Monday, November 17, 2014

An Apology, an Explanation, and a Goodbye (For Now) From Rachel

Hi guys. So you may have noticed that this blog has been looking a little empty lately. First of all, I'd just like to apologize for totally falling off the grid without an explanation. I didn't intend to disappear like I did, but there have been a lot of changes in my life lately that have resulted in my extended absence.
The most important change I'm facing right now is the transition to adulthood. Somehow, I have managed to make it to age eighteen, and the past few months of my life have been all about adjusting to this new part of my life. This transition hasn't been incredibly sudden or dramatic, but I have been dealing with thoughts of "holy crap I'm an ADULT?!" on a daily basis, and it's making me think about my life in a different way. I'm realizing that I have changed a lot during my years in high school, and I have grown and matured quite a bit. This blog began when I was fifteen, and here I am three years later, with different ideas and opinions and tastes in all aspects of my life. I'm a different person, and I'm no longer sure how this blog fits into who I am now.
Along with the adulthood thing, I've been focused on the idea of college lately. I've been wanting to go to college for most of my life, so it's always been this goal I've worked towards, but in a big picture, one-day-I'll-go-college kind of way. Now, here I am, applied to my first choice school in a binding contract that feels a bit like selling my soul for an education, waiting to receive a letter that will determine the next few years of my life, and I'm terrified. I've stressed myself out and worked my butt off for the past several years to impress colleges and do everything I can to get out of high school and into an environment in which I'm happy, and it seems like all of that hard work has come to an end. The application is in, and there is nothing I can do now but wait.
Never before in my life have I not had any idea where I would be a year from then. For every year before this one, I always knew that I'd be in the next grade of school in the same town I've lived in for all of my life. Now, I have no idea where I'll be in a year. I know a few places where I hope to be. But I don't know anything for certain, and anything could change depending on an acceptance letter or a rejection letter or finances.
While I'm struggling to accept the fact that I have reached a pivotal and terrifying point of my life just before everything is about to change, I'm also becoming aware of how different I've become in the past few years. That's where this blog comes in.

When I started this blog, I was fifteen. I was obsessed with Jace from The Mortal Instruments and I loved to scream about books with my friends and I frequently showed up at author signings with shirts covered in poorly-painted quotes from books. I was young and immature, which was fine, because I was fifteen and fifteen-year-olds are allowed to be immature, but the point is that I was different.
Now, I still love The Mortal Instruments and I love to talk about books and I think authors are the coolest people ever, but my tastes and opinions and ideas and standards have all changed. Reading is still a major part of my life, but not in the same way it once was. I'm trying to expand my reading tastes and move on from the YA bubble, and I'm trying to focus on my writing and learn how to improve my craft, and I'm trying to figure out what kind of books I do love now.
Because my reading tastes have changed, my experience with blogging has changed as well. I've started to notice that I no longer get excited about the idea of advance readers copies or the sequels to series I've been reading for years finally being released. It's not that I don't care about these things anymore; it's just that I care about them a lot less than I once did. Blogging was a fun part of my life for a few years, but I think I'm over it now. I don't mean to say that I don't see the value in blogging or that I hate it, I just think that maybe it's not "my thing" anymore.
Blogging was "my thing" for so many years, and I'm glad I had that experience, but I don't think I need that escape from "real life" anymore. Talking about books online is fun, but I'm also starting to meet people with whom I can talk about books in person, and to me, that's way better. I simply don't have much interest in reading Top Ten Tuesdays or Waiting on Wednesdays or reviews to books I don't know much about. I'm tired of feeling stressed-out about my ginormous stack of review books I'm supposed to get to, and the even larger stack of books I bought because I wanted to keep up with the trends of the book blogging world. These things don't hold much appeal to me anymore, and I'm ready to move on from them. I don't mean that I'm going to leave the blogging world entirely and stop reading blogs and stop reading the books that bloggers love to talk about, but I'm definitely going to take a step back and view the blogging world from a bit of a distance. I don't like that reading makes me feel stressed out and overwhelmed. I don't want to focus on how many books I read and how fast I read them and how I'm doing on my Goodreads Reading Challenge. I don't want to feel pressured to keep up with other bloggers in the books I read and reviews I write. I just want to read because I love it and I want to write because I love it and I want time to live my life outside of the blogosphere.
This post is getting a little long and rambling and disjointed, but hey, that's what I do best. :)

What I mean to say with all of this is: I'm kinda confused. I've loved blogging for so long, but I'm starting to change my mind. As a newly-eighteen-year-old, I'm well aware of the fact that changing my mind is totally normal, but I've never been particularly fond of straying from my routine, so this is difficult for me. 

I don't want to officially say goodbye to blogging, because I'm not totally convinced this is goodbye for me. I may very well decide to start this up again, once I feel a little less confused and a little more excited about the idea of blogging. Maybe I'll come back to Read Write Ramble, or maybe I'll start a new book blog one day. At this point, I don't know what my plans are, but I'm trying to accept that and just see what happens. For right now, I've decided to continue this extended absence and keep my distance from this blog. So, this is it for the time being.

While I won't be around on this blog, I have no plans to stop making videos on my YouTube channel (although I do have plans to start making more non-book-related content), and I'm sure you'll still be able to find me on Twitter. I also did start a new blog. There's not much there yet, but I think I might make it into a place where I can share my writing and posts about my life, with the occasional book or maybe even music review thrown in. So if you'd like to follow me to those other locations, I'd be glad to have you. :)

I know I'm not the only blogger who has been absent from this blog lately, and while I've explained my reasons to you, I can't speak for Megan or Katherine. I'm not sure if they intend to continue blogging or not, but whatever happens, I know we'll have no trouble remaining friends. If they decide to continue this blog, I wish them the best of luck. Perhaps I'll return one day, or maybe I'll just pop in now and then, or maybe I'll just stay away.

If you've read all this, thanks. I appreciate it, and I hope you're having a great day/week/month/year!

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