Saturday, November 07, 2009

Confession of a Blogger: Do You Really Need to Know Why I Haven't Been Around?

Ti over at Book Chatter has a great feature in which she discusses an issue each Saturday that relates to reading or blog reading. This week she talks about being a cover snob. She also opens the floor to other bloggers who may wish to bring up questions or thoughts they may have. I had not intended to participate this week, but as I sit here, struggling with whether to write a blog post or not, I thought I might as well approach the topic with opening it up for discussion with you.

I am going through a bit of a slump right now. One of the reading and blogging variety. I settle down to read and I find myself immediately getting up to do something else. Doesn't matter what book it is. I've tried several. I sit myself in front of my computer to either write a blog post or visit all your wonderful blogs, and I end up doing something else entirely. I haven't even been staying on top of my television shows lately. They're piling up in the DVR as I write. Being sick with the flu certainly did not help. And then we had a little incident that required a middle of the night visit to the emergency room this past week (my husband's fine--stitches came out last night). Work has picked up considerably and I have been extra busy with that. Then there is . . . oh, but that's way too much information, isn't it? You get it. I have plenty of excuses as to why blogging and reading haven't been the biggest priorities in my life lately. (And I can hear a couple of you tsking me. If it was really important to me, I'd make the time no matter what. Yeah, yeah.)

You may think I am going to ask you what you do to pull yourself out of a slump, but I am not going to (although you are more than welcome to commiserate and offer suggestions if you want). I have been struggling with whether to write a post about why I am not blogging just now, or to just not post at all while I pull myself out of this. I feel guilty when I let my blog go too long without a post. I feel even more guilty when I am not able to visit my blog friends. My husband says I worry too much. Well, he hasn't actually said it, but I can tell he thinks it, especially when I lament about it over and over again.

My lapses in blogging do not last long and so perhaps letting you know I'm okay during those absences is unnecessary. You may not even notice, especially since they happen occasionally and so you have come to expect it. Other bloggers sometimes will post about their absences, be it health related or something fun. I don't mind at all. And I never mind when you talk about your busy lives or blogging and reading slumps--it's always nice to know I am not alone. Given that I think of many of you as my friends, I am interested in what is going on in your lives and like to offer my support when I can.

What are your thoughts about "why I haven't been blogging/reading" posts?


Note: I have had to stop several times while composing this post because my cats and dog demanded I give them some undivided attention and love. You try typing while you have a cat nudging your hands and another one trying to settle in on your chest while the dog decides it is time to put his front paws in your lap.


© 2009, Wendy Runyon of Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved.
If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.

58 comments:

  1. Glad to know you're okay. You just sound restless. I've been feeling that way myself for the last week. Why not take a little vacation from blogging? I did this summer and felt great. I missed all my blogging friends but not the blogging part. Or how about children's books? I usually read picture books when I'm in a reading slump. Take care.

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  2. I don't know if this will make you feel better or worse, but I've noticed that you haven't been blogging as much as you normally do. Good to know it's just a slump that's kept you away.

    I slump all the time, in both reading and blogging. There was a time when every spare minute I had was filled with reading. Lately, not so much. It's the normal ebb and flow I think. Don't let it get you down.

    (((Hugs)))

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  3. I've been in a slump myself. I don't worry about the blogging part so much since I've never blogged consistently, but I do about the reading. This just isn't a few months thing - this goes into last year. I'm beginning to wonder if it's too much of a good thing. I love books and the blogging world but is it possible to be overwhelmed by the enormity of it all? I remember when I read one book at a time at my own pace. That was before I realized there were so many books out there waiting for me to read. I also don't want the reading to become a job. That's one reason I stopped regular reviews. It became a job. I am so impressed by those of you who read so much, review, blog and everything else, but I'm not sure it's not for me. I would miss the relationships I've made so I'll never give up the blogging world entirely. As one of the other posters said you probably just need a break. Believe me you're readers will come back if you decide to take one. You do a fabulous job. And no, you don't have to explain why you are away:-)

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  4. I think the slump has to do with the time of the year. I find myself a bit distracted too. My mind is pondering the holidays. If I read, I end up getting up to make a list of what to read which makes no sense! It's as if my mind is craving order where there is none.

    As for your question, I don't think much about "why I am not blogging" posts UNLESS the blogger publishes post after post about it. One update is good, but three or four is pushing it. If the blogger needs an extended break, then I think he/she should just say so and then come back when ready to do so.

    There is nothing wrong with taking a break. I've been scattered since read-a-thon and I was not like that the last time around so I really feel that it's just the time of year.

    Thanks for participating!

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  5. It's good to hear from you as we do notice when your are not posting. It is perfectly normal to have those up and down periods, and I think this time of year (not to put more stress in your head) Thanksgiving under 3 weeks away and Christmas following behind that, who among us is not have an occasional anxiety attack. ---just go with the flow and do what feels right. we'll still be here.

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  6. I notice when you don't post for more than a few days at a time, and I definitely notice when you don't come around to leave comments! But I don't want you to feel guilty about it :-). We all need breaks sometimes.

    Having said that, I understand felling guilty about letting the blogging slide. I think that's one reason I try to post pretty consistently - trying to avoid the guilt of not posting! (I grew up Catholic - I know guilt all too well.) Blogging has aspects of a relationship, and I feel a sense of responsibility about holding up my end of it.

    And having said THAT...I like seeing posts when someone is planning to take a blogging break. I'm less patient with posts every few weeks about why someone has been too busy to blog, though :-) - kind of what Ti said in her comment.

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  7. I myself like to read these posts just to know that you are doing okay and hear about what is going on in your life. But to me I don't think that blogs always have to be about books so I like hearing about family lives and etc. Good luck with your slump!

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  8. Vasilly - I think that is probably what it is. Restlessness.

    I think I may have a few old children's books in the deep recesses of my closet. Maybe I'll dig them out. :-)

    Trisha - Thanks, Trisha. Better it be a slump than something else, that's for sure.

    I've been feeling guilty that I haven't been reading more--which doesn't help. I need to remind myself that it's okay not to read if I don't feel like it.

    Kristy - Sometimes having so many choices of reading material really can be a bad thing. It can be overwhelming. Add to that blogging . . . Yes, I definitely think we can be overwhelmed by the enormity of it all as you said. It's easy to get swept into it all and lose our footing.

    Yes, I think maybe I need a break. And not one where I'm sick the entire time. :-)

    Ti - The way my Google Reader has exploded, it's been hard for me to tell if others are going through the same thing right now. ;-)

    I know what you mean though--the holidays do tend to slow all of us down. I haven't even started my Christmas shopping yet.

    Thank you for your words of support, Ti.

    I know what you mean about excessive explanations of why a blogger isn't blogging. I am guilty of that recently. At least I think so. I tried to break those posts up with a couple of others in between so it wouldn't be too obvious. :-)

    Diane - Thanks, Diane. You are definitely right. We all go through these ups and downs. I just have to keep reminding myself of that. :-)

    Florinda - I missed your Hunger Games review! I'll go back and read it later. Maybe tonight even.

    You are so good about keeping up with your blog. You are organized and just about always prepared. I want to be like you. :-)

    What you said about that feeling of responsibility about holding up our end of the blogging relationship is so true. At least for me. I feel so bad when I am unable to keep up my fair share.

    I have such high expectations for myself and am not as flexible as I should be when I am unable to meet those expectations.

    Samantha - I like those kinds of posts too. I probably really limit myself by not talking about too much in my life other than books and movies, that's for sure.

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  9. The whole reading/blogging thing can become a little overwhelming. Actually, more than a little. I'm noticing a lot of "old timers" not around as much. As some others have said, it's nice to know if you're taking a break so we don't worry too much, but don't feel obligated. We'll be here when you get back! :-)

    You take care!

    Lezlie

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  10. Sorry you're slumping! Sometimes I feel like I slump almost weekly, but the truth is I, like you, am probably just a busy person with a variety of responsibilities and interests and book blogging just doesn't always come out on top. I've got a job that sometimes (most times?) seems to suck all my energy, I've got real life relationships to keep up with, and I like to do other stuff like, say, watch the Yankees win the World Series. I decided a while ago that I was tired of feeling guilty about not keeping up with what is, essentially, just one of my several hobbies, so I just try to do what I can and not get too wrapped up in my own bloggy navel gazing which always makes blogging seem like a drag instead of a fun hobby.

    If I want to be honest with myself (and you!), I'm usually so behind with my blog reading and everything that I hardly notice when someone vanishes for a week or two. If you're gone for a month, I'd probably notice and be concerned, but when people are all posting "I'm okay" posts after a week of absence, most often I find myself thinking, "What? You were gone?" So yeah, the absence of such posts doesn't bother unless you're talking, say, 3 or 4 (or more) weeks of absence. Honestly, it also seems goofy, in a life where time is a real precious commodity, to sit down and take the time to write a post explaining the whys and the wherefores all about why I haven't been around and might not be around. I guess my way of thinking is that if I have time and the desire to sit down and write a post why waste that by exclusively writing a post of excuses and reasoning as to why I haven't been around? Which is not to say that I don't care about what's going on in your and other bloggers' lives, as a matter of fact, even if you don't have bookish things for me I'd rather read a post where you tell me what other random stuff you've been up to than one stating the obvious "I'm taking a breather from blogging."

    Anyhow, I've gone on quite long enough. Hope you de-slump soon! Don't worry, we'll all still be here when you're ready to play with us again. ;-)

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  11. No one can blame you for not being as active of a reader or blogger lately. You have had a lot going on and these slumps just happen sometimes and I think they happen to all of us. I know when I came back from my business trip to Denver it took me days before I wanted to read a book. I was just kind of let down and wasn't into it. Now I'm reading lots. I'd say just relax and you will be ready to read and blog again in no time! We'll be here for you when you get back to blogging and will be sending you good thoughts in the meantime!

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  12. Personally, I like knowing why a blogger hasn't been around in a while. It doesn't have to be very personal : it can be as detailed or as simple as the blogger wish, but I like to know what's going on with their life. Are they okay, or just too busy? It's good to know, and it also gives us the chance to cheer up one another when life gets harder.

    I think maybe you just need a blogging vacation! Sometimes life gets crazy and finding the time and motivation to read is the hardest thing : same thing goes for blogging. It can get very overwhelming, but you shouldn't feel guilty about not being around as much. Take some time to breath and come back when you feel better. ;)

    As for the reading slump, one of the things I try to do is to vary my type of reading. Instead of reading books, I'll turn to magazines, or art books with more images than words. I keep turning the pages, but the feeling is different.

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  13. I'm glad you told us what you were up to - I do wonder when several days go by without a post from my favorite blogs. But don't feel guilty - we all go through phases where we're more busy, restless, distracted!

    Have a great Sunday, Wendy. :)

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  14. Good to see you here. I know that restless phase. Bloggingless days are our way of rejuvenating.

    There are days when I can't write poetry and that bothers me.

    I too am having a reading slump right now and much worse is, I have to catch up with my reviews too. That kind of puts a pressure on me.

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  15. You are definitely such a presence when you ARE on here, that when you go away, it is very obvious to me. I mean that in a very good way though, and I believe that we all go through slumps and we are certainly allowed them! Whether you decide to tell us why is your choice. We have to honor your privacy. If a blogger bares their soul about their slump, then as a friend I feel it is my job to support and console, just like I would to a "real life" friend! So no worries Wendy, just take your time working out of your slump, and I will be here when you are ready to jump back in!

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  16. Blog when you want. No pressure. That's what I say. As you know I only blog on my reading blog about once a week. Of course, I don't have very many followers but I blog for myself so I'll have a record of what I've read. Comments are a bonus that I really appreciate, though.

    I'm a little more prolific on my poetry and "stuff" blogs. I've been trying to lose a little weight and have been blogging everthing I eat, drink and do plus my weight each day. I promised myself to be brutally honest and that has helped so much to stay on track. (And I'm down about 9-10 pounds in 45 days)

    Right now, that's what I want to do so I'm doing it.

    You do what you want to do, too! We all go through phases and dry spots are ineveitable and even good for us. We come back renewed and regenerated.

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  17. We don't hold it against you when you're gone.

    I enjoy hearing tidbits from my bloggy friends' lives outside of books, so I like hearing what else you've been doing while you've been away. But if you didn't post about it, that would be fine too. We're all here when you get back. And I'm confident you'll be back at it soon. Hang in there!

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  18. Everyone goes through a slump. Embrace it. Your psyche is just telling you that you need a break!

    I haven't been to many of my usual blog haunts in the last couple months because this book I'm writing is kicking my butt in the worst way. I'm having a hard time coming up with topics for my once a week blog commitment to First Offenders.

    But this, too, shall pass.

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  19. I think we all have slumps. I sometimes think that it's hardest to blog when there is nothing going on- can't find a book to blog, kids/pets are uninteresting, work is same old same old, etc. You'll be back when you're back.

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  20. Slumps are tough. For me, it's the reading slumps that are the worst. Ususally I can participate in memes to keep me active through a blogging slump, but if I'm not in the mood to read? That's sacry!
    I don't think anyone should ever make excuses for not blogging, but if you are gone for awhile I think people start to worry and maybe a I'm still around post is nice.
    Here's to hoping that your restlessness (isn't that what a slump is?) settles :)

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  21. wendy, I just posted about this yesterday! It was becoming hard for me to even sit at the computer, never mind check my blog. So I finally gave in and did what I wanted to do, which was watch Fringe endlessly and read a little and mostly just wait until I knew what was going on (with my health). sometimes, I find it hard to be in the world, even through the computer, and i am realizing that we are 'on' even if only blogging! I haven't blogged nearly as much as normal the past few months. It was nice to just let it go, trusting everyone would be here when I got back, because I had to go. And I missed talking about books. So, play with your dog and cats and just do what's calling to you :-)

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  22. I feel a little slump-y myself today. Must pull myself out of it. I will read a grownup book today. Resolved.

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  23. I'll confess I didn't notice, but that's because I've been in a Google Reader slump the last few days. I got a lot of reading done, though! So thanks for helping to keep the # of unread posts down. :-D

    I do like it when people check in occasionally, though.

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  24. Take the time you need and just enjoy your life. We'll be here for you when you're back and ready to blog/read again!! :)

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  25. I actually like this type of posts because I tend to worry when someone hasn't posted in a while. Glad to know you're fine.

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  26. Hi Wendy, I'm glad you're fine.

    It was like that for me last week too. I had no motivation to visit my blog friends (I love them very much!) and I have things to write but decides not to. I wanted to read but didn't read much.

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  27. There are times that reading provides escape from the trials and tribulations of life and times that the same trials can leave you restless and unable to settle in. I go through these cycles on a regular basis, as I'm sure most people do. The same for blogging and blog reading. Hope that you settle back in soon to a comfortable situation!

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  28. Like you, I always like seeing my blog friends post whether they be bookish or personal. It does allow us to connect on that larger human playing field type of level, rather than just about books. Take the time you need, watch some good TV, or do whatever else you feel like. I get into difinitive SIMS2 moods that usually take the place of my reading and blogging when I'm in a slump.

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  29. I have to admit I like posts like these. Even if it is only a few sentences. It lets your readers know what you are up to and that you WILL be returning. And that you are okay!!! (at least physically!)

    I think when you are a regular blogger, you sometimes get burned out and need a little break. So give yourself that time and we'll see you when you get back.

    -Amy
    Life by Candlelight

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  30. This was a wonderful post. Thank you for taking the time to write it. I think that with blogging, as with the rest of life, one can only do one's best. It is simply impossible for me to visit all the blogs I want, as often as I want. I can't imagine how people do it who have a job and/or little ones around the house. I have neither and still am not able to read all the blog posts I want to. I have never had a reading slump, though I read about it often. I think the answer for me is one book at a time. I like what Kristy wrote about reading one book at a time at her own pace. And then write about it or not - whatever one feels like. Thanks again, Wendy.

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  31. Hey - life happens. Good to know it's not something tragic and in reality something completely normal.

    I've been kind of absent from my own as well as other blogs lately. Seems there's just not enough hours in the day and when the time is there, I'm distracted.

    =@@=

    (that's virtual fistbump of commiseration)

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  32. You and me both, Wendy! You and me both! (As you may have noticed from mylack of comments.)

    I think sometimes life just gets complicated and we don't have the time to relax into our more quiet, solitary pursuits. (I know this is true for me, w/ various mom-care crises.) And then guilt kicks in, making it even harder. But then you miss it, don't you?

    For me, it's worth the effort to carve out a leetle time every day. I mean, I'm now sitting at my desk at nearly 7 p.m. and have just let myself write for 20 minutes. Its too late and I'm too tired, but this was the only time I had. And I didn't write much, but this was a little gift I gave myself - like forcing myself to exercise - and I'm happy I did it, even this little bit.

    Maybe when your life allows you to, you can do that too? Just a tiny bit... just to get your writer/blogger self back?

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  33. PS = And while I totally understand the slump, I do hope it passes! Your blog is my favorite break when I am writing regularly. Which I hope to be doing again soon!

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  34. Wendy... don't feel bad about that! I've been going through something like that as well, and can't quite figure out why. I've found keeping the tv and computer off helps with the reading, but that's about it. I'll be here whenever you return!

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  35. I do read the 'why I haven't been blogging lately' posts because I can totally relate! I feel guilty too, but then I think, no, if I take a break, I'll come back fresher. I don't think you should worry about it at all - who doesn't go through slumps??

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  36. I can relate, Wendy! I've been in a slump lately and I think it's partly have to do with the year end, work, and blah blah blah... Anyway, I just want to say don't worry about it, we all need some of those blogging breaks once in a while, and that we'll be here whenever you return. :)

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  37. You all make me feel normal. I too have been in a slump. I am having a hard time reading,blogging and doing school work.My mind is all over the place or seems to be stuck on blank mode.
    When a loved blogger is gone for awhile I do wonder what is going on in his or her life, but since I slack on my blogging now and again I do understand the absence.

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  38. Apologies are not necessary, we all go through patches of having little to say, or wanting to read. Just relax and have some fun.

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  39. I've been in a blogging slump too...for about 6 months now. I just haven't felt inclined to write much even though I am still reading at about the same pace.

    I like the update posts. Since most of us know each other through books, these posts add a slightly more personal touch to the blog.

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  40. Blogging is supposed to be fun, and if you're not in the mood, don't feel guilty about it. I've been taking a few days off here and there lately because "real life" has been so overwhelming and I don't want to feel overwhelmed by my hobbies. I think we wonder where you are when you haven't been around because we care about you, but you always should take time for yourself and your family and worry about the online stuff last.

    --Anna
    Diary of an Eccentric

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  41. I went through a reading (and thus blogging) slump for a long time. It lasted two years. That's why I had more blog posts in October of this year than in all of either 2007 or 2008! Really, I think sometimes other things take priority. And I completely understand the guilt feelings and the obligation overwhelming you. But honestly- it's just a hobby, and if you don't get pleasure from it at the time you're doing it, then I don't think you should have to do it :-) So, if you're being easily distracted- then go do something else! Be a rebel ;-)

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  42. So that's where you've been! ;) Whenever someone disappears from the blagosphere I just figure something IRL is overwhelming. Hey it happens--it's happened to me before, too. You'll be back in the swing of things eventually, though, I think. :)

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  43. I'm glad you posted this update - I had been wondering what happened to you. And I do appreciate updates like this on blogs that are usually very consistent about posting, because when the blogger doesn't post, I worry about them!

    That being said, you need to do whatever feels right to you to take care of yourself, and if that means no blogging for a while, then that's what you need to do (although I hope your blogging slump passes soon, your site is one of my favorite blogs to visit and even if I don't always comment, I do read all your posts!).

    Sometimes, the best way to deal with this kind of restlessness/slump/unease is to just give in and go with it. Best wishes go out to you!

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  44. I'm going through the same slump (even with the TV thing. I'm behind on every show!). Honestly I'm beginning to believe I've forgotten how to write a review! Not to mention trying to concentrate enough to get through more than a chapter of a book...

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  45. Aw, Wendy, I think it must be something in the air! :)

    I've been going through a bit of a reading & blogging slump myself. Not so much that I don't want to, it's more that I have just felt a bit overwhelmed with some other things. But things will calm down and the books and blog will always be there. I hope you are doing well and also your hubby and don't worry about us. We'll be here ready to read your posts when you come back!

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  46. Wendy,
    Even as a new blogger I am in a slump (reading and blogging). And the dog is slumping on her dog blog...that is serious stuff. Dixie wants you to know that she doesn't feel any responsibility to blog when she's not feeling it, but she (and I) are always glad to see your messages.

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  47. Oh, I do commiserate with you. I don't have any suggestions for you though! I find myself in the same position and wonder some days if I will have any blogger friends left after my repeated disappearing acts. "Online" activities, whether they be for work or pleasure, seem to have taken over my life and I feel like the proverbial hamster on a wheel. So, yeah, sometimes I just disappear. There are times I long for the days without computers; but then, yes, I would be missing something (book blogging) that does bring me pleasure. I am so bifurcated!

    Your description of trying to read sounds familiar too -- I feel so ADHD about reading in the last few months. Maybe a cat comparison would be better ... I find myself suddenly needing to be somewhere else doing something else every time I sit down to read. Either that or I fall asleep.

    I do have you in my reader, so whenever you post I'll be sure to know and stop by! You are one of my favorite online stops :o)

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  48. It's nice to know you're just in a slump, and not disappearing! I've had those kind of reading frustrations before. I always feel like being ill will give me opportunity to read- stuck in bed, after all- but just cannot keep my eyes on the page. Hope you're well again and blogging soon! Here's something- I have given you a blog award.

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  49. Lezlie - Thanks, Lezlie. It does seem like there are a few of us who decided to take a little break--or at least post less--recently.

    Megan - LOL I know exactly what you mean about sometimes feeling like you slump almost weekly. Like you said though, it's probably more a result of our being so busy. I have one of those draining jobs too, so I can relate.

    I am not always quick to notice when someone hasn't been posting either. I follow so many blogs that it's hard to keep track. I do notice when my regular commenters aren't coming around so often though.

    I am hoping the slump is over. I have a few new ideas I'm batting around--so that's a start!

    Kathleen - Thank you for your kind words. I have slowly been easing back into reading and hope to do the same with blogging.

    Kay - I like to know why a blogger hasn't been around too, and, like you said, it doesn't have to be personal or even detailed. I just like to know the person is okay.

    Magazines are a good substitute when books aren't appealing to me, I've found too. Goodness knows how many of those I have to read since I tend to let them pile up when I'm really into my books.

    Carrie - Thanks. Hopefully I will be around more. I've missed visiting your blog.

    Gautami - Very true. Sometimes we do need to rejuvenate and if that means staying off the computer, than so be it.

    I hope you are able to get out of your reading slump and catch up on those reviews. Take your time on the reviews--don't let the pressure consume you.

    Sandy - You are so sweet to say that, Sandy. Thank you. I've really missed you and the blogging community. You've all become such a part of my life.

    Linda - Thank you, Linda. Congratulations on your weight loss! That is so awesome. I can't even imagine juggling multiple blogs, so my hat's off to you for being able to do so.

    Lexi - Thank you, Lexi. It's impossible to stay away too long--even in a slump. :-)

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  50. Karen - Thank you. Coming up with blog topics can definitely be a challenge. And I imagine that when you've struggled with your novel all day, writing a blog post isn't the first thing you want to do.

    And you're right. This will pass.

    Lisa - Slumps are definitely a universal experience.

    Stacy - Thank you. I do tend to feel like something's wrong if I am not able to read for long periods of time--or if nothing seems to interest me.

    The memes are good in a pinch, I agree.

    Susan - That would be the worst, waiting to hear what may be wrong health wise. When I am sick, I often don't feel like reading. All I can manage is watching television or movies.

    You are right, sometimes we do have to let go. The blogosphere isn't going anywhere.

    And my cats and dog never mind the extra attention. :-)

    Deb - I am glad you were able to pull yourself out of your slump!

    Jill (Softdrink) - I wasn't gone all that long, Jill, so I am sure most people didn't notice. I probably noticed more than anyone else. :-) Those little breaks are definitely good for helping keep the Google Reader down, aren't they?

    Staci - Thank you, Staci.

    Kathy - I like update posts too. It's nice to know that someone is okay when she's been absent.

    Alice - Thank you. Sounds like you were going through something similar. I hope you are feeling more like your old self now.

    Jenclair - So true. I definitely think I'm going through one of those phases where I'm unable to settle in. And sometimes it's worse than others. I think things are starting to fall into place again. :-)

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  51. Andi - My husband re-installed Sims3 on my computer in case I needed to de-stress that way. I haven't played too much though. I think he gets tired of me sitting there playing Bejeweled over and over again. :-)

    Amy (Candlelight) - I think you're right. Burn out happens to all of us now and then. And sometimes a break is in order.

    Nan - Thank you, Nan. Sometimes it is a real juggling game, between work and blogging and add to that having a life outside of either. I don't know how parents do it, especially those with small children.

    I usually read one book at a time (although this week I'm upping the stakes a little since I'm going to be reading a chunkster nonfiction book-I figure a good fiction novel on the side is in order).

    SuziQ - Fortunately it's just a matter of life getting in the way of my fun and not a tragedy. I'm definitely grateful for that.

    The time sure does seem to slip by us--never enough time to do all we want, is there?

    Thank you for your kind words, Suzi.

    Clea - Yes! That's it exactly. So much has been going on lately without a break. It's been hard to find the time to settle in a really read or write. I was complaining to my husband last night about how every book I'm reading these days seems to get off to such a slow start. He reminded me that it's not like I've had a chance to really sit down and just read, to immerse myself in the story. I realized the other day that I haven't done any creative writing in months now. I really need to get back into that. Like you said, set time aside each day to just write whether it be a blog post or whatever. Sometimes we have to force ourselves to do it at first, to get back into the habit. I love your exercise analogy. Very fitting.

    I hope you are writing again regularly soon too. :-) You and your mom continue to be in my prayers.

    Kristie - I'm slowly starting to find my footing again. Keeping the tv off isn't so hard, but the computer is another matter altogether. :-)

    MycKyee - I think it's a good idea to keep that in mind--the positive perspective, that we'll come back fresher--rather than the negative. Thanks for that reminder.

    Melody - I hope your slump has passed, Melody, and that your life settles down some.

    Sari - Haha! I'm glad because you are normal. Juggling school work with blogging and reading can be quite a challenge, I imagine.

    Poppy Q - Thanks, Poppy. Hopefully things will slow down soon and I'll be able to do more of that.

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  52. Melissa - It can be difficult at times, especially when you just can't work up the energy or the words to write. On the plus side, you are reading. That's a good thing. :-)

    Anna - That is good advice, Anna. Thank you.

    Aarti - A two year slump is a very long time. As you said though, sometimes other things have to take priority.

    Heidenkind - It happens to all of us, doesn't it?

    Ingrid - Thank you for your concern and thoughtful comment.

    I did just as you said this past week and gave in and went with it. I can't say I'll be posting every day (or close to it) in the coming weeks, but I'm okay with that. :-)

    Jen - I know the feeling! Fortunately the review I'm posting tomorrow is one I'd written already. I have a couple of reviews though I do need to write--I am struggling with how to start. I'm slowly getting back into my reading again, which I'm glad for.

    Iliana - From what I've been reading, it does seem to be something that's going around, doesn't it? It must be that time of year. I hope things will settle down for you again soon too!

    Christine - Thank you, Christine. And thank you to Dixie too. :-) I think we should follow Dixie's example and not let our inability to blog get to us.

    Terri - Oh, I know what you mean! I think that's where the guilt comes in of not being able to get online. I really like being able to stay in touch and feel badly when I am unable to.

    You too, huh? I hate not being able to settle into a book. It's just as you described, I try to settle in with one and I suddenly feel like I need to be up and doing something else.

    Jeane - Thank you so much for the award. :-) You made my day.

    I find it so hard to concentrate on my reading when I'm sick. It sounds like there are a few of us who are like that. It's good to know I'm not alone.

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  53. All I can say is don't beat yourself up over things. Blogging is supposed to be fun! Yeah, there's a lot of work involved, but you should still enjoy it. There will be times when you do more reading and have more to say than other times; nothing wrong with that.

    I am in a stretch where I am doing a lot of traveling - 2 to 3 weeks a month - and that makes it hard to keep up. Sitting in a strange hotel room, stuck in an airport, it's not always the best time to think about a review or work on a blog post. I just do what I can, when I can, and hope for the best.

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  54. Lisa - It's the perfectionist in me coming out--gotta always be on top of everything. :-) I'm better than I used to be, but still have a ways to go.

    I don't envy you all that traveling--and I'm one who likes to travel. I hope you are at least finding time to read. I can understand your not feeling like writing a review or blog post while on the road. That would be difficult. As you said, we just have to do what we can.

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  55. I hate it when I get into a reading slump, more so than a blogging slump. Usually a ya title or an easy read does the trick. If not, I just give myself permission to take an indefinite break. Then when I feel the relief from that, I usually more than make up for it!

    My advice is -- just always do what is best for you!

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  56. Michelle - Those indefinite breaks are often what help me. They rarely last more than a week, fortunately. :-)

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  57. Ahhhh, slumps. I know that feeling - when you just can't seem to settle into a book, or when you just can't make yourself finish. Often I find that picking up an old favorite will get me back in the mood for reading.

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  58. Lisa - I wish picking up an old favorite would work for me. I usually end up feeling too guilty that I'm not reading one of my unread books. Go figure! Often taking a break from books works the best for me.

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