I’ve neglected this site and I am not entirely sure why. I think it’s partly because I’ve had another project in the wings but that’s not entirely it. And it’s been an uneven year but 2009-2010 were near catastrophic years and I wrote plenty then.
I think part of it is that I have always loathed reading what I must read as opposed to what I want to read. It’s childish, but there you are. The sheer bulk of review requests I receive is shocking. When I began this site, a writer I know from teh LiveJournal who also writes reviews, told me he had only ever received a couple of review requests and advanced reader copies throughout his tenure as a reviewer. I get three to four a week.
And that is all the more problematic because I myself am a failed fiction writer (failed as in I no longer write because I loathe finding an audience for my writing) and have in me an enthusiastic desire to read new writers and support their attempts to build a writing career. So I never say no, but failing to say no has put me in a position of reading books I must read as opposed to reading what I want. Not to say the books aren’t great -most are. But October is coming up and I want to read ghost stories and books about demons but feel all the review requests breathing down my neck, making it impossible to wallow in the season. I don’t like it when it reading becomes an obligation, so I procrastinate. Again, this is all very childish but I am who I am, you know.
(And for the love of your sanity and mine, if you have sent me a copy of something to read, do not have any mixed or odd feelings about this entry. People asking me to read their works is no the problem. My innate softness is, and my gooey nature is not your problem.)
I feel like the only way out of this mess I have gotten myself into is to hunker down, read like a demon and discuss as much as I can before the end of the year. Which sucks beyond the obvious because I like to go on at length about books I read. I give authors the discussions I wanted to read about my own works back when I still wrote fiction, and a full-onslaught to get my review copies read and discussed will mean a shorter word count.
But if I don’t just crap out content until I am caught up, I fear I will just stop writing all together and this site will die off.
So I am putting a moratorium on taking new review requests that I will likely lift at the beginning of 2013. Those I have accepted already will be read and if you have contacted me before today, yes, I will be reading your books, even if I have not responded to your e-mail yet. The only exception are those from the New Bizarro Authors Series. I will always accept books from those writers and that series.
I have a couple of regular reviews to finish, then in October I will finally get the Jim Goad, “Rape” zine discussion online. And from then it will be a full-bore writing assault to get caught up so I can begin January with an empty or near empty slate and hopefully this will put an end to my avoidance.