Sunday, February 21, 2010

Sunday Salon: Blogging Burnout Blues

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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  1. I'm so sorry you've been feeling blue :( I hope that funk will disappear for good soon. I know what you mean about things becoming more and more overwhelming the longer you stay away.

  2. I'm sorry you've been feeling so burned out, Nat; if it is any consolation, you are not alone.

    Good luck with the face-lift and catching up on reviews. I shall see you the first week in March for The Pillow Book discussion (no objections at all)!

  3. Hi, just wanted to say that I really enjoy your blog, your book choices and the wonderful Hello Japan! Challenge. I think everyone goes through blog saturation but as long as we all come back at some point, there will always be people ready to welcome you back!

  4. My blogging volume goes up and down in direct correlation to how much is going on in "real life" - and, yes, then you feel that little disconnect and it is hard to get back in the groove. I try to always remember that more than anything - my blog is an outlet for ME so I let that thought comfort me when there isn't time to keep up. Do what you love!

  5. I hate blogging funks. :( But I'm glad you think things are looking up!

  6. So glad to hear you are coming out of your 'funk.' I've already started "A Wild Sheep Chase" in anticipation of 'Murakami Month'! :)

  7. I can definitely relate as I've been feeling much the same way of late. Often I think about giving up blogging, but then you know how that goes. I'm trying to balance my life by not posting as much. I also decluttered my blog recently. Will be looking forward to your facelift. :)

  8. I think we all go through these phases now and again. I'm actually pulling myself out of one right now. Remember, we're here for you!

    Diary of an Eccentric

  9. I totally understand! I am in a life funk right now too. On the verge of changing things up and lots of stress and health problems. But people go through funks and whenever you get back on your feet we will all be here.

    Hang in there!

    P.S. If I wansn't in an everything funk I'd join along in your Pillow Book read. As it is, I am enjoying the posts and would love to read it in the future.

  10. I definitely understand the blogging blues. I've had the blogging and reading blues this year.I hope you find a way to blog that works for you and you don't feel so overwhelmed.

  11. I understand what you mean about feeling the blogging blues. I am sorta feeling that way myself.

    Just want you to know, I have been following your blog for a bit now and while I have enjoyed it, I am now truly loving your posts. Your blog has been perfect for me as I have just gained an incredible interest in Japan, as well as my 14 yod. I will be reading some of your book club books and am slowly making my way through Pillow Book.

    Thanks for posting.

  12. Nymeth - Thanks, it's been a weird couple of months. Usually I can shrug off the blues after a little while but this time I was just stuck there. It's amazing how much better I feel now that I'm finally outta da funk! :)

    Claire - I don't really wish that feeling on anyone, but yes I suppose it is some consolation. And yay, I'm looking forward to resuming The Pillow Book discussions. See you there!

    chasingbawa - Thank you! It's very nice to hear. :)

    Just Mom - This time my blogging disconnect was just so long, but all is looking up now. I think part of my problem is I just don't have enough time to do everything that I love. LOL.

    Eva - Funks are no fun at all, blogging or otherwise! Things are most definitely looking up, thanks!

    Teresa - Thanks, it's been long in coming. I'm reading a short book right now that I'll hopefully finish soon and then A Wild Sheep Chase is up next. I'm so looking forward to a month of Murakami. :)

    claire - Oh yes, I contemplated just giving it all up too, but having a few blog commitments was good to at least keep me a little active, and of course I don't think I could abandon it completely.
    BTW, I love your new look, but then I also loved your old one. :)

    Anna - Sorry to hear you've been down too, but I'm glad you're also shaking it off. Thank you, the support of all my blog friends really means so much!

    Amanda - Life funks suck! Hopefully the changes you plan will help make things look more promising. Hang in there, right back at ya!

    Vasilly - Thanks. Pretty much everything was overwhelming there for a while but thankfully I'm feeling much more "myself" these days. I hope you figure out a way to kick your own blogging blues.

    ibeeeg - It seems like a lot of people are suffering from the blogging blues lately. Sorry to hear you've been feeling that way too. I hope it'll pass soon.
    And thank you for your kind comments. It makes me really happy to know that moving to a little more of a Japanese focus on my blog is appreciated.

  13. I have so been there. I am glad it's lifting for you. I just got ff jury duty and I didn't blog at all when I was on it. It was just to much. Have a great week.

  14. Thanks Nicole! Real life does seem to get in the way of blogging sometimes, doesn't it? Mine is still a bit sporadic but at least it's just timing issues now, the blues have lifted. :)


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