Monday, July 2, 2012

Odds and Ends

Changes to blog:  For quite a while I've been feeling that I need to make a few changes on the blog for three reasons:

1.  I signed up with a couple of promoters to be part of virtual book tours.  I have tried to be selective about the books I chose to review, but sometimes I can't tell from a short blurb if it's something I'll be interested in.  I have ended up reading some books I did not enjoy - that I had to force myself to finish because I accepted a free copy.   I have received two self-published books that were so poorly written that I had to back out of reviewing them.   I could not give an honest review that said anything positive, yet couldn't publish something hurtful to the authors.  

2.  Since I began working at the library in 2005, I began feeling increasing pressure (self-imposed) to be up on the new trends, authors, etc.  so that I could make recommendations to patrons.  With the addition of the blog in 2009, the pressure increased (again self-imposed) to keep up with the other bloggers - read faster, read pre-release, read more "literary".  

3.  Over the 2 1/2 years of blogging I have occasionally, and with increased frequency, written about our family, our life, the comical - and sometimes the serious - happenings.  Those are the posts that get the most comments and hits.  I also find that when I'm reading other blogs I am a lot more likely to skim book reviews, but read posts that have to do with life.  

In light of these three factors, I am shifting focus.  Reading has been my favorite activity since I learned how, so of course books will continue to be part of the blog since they are a part of my life.  But no more book tours or reviews on request.  I love read-a-thons and other book-related events, so I'll still be joining them - but no challenges or other things that dictate what/how I read.

I wrote a post once before about how I felt I was losing the joy of reading - replacing it with the responsibility of reading.  I tried at that time to make some changes, but evidently not enough.  I want reading to be fun again.  I want it to be something I do because I can't think of anything I would rather do - like I used to feel.  I also don't want the guilt that comes when other responsibilities keep me from reading at the necessary pace.  So there will be fewer book reviews here - only when I'm excited about a book and really want to share.  And there will be more content about life.  Hope you'll hang around to get to know us better.

Book Buying Ban:  After just saying that I would not be joining any more challenges, I am accepting one - but not the usual type.  Instead, I'm joining Rikki at Rikki's Teleidoscope in instituting a temporary book buying ban.  The stack of unread books on my dresser and bookshelf is just plain silly - and most of them are books I purchased because I really want to read them.  Rikki threw out the challenge to refrain from any new book purchases until I have read twenty from my own shelves.  I gave myself an exclusion for a couple books that were already pre-ordered, and of course library books don't count as purchases, but they also don't count towards to goal of twenty books.  So far I've read four.

Movies:  I'm having so much fun watching old movies this summer, that I've added a few more to the original ten.
I've added:

  • Mary, Mary - starring Debbie Reynolds
  • The Three Musketeers - starring Gene Kelly and Lana Turner
  • Dream Wife - starring Cary Grant and Deborah Kerr
  • Going My Way - with Bing Crosby
  • On the Town - starring Gene Kelly and Frank Sinatra
  • Christmas in July - Dick Powell and Ellen Drew
  • Send Me No Flowers - Rock Hudson, Doris Day 


  1. I love old movies so I'm really going to enjoy hearing what you think about the ones you've chosen. About the changes - you've absolutely got to do what works for you and makes you happy. I hate when I reach the point when blogging feels like work.

  2. I have to agree with you to not do reviews especially if you can't always choose what you get to review. That's why I like the places I review for; I can pick the copies so it is something I'm somewhat interested in reading. I laughed about the no book buying ban! I think that is a wise thing to do. In the days when we were "rich" and I was buying books, I'd go book happy every once in awhile. There are just so many good books out there (sort of like so many good blogs out there :)


  3. I do the exact same thing, skim over the reviews to get to the personality. Happy your changes will bring you back to the in love with reading stage. And now I know that if I see a review on your blog, it will be a doozy!

  4. Isn't it weird that many of us found each other because of books and yet it is the other stuff that gets a conversation going? I need the pressure to read right now since Gage could easily take up 24 hours of my day. I need to make sure I'm getting just a little me time.
    I used to take some of the self published books, but stopped. Some of them were JUST SO BAD!