Hello, 2019: Let's Try This Blogging Thing Again

January 12, 2019

I've struggled with how to start this post, but you know what? I'm just going to start.

I've finished graduate school, and I'm back in the world of full-time work and part-time rediscovery of what I like to do when I'm not at work. I keep thinking that second part should be simple now that I'm not a student, but I've never been great at transitions.

I still love to read and am thrilled to have more time for it now, but I've been circling my TBR hesitantly. I've had a harder time than normal focusing, retaining information, and sinking into narrative in any lasting way. Maybe I overstretched those attention muscles for school. It's possible facing the dung heap of the United States on a daily basis is training my brain to shut down as self-preservation.

What I do know? I want to try writing again, especially about the books I'm reading.

Here are a couple of my 2019 aspirations:

Chip away at my Audible backlog

I've waffled over cancelling my Audible subscription for months. It's felt especially handy ever since moving to Seattle. I never thought I'd be mad about living in a city full of readers, but the library holds lists for every medium are often backed up for weeks, if not months. For what's felt like a reasonable fee, I'm able to snap up whatever I want to listen to when I want to listen to it through Audible. But, joke's on me: for $17 a month, I've now got 22 books I couldn't wait to read at the time gathering virtual dust bunnies. Those holds lists don't seem so ridiculous now.

I've also recently realized 1) how much better I absorb and understand information when I'm reading it, and 2) how much longer it takes to listen to a book than to read it. Sometimes that information retention factor is less important, and often the audio versions of books have made my experience far better than they would have been if I'd read them. Sometimes, though, I want to better remember what I've read, and I also want to get through what I'm reading faster than an audiobook allows me to.

My Audible subscription is on hold now, and I'm going to cancel it when the time comes. I want to whittle away at my current backlog, shift more of my reading back to books and e-books, and give those interminable library holds lists a try.

Host a readathon or other event for Heather of Bits & Books

Just under two years ago, a fellow book blogger and dear friend Heather passed away. It was one of those accidents that felt fiercely unjust because of its complete randomness. I wish I'd known her better than I did, but I knew her enough to see how her enthusiasm (for budgies, baked goods, and especially books) and warmth touched not only me, but everyone around her. My heart still lurches when I see her blog in my RSS feed or her Twitter account pop up as I'm doing a search for something else. Knowing her, she'd probably just want me to smile at her memory and then find a delicious pastry and equally delicious novel.

Even while I've been out of the blogging world, I've kicked around the idea of hosting an event for Heather, perhaps in June for her birthday. I'm not sure what it would look like, but let me know if you'd have any interest in brainstorming or hosting with me.

Is there anybody out there? How the heck are YOU all?

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