Hello bloggers! Welcome! Pull up a chair. Can I get you a drink? It’s been so long since we had a proper catch up, after all.
You may be wondering why after a hiatus of almost a year, a couple of book reviews suddenly popped into your inbox within the last month with no warning or explanation. I imagine you must have a lot of questions. I always told myself I would never be one of those bloggers who disappeared without a word, but the truth is I never made a conscious decision to take a break. So, where did I go and why? Let everything be revealedddd!!
Why did I disappear?
Working full time/lack of free time
Ah, that ever elusive time. As humans, we’re always searching for it. When I started this blog I was a teenager in secondary school. Now, I’m graduate struggling to make my way in the world, and somewhere along the line, I swear days became like 6 hours shorter! After finishing university I began a part-time job at a hotel which quickly turned into a full time job – including most weekends with random shift hours. Throw in trying to have a social life and much needed down time so vital for introverts like me, and I was never quite able to meet that work life balance!
I’ve been blogging for 6 years! Can you believe it?! I DIDN’T EVEN REALISE IT WAS THAT LONG UNTIL I LOOKED IT UP FOR THIS POST. I mean geez, no wonder I felt like a break.
Blogging is hard
Seriously. Coming up with new content all the time, keeping up a regular following, taking pictures or creating visuals for posts is time consuming, and can become creatively draining. There’s a lot of blogs out there now, and it does sometimes make you question what you’re doing and what you can add to the community. It’s easy to lose perspective. I returned to blogging to discover that dozen of my favourite auto-read bloggers had called it quits which was gutting, and just really brings this home.
I wasn’t yet willing to adapt the way I knew I needed to
Considering the above, the only way I was going to be able to continue blogging was to change my style. I write looooong posts which are time consuming, and I always wanted to review every single book I read. With my limited time, that was no longer practical but I wasn’t ready to accept that. So I stopped altogether. Some might call that stubbornness!
My laptop died
Okay, this one seems lame, but it was actually one of the biggest contributors. My laptop is where I wrote all my posts and it died a slow and painful death last year. It got to the point where I couldn’t even have it on my lap because it overheated so badly, and eventually it ceased to function altogether. This meant I could only use the family computer which was extremely limiting.
What did I do while I was gone?
Traveled, traveled and traveled some more!
Oh yes, I’ve had some adventures while I’ve been away. Let’s see, I’ve…..
- Hiked up Snowdon, the highest mountain in Wales (and on the same trip zip wired through slate caverns)
- Visited Bath’s Christmas market, and revisited Bruges’s awesome one.
- Tootled through the Cotswold villages (especially its book shops).
- I went back to Edinburgh (and visited a cat cafe!)
- Saw a LOT of Italy – including Rome, Sorrento, Pompeii, Venice, Verona and Pisa.
- Was driven through the Austrian Alps and Slovenia’s national parks (gorgeous!)
- Travelled along Germany’s fairytale-esk Romantic Road.
- I also had my first ever all inclusive sunny holiday in Lanzarote.
I got a new job
I called it quits on the hotel job and I now work at a private children’s centre which offers neurodevelopmental assessments for autism, ADHD, sensory processing disorder, dyspraxia, etc., and therapy options for children with behavioural, motor function, processing, and emotional regulation issues. We’re the guys people come to when they’re slapped in the face by an NHS 2-5 year waiting list for an assessment for diagnosis. My position is an administrative but one of the main things I do is triage, taking initial enquiries from struggling families, trying to wean out the details of what’s causing their child’s underlying issues, and then directing them to the most appropriate services which is really rewarding, and much more related to my Psychology degree! I’ve been there exactly a year and it’s enabled to me sit in on therapy sessions, and we’ve also just had a Psychologist join the team that I will soon be shadowing, so I’m really excited!!
Why have I come back?
I miss this swash-buckling, ass kicking intensely intelligent community. Nothing else compares….and that’s for realskies.
There I was, sitting on my sofa having just finished Little Women, and all I wanted to do was tell you guys about it. I could have mentioned it to one of my friends or the boyfriend, and they would have humoured me, nodded politely, and moved on to the next topic because reading is not their thing, and that’s okay. They don’t understand that a book can leave your mind swirling with thoughts, ideas and wimsey, or the woes of fictional characters, and they definitely don’t understand the heartache of leaving a story behind.
I miss having a place and refuge to call my own.
When I started this blog, I didn’t put much thought into why, it was just a need. A need to write, and express and discuss. Through the years, this space has been many things for me depending on where I was in my life. I’ve realised, it will continue to evolve with me, hopefully for a long time. It’s nice to have a happy place to call your own!
I’m finally ready to adapt my style
I’m now in a place where I will no longer hold myself to some kind of crazy unrealistic ideal despite all logic. I’m okay with popping in here once a month or so, It’s okay if I’m not able to post regularly. I no longer feel the need to review every book. I have freed myself from my own shackles!
Moving forward and implementing changes…
I’ll be writing some shorter posts… maybe?
I kind of feel like this one is destined to fail because I am a waffle monster and I always have TOO MANY THOUGHTS. But, I want to be be able to pop in here, write a few paragraphs, and start a conversation. I think, shorting my posts is the key, and the only way I will realistically be able to keep at this blogging lark considering my limited time!
Don’t be surprised if you discover that the format of post keep changing within the next couple of months. I’m going to try and a few different styles and have some fun playing with layouts and find what works best for the 2018 me.
Showcasing books in different ways
Now that I’m not reviewing everything I read, I’m going to try and showcase books I’ve read in other ways. This will probably mean more list style posts!
Possibly more lifestyle/personal posts
I 100% want to keep this blogs bookishness, but I also want it to be relaxed space, like we’re all hanging out at a cafe having coffee. This means, I’m going to let you guys more into the world of Becky. I may start writing about my travels more, any interesting days out I may have, etc. Let me know if this is something you would be interested in?