A Mini Update: It’s September Already?

Today’s post is not a tag or a book review (though I certainly wish it was the latter – I’ve been a bad, slow reader lately), but just a mini-update. This post has been a bit overdue, so some of this stuff may be old news. I will try to not ramble.

`


So, I’m running Read, Think, Ponder alone now.

Shingie and I had a talk recently, and we decided it was for the best that I run Read, Think, Ponder by myself. I asked her honestly whether she saw herself contributing, but the honest answer was no. Shingie is currently balancing work, studying, and a multitude of other things that take priority, so RTP no longer had a place in her life. Though I know that reading and what this blog means – because, after all, we set out to do this together – is still important to her, this was a practical decision. So I will be the only writer and owner of Read, Think, Ponder. I wish some of you could have met Shingie! But, alas, maybe one day.


I think I’ve found my blogging style… and yet I feel unsatisfied with some things.

When I started this blog, I really struggled to find my ‘voice’. Within the past two months, I believe that I have found my ‘voice’, which is cool. It’s nice finding my rhythm, and it’s also nice to read my own reviews and think, yeah this sounds like me.

The thing, however, that I am still unsatisfied with is that I believe my book reviews aren’t very accessible. I acknowledge that not everyone has time in their day to read my wickedly rambley reviews, so I have been asking myself what I can do for those that don’t have a lot of time to read my reviews. Should I write TL;DR’s at the bottom? A quick summary? And yet when I think about it, offering something doesn’t seem like it’d fit with my style of book reviewing.

What do you guys think? Would you guys like a short summary at the end of each review?

(And then there’s the whole art thing. Maybe it’s an artist’s affliction, but I’m never happy with what I produce. sigh. I’m still trying to figure out what looks best!)


ARCs have turned me into an awful reader – though that’s my fault.

I had always seen the words ARC thrown around in Goodreads, but didn’t really understand what they were. So I made a Netgalley account and naively requested a lot of books like I would for Goodreads giveaways, believing that out of fifteen, I might win one. Next thing you know I receive several approvals – more than I can read in a timely matter. Whilst I’ve found some gems like Gambit, and some not-so-great ones like A Girl’s Guide to the Apocalypse, I’ve learned something about myself: if my choice of reading material wasn’t an intuitive choice but an obligatory choice, my enjoyment of a book is curtailed.

So after I finish my list of ARCs, I’m going to stop requesting and revert to books-I-want-to-read for awhile. And as of late, after reading so many fantastic reviews, my TBR list is gargantuan! Time to start cracking on those books!

Do you enjoy reading ARCs? Why or why not? 


Something I’ve always just wanted to ask everyone…

So. What’s your MBTI personality types? Here’s a free test if you don’t know what you are. Just for fun.

Do you agree with your personality type? Why or why not? 


Before starting this post, I said to myself, “CW, no more than 300 words! This will be a SHORT POST!”

Welp. Impossibility, confirmed.

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41 thoughts on “A Mini Update: It’s September Already?

  1. Same happened with me in terms of NetGalley, I now have so many ARCs that I feel guilty. I am trying to finish it all, it will take the whole September and a good part of October to get through all the books.

  2. I agree so much about ARCs. And I always feel so much pressure with NetGalley because of the archive date. I find that the formatting goes weird on my kindle app so I read using Adobe Digital Editions but the books expire after 55 days on ADE. I have one that I have to read in the next 10 days if I want to still want to read it…. SO MUCH PRESSURE.

    I don’t mind at all that your reviews are long (mine are always really long too T_T). I always read your whole post but maybe it might be easier if you had a summary at the end.

    In high school, I was firmly an INTJ but I just took the test again and now I’m INFJ!

    • Right?? I’ve given up on one… and I made the mistake of not checking the reviews on GR too and one has rated really badly… :’D

      It’s really weird with mine too! It messes up the paragraph, but I am trying to soldier on despite. UGH yes the pressure. :'( idk, I feel torn because I want to read it to help the author but I also don’t want to read it because I want to read other things. WEH.

      I like reading yours too, and I read all of yours! I suppose a summary might help. I think I’ll consider adding them in, see how it goes.

      OOOH COOL I’M AN INFJ TOO! :D HOORAY.

      • I was trying to read an eARC of One by Sarah Crossan on the kindle app but it was impossible because the book is written in verse! I’ve stopped requesting ARCs for now since I never feel a massive sense of excitement towards the book when my request is accepted.

        YAY INFJ buddies! When I took the test for the first time in high school I got 100% for Introvert. It was kind of scary.

        • Same! Good call. Life is short, we must enjoy the books we love and want to read. XD

          YEAH BUDDIES! Oooh wow! High school is a scary time to be introverted, especially with all the activities, hmmmmh. I’ve always been marginally introverted. I have these bursts of extroversion where I go out all the time and socialize, and then a week later of that I just live in my bedroom to recover. XD

          • During undergrad I spent so much time working from home and spending as little time at uni as possible. But now, I do all of my work at my desk at uni and the socialising makes me so exhausted. My weekends are pretty much just me lying in bed.

            • That’s how I spent my undergrad too! Well, I found that I couldn’t study at uni – too many distractions and food wasn’t a 2 minute walk away!

              I think going back to uni, I’ll be more sociable. It’s going to do a real number on my social energy though, haha, but I think work life prepares that for you somewhat.

              But I know what you mean – contrived conversation is the worst for me. And I’m really awful at it, so sometimes I’m standing there like a stuttering, fumbling idiot. DX

              • I’m trying hard to be sociable now as well. When I first started my PhD, I never went to the staff/PhD weekly morning teas because I was intimidated. But then I realised that uni is a place for networking and finding out about opportunities from other people. It’s still so tiring though!

                • Oh I see! Thanks for sharing that insight. :D I think I have much to look forward to when/if I return. And I bet it is! sigh us introverts need time to withdraw.

                  Networking is the bane of my life. I enjoy talking to people but when conversation is contrived or goal-orientated, it makes me feel a little weird. And yet it is a necessary evil. BLEH. :C

  3. I stopped reading ARCs too! I did the same thing as you and mindlessly requested a lot of books and most of them were not very good at all and so I decided to read books that I want to read and review those. I still use the website Blogging for Books which sends you hard copies of newly published books and I have enjoyed that service just because the books they offer are generally of higher quality.

    Oh, and I’m an INTJ!

    • Hahah oh dear, then you know my struggle! X’D But good call. I think once I read the ARCs I have amassed, I will be very selective with what I request. :c

      Oooh, COOL! I had no idea Blogging for Books existed. It’s a shame they don’t ship outside the US, but eBooks are cool too, I suppose. c: But thanks for sharing! I might sign up and check out their selection.

      AWESOME! My sister is an INTJ. :D It’s always super interesting to learn what everyone’s personality type is!

  4. Oh! I didn’t even know you had a co-blogger LOL. But best of luck to her!

    You pick on a very particular point about long reviews — no one has the time to read it. How I dealt with it (sort of not really) is to provide a TL;DR at the beginning so if/when they do click on it, it’ll provide a brief summation of the entirety in point form. I also have that review graphic (if you’ve seen it). For me, as of now, it’s the best of both worlds that I can adapt with. I can’t really control how much I write (sometimes it’s 750 words…other times 2k+) but what I can control is the measures I take to make things more accessible. But then again, I’m still trying to figure things out going into year 2. So there’s that.

    But you should be proud of what you’re doing and unhappy with how things are; pushing yourself even more to achieve what’s missing. THAT’S ALL I SHALL SAY.

    • Haha yes I did! But she’s only ever posted 2 reviews, so. Don’t blame you, haha. I shall pass that onto her. :)

      Yeah, I saw that! It was actually your review format that got me thinking. After thinking about it, I might add a short summary at the end of each review. I guess I’ll see how it goes. It might not fit well with how my blog should be like, idk.

      WISE WORDS, OLD MAN!

      • THANK YOU. I’M JUST SOME REPOSITORY OF USELESS INFORMATION. SO I’M GLAD IT COULD BE OF USE.

        Be wary though, if it’s long, people might not even get to the end of it — but at the same time, people may scroll to the end for reasons of reading comments. Think on that.

        • Yeah, I’ve been thinking about it and reflecting on my own blog-reading habits. Oh well. I’ve bolded the main points in my reviews so… BAH I’ll figure it out. :’D

  5. Knowing you, you’re going to want to make this blog for more than just… a blog. ;) Everything always has to have a deeper meaningful purpose, it always does. What is your purpose? To develop your online voice? To inspire people to read? To encourage people to think deeper about the media we consume? Also knowing yourself, writing a tl;dr for people who are too lazy probably aren’t the type of people who will find your blog appealing, which is a shame since they’ll miss out on your deep meaningful insights/commentary. Still, brevity is always a gift. Maybe you can alternatve with mini-reviews patterned with deeper lengthy ones, so that 1) you can update more frequently with the mini reviews, or when you just want a sort of break or 2) devote more time with books which have lengthier reviews. Some books i.e., Frankenstein, merit longer analysis to do the book justice? Versus books like… well.

    Also, what is ARCs? lol.

    • HAHAHA. Guuurl, you know me too well. XD I shall reserve my reply until next time we talk. :P

      ARCs = advanced reader copies. So you typically receive them before publishing day and you give reviews. It’s a marketing thing!

  6. I’m an INTJ! What are you? Co-blogging can be difficult, but I’m sure RTP (lazy fingers, sorry) will bloom no matter how many brains are behind it. For reviews — I suggest instead of placing a short summary at the end, maybe include one or two descriptive phrases of your thoughts in the blog post title, like Cait @ Paper Fury does. That really makes me more interested in reading the post! And actually, I’d suggest allowing people to comment with name + email + URL, instead of having login options — as far as I know WordPress has decent spam filters, so you should be fine with relaxing the restrictions. It would make commenting a lot easier!

    • AWESOME, Alyssa! I’m an INFJ! :) For as long as I can remember!

      Haha, it’s okay! RTP is quite catchy. c:

      Your advice has honestly been invaluable. I had no idea my commenting section was so inconvenient! So I shall be investigating this as soon as possible – thank you for bringing it to my attention! <3

      I'll consider doing a summary, and find a way to do it that aligns with my identity as a blogger and the identity of my blog. :)

      Thanks, Alyssa! <3

  7. ISFP REPRESENT! That’s me and I think it’s a mostly accurate description of who I am. I’m not competitive like the profile says though.
    I don’t think you have to have a summary. I haven’t had a problem with your reviews but then again, I like them. Perhaps, a short outline or bulleted list of the main things in the review?
    It sucks that I never got to meet Shingie. Perhaps I’ll go back to her old posts and read them there! Hopefully, I’ll get to see her later though.
    I think Netgalley is simultaneously the best and worst thing ever. My ratio had an all time high of like 37% but then I got two more ARCs an it just dropped again. So. It’s a work in progress.

  8. I THINK IT’S GREAT YOU FOUND YOUR STYLE. That kind of thing takes time, and the fact that you’re happy with what you write is amazing :) I can’t really answer your question, because living where I live, it’s pretty hard to access ARCs, so I mostly end up having to buy everything. Lovely post, and I’m and INFJ. LET US UNITE XD

    • Aw, thank you for the kind words, Nirvana!

      Me too! All the ARCs I have received have been e-ARCs. :c Which makes me sad because I want the actual booook. *U*

      ANOTHER FELLOW INFJ! HOORAY! :D I’ve met quite a few INFJs in my life – I’m beginning to wonder if we really are the rare ones (… or maybe we’re the type to know our personality types)!

  9. I wish you the best of luck going forward with Read, Think, Ponder but I know you will do amazing. It’s so wonderful to hear that you are more confident with your blogging voice, it’s definitely something that is very difficult to pin down. I am still experimenting with different styles of reviews at the moment.

    I love the idea of ARCs, mainly because there are some sequels I am positively yearning to get my hands on – but it’s so tough being greedy and not being able to finish up your request pile. Nowadays, I really have to ask myself whether the ARC I request would jump to the top of my TBR when I receive it before I ask for it – I don’t want the publishers to lose faith in me and start denying my requests if I don’t fulfil my end- but I also want reading to remain a hobby instead of an obligation.

    I am Ixxx the other things change every quiz but I am a firm INTROVERT haha *goes back to hermit cave*

    • Thank you Aentee!! <3 I hope I can blog for as long as possible – I know it's hard for me to conceptualize discontinuing blogging while I love it right now, but I hope I don't stop soon.

      I think the variety that you bring to your blog is really awesome! Makes the reviews interesting. c:

      Me too! I've been reading naught but my ARC pile. ;_; I can't wait to read my own books again. (I'll stop whining about it someday, but not today. XD) That's right! I should ask myself the same question too — as I should, since I don't want to take them for granted. :<

      OOOH interesting! I am a firm introvert too. It always confused me as a kid because my friends were big extroverts and when they wanted to go out more, I just wanted to go home and be by myself. D:

  10. I totally get you on the ARCs! At first I was like “haha of COURSE I’d read all these books” but then after I kept getting accepted I didn’t know what to do! Especially since after a while I wasn’t interested in those books anymore. Now I’m doing what you’re doing: focusing on books that I actually want to read!

    I’m sorry your co-blogger stepped out, but now you have full reign of the blog, muahaha! Best of luck with it!

    • I completely agree, Alia! My interest for a book wanes after awhile, so I like to devour my books super quickly, haha. XD Oh I wish I was doing that. :c Me being me, I feel obligated to read and I would feel suuuper bad if I didn’t finish my ARCs! But just three more to go. Then FREEDOM! :’D

      Haha, I suppose I do! That is one way of looking at it. Thank you so much, Alia! c: <3

  11. Ahh Netgalley. I managed to keep my approval ratio at a top level for almost a month but then I requested 2 more books today >.>.

    I’m also an INFJ! I need to be more accepting of my INFJ ways instead of being frustrated by tendency to reflect. Though I do love my extroverted friends because they understand my need for quiet time.

    • Aw LOL. My ratio was on its way up, and then I foolishly accepted an invitation to read one of their free books, and now I don’t want to read it because the rating is less than 3 in GR. :|

      Ah, another INFJ! Man, for a type that’s rare, I’ve found like, 4 of us in the blogosphere! I too struggled with my tendencies when I was young. I felt super alienated from my very extroverted friends, and it was hard when they didn’t understand my innate need to withdraw for my own reasons that were beyond logic.

      I think as I’ve grown up I’ve found more introverted friends, though I wish I had some more close extroverted friends to accommodate my bursts of extroversion. Birds of a feather flock together? XD

  12. Oh gosh, I feel like I’m so behind with your blog, Chooi! So sorry! It’s been a while. T.T

    Anyway, I’m sorry that we didn’t get to really meet Shingie, but I’m happy for you both with this decision if you think it’s best. And I love your book reviewing voice. Honestly, I always found it unique. Your rambles have always been so insightful and interesting. For that reason, I’ve always trusted you reviews. But anyway, I think a quick summary at the bottom would be a good idea. For me, I prefer just reading the entire review, but I do know some readers that like the TL;DR bit. I seriously considered doing that myself on my blog, but now I think I’ve gotten used to bolding the key points. Anyhow, I’m so happy you’re more satisfied and enjoy your own blogging voice!

    Oh, don’t worry! That’s happened to me too. Netgalley wrecked the month of September for me. On all of the sites I visited that discussed how to obtain ARCs advised bloggers to not go wild with requesting. And you know what? I did it anyway. I’m pretty sure my NG ratio was under 25% at some point this year, but thankfully I’ve caught up and I’m in the same regions now. ^.^ And yes, there’s been a couple of instances where I’ve felt compelled to have a requesting spree and requested a couple of bad titles, which sucks. But there always seems to be a good title to redeem the whole awful bad reading experience. I guess for you it’s been Sorcerer to the Crown (I’ll be reading your review on that one soon) and a couple of others.

    Anyway, so sorry this is so long and probably very word vomit-y. Hope you don’t mind, and I hope you’re do well, Chooi!

    • Oh gosh Summer, thank you for keeping up with my blog despite your busy busy schedule! I’m really happy. ^_^ Don’t be sorry!

      Aw, thanks so much Summer! It means a lot because I think you’re one of my first followers that followed me and actually read my blog. I’m honestly glad you can hear/read my blogging voice hahaha! Sometimes it comes to me, and sometimes it doesn’t, but I am working on that! c:

      HAHA I should have read a guide first! But I was silly and got cocky. Mine is creeping up, but there’s ONE book I really don’t want to read because I stupidly requested a second book of the series without requesting the first. -_- So dumb! I didn’t even read it properly, I just went on a frenzy. XD

      Hahaha I love word vomit-y comments! I do, haha, they engage me and I enjoy reading them. So don’t ever apologize! <3

      • Aww, me too! I requested Hunter after a few of my GR friends expressed their fondness for the story. I tried reading it last month and I can’t seem to get past 25%. There’s no telling when I’m going to read that one now. My NG ratio will always be less than 100% if I don’t ever revisit it. T.T Lol, I can’t believe I’m complaining about getting approved of ARCs. Stop, Summer. Be thankful. XD

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