31 March 2014

I'm a reader, not a reviewer

For the past few months it has been pretty quiet here on About Happy Books. There was a time when I was constantly working on new posts, when I felt the need to share everything bookish with the world. This period lasted for some years and I was sure that it would go on like this forever. But then something strange and scary happened, I started to read less and less, I started to feel less excited about books in general and I started to wonder why this was happening. 

A few weeks ago I finally realized what was going on and what was making me feel less passionate about reading. My blog is the reason I feel less excited about books. Seeing myself as a reviewer and constantly feeling the need to share my thoughts on books was making me want to read less. I thought that reviewing books, being an active part of the book blogging, would make me more excited about books, and for some time it did. But this time is over, I realized that I'm not a reviewer, I'm a reader. 

Without the pressure of having to blog/vlog about every book I bought or read, without the pressure of having to share all of my feelings about books, I once again feel excited about books, I once again look forward to starting a new story and to get lost in it. 

Does this mean that About Happy books will disappear? No, I want to continue with my blog, however I'm not sure how the content will look like. Right now I'm thinking about using my blog as a sort of diary for my reading activities. I want to continue to write about the good books I read, I want to share other bookish things, but not as a reviewer, from now on I'm solely a reader. This decision makes me feel as if I'm free again to read what, how and whenever I want to. 

In the last two years I put too much pressure on myself, took reading too seriously and thought that I had to constantly create new content. I expected too much of me and forgot that blogging about books was once one of my favourite hobbies. I want to go back to feeling as if About Happy Books is a place where only good things happen, where there is no stress and only good times. I want to go back to being a reader who doesn't really care about writing style, world building and so on, I want to go back to enjoying a book without constantly thinking about what I might write in the review. 

From this moment on I'm back to being a reader, nothing less and nothing more. I no longer see myself as a book reviewer and it feels damn good. I'm not exactly sure when my next blog post will be up and how it will look, I still need some more time to come to terms with the changes, I need to think some more about the direction this blog will take in the future. But I will be back and hopefully this blog will once again fuel my passion for books and not the other way around. 

A reader. 


  1. I feel that I understand what you are saying. I love reading your blog and watching your videos. After all, you are the one who has turned me on to Betty Neels books.

  2. I totally understand what you mean. That's the reason why I started completely fresh with a new blog and I am not blogging about all books. I started with a weekly book blog two weeks ago but it's something I am putting no pressure in. As you say I am a reader too and I wanna enjoy the books I am reading and not feel the pressure to talk about every book!

  3. I completely understand this feeling. I'm still reviewing, but only books I want to - NOT EVERY BOOK. And one day it will get to the point that I just track what I read and not review.

    I bet you are so much happier with this decision than you ever realized at first.


  4. I can totally understand what you say! Twice a time a try it also with a book blog. I thought: "I love to read books, I love to talk about books, I would love to write about books!" ... but it also feel like work for me, not fun. It didn't work. I'm also only a reader :) but I will miss your regular posts and videos! :) I always love them. But I can understand you and I will look forward to your dicision and the future of your blog :)

  5. Welcome Reader! I am so glad you've got your reading mojo back. Keep it light sister,especially when you are reading for enjoyment. I look forward to seeing your bookcases, the new books you bought, the books you liked and the books you didn't in whatever form that takes.

  6. Hi Julchen, I do completely understand your poisition. Writing reviews is a lot of work for me as well. For now, I love the interaction though with other bloggers and readers and authors. But I would keep following your blog if you just post what you buy, and a one sentence "review" if you liked it or not, recommend it or not.
    I wish you a lot of fun reading and discovering new worlds.

  7. Yes, reviewing should be fun and not a 'have to'. Enjoy your recovered book love.

  8. Hello hello!
    Well I am late for this but I just wanted to chime in to say I completely understand. Blogging shouldn't feel like work and certainly not take away your enjoyment of reading. I think you are taking the right decision for you and your blog - plus it doesn't mean that you don't get to participate in all the fun discussions online!
    I've been having a reading/blogging slump since last fall and I realised I had stopped reading what I wanted and was working too hard on keeping up with books received for reviews and things like that. So I have been slowly changing my approach to blogging and reading this year, too. And I am slowly gaining back my passion for reading. And it feels good! :)
    See you around :)

  9. Hi Julchen, I felt the exact same way too. It happened to me in the last couple of years when reading really took a backseat. It felt like a chore to update my blog. Even though I'd get excited about new themes to update the look, I would be at a loss on what kind of post to write. And I was thinking which actually came first for me - reading or writing about reading and books on my book blog. That wasn't a good time for me and what's worse was that I didn't like the books I read.

    I'm glad that this year my interest in reading and blogging about books have improved. I hope you decide what's your next move but most importantly, don't stop loving reading! :)

    I'm a fan of your blog by the way. The pictures you take are amazing!

    Books Love Me

  10. I will say what the previous posters said "I totally understand!" Sometimes the pressure of reviewing takes away from the joy of simply getting lost in a story. I have you on my blog roll and peruse your posts (when I have time to look at my blogroll, which is quite honestly about twice a month. Yikes!) I just wanted to drop you a line and say that I do enjoy your posts. Specifically your book stack photos. Happy Reading!

  11. I understand completely. Going through the same phase as well.

    1. It's good to know that I'm not the only one who had/has thoughts like that.




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