Running on Empty?

Posted July 23, 2010 by Jen in Tags: , ,

I feel like I’m in a book reading slump. Do you ever feel that way? It seems like it’s taking me longer to read each book I select. I used to read a book in 2-3 days, it’s now taking 5-10 days!  Also, I find that I’m not enjoying reading like I once was. Usually, I found it almost impossible to put down a book, especially in the last 100 pages, but lately, I’ll read a few pages and walk away.
I think part of it is due to my blog. I LOVE my blog and enjoy reviewing books, but now I have the added pressure to come up with something intelligent to say about the books I read.  Back when I was reading a book a day, I could skip a few pages, maybe miss a conversation or event, and it wouldn’t matter. Now I need to pay attention so that I don’t make an error in my review. It used to be that when I finished a book, I would think “I LOVED that,” or “Eh, not so good.” But now I need to figure out where it falls on a scale from 1 to 5 and WHY! In addition, I am constantly thinking about the review as I read. I’ll make notes “I like this part…” or “This seems out of place…” and I’ll think “I want to make sure I highlight this in my review.”
Or maybe I just need to recharge my batteries with something new. A new author? (I am finding several)  A new genre? (doubtful!)  Something a little more smutty? (probably)
And it could just be that I need to read without the constant barrage of kids’ needs, housework, blog upkeep, blog networking, email checking, twitter influences, etc. 
So what about you? Have you ever found yourself in a book reading slump? What did you do to get out of it?

11 responses to “Running on Empty?

  1. I feel your pain. I’ve been there with my latest reading slump happening last month. For me to get out of my latest slump, I read a different genre. I had completely immersed myself in PNR and UF and I was getting burnt out. So I decided to change things up and that’s how I came up with my Historical Romance week. I don’t think you need to anything as drastic. Maybe take a break from reading or reviewing or both. Thanks to my PNR/UF break, I’m actually looking forward to getting back to reading PNR/UF! I know now not to completely immerse myself because I do like and read a variety of genres. I just need to find the balance.

    Also, I used to feel the pressures of reading and reviewing and whether or not I’m posting often enough on my blog. It started feeling like a job and was no longer fun. I decided that I wasn’t going to sweat it. It’s my blog; I’m gonna post as frequently or infrequently as I want. I did stop participating in certain book meme’s so that helped ease the pressure. I still say that my book blog is my 3rd job because it is a lot of work.

    Good luck! The slump is something we all go through so you are not alone. I wouldnt’ sweat it. Maybe you just need to take a little break.

  2. Oh hun, I’m sorry to hear you’re in a reading slump as well! I have the same problem atm. I don’t know what’s causing mine, but I don’t think it’s the added pressure of writing a review that’s bugging you. Although it’s not helping either. 😉
    For me it’s lack of time I think. It’s hectic at work atm (before vacations start) and aside from that internet (bloghopping, twitter, emails) is rather time consuming. I just have to accept that I can’t do all at the same time… Next week my vacay begins (no work, no internet) and I hope to get out of my reading slump then!
    Good luck with yours, sweetie!

  3. I’ve been in a slump lately as well. 🙁 It took me 2 weeks to read a book I actually liked! But with school and the kid and Mr PK and the 80,000 birthday parties we have from May-August, it’s hard to find time to sit down and get immersed in a book. And even when it’s a good book, if I have to put it down it’s really difficult to get back into it. Sigh.

    Sometimes you have to take a little bit of a break. Or read something that’s solely for your enjoyment – don’t take notes, don’t keep the blog in the forefront of your mind. (I mean… that’s the whole point of reading, isn’t it?) If you love the book, you’ll remember what you loved. If you didn’t love the book, you’ll remember why.

  4. Wow, with so many saying the same thing…maybe it’s the summer. I don’t watch TV normally, but with TB on now, I specifically set aside my Sunday night. So that leaves Sat night for the DH and Friday night for the kiddies…so I read on Mon-Thurs. The hard part is being interrupted and if the book is slow, well uggg. I had to leave PNR for a bit and I have been a bit gluttanous for Harli-Blaze novels (fast, easy, often witty and some good lovin’). I just love Lora Leigh and she has a new novella with Jaci Burton that I read last night. Plus, just bought Sizzling Sixteen, always a great beach read that JE. Have a fantastic weekend! Karia in Canada

  5. Sometimes mixing it up helps! For me, I often find myself reading books that I know I love but haven’t read in awhile because the concentration does not have to be there. Summer is actually a big TV season for me, so that helps!

    Oh, I went through a bit of a slump when I realized people read my reviews. I started to feel like I “needed” to be “more”. I got over it by just repeating to myself: just write what you would want to read in a review. I wish I could be as eloquent and defining as some people but really I can’t 🙂 I understand that pressure though, it can take away from the enjoyment 🙁

  6. Karen and Emily: Thanks for providing the links to your posts! They were helpful to read.

    Marq: I remember you tweeting about your slump and thought of you when I was writing this. I cannot do historical – just not my thing, but maybe another genre? Meljean Brook has a new steampunk coming out and I thought I would give it a try.

    Janna, Julie, Mama, Karia & Felicia: Thanks for the support and ideas. I hope to get out of this funk soon. I’ve noticed I’m also being really short with my kids, too. Maybe I just need a good vacation (alone!)

  7. I don’t know if this is one of your problems but once I started blogging I found that I read differently. I used to just read what hit me when I was at the bookstore but then I found myself reading more of the “it” books because everyone else loved them so I thought I would to and then found that I didn’t…which led me to read more reviews for new bk reccommendations etc – vicious circle.
    Also – the genre is just getting repetitive as a whole. I stopped reading for a few weeks…thank god for rants and meme’s because I had nothing to post for awhile :-))

  8. When I get in a reading slump, I tend to read one of my favorite books to get out of my slump. My last slump had me reading the first 3 books in the In Death series before I was ready to read a new book.

    Love the new look to your blog. I know you didn’t want to change it, but it looks really awesome!