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A new beginning

Hello there!

Well, here we are. Here I am. I suppose I should start with introducing myself. I'm Hayden. I'm 24. And I used to run a book blog. A couple of books blogs, actually, because I could never make up my mind about what I wanted it to be.

After a few years of moderate growth and plateaus, I deleted everything. I wasn't active on my website anymore, it was getting harder and harder to find the motivation to post on Instagram, and Twitter had just turned into me following a ridiculous amount of people who all got involved in drama. Drama that I knew nothing about, because I slowly started to log on less and less. So when I did bother to hop on my account, I felt clueless and out of the loop.

My goals had been all over the place. I wanted my accounts to grow, I wanted to post fun stuff on Instagram, and I wanted to do reviews. I wanted to make friends, I wanted views, but I didn't have the time or energy to make any of these things happen. I set goals that were unreachable for where I was at mentally.

I deleted everything for a year. I stopped looking at book-related accounts on Instagram, I removed myself from Book Twitter, I deleted my blog. I continued to read on my own time, like I had for years. Separating myself made me feel like I was out of the loop, and I definitely was. I had no clue about new releases anymore, I had no clue what authors or other readers were up to.

Part of it was nice. Mostly, I was able to focus on work. I admittedly didn't focus on myself as much as I should have. This book club is a result of that. Let me explain.

I've lost my outlets. I'm a writer, who is too mentally drained to ever write anymore. I do it in random spurts, but nothing comes of it. I get sad about it. It used to come so easily. I'm a reader, who has no community. I don't have anything fun for myself to do in my free time.

My time off realized I enjoyed blogging and taking pictures of the books I'm reading, and generally chatting with other book nerds. But it also made me realize that, if I wanted to get back into this community, I really needed to throw myself at it and make it into something for myself. Something I could handle, something that would not feel overwhelming, something I could keep control of easily and stay on my own terms.

The concept of a book club blossomed in my brain.

I used to write reviews. Writing reviews is fun for some, but it wasn't fun for me. I felt like I had to adhere to certain rules and regulations, I had to think certain things in certain circumstances. I felt guilty for not enjoying books that were sent to me. I felt guilty for writing negative reviews. I decided to stop writing negative reviews, and then was judged for not writing a review for a book I was sent, even after explicitly stating I'm not obligated to write anything if I didn't enjoy the book. It all led to me not reading at all. I wasn't enjoying it anymore.

But a book club is different. It can be whatever you want it to be. I don't have to rate anything. I can set realistic reading goals for myself (and whoever else participates), and simply write down what I'm feeling as I read. It doesn't have to reach some sort of conclusion.

Another factor was, I was unhappy with the website I was using to host my blog. So I changed that as well. Now, this site appears to have a feature that allows people to interact with each other. Not just a comments section, but an actual page I can host discussions. That sounds SO fun to me.

This post was longer than I planned, because I have a tendency to ramble. I will leave this here. Soon I will post an update on what book I'm reading. The month of June will be a trial run, since May is pretty much over with.

But I'll explain all of this in my next post.

Until next time!

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