I love to read and can get very attached to my opinions, but recently I've been learning not to completely lose my head when people disagree with me, so feel safe to argue with me whenever you wish ;)
Over the last few months or so I've been feeling more burnt out than I usually do. I struggle to read, I struggle to review and in general I simply don't feel the same crazy interest I used to in my usual activities. I don't care as much, even though I pretend to myself that I do--I care enough about caring that I force myself to do so. I've started to get much more detached from things than I know is necessary, becoming extremely critical of everything until the only thing I'm really inclined to do is pick fault with anything I read--including my own writing, leading me to delete (instead of rewriting like I usually do) several reviews that even my friends told me they enjoyed.
I don't know if any of you have noticed, though you probably have. I thought I was just being too whiny and I'd bounce back to it soon enough. But still, I feel like anything I post now lacks the passion and effort I used to put into it. Most of my reviews feel empty, vague, and written too *carefully*. Much of my time is spent wondering what's happened to my old enthusiasm for reading and writing rather than mentally engaging with other people's ideas and reading experiences. Every time I do review at all, I do it with a gut-churning fear that nothing I produce will be reflective of what I want to say. In other words I feel like I'm just trying to find myself again. Wow I never ever ever thought I would say that, ever.
Now, this doesn't mean I've given up reading, or Goodreads, or talking with the rest of you. Of course not. I still love reading and interacting with other people to exchange opinions about books. I think this is just a bump in the road I'll eventually get over; I'm just impatient and desperate to know when, because this block has been dragging out for far longer than I expected, and there have been times when I have actually wondered if I should give everything up for good, if I'm simply not up to this whole thing anymore and if I should find something better to do with my time.
On the good side, I'm making it sound worse than it really is. Some days are better than others, and I think I'm getting closer to...well, closer to where I want to be. A few friends I've told this to have been very encouraging (thanks a lot for your support, Jonathan--and to the rest of you for sticking with me), and several times the last couple of weeks my interest is genuine rather than forced. And at least I had the guts to write this particular thing here, which is comforting. I hope you don't interpret this to mean that everything I've written in this period was insincere; maybe a better way to put is that it takes a long time for me to get worked up enough to be remotely interested enough to do anything at all.
I'm well aware that I sound extremely pathetic right now, and I know I'm probably taking this way more seriously than it needs to be; I just can't help it. If you're laughing at me right now, I don't blame you. But at least I know that I need to
*stop thinking that getting interested in reading again is so complicated
*stop expecting some sort of fricking masterpiece to fly out of my hands every time I look at a computer
*and relax, some more
...And I'd appreciate if someone could throw a bucket of ice water at me and tell me to wake the hell up, as I doubt I'm clear-headed enough to do that myself.
Thanks for bearing with me and listening to my rambling.