Tuesday, April 8, 2014

What I've learned...my FOUR Month Blogoversary!!!

It's my FOUR month Blogoversary!!! *Showers the world with love, joy, and bookish happiness* I have been blogging for 120 days, give or take a few (you know, because of those pesky months with 28, 30, and 31 days?). If you're new to Loving the Language of Literacy I want to say Hello and I hope you stop by again on my blog. If you have been around since day one, I'm going to say WOW (not waiting on wednesday) you have stuck through my insane/crazy-ness for a long time. I will be doing something big for my six month blogoversary, but for now, you have a long discussion post....so grab a cup of coffee (or whatever beverage suits your fancy, I personally am not allowed to drink coffee according to the people around me that say I get too hyper when doing so), kick back, relax, and read this post.

In the four months I have been blogging, I've discovered something very important about myself (to the bookish extent).

I am a mood reviewer.

What does that mean? The best explanation is to look at Jessi @ Novel Heartbeat's post about how she is a Picky Reader. In her post, and others she has discussed how she will read 5 books in one month or 15 depending on her mood. Jessi said she would be able to start 100 books a day until she found the right one.

While I don't have that specific problem, I am that way with reviews.

I have 8+ books to review. There are two reasons for this. I started Loving the Language of Literacy so I could gush....I mean express my thoughts about books. That was it. That was the SOLE purpose of me creating a new email account, turning Twitter into a marketing tool, learning actual time management, and figuring out how the heck to use Blogger. And those are just the technical aspects of it.

Anyway, anyone can see that Loving the Language of Literacy has grown to be A LOT more. I mean.....she's my baby. Do blogs have genders? I now participate in blog tours, memes (I had no idea what those even were before), readathons, review writing, and (hopefully more in the near near future) discussion posts.

I've come to realize that blogging is a full time job. At the very least, I'll spend five hours on each book when you calculate in the reading, reviewing, and even mentioning the book in a Stacking the Shelves post or a tweet. I don't want this to sound like I'm lazy or complaining, but I were ranking the time it takes to write various posts, reviews would be the most time-consuming. I have spent 90 minutes on a review before, and we all know that is not how it should be. Yes, it would help to take notes about the book while I'm reading, but that brings me to my second point (and it is not that I am disorganized).

I don't always get the feels.

I don't get the feels out of 25% of the books I read.

And that is my personal problem.

Most of my ratings, reviews, and what I remember about a book is what it made me feel. The intense emotions it evoked, and because I don't feel those every time, that is why reviews take so long.

To quote my all-time favorite poet:

"People will forget what you said. 
People will forget what you did,
But people will never forget how you made them feel"

Replace all the "People"'s with the word "Books" and you have the gist of this entire post.

Four months in, I have started to dislike the review writing process, which is NOT how blogging should be, especially since I started blogging FOR the reviews. It truly isn't that the books aren't great, or even bad, it's just that I don't have that many things to say. In December, I put on my Goodreads bio that I will review every single book I read. I am now sitting here on my 4 month Blogoversary (okay...I'm actually for once writing this ahead of time, but close enough) and thinking "What the hell [excuse my language] was I thinking?"

Now comes the question I'm sure you (and myself) have been wondering....WHY?

One of the main reasons, not technically persay, but more of the books I read now (that phrase makes zero sense) is that there are so many more options. I remember a time in my life when I thought I had run out of books to read. I quickly found Young Adult novels and that opened up this huge doorway for me.

The gist of what I'm saying is....look at me now. I have SEVEN different channels of books that I want to read.

1. Library Books
2. Hard Copies of Books I Own
3. Blog Tour Books
4. Review Request Books
5. Digital Copes if Books I Own
6. Netgalley Books
7. Books I Borrow From Friends

In less than three years, I have gone from 'there aren't any more books left to read' to 'there isn't enough time to read all of these books'. Deadlines are what come with this new territory. Blog Tour books have to be read and reviewed by your tour stop. Review Requests have to be done in a timely manner. And no one wants their Netgalley approval ratio to be terrible.

From the end of January to about the middle of February, I had gone through what I thought was a reading slump. In actuality, it was a review slump. I remember thinking that ALL I could say about a book was that it was good, fun, quick reads. Now let me tell you, that does not make for eloquent or even acceptable sounding reviews.

The problems I have are with books with a 3 or 4 star rating, otherwise known as 5-8 on my 'out of ten' scale. If I rate a book 5 stars, there are obvious things I can talk about -mainly how everyone in the entire universe should read this book immediately or they will die a terrible death. If I rate a book 2 stars, I am usually frustrated and full of complaints. One star obviously means there was a lot I found wrong with the book.

Now you know my dilemma and I want to know your opinion and what you would do in my position. If I only reviewed books with a 1, 2, or 5 star rating, I would have a review up every 2 weeks instead 3 every week. Should I cut back? Find a new review format? Should I write mini-reviews? What do you think?

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