Updated, January 2023!
Happy New Year, something a little different today, just a quick note – think of this as a; notice board post-it. There to read then after a quick glance easily forgotten – that’s what this post is, my quick news post-it.
You all may have noticed I have been particularly quiet lately, not just on the blog but also on my social media, I have not been very active and not a very good blogger over the last few months, scheduled posts – blog tours, reviews and pre-arranged book spotlights have all been rather neglected, some being posted days, weeks and months later and some – rather shamefafully – not posted at all. I do seem to do nothing but apologize for my tardiness these days, but to be honest I do have genuine reasons for my lack of respecting promises and letting folk down.
I have had a lot going on in my personal life, since Christmas it’s been one thing after another; multiple household appliances breaking down and having to be replaced (Christmas day of all days for the Fridge to die on us) ill-health (parents & pup) plus other factors which I won’t bore you with, not to mention my inability to say no to every review request I receive – honestly my TBR is now Mount Everest proportions. I will admit that it did get to me and I was feeling overwhelmed by everything happening all at once and I wasn’t enjoying the blogging process or at times the reading/reviewing process as much as I did.
So, a few weeks ago I did decide to stop accepting new review requests, and stopped putting my name forward for every blog tour I was offered which has cut down my workload and finally freed up my calendar – I now have a calendar that isn’t crammed, I can actually see the date in the little box. Then last week I took off social media and the blog completely, yes I missed more scheduled blog tours, reviews and book spotlight something I do feel awful about, I always feel guilty when I let people down but my own peace of mind and my happiness is far more important.
I had a full week of nothing but walking the dog, painting, watching the birds and basically breathing the fresh air – not a book in sight, unless you count the puzzle book beside my bed, no blog, no social media (except the occasional Instagram post) and I feel better for it. But, I did miss reading, so Saturday after over a week of book-celibacy I picked up my kindle and started reading and you know what?…. I thoroughly enjoyed reading without the pressure of reading to a timeframe.
I am back from my mini-break, but things will be different this time around, I now know I can’t allow the blog to take over my life as it has done, so I have put a few changes in place. I will still be blogging and reviewing, but now it will be at my own pace and on my own terms.
Firstly, every future blog tour I have already signed up for will go still go ahead and those books will be reviewed, but after those I will still participate but I will be more selective as to which tours I review for, as for tours with other content such as Excerpts, Interviews, Guest Posts and Spotlights, Book Blitz’s and Cover Reveals – I am more then happy to continue to participate with those.
All tours with which I had signed up for and unfortunately missed, all those reviews will be posted in the coming weeks.
I won’t be accepting new review requests from any author until further notice!!!
I know a lot of my regular authors who I have reviewed for, for many years have contacted me and said it doesn’t matter when or if a review is posted, or if I want to review their book at all as they want me to have a copy of their books as gifts, but I still feel bad that these amazing people have entrusted their precious work to me and I have failed in posting my reviews (even worse, when I have actually written those reviews but haven’t been able to post them).
So, to not let further people down, my reviews are closed, keep an eye on the blog as I will let you know when my review requests are open again, but this doesn’t mean that I am barring all bookish content from the blog, I am still more than happy to host book spotlights, guest posts and interviews for any author.
All books which I have already received and accepted to review will be reviewed but it may be a little longer to wait, apologies about that. I am once again reading at my own pace and enjoying not stressing about the blog, all reviews will be posted eventually, but I am now going to post and review at a more leisurely pace.
I won’t be on social media as much, in fact, I have taken the decision to close my Facebook page, as I am never on there it seems a waste and I prefer Instagram anyway, so if you do follow the page do follow me on Twitter and/or Instagram so not to miss out on any of my posts.
I think over the last few years, I have been so focused on pushing the blog to be something it isn’t, wanted to post as many reviews as I can and to be on every blog tour that I was offered, I think the thrill of having my blog’s name everywhere went to my head. I forgot the reason I started the blog in the first place, and that was to share my love of books, and that’s it, those early days were all about getting a book from the library, or off my bookshelf enjoy the reading process in my own time and then sharing the love of that book.
That was it, simple!
I lost my way a little, I went off track, but after my mini-break and new insights into what makes me happy and what was stressing me out, I now know the ingredients of a happy blog and that is to go back to basics, which is what I intend.
So, I will repeat my new rules once again – more for myself then you intelligent people reading.
- I am not accepting new review requests until further notice (I will update the blog when this changes, so do keep popping by)
- All outstanding books which I have accepted as a review request from the author will be reviewed but at a later date than originally scheduled.
- Blog tour reviews I have missed will be posted in the coming weeks.
- I will participate in blog tours, but I will be very selective over which books I review, but I will happily participate in blog tours with Excerpts, Guest Posts and Interviews.
- I am still more than happy to participate in Cover Reveals, Book Blitz’s, Book Spotlights and I always welcome any author to contact me if you would like your book to be featured in a Spotlight.
- I will be cutting down on my social media, and closing the Chicks, Rogues and Scandals Facebook page, do follow me on Twitter instead and Instagram.
So, there you go the reason – more or less – for my absence and for the tardiness of my reviews of late, I actually feel a huge weight off my shoulders having opened up. I may have gone through a bit of a blip with certain things going on behind the scenes which at times made me want to give it all up, but stepping back even for that week made me see that I do love the blog, I missed it in that week I was away and even though I will be cutting down a little I will keep going waving the book love flag.
Thank you for reading right to the very end, stay well and safe and happy!