Today marks the thirteenth blog birthday of Becky’s Book Reviews. As I embark on my fourteenth year of blogging, I wanted to take a few minutes to mark my perhaps radical change in philosophy. This isn’t without a certain amount of risk. Will this philosophy, this change of practice, be lasting?! Can an old dog learn a few new tricks?! I have made significant life changes in the past and kept them up. So there is hope.
I am removing “have”, “should”, and “must” from my blogging philosophy.
I “have” to review a book every day of the week.
I “must” review ten plus books a week (across all three blogs).
I “should” finish this book tonight so that I have a review to post tomorrow.
I “have” to choose short books so that I have plenty of books to review in any given week.
I “must” finish this book because I’ve already gotten this far.
I “should “ have weekly features.
I “have” to host reading challenges. I started the challenge, I “should “ keep it going each year.
I “must” be open to accepting review copies.
I “have” to read and review 500+ books a year. The higher the number of books, the higher the number of pages...the better.
I “should” be supportive and join other reading challenges that other bloggers host.
I “must” read books that fulfill reading challenges.
I “have” to review every book I finish reading—even if I have nothing to say.
I “should” read from as many genres and sub genres as possible.
I “must” read outside my comfort zone.
You get the idea. All of these are self-imposed, I know this. The only real should is that if I’ve committed to reading a book for a blog tour within a given time frame (a specific day or week) I need to keep that obligation. I will keep that should!
From now on, my goal is to post around four to six book reviews a week across all three blogs. If it’s two or three—no stress, no panic.
Heading into 2020, my goal is to review a hundred books per blog over the course of a year. It will be a complete experiment. It might not be achievable. It might be quite easy to achieve.
I will probably change up the format of my posts in 2020. Perhaps numbering the posts in the title so that I can keep up with how many I have reviewed for that blog. I may add—emphasis on “may”— the dates I started and finished a book.
Probably the biggest change I will try to hold myself to in 2020 is abstaining from joining and hosting reading challenges. I may decide between now and January that I want to host one (and only one) reading challenge. If I do, I will need to choose carefully. And for the right reasons. Just because I “have” a fun idea for a challenge doesn’t mean it needs to happen. Likewise, I may decide that I want to join one and only one reading challenge. But I “should” not say yes to a challenge just because I like the challenge image.
I am hoping that these changes—big and small—will lead to a better (more sustainable, more natural) experience. I was tempted to say genuine. But it’s not that I haven’t been honest in my reviews. But perhaps I haven’t been honest about stress, exhaustion, fatigue, burn-out. I have tried to be super human instead of human.
I want the freedom to read what I want to read when I want to read it.
I want the freedom to take my time with a book. To read it as fast or as slow as I choose.
I want the freedom to read only books that I currently find exciting, compelling, engaging. I want to fall in love, be swept up, up and away. I want to visit worlds where I can get lost. I want to find kindred spirits. I want to have book crushes. I want to revisit old friends.
I want the freedom to read massive, epic, oh-so-intimidating chunksters. In the past, I’ve held myself back because it might mean three or four reviews for the month instead of twenty or thirty.
© 2019 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews