Monday, August 12, 2013

Confessions of a Reader Facing Burnout

So, I'm a reader. I've always been a reader.

I was that kid who read EVERY DAY...every day growing up.  I still read almost every day.

Reading is how I've always relaxed...hence the name of my blog, LOL.

Image from Wise Craft
As I've gotten older, in general that has not changed. I still feel compelled to read every day and I find that something is missing if I don't.  Reading is probably what could be called my life's passion.

And yet, with all of my professional reading responsibilities now - professionally reviewing for three national magazines, reading to consider books for our library's fourth and fifth grade book club, reading to be able to provide excellent reader's advisory to all my tween and teen library patrons, and finally reading books to consider for the seventh and eighth grade book award committee that I'm co-chairing this year - I'm starting to feel a little reader's burnout.

Image from Talk Nerdy 2 Me
Instead of happily curling up with a book... now I'm starting to feel anxious about my reading.  Though there are plenty, and I mean PLENTY, of books that I would like to read, I literally have no time to just idly pick out a book.  At this point, I have about thirty books waiting to be read in just the next two months!

Every time I put down a book, there are three more waiting to be read and I have no choice any more, really, about what I'm reading.  When a new book or sequel to something comes out that I'm just dying to read, I actually feel guilty if I squeeze in four hours to read it on a weekend.


Reading is not as fun as it used to be...and I miss that.  I miss it a lot.

While there's not too much I can do about things at the moment, I think in the new year I'm going to make some changes. I think I'm going to be cutting back on some of my reading responsibilities so that I can just re-embrace the joy I used to find in reading.  I want to be able to happily peruse the library shelves and just pick up a book that catches my eye and read it that very day.  I want to be able to put a hold on a book and not panic when it actually comes in and I have no time to read it.

I want to READ TO RELAX.

Image from EASLibrary
So, until then, I think that I'm going to ease up a little on the blogging.  Not that I'm going to abandon this blog by any means, but I think I'm going to ease up a little on my book reviews.  I'm going to give myself a mental break and maybe throw in a bunch more of other types of posts.  Memes, movie reviews, celebrity gossip, etc.  Something to make this feel less like just another reading responsibility that I have to keep up with... because I want this to be fun, too!

If you have any commiserations or suggestions for dealing with reader's burnout, let me know! This is the first time in my life that I've ever felt like reading isn't really that fun anymore...


  1. I tend to face smaller but more frequent feelings of burnout every couple of months, just for a weekend or so. It often coincides with a pile of things I don't enjoy. Taking a breather from reading and doing something else' like knitting or biking or (gasp) talking to other adults really helps. We all face blogging doldrums as well. Give yourself a break, read noy if you feel like it, and hopefully the feeling will pass. when it does, you'll get caught up because you will have renewed vigor. Hope the feeling passes quickly.

  2. Awww, sad day, I always wondered how you were able to review so many books. It sucks that it's become overwhelming. Take a break and watch a movie!!

    1. Kym, I read constantly, and usually I don't mind...but even wanting to take a break now, I really can't. I will say that I have seen more movies in the theater this summer than I have in the last three years combined, so I'm *trying* to give myself a break. :P

  3. Can you get any of the books you need to read as audiobooks? Maybe you could listen to some of them while driving. I know what you mean about burnout, and I don't even have as many reading responsibilities!

    1. Emily, if I wasn't reviewing audio books, too, that would work...

  4. So, since posting this I decided to take a break from professional reviewing for a couple of months to give myself a little mental break. I hate doing it, but I needed to!!