You know… I’ve been thinking lately about what I read and WHY I read what I read. Maybe this comes with being a “seasoned” book blogger, or something, I don’t know. I think all of this thinking started when I was doing my year end survey a couple weeks ago. I realized that I read a lot of “meh” books in 2013. There were very few that made me scream from the rooftops, “THIS IS WHY I READ!!!” As I was trying to come up with answers to the various questions, I found myself wanting to answer with the same handful of books because those were the only ones I LOVED. I don’t want that for myself in 2014. I want to read books I love. I don’t want to force myself to finish a book if I’m just not feeling it. I don’t want to force myself to read a book if I’m not in the mood right then, and would rather read something else instead.
I read to fall in love. I read to travel. I read to visit friends. I read to escape. I don’t read to review. I don’t read to please other people. I don’t read for the publishers or the authors or the publicists or the blog tour hosts or even for my blog readers. I read for me! I review because I want to share my love of books. I don’t review because I have something to prove, or because I feel like I have to. I review for myself, and if my blog readers are interested in what I have to say, that’s awesome! I will love you! I love talking books with people! I love being exposed to books I never would have read otherwise. I blog because I love the friendship. See? I do what I do for selfish reasons. And that’s ok! I’m allowed to be selfish.
My goal for 2014 is to come away with a huge list of books I LOVE. I want a big long list of books I could not live without. I will not be afraid to decline a review request. I will not be afraid to DNF a book if I’m just not feeling it. I will not feel obligated to do this or that, and I will not feel obligated to NOT do this or that. I’m making 2014 about me. Yes, I am SO going to tackle my review books. I am going to improve my Netgalley review ratio like you would not believe, and I am going to blow up Edelweiss with my awesome reviews. I am going to read those ARCs like it’s nobody’s business. But I am going about it with a completely different mindset. I am going to do it for me. I will find my new favorite book this year, and I will sing and dream and talk and dance about it. And if I come across a book that I just don’t feel, I will move on. It’s like dating. I will say yes if a book asks me out. I will curl up with it and give it a chance. But if it hurts me or disappoints me or says things I don’t like or makes me cry for bad reasons, then I will dump it. I will not suffer through a terrible book date because that’s not good for the book, and it’s not good for me.
I feel like a huge weight has been lifted from my shoulders! I feel like 2014 is going to be awesome! You should really try this. The moment being a book reviewer makes you feel like you’re going on a ton of mediocre dates and will never find your true love, dump those books and tell yourself you’re worth more than that. It’s what your mom would tell you to do.
Am I really late to this happy world of realizations? Does anyone else feel like I do?