sinking slumps

The past June/July have been the most amazing ever. I’ve studied 25 hours a day till my head burst, went (underage but not illegal shh) clubbing with the craziest friends, then kicked off July with my last theatre production in high school. I FELT SO ALIVE.

But as all good things, they come to an end.

After all that ups and downs and turns and tipsies, recalling myself back to the mundane daily routine is the last thing I want to do. I’ve been sitting at home feeling all blue and miserable at the thought of sinking back into the same lackadaisical body. It’s like being a snuffed out candle. Where’s the brilliant eureka? Why am I stuck at the same spot doing the same things when something should have changed within me? WHY?

Okay. As you can probably tell by now, I’m having issues. And this glum has, inadvertently, affected my reading. I’m going into decay mode soon because OH CRAP, here comes another book slump. I can feel it. In fact, it’s already happening!! I’ve been changing cover after cover on my “Currently Reading” sidebar widget without adding any new books to my READ shelf. I’ve been picking up so many first chapters that I couldn’t invest myself in.

This feels absolutely horrible.

I’m not saying that reading is anything “mundane”, it is NOT. I still love reading, perhaps not the choices I’m making. I’ve been wondering what exactly I’m missing from the books I’ve recently read, and I really really really hate to face the conclusion.

I might not enjoy YA as much anymore.

It’s not like I’ve never paused my reading to deal with LIFE, and usually, after those busy days I could slip right back into my happy YA-loving-YA-reading routine. This time though, going back to YA books don’t feel like home. The characters don’t speak to me, the plot doesn’t make sense and many times, I catching my brain dozing off even as my eyes force themselves across the page. Instead, a tiny part of me is craving for something else. Something different.

I can’t pinpoint what went wrong between me and YA, yet something is certainly disparate now. Am I too saturated by the voice of sixteen, seventeen year olds? Have I lost the connection? Are the plotlines getting too similar? HAVE I OUTGROWN YA?!!

I don’t actually believe people outgrow YA. Young Adult dictates only the age of the main character, not the theme or depth or content or writing. Search up my archives and you would know that I’ve been blogging YA fiction books since a long long time ago, and I love it as much as I did then, if not more. There are great works of YA Literature out there worth ruminating over, and I’ve certainly come across some before! Books like Just One Day changed my perspective of carpe diem; Books like The Hunger Games haunted me for days; Books like Harry Potter… enough said right.

Maybe I’m just not picking up the right books…? Of the 7 YA books I’ve attempted to read in June, I put all of them down except Crown of Midnight because, EXCUSE, it’s Crown of Midnight!!! This DNF rate is too high to simply be an unfortunate incident of me picking up 6 lousy books consecutively.

Any advice? Being stuck in a book slump AND knowing that your favourite category of books isn’t so much favourite anymore… AHHH. MOST TERRIBLE FEELING. I could be wrong (and I hope I am). I want to read YA books, I want to enjoy them again, I want to pick up the momentum and start posting book related SPAZZ. It’s just not happening. I feel so bad for leaving the blog empty for so long, and I don’t want to fake the book love when I’m not actually feeling passion for the books. My thousand apologies.

Have you ever felt the same? Will there come a day when YA books won’t give the MORE that I wish for? Do people actually “grow out” of reading YA books? How have you gotten yourself out of a book slump? Recommended reads?

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34 thoughts on “sinking slumps

    • I’ve been recently reorganizing my shleves and found my old collection of Roald Dahl books <3 Been reading them for the week and ahh so many childhood memories!!! Roald Dahl is absolutely amazing, I feel so happy just sitting with my tattered and dog-eared copy of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, so yes!! Your advice is certainly helpful, thank you, Missie :))

    • AWW yes food analogies :)) I do think it’s a matter of changing tastes, I’m looking for something that I have yet to see in the YA books I’m reading these days. I’ve been staying away from YA now, but I still don’t know what I’m looking for! In any case, thank you for your advice, you guys are so sweet!

  1. Oh, I know what you mean – I am not quite out of mine yet. I have had a few “miss-steps” already this month . . . If I don’t get pulled in right away, I try something different. Unfortunately I have no advise . . .I have not found anything that works for me yet . . . Hope you find a way soon!

    • *HUGS*

      Seeing as I don’t have any good advice either, have an ice cream! :)) For the last few days (since I’ve published this post), I’ve been letting the distressing emotions settle themselves, take time to sort through books that I THINK I might suit my new taste, and pack up those that I’m no longer inclined to pick up. That’s therapeutic for me and things are starting to look better! Hope you get out of your slump soon :)

  2. I don’t think you “outgrow” YA books but maybe you need to read something different for a while. I am 33 and still love and enjoy YA books like mad, but I usually keep on mixing now and then with non-fiction books, and adult books and even some middle grade books… if you are in a reading slump, just don’t force yourself to read, just enjoy something else for a while, watch some shows, go out more… or read something that is not YA and give yourself permision to enjoy it!

    • Thank you, Maria!! I agree with you that YA books is not only meant for young adults. So many bloggers out there can back us up on this! While I was writing this post, I just couldn’t explain the distress I felt from DNF-ing book after book, and turned to considering this issue of “outgrowing books”. I’m feeling a lot better after taking break, thank you for the advice, and I’ll definitely be introducing more variety into my reads from now on to keep things diverse! :))

  3. A few years ago I discovered YA and I became obsessed with it. I started only reading YA for the most part and I loved it. But, I’m now to the point where it’s losing my interest and I now read a mix of genres. I probably only read one-two YA books a month now, and the rest is adult fiction/non-fiction. There’s some amazing YA books out there, but there’s also a ridiculous amount of copy cat writing and repetitiveness. I’ve gotten to the point where I have very little tolerance for crappy writing :p

    • JAYNE.

      I SPEAK YOU LANGUAGE.

      2 years ago, I’ve started out all smitten by the YA genre. I would run to the YA section at libraries and bookstores, and spend hours in my small literary heaven. But as with every other genres, there are good books and there are bad ones. As a book blogger, it’s kind of a responsibility to sieve through all kinds of books and report my honest opinions, which meant I can’t be toooooo picky about what I read. So I’ve read AMAZING YA books that I’d frame up on my shelves, and a good number of crappy ones that wasted hours of my life. Like you, I’m getting tired of the repetitiveness in certain plots and the predictability of characters.

      I know I shouldn’t give up on an entire genre because of a few bad apples. I will be reading YA but for now, am reading my childhood favourites again (ROALD DAHL LOVE), and finding back my love for good writing. Thank you for your comment omg *hugs*

  4. I totally understand where you are coming from. I think it can be a mix of two things: one, I guess the market already feels saturated for you. Every time you look at a book and think, “This is YA”, it automatically sends a motion that it might be something you wouldn’t like. Second, the books you’re picking up may be the mediocre kind. I’ve been in that situation before, and what I did was do something outside reading. Like for 2-3 months, I would read one book a week, and then the rest of the times I would be playing video games for 7-8 hours a day (I did enjoy it… haha). When that burnt out, I went back to reading and am now reading voraciously again. Or try rereading your favorites (It’s worked twice for me!) or try an Adult book (recs: ALL the fantasy books by Brandon Sanderson, The Golem and the Jinni by Helene Wecker, The First Law by Joe Abercombie). I went into these books when I wasn’t feeling YA, and man, did they reignite my love for reading! Who knows, it might work the same for you, too! :)

    Faye at The Social Potato Reviews

    • If there were a like button for comments on Goodreads I’d definitely favourite yours, thank you, Faye!! You’ve had my situation organized into a few problems and hey, now there’s hope for messy Alicia to deal with them! :P The first point is really interesting. I haven’t thought of it but that happens for me every single time. I look at a YA book and feel dread coiling up in my stomach, and a small voice in my head goes, “ugh. again?”. Am distancing myself from YA books these days (reading Roald Dahl again haha been emphasizing this fact for every comment because IT’S ROALD DAHL). That’s working in keeping my reading self really happy so… Thank you so much for your time and thoughtful comment, I really appreciate it :)) Will be checking out the books you’ve recommended!

  5. I’ve just come out of a book slump <—true story!!! And I didn't DNF books or stuff like that but did give only 1 and 2 stars (to 4 BOOKS. IN ONE WEEK.) All my GR friends were like WHAT?? But now it's okay because I picked a book I thought I'd love and I did love it so YAY! As an advice, that would be it. Also, sometimes I do feel like YA are too 'young' for me even though I'm not old lol so when that happens I pick an adult book or UF series. :P Hope that helped! :D

    Lola @ Hit or Miss Books

    • Hi Lola! I feel you on reading slumps, and it’s great that you’ve gotten out of it! I’m hoping to chance on a new BIG LOVE to pull me out of mine soon, but the sickening feeling of not liking YA books anymore has left me at least :) I know what you mean when you say YA feels a bit too “young” sometimes, it’s nice to switch to a more mature perspective once in a while! Thank you!

  6. You really are not alone. I’m a subby to a lot of blogs and have one of my own. Not only am I reading a lot of these kinds of posts but I am going through it too. Knowing that I’m not alone is a stress reliever because it is stressful having to slow down or not feel like posting or reading certain books. So try not to be so stressed. It happens. As for not being a YA lover anymore and what not… I have to say that I haven’t really read a lot of of YA this year. I don’t think I’m out of love with YA just that I haven’t really found anything really eye catching. I started off this year with only 30 2014 releases on my to be read shelf and that is insane since it’s normally like 100+. I think in general I haven’t been wow’d by the books being released. I’m just breathing in and out. Taking it in stride. Keep your head up. Have fun. Just do what you want to do now and you’ll find your way back when you don’t feel it’s an obligation or that it’s the same old, same old’ anymore.

    • Yes, definitely! I’m really glad to have found myself in a community of book lovers who can empathize with all the book-related feels so we all know we aren’t alone :)) I get overly anxious at times, and this post is considered MILD compared to one of my panic attacks, but you guys are all so supportive and great and ahh I don’t have words for this. Talking it through with you guys has made the process of coming to terms with my changing reading likes so much easier. Thank you <3

  7. I don’t think it’s so much a matter of ‘growing out of’ things, but more that as you grow up your tastes changed. It’s not because you’re too old, but simply because you’re changing as a person and so you’re becoming interested in different things. Maybe look at it as an opportunity to branch out your reading :D

    • Thank you so much for taking the time to comment :)) You’ve put things so succinctly and I can’t agree more! It’s now time to venture into new grounds.

  8. Hang in there! You may not be growing out of YA, it may just be the slump making you feel that way. I thought I got too old for YA, but I got pulled back in by some great books. Hope you come out of your slump. I was in one recently, I tried to read out of my norm to see if that would help, but I got a not-so-good book. Then one of my favorite series came out with a new book & that helped! I have some recommendations for you — anything by Maggie Stiefvater, The Lumatere Chronicles by Melina Marchetta, The Queen’s Thief series by Megan Whalen Turner, Graceling series by Kristin Cashore, Darkest Powers/Darkness Rising by Kelley Armstrong, Shift series by Jeri Smith-Ready, and/or the Abandon trilogy by Meg Cabot. That’s all I think of off the top of my head, hope it helps! Hope you get out of your slump soon!! :-)

    • A BIG YES TO MAGGIE STIEFVATER.

      Her verbose writing throws me off at the start of each book but once I get used to them, I can’t get enough! Thank you for your kind words and I’ll be sure to check out your recommendations!! Hopefully there’ll be one that’ll give me a boost out of this slump :))

  9. Alicia!! You don’t have to beat yourself up for what is happening right now! Things change and people change, perhaps after what you’ve gone through, you developed a new liking for books outside of what you used to read. I understand the worry you are experiencing (I had that period once and IT WAS HORRIBLE. Like an identity crisis!!), but take it easy, okay? :) Have a break, do something else, pick up some never-heard-before books, and I’ll wish you all the best!

    • Lol identity crisis… xD Yep, I’m finding my way out of this and it’s been a great week of rediscovering my childhood favs, albeit slowly. Perhaps a Harry Potter reread might help? :P In any case, thank you, Johanna, and all the best to you too!

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  11. If you’re outgrowing YA, I’m regressing. All I want to read right now is middle grade! I go through phases with genres. (YA isn’t exactly a genre, but you know what I mean.) For a long time I read only adult romances. Then I moved on to adult mystery/suspense and then true crime. Now I’m reading YA. Eventually I’ll probably leave YA behind. I’ll miss it. I still miss some of those other genres I’m not reading anymore. I’m still hanging on to a few books I haven’t read from those genres. I’m even still buying a few books from those genres, those by my favorite authors. But I’m not really reading them. I just can’t let go. Nora Roberts doesn’t need my book money, but I still need her.

    Have you tried reading and reviewing something else? You don’t HAVE to stick with YA just because that’s what you started out with on your blog. I mix it up occasionally. It would be harder for me to switch away from YA completely because YA is in my blog name and URL, but I could do it if I felt the need. I could strike through the YA or something.

    • You know sometimes I imagine how I’ll be like 10 years down the road. What will I be reading? Will I still look back fondly at the books I’m reading now? Am I going to be laughed at for fangirling over a teen book-to-movie adaptation? I don’t know, and it’s kind of scary to think of where I’ll be, how much I’ll change.

      Thank you, Jenna, for sharing your experiences with me! I’m regressing back into my childhood days (reading Roald Dahl again) and loving it there. I still get all crazy and jumpy at new YA releases, but there’s a NEW trend of books that I might read. Rearranged my goodreads shelf and well, guess I’m ready to take up new “genres” at a new stage in life :))

  12. Awww…I’m so sorry to hear this Alicia. :( I completely see where you’re coming from. Reading slumps always stink, and feeling like you’ve outgrown a genre you love is not a good feeling either. It’s only natural that your tastes are going to change, right? I hope you find something that gets you out of your slump soon though! <3

    Thanks for sharing! <3

    P.S. You do theatre too? :D *high-fives* xD

    • YES HIGH FIVE OMG HAHA I’m part of theatre club in school and we just put up our last production for the year so I was feeling all zee blueeeeeees. Love the magic that just happens on stage!! Tell me more about your theatre :D

      This breakdown/slump/panic episode hadn’t felt good, but reading all your kind words of encouragement of advice has given me the strength to keep going on, thank you so much for taking time to comment <3 I have a clearer understanding of my own book tastes now, and I'm trying to incorporate some new genres/themes into my reads… I'm still learning on the way haha!

  13. Just read whatever you want to read. If you feel like reading adult books, do that. Want to read erotica? Great! Feel like reading non-fiction? Awesome! Just read whatever you feel like is best for you. And if you don’t feel like reading at all, then don’t read at all! You’ll get through there, we’ve all been there :)

    • Thank you, Sandra! Really need that confidence to pick up whatever I feel like reading, instead of what I THINK I SHOULD be reading. I think the Stephanie Perkins readalong came just in time, because no one can read Anna and the French Kiss without feeling happy feels :))

  14. I get tired of YA from time to time and just switch it up. Try another genre of lots of ither genres. If always works for me and YA is waiting for me with open arms when I return. Oh and I can state for sure, you never outgrown YA and I should know as my YA years were many moons ago!
    If you don’t want to try a different genre, retread a book you loved as a child. That works for me too. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve read Anne of Green Gables but if I’m in a slump I’ll pull it out.

    • Haha yes childhood favourites ALWAYS WORK!! I read Roald Dahl’s children books again on my YA hangover, and they just made me so happy :)) Things aren’t looking so bleak anymore after I’ve gotten past the initial phase, and I’m enjoying the variety of books that I’ve added to my shelves recently. Thank you for all the kind words! Don’t worry about the typos haha xD

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