Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Happy New Year!

For the first time, I still have vacation reading notes to write up at the start of the new year. I really need to get those done, or it'll interfere with my ability to pick up where I left off during my next vacation.

One of the things I realized at the tail end of 2018 is that it has become really hard for me to force myself to write reviews. I'm not sure what's up. I don't want to stop blogging/reviewing, but I think I need to figure out a different way of doing things. Maybe I need to change my reviewing style.

I also realized that I need to actively work at offloading (donating, recycling, or selling) more of my collection, more regularly. In the past couple years, I haven't offloaded more than 30 items a year, whereas I've definitely purchased more than that. I just bought a new bookcase that's taller than me, and that's certainly helped a lot, but I can't keep adding and upgrading bookcases. So, one of the things I'm trying in 2019 is sticker rewards, since Booklikes Bingo has taught me that I apparently have an inner small child that still loves stickers. I have a sheet of paper with a blank table with 56 spots on it. For every item I offload in some way, I get to put one sticker on the sheet. Ideally, I should have the whole sheet filled up in a year. It's not much, but it'd be an improvement over previous years, if it works.

Beyond that, I don't have a whole lot of reading/reviewing goals. As far as goals not related to books go, I'd like to continue to go to the gym regularly and get back to my pre-Hep C medication weight. I don't know if I've mentioned this, but in the past few months I was diagnosed with mild arthritis in my right hip. After being referred to multiple doctors, each of whom thought surgery might be a good idea, I was finally reluctantly given a prescription for physical therapy, which I'm very happy to report worked wonders. Since then, I've been going to the gym regularly and doing my physical therapy exercises and stretches semi-regularly (yeah, I need to work on that). I've also made it a quarter of the way to my weight goal. My hip's still occasionally a bit stiff, and flexibility is still an issue, but things are so much better. I'd like my progress to continue into 2019.


  1. Happy New Year!

    I'd like to say how much I've enjoyed reading your blog the last couple of years. I especially like your in-depth reviews of manga and manga related media, since I would otherwise have to wade through a lot junk to find the good stuff.

    I'm sorry to hear that you've been having issues with your health. Perhaps it's time to take a short break? I've been collecting old SF magazines for decades and when it's not fun anymore and feels like work, I take a few years off.

    I've often wondered how you are able to do the reading and writing for this blog and hold down a full-time job.

    1. Thank you! I'm glad my reviews are helpful.

      Part of the problem with taking a break is that the reviews are helpful for me, too. I'm always surprised at how much I forget in a couple years, and reading my old posts reminds me of where I left off in a series or why I should or shouldn't buy an on-sale copy of something I read or watched years ago via a library checkout.

      I'm thinking what I might try is to record gut level feelings of things I just finished over at LibraryThing (the place I use more as a review back-up rather than for anything even vaguely social). If I never end up fleshing them out, then I at least have something written down that I can consult later. If I do actually write something I consider to be a finished review, then I'll go to the effort of cross-posting it in all my usual places. I just finished an audiobook today that could be my first test of this system.

      As far as all the reading and writing (and gaming and TV watching) I manage to do goes, I used to have a nice system worked out where I did all my consumption (reading, etc.) on weekdays and all my production (review writing) on weekends. It's also probably helped, up to a point, that I don't sleep much. It's not exactly healthy, but reading/writing does fill up the time when I can't get my brain to be quiet and let me sleep.