As you know, over the last 2 or 3 months I haven't been blogging as much as before. A lot of that has been time-related, either due to real life commitments, or my own inadequate time management, but I've also been stuck in a rather big negative spiral. It seemed that the more behind I was, the less energy I felt to blog. The less time I spent blogging, the more distanced I felt from the blogging community. In a word, it was Overwhelming, with a capital O. It wasn't just blogging either though, life generally seemed to have a permanent blue cloud hanging over it, which when it happens, always tends to make me overly sensitive, kills my self-esteem, and results in me wanting to just hermit myself away. I often seem to get quite low during the winter but it really lasted much too long this year. Anyway, I'm still behind, I still have time issues, and I'm still insecure, but I'm happy to say that I think I'm finally coming out of my reading, blogging, general life funk.
And I have a few things in mind to help get my blog back on track. First of all, I'm going to work on catching up on the 15 or so reviews that I'm behind on, and some of the other posts that have been started and have been sitting in partially completed draft form for far too long, one post at a time. I'd also really like to give my blog a facelift. This template has served me well but lately I've been feeling that it's just too cluttered. I've often referred to it as organized chaos but I think a fresh, new, simpler look will help reinvigorate my blogging mojo. So watch out for that sometime in the hopefully near-ish future.
In the meantime, what have I been reading this month? Well, I finally finished I Am a Cat by Sōseki Natsume. It's a chunkster, and especially this last volume was a bit dull at times, so it's never going to be one of my favourite JLit titles, but it had been sitting on my shelf for ages so I am very glad to have finally read it. I've also been reading some manga here and there. At the beginning of the month I read Oishinbo: Japanese Cuisine, written by Tetsu Kariya and illustrated by Akira Hanasaki. It's part of a famous manga series that focuses on the world of Japanese cooking and food culture. I would certainly recommend it to anyone interested in Japanese food. I also read the second volume of the manga series Monster by Naoki Urasawa. And I've started re-reading The Pillow Book of Sei Shōnagon this month as well and I'm enjoying it just as much as the first time around. Thank you to everyone who commented on yesterday's somewhat pathetic plea. If there aren't any objections, let's resume the read-along of The Pillow Book on the first Friday of March. Check out the sidebar, or the Read-along Page for more info on the schedule, or please email me if you have any questions. Speaking of March, it is going to be a kind of Murakami month around here, and I can't wait!
I know I've said it before but I really really appreciate all of you for sticking around and hope you will bear with me for just a little longer as I get my life/blog in order. Thank you truly for all of your support!
Your slightly neurotic book friend,
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