Random Musings

Why So Serious?

Yesterday, I wrote a post talking about my promise to talk my book blog, Erlebnisse, more seriously. Thanks to some exciting connections with publishers like Orbit and Titan, plus a slow increase of traffic on my blog, I wanted to get more involved over there, publishing more content and keeping my reviews flowing regularly. I made that decision perhaps a week ago, maybe two, even though I “announced” those intentions yesterday. It’s one I’m going to stick to. I’m really excited about it and I’m excited to push myself and that blog in the coming months and see how it goes!

But it’s also got me pretty stressed out.

Already.

I mentioned briefly that I made a review calendar for the ARCs I’ve received, especially after receiving so many from Orbit this past weekend. I didn’t want them to all get lost in the shuffle. After I made that calendar, I realized that one book was published today, with two books being published next Tuesday and then another on the 22nd (before we get into the June releases). Ideally, my intention is to always publish my review of an ARC on the day it’s published, because that’s when everyone is talking about the book the most and it should help the author get the most traffic.

I don’t think I’m going to make any of those publication dates for this first round of my most recent ARCs.

One of them–the book published today–is simply unfortunate timing, as I got the book in the mail on Friday and I almost never have time to read on the weekends, so the earliest I could have started it was Sunday night. But I am already in the middle of another book I got from the library that’s due in a couple days and I can’t renew it because of holds. So I knew I was going to miss this one.

With the two being published next Tuesday, I think I can make one of those, if I read one after finishing my  current book this week. The other, I’m definitely going to miss. By a lot, I fear. It’s the second book in a trilogy of which I haven’t read the first book. But not only that, it’s only recommended that you read the author’s other trilogy, so you avoid spoilers by reading this series, even if it isn’t a direct sequel trilogy. I haven’t actually ever read any of this author’s work, but I’ve always meant to. By receiving this ARC, I thought it was a great opportunity to kick my butt in gear and finally read an author I’ve always been curious to read. And I will, writing reviews for each of those books, including the ARC copy.

It just might not be the most timely.

Which irritates me, because that’s something I’d really like to do: be timely on my ARC reviews, posting them as close to the publication date as possible. Yet I’m getting so stressed about it already–especially as I look at my stack of books at the library, all of which that I want to read, too, with due dates that are all approaching–that I’m forcing myself to take a step back and one, breathe. Two, just because I’m becoming a more serious book blogger doesn’t mean I want to turn one of my greatest pleasures–reading–into work. Don’t get me wrong: writing reviews takes work and staying on top of ARCs so I don’t go five months before I read that book and post the review is important. But at the same time, I read because it helps me escape and because I love to read. If that means that I don’t post an ARC review in line with my timeline standards because I chose to read the latest regency romance? That’s okay. Or because a book I’ve been waiting months for finally came in at the library? Also okay. Or because I found a new series that I absolutely love and just binge-read?

That’s okay.

It’s just about balance. Sure, ARCs that I receive for free are usually going to come first, but I’m not always going to be able to hit every deadline I make for myself (as evident above). Especially since I’m now working with two publishers, instead of one, so now I have more books to juggle. I’m still new at this, so of course it’s going to be a little wobbly, at the beginning. But I never want to lose the joy of reading because I’m so stressed out about deadlines and posting schedules. I’m going to try and stay on top of things, of course, but I’m also giving myself permission to just relax and enjoy this experience, too.

Cheers.

2 thoughts on “Why So Serious?”

  1. It sucks that as you try to get more serious with things other goals – or just loves – tend to get pushed aside. I’ve been trying new things and I found it’s cutting into all the things I like to do just because I like them. Trying to find that balance of meeting deadlines (whether internal or externally created) and having a life is so hard.

    1. Gosh, you always preach everything right on the nose, Beth, because YES. It’s always difficult but you know what We’re trying and that’s the most important first step.

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