Helllllllloooooooooooo, beautiful people… I’m BACK! And holy hell, you have no idea how much I missed you all. ♥ (By the way, say hello to my 1,000th blog post!)
I announced a couple of weeks ago that I was going on my first ever hiatus so that I could switch my blog over to self-hosting and overhaul the entire layout and design of the site. I originally planned on coming back on either the 16th or the 23rd of this month, but I’ve missed you all too much to wait any longer! I’m still making some tweaks here and there (mainly with updating old posts to match the looks and feels of new posts), but for the most part, this is what we’re working with now, and I could not possibly be any happier to share it with you all! I loved my old look but I can’t help feeling like this new color/graphic scheme and overall “vibe” suits me better, and I hope you’ll agree!
Since the move to self-hosting (which you can read more about in my hiatus announcement post here) is a pretty big one, there may still be a few broken links or glitchy spots here and there. Don’t be alarmed, but if you do find anything that looks unusual, please feel free to message me and let me know! I would be eternally grateful for the help in making sure Howling Libraries runs more smoothly than it ever has before. ?
Now that the move is complete, you might be wondering:
What’s going to be different about Howling Libraries moving forward?
And that answer is both a lot… and not much at all, friends!
The core of this site is going to be what it’s always been: just me, chatting with/rambling at you — mostly about books I love, with a few “meh”s and the rare but popcorn-worthy Epic Wow-I-Hate-This-Book-So-Much Rant™ thrown in. Oh, and lots of weekly memes because ya girl can’t get enough of those fun, chit-chatty formulaic posts.
That said, moving my site over and looking at my old posts made me realize a few things around here do need to change. When Howling Libraries first kicked off, and for the first 12-18 months of its existence, it was 90% book reviews. Nowadays, it seems like I do anything I can to get out of writing thorough, complete book reviews, and I don’t know why that is. I usually LOVE writing book reviews — so where the heck are they?!
The more I thought about it, the more I realized that a few things happened around the time I stopped writing many reviews:
- I started letting myself become overwhelmed with ARCs, while totally neglecting to write reviews on backlist titles I was reading at all
- I stopped taking reading notes (which have always helped me tremendously with the review-writing process!)
- I started reading way too many books at once (as many of you will remember all too well that I spent a couple of months earlier this year keeping my currently-reading shelf at 15+ books at any given time…)
So, these feel like pretty simple fixes I can work on, and I’m hoping they’ll help me return to that review-writing fiend most of you first met me as! I’m going to be focusing more on backlist titles and requesting way less ARCs (by the way, expect the first ARC Ban Update in this weekend’s Sunday Post!), I’ve already started taking reading notes again (AND I HAVE MISSED THEM SO MUCH, OMG, I CRY), and once I get my currently-reading list to 5 or less, it’s staying there, dammit. No more exceptions or excuses.
Beyond these little changes I’m making to my own outlook on Howling Libraries, the other changes you can expect to see will be mostly stylistic. I do have a few exciting new details I’ll be adding to my reviews moving forward that I think you’ll really like, but I won’t spoil you for those — you’ll just have to take a peek at my next book review post coming bright and early next week!
And finally, in case I didn’t say it enough…
I missed your beautiful faces so damn much.
This blog is such a massive outlet for me, but even more than that, this community means so much. This hiatus made me realize I truly can’t fathom ever ending my time as a book blogger because I don’t know what I’d do without it! I even mentioned on Twitter a few days ago that my spouse even commented on how sad my hiatus was making them, because they could tell what a negative impact the lack of a creative outlet + the lack of discussion with my bookish family was taking on my mental health. I guess all I’m saying is…
— destiny ♥