Monday, December 29, 2014

Herein I Do That Whole Year-In-Review Thing

Having used the word herein in the title of a blogpost, I can just about say all my goals have been met with this blog. Of course that would imply this blog has ever had goals, which it may have at one time (or several), but those goals have long since passed into irrelevancy (or perhaps) apathy.

What a brilliant way to cheerfully begin the blog post that’s supposed to celebrate 2014. Did I mention that I never bothered to do one for 2013? I think that was the first time in the 8+ year history of this blog. Oh well.

The truth is that anyone still bothering to read this blog well knows that I don’t have the time I used to. I only posted 16 reviews in 2014, and a good number of those were books I read in 2013 because it takes me a while to write a review these days. And most were shorter reviews. So we’ll just stick with posts that were actually posted in 2014 for simplicity’s sake. Of those 16, 7 were written by women (~44%), which is easily the highest annual percentage for this blog. While that’s certainly a big step forward for me, I should also point out that 0 of those 16 books was authored by someone who would be classified as a minority with typical definitions. And only 1 of those books was authored by someone whose primary language is something other than English. So, there’s still a lot of room for improvement.

But the truth is that I don’t see this as the year for improvement. Life is overwhelming for me as I've become way overcommitted. One result of that is that when I read, I’m finding I mostly want relatively light reading that’s not out to challenge me. This is leading mostly to what would often be considered rather escapist reading that is much more about entertainment than anything else. Though something particularly absurd and/or overflowing in biting satire would also work well. Anyway…it’ll be interesting to see where these attitudes lead me for reading choices this year.

I do expect things to lighten up again after September, so hopefully that will bring back to the blog and my @nethspace Twitter account more regularly. That’s certainly the plan.

As mentioned above, I reviewed 16 books in 2014. I suppose I should highlight 5 of those reads that appealed to me most at the time.

  • Caine’s Law by Matthew Woodring Stover (review)
  • Half a King by Joe Abercrombie (review)
  • Breach Zone by Myke Cole (review)
  • City of Stairs by Robert Jackson Bennett (review)
  • A Natural History of Dragons by Marie Brennan (review)

So…44% books written by women. I list five favorites, of which only one (20%) was written by a woman. And did I mention that my thoughts about what was one of the most talked about books of the past few years were contrary to most? That in combination with my thoughts on this book perhaps raise an eyebrow or two. Yeah, well…interesting.

Anyway…2014 for me in blogging terms has been something along the lines of not dying. 2015 will probably be more of the same. After that I’m hopeful for more time. Of course who knows what the state of things will be by then – how much of a dinosaur will I be clinging to a blog? Just maybe I’ll find time to attend a convention or two – but likely not until 2016 or 2017.

For what it’s worth – I've read and not yet reviewed 5 books. 4 of those actually have drafts in progress. Since I've tended toward posting in bursts, it wouldn't be surprising for a few more posts to come online in the next week or so, probably at least one before that rather arbitrary division in time known as the New Year. This should be a cause of mass celebration with parties everywhere on Dec. 31st. At which time everyone should resolve to make changes to become better people. Yes people, it’s always been about me.


Larry Nolen said...

Squirrels. The answer to all your problems is obviously squirrels.

Nathan (@reviewbarn) said...

How would you suggest preparing them Larry?

Larry Nolen said...

Ha! Well, it does take a long time to train them how to read and to type out blog posts, so maybe a mixture of acorns, nuts, and rum?

Neth said...

Almost sounds like Nathan is looking for suggestions for something like squirrel stew.

Larry Nolen said...

Then he has a death wish, alas :(


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