few different methods in the coming weeks. Maybe I need different folders of favorites so I can mark some as read and others not. Maybe I need to skim more often. The fact is, I love your blogs, I love reading them, and I love getting tons of books on my TBR. But I can’t keep up.
How do you manage your blog reading? When do you find time to read blogs? How many are you subscribed to?
(P.S. If you have a partial feed, change it to a full feed ASAP. I’m about to unsubscribe, it’s driving me nuts. I love you, but I hate your partial feed!! If you don’t know what type of feed you have, subscribe to it yourself to find out.)
I’ve also felt burnout when it comes time to write my reviews. I have a number of reviews waiting, but at night, I’d rather sit down and read rather than sit at the computer and write up reviews. So the blogging has suffered. I’m going to try something new by merging reviews together but I’m not sure how that will work since my reviews border on 1000 words normally! But merging reviews could take me from 5 or 6 posts a week to 3 or 4. That seems more doable in my overwhelmed mind.
When do you find time to write your reviews? How long to you spend writing reviews?
So instead of blogging this week, I went to the zoo with my family (in honor of the birthday boy). I played in the leaves with him. We visited Grandma. It was a great week, I just neglected my blogging friends.
How do you balance your blogging life with real life? (more…)