Why going on a hiatus was the best decision I’ve made for myself

Posted August 25, 2017 by Fran in On Writing / 14 Comments

When I made the announcement back in May 2015 that I was going to take a step back from Mind Reader, I genuinely didn’t think two years would pass by. Seriously. I simply thought that a few months off would do the trick, but I truly underestimated my feelings. I really had too much on my plate—and I am one of those people with little patience—so, when I had too much going on in my personal life on one side, and was taking too much sh*t from authors on the other, I just lost it.

On Hiatus

After that, I think I didn’t pick up a book for several months. I’d just had enough, and didn’t want to do anything remotely related to books. Instead, I began watching videos on YouTube, playing games, and basically do anything else.

I got passionate about YouTubers, and thought it would be cool to start my own YT gaming channel. That’s a lot of hard work, so I spent most of 2016 watching other YouTubers’ Let’s Plays, finding out what kind of equipment/software they used, and generally thinking about what kind of games I wanted to play. I still had a part-time job at the time, so I had a lot of free time to search for games to play and do my video recordings.

At the same time, I had a lifestyle blog with my bestie that didn’t last very long, unfortunately. However, it gave me the chance to explore a new blogging branch and work with some great brands. It was an interesting experience, as I got to see how that different side of blogging is, and I gained knowledge on how to approach brands (instead of publishers).

With that gone, I continued focusing on recording games. However, what is it that they say? Once a reader, always a reader… I guess that’s true, because I kind of started to miss reading. So I picked up a book. and read it. I believe it was Amanda Carlson’s Jessica McClain series which made me enjoy reading a book again. I hadn’t feel so excited and involved in an Urban Fantasy series since Keri Arthur’s Riley Jenson Guardian years before. It was a very defining moment for me, as I rediscovered the meaning of ‘reading for pleasure‘. Then I read another. And another. And another. And soon I was missing sharing my opinions with the world. So I decided to give Mind Reader a new look and return to blog again.

I started fixing images on the old posts and try to match the new look that Silvia was giving the blog. It took a really long time and, in the meantime, I was also writing down reviews so I’d have something scheduled already. Fate, however, had different plans for me, as I found a job in publishing and everything I had been working on was abruptly put on hold. Although I was ecstatic to get the chance that I’ve been desperately (kind of, hehe) pursuing all these years, a part of me was sad that I had to stop everything else because I simply didn’t have time anymore.

The holidays went by, and a new year began. Still, I was using my spare time to recover from the exhausting weeks at work. I was telling myself that the blog would simply be delayed a little bit and yet, something in my gut made me feel like what I’ve been done so far (besides having the reviews already prepped) was not the right choice. At the end of May 2017, I finally gave in and purchased a domain name and hosting from Nose Graze, then something clicked and everything else felt right, like ‘this is what I’ve always been meant to do‘.

I’ve spent weeks learning how to use WordPress again, and scheduling posts, and using my free time to write a number of posts so that my blog would have variety. I have also learned so much and I have realised that I have grown as a blogger. I think you will be able to see it in my posts, I hope you will see it in my writing.

This hiatus was the best decision for me because it gave me the opportunity to get out of my shell and discover new things. It helped me understand what I now want for my blog and, most importantly, it helped me improve my writing style.

I hope you guys have enjoyed this post. If you have been through a hiatus period, please feel free to leave a comment, I would really love to know your story!

14 responses to “Why going on a hiatus was the best decision I’ve made for myself

  1. I’ve been on hiatus too last year but it was because I’ve been gearing up to self-host, but I do miss those times that I have all of my time. You know, not dealing with some demanding review requests, don’t nrrf to have to spend so much time in front of computer for writing reviews etc. But eventually, after like 7 months I went back to blogging then got the chance to meet some new book bloggers. And I think it was a good move for me too, because right after I went back, I was refreshed.

    And I’m glad to know that it worked so well for you too Fran. And I have to agree, once a reader always a reader. Ohh, you play games? That’s one of things I want to love, but it’s just not for me.

    • Refreshed. That is what it is. I have a full time job that basically sucks the life of out me, but when I get home, I try my best to work on the blog even if I am tired. Unfortunately a lot of the times it doesn’t work, haha, but I try. And I’m grateful that I can manage to respond to comments from my iPad.
      I do! Well, mostly The Sims 4. It’s such a shame, though, as I was truly working on the content of my YouTube channel. I did have a bunch of games recorded which I was getting ready to do the voice over for (as I am camera shy and was not planning on showing my face). Unfortunately I did have to put that on hold because I didn’t have time anymore. Who knows, maybe in the future… 😉
      Thanks for stopping by and for sharing your thoughts!

  2. Sometimes we just need a break, you know, even when we don’t fully realise it right away. I think you needed this time off, and it doesn’t matter that it took you longer than expected to re-open your blog because, in the end, you are happy (which is the most important thing) and your blog looks just amazing! We had a nice adventure together with our lifestyle blog, but we both know what you really wanted was this baby back, and I couldn’t be happier to see you in action again. Of course, I also couldn’t be prouder of all the things you have achieved so far. Cheers to the hiatus that brought you where you are!

    Silvia recently posted: "Redemption Road" by Katie Ashley
    • And that is why you are my best friend!
      I did enjoy our time together on our lifestyle blog, but I suppose we work best together when we do our own thing. And yes, I’ve always been sure that I would be blogging again, and I’m so grateful you’ve been there for me to support me.

  3. Some time a break needs to happen for us to find out what it is that we truly love and are passionate about. Glad that you finally found out what your passion is. My approach since I started blogging has been to read for pleasure and don’t feel bad to put down a book if I don’t like it, even though it’s an ARC. It helps me.

    I love meeting you here in this community, Fran. Yes, once a reader, always a reader. 😁❤️

    • Thank you, Geybie! You’re an awesome blogger as well, and I’m glad I came back at this time so that I could meet you. 🙂

      I’ve never been scared to put a book down if I didn’t like it, or give a negative review, but I have taken the approach of ‘I only read what I want to read’, and I think it’s working pretty great. I believe that readers can see when the heart’s not into it, and I did not want to repeat that again. I am a much happier blogger now. 🙂

  4. This is so interesting to read how the hiatus helped you and made you re-discover your love for reading and how you eventually returned to blogging. I know how busy blogging can be ad it really is a struggle at times to keep the right balance between things in your life, but also between reading books fo review and those not for review.

    And that’s itnerestign you thought of starting a youtube channel. I like gaming, but I actually rarely watch gaming videos. I haven’t been through a hiatus myself, but there are times I take things more slowly and over the past year when my business picked up more I did found myself changing how I blog. But at the same time I enjoy blogging so much and it’s a part of my life, so I can’t imagine ever taking a complete break, while at the same time I can totally see how helpful it could be when you really need the break.

  5. Thanks, Lola! Unfortunately when life gets in the way, there is not much you can do to overcome that dreadful sense of ‘too much pressure’.
    Yes, I have always enjoyed video games, although it was something that I realised stayed below the surface. My mind also was not in the right place… there is so much more than just playing games in a gaming YouTube channel, so I have now put that on hold to reprise when the time is right.

    We always must remember that we are not machines, we are human beings, so I suppose it’s normal that we break down from time to time.

  6. Grace @ Rebel Mommy Book Blog

    Glad your hiatus was good for you! I haven’t taken any long hiatus but often take one or two week breaks that really helps me.

    • I know, right? I wasn’t planning on being away for so long, but I guess it did more good than anything. 🙂
      Thanks for stopping by, Grace!

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