Here we are in 2022, leaving behind another year of highs and lows, of things that we could never have foreseen happening, nor would have chosen to happen, and yet 2022 hurtled out of nowhere before I really had chance to take in everything that 2021 threw my way.
Last year, I felt that I did quite well in reading lots of books – many of which I loved, and putting together my end of year #MostSelfishReads2021 proved to be even harder as my reading had been in fits and starts according to who I had at home and when!
Still, as always happens at this time of year, I sit and think about book blogging – largely because I am feeling increasingly like I am not very good at it, and as always that I spend too much time reading and not enough time reviewing. I also hit December and felt overwhelmed with it all – not just reviewing, but setting up Two Fond of Books with Amanda (which I am so extraordinarily proud of) and a series of personal events I could not have foreseen last year knocked me for six, including Covid and becoming a full time carer to my adult son when I least expected it .
I think all the things that were happening to me at home meant that for a time I had to put my reading as my last priority rather than my first, and had to admit that I just couldn’t keep up with everyone else who seemed to be posting and blogging so frequently. Then I did that thing I guess lots of bloggers do, and started to question what the point of it all was – I don’t mean that to sound melodramatic, but when life means you can’t read as much as you think you should, you start to wonder what the point of it is. Then I just lost every creative impulse in my body and simply stared at the screen, attempting to write blogs so I could at least have something to show for my reading.
I couldn’t find the words. I can’t tell you how many draft and deleted posts I have on here, but all I know is that for a woman that could previously produce blogs at the drop of the hat, now I was completely lacking in confidence – they all sounded the same, and I felt I was just regurgitating all my previous posts. So I stopped writing reviews, and instead of picking the next book off my pile to make sure I could read and review it for publication day, I picked up a book that I wanted to read, and I can’t tell you how much better I felt as I finally lost myself in a book again without the slightest inclination to review it.
Why am I telling you all this? I guess it’s because I need somewhere to write down what I am feeling – and to let other people know that if you feel that too, it’s ok to admit it. I forget a lot of the time that I am doing all this for free, and sometimes my worry of letting publicists and publishers down (who by the way are the kindest and most supportive people ever) means that I forget this is and always should be a hobby.
Anyway, I think what I am trying to tell myself and anyone else feeling baffled by the world and not quite sure where their blogging is going, is to maybe know that you are not the only one who feels like it, and theres no shame in admitting you can’t find the words at the moment. The books will always be there, and I love the feeling of finding that book that sparks something in me that means I need to write a review all about it to tell the world. I know it will come back, and in the meantime am just enjoying reading for reading’s sake again – and it feels wonderful!
Here’s to 2022, and whatever and whenever you feel like reading, and know that blogging will always be there for you whenever you are ready to return to it.
Lots of love,
8 thoughts on “What To Do in 2022?”
Oh, Clare, so sorry you felt like that – but yes, I admit I’ve had moments (or, to be truthful, long periods) of feeling the same way. I hope things improve for you in 2022 and I certainly hope you never lose your love of reading.
I think your thoughts each what all of us feel at sometime. It is a hobby but sometimes it feels like an unpaid job that is stressful – hoping to find a better balance myself in 2022. Happy New Year Clare x
I think you’ve done fantastically well, Clare, particularly with so much on your plate. I hope you never lose your passion for books. And please keep posting pictures of that lovely dog of yours! Here’s to an easier, brighter 2022.
Life is tough on everyone at the moment and it seems that you have experienced that more than most. Keep doing what you are doing, Clare. It is still working well. Sending love and hugs, Paul
Oh Clare – I am sending you the hugest of hugs. For what you are going through and the beautiful honesty of your post. It is always lovely to hear your thoughts, but absolutely no pressure. ever xxx Numberlady
You’ve had a lot to deal with, and I’m glad you’ve managed to keep your love for reading through it all! I love seeing you on Twitter and Insta, and you keep the book love going. Your blog posts are always interesting but you’re right to only write them when you feel like it! It’s a hobby after all. All the best for 2022 x
I always appreciate your honesty, Clare. I look forward to your posts, but you are so right to not put unnecessary pressure on yourself. I’m sure your loyal readers will understand if you need to take it more slowly for while. Wishing you all the best for 2022.
Kudos to you for going public on something that many bloggers do experience but seldom admit. Whenever I get stressed out by the long backlog of reviews I have yet to get to, I have to remind myself that this blogging lark is meant to be fun. Not to be taken too seriously. So what if I am months behind, who is really going to care that much???? I guess what I’m trying to say is that your decision to take a break was the right one for you.