A World Without TBR Lists and Reading Priority Systems
When I started my month of Blog Detox (one month without memes or reviews) I didn’t really think about what effect this month would have on my reading. I only thought it would be an interesting experiment to see if it changed the way I felt about blogging – but it’s having a huge effect on other book-related areas in my life as well.
I’ve posted before on how I choose what to read next, and although I try to keep enough space in my reading for books I’m excited about, there is this constant pressure of knowing you have to keep up with review books. I have physical ARCs, Netgalley ARCs, Edelweiss ARCs, and a huge pile of old review books I never read that all weigh heavily on my conciousness. Even though I schedule reviews in advance and I’m very careful of not making my workload too heavy, it still forces me to weigh my options. Review book or fun book?
Although it’s possible to stop accepting review copies, there still is this little voice in the back of your head that tells you you can’t read Lord of the Rings right now because then you won’t have a review to fill that slot next week. Since I’ve started blogging in earnest, I’ve barely read any big books – although I used to love huge fantasy tomes before.
But now, during the Detox, I have one month without reviews. This means I don’t have to read anything. I could just blog for a month and not opening a book once. This freedom is mind-blowing, and it took a while before it hit me.
I can read everything.
It doesn’t have to be an English book. It doesn’t have to be fiction. It doesn’t have to be a popular book. I don’t have to have deep thoughts about what I’m reading. It doesn’t have to fit the theme of my blog. It doesn’t have to be finished before a certain date.
There are no review slots to fill.
So after marking an unsatisfying young-adult book as unfinished, I started one of the biggest books in popular fiction: Outlander. And I’m reading it without feeling guilty or worried that I’ll get behind, because there is no getting behind this month. And I’m going to embrace that and read whatever the hell I feel like.
How do you deal with the reading side of blogging? Do you ever feel like you’re just reading to keep your blog updated, rather than because you feel like it? What would you read if you had all the time in the world?