sunday salon: winter of our book blogging discontent

The Sunday Salon

There seems to be a theme of discontent running through today’s Salon posts, as more than a few folks seem to be musing on the pressures of book blogging or talking about being overwhelmed with life in general.

If we’re not feeling obligated to review the newest books or every single book we’ve ever read, we’re feeling guilty because we’re not reading or reviewing enough books.  We’re fretting over our stats and worried that we’re not as good as That Other Blogger – while That Other Blogger is comparing herself to Some Other Blogger. We’re cringing every time we Mark All As Read in our feed reader or skim posts or apologize yet again for not writing, not reading, not commenting, not reviewing, not not not ….

We are stewing in one big pot of negativity. We are taking ourselves way too goddamn seriously.

Those of us who have been doing this for a number of years are no strangers to this. We’ve seen this before. We know that a rampant case of the blogging blues happens to the best of us. And sometimes, it is enough for some of us to quit blogging altogether, as just today two mainstays of the book blogger community (Michele from A Reader’s Respite and Sandy from You’ve GOTTA read this!) announced today that they were closing up shop.

Let me be clear: I’m not minimizing any of these feelings or reactions. They are very real because we do take ourselves goddamn seriously. We’re real people with real lives behind these blogs and we put so much of ourselves into every word we write in this space.

So how do we change this? How do we let those who are wrestling with these issues know that we are listening and that we understand?

We talk about it. And we are. Andi’s post (“Getting Real: We’re Not WonderWomen”) is excellent, as is “On How to #BlogHonest and #BuildCommunity” by Becca of I’m Lost in Books. 

We take the pressure off, starting with ourselves. Give ourselves some slack if we don’t blog for three weeks or if we write a three sentence review or no reviews or take a blogging break or whatever works best for our lives.

We make book blogging fun again.





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3 thoughts on “sunday salon: winter of our book blogging discontent

  1. Laurie C

    I’ve been reading up on these kinds of posts all weekend, but I hadn’t heard of the two announcements from Sandy and Michele. We really do need to accept that it’s impossible to do all that we want to do in the book blogging arena, while doing so many other things as well, don’t we? As I spent the weekend commenting and “catching up”, I didn’t write up any reviews, even though cancellations freed up my entire Sunday!

  2. Michele

    “We are taking ourselves too goddam seriously.” <—– Stands up and APPLAUDS! I cannot shout that line from the rooftops loud enough (quick, someone give me a megaphone!). It's so true, so timely, so apt. Even though book blogging has grown exponentially over the years, most bloggers are still involved in some sort of bloggy community. And it's so easy to forget (perspective) that outside of that book blogging world, as great as it is, no one really cares all that much. Certainly not enough to warrant the angst, the pressure, or (gah) the competition. You hit the nail on the head with this post. Sandy and I closing up shop was because it felt like a good time. I certainly still have things to say, just not in the book review world. But since I'm still relying on you all to give me great recommendations, I hope everyone cuts back on the self-pressure and remembers that this is fun. NOT A BUSINESS! Enjoy yourselves because it shines through when you do. Warmest regards — Michele (the artist formerly known as A Reader's Respite. Ha.)

  3. Andi Miller (@estellasrevenge)

    I can’t say much but amen! And this is a reaction to the plagiarism issue. That grew of being overwhelmed, so we have to understand that finding a way to chill the fuck out is more important than taking a path that will bite us. I think just about everyone understands that already, but it’s time we talk about it and get real.

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