June 8, 2013

Slumping


Le sigh
 I can't remember the last time I felt so blah about books. I'm slumping you guys. Hard.

I'm reading two enjoyable books. In fact, I'm still enjoying them, but I just don't care.

WHY IS THIS HAPPENING?

Theories? I have two.

  • This is the first time that I've read more than one book at a time. My brain feels split in half. 
  • I've let my review pile get ahead of me and I'm feeling the pressure. 

In other words? It's my own damn fault. 

This won't last long. Right? Tell me I'm right! 

Blah
Do you have any tips? Tricks? Suggestions? How have you gotten over your own reading slumps?

82 comments:

  1. Sorry to hear you are in a slump. I have found that I can't read two books at one time either. It does seem like my brain is split and I have a hard time keeping up with two different worlds. I also can experience a reading slump when I have been doing too much reading and need to take a bit of a reading break.

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    1. Thanks Carol :) A break might be in order? Oh how I detest the thought of that though!

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  2. I usually get over my reading slumps by reading children books the books I enjoyed when I was young. These books are fun to read, do not cost a lot of energy or concentration, but you keep in the habit of reading. Then I start reading easier adult books like some well loved Agatha Christies and then I am usually back to being able to enjoy 'grown'-up books' again.
    Don't force it, relax and know it will not last forever!

    Take care & kind regards,

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    1. Love the idea of reading children books. Ooh, maybe I should read a graphic novel. I've got Persepolis 2 on my shelf and have been meaning to get to it! Thanks for the advice Bettina :)

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    2. This works for me, too -- not necessarily children's books, but anything I've read multiple times and just love.

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  3. I feel a little bit like this, too. I'd agree that part of it might be having more than one book going at once. It's hard to really fall into a book if you're not going to read right through it. But part of the reason I've got so many going at once is because there are so many books I want to read. Which is part of the reason I feel I'm in a bit of a slump - it's just so overwhelming!

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    1. Yup. I'm pretty sure that reading more than one book at a time is not for me. After this I won't be trying that again! :)

      Overwhelming is the perfect word for it. I know I've done it to myself, but that won't stop me from complaining about it, lol.

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  4. Oh, I'm not so sure more that one book at a time is what triggered it. Sometimes concentration or desire just goes away. Maybe it's spring/summer fever or too much daylight. Could be anything. Try a re-read... a book that's an old friend... something that's easy for you to get in to.

    I routinely read 2 or 3 books at a time... right now there are four. One print, one non-fiction and two audios. That second audio is the #domealong. Somehow the brain is managing to hold together, barely.

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    1. How do you hold it all in your head?? I commend you :) You might be onto something regarding the weather. The temps have warmed up and I'm feeling squirrelish ;)

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  5. I went through that about a week ago. In my case, it was due to over-committing to solicited reviews. Once I got caught up and decided to cut back on the number of review requests I selected, I snapped out of the slump.

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    1. I think that has something to do with it Melinda. I keep thinking of everything that I *should* be reading. :(

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  6. I've had that happen a time or two. It usually happens when my mind is pulled in all different directions either with family commitments, school, and reading. It's too much at times. I can't read more then one book. It's hard to focus. :-) Sometimes a little break will help and then I like to go to an old tried and true favorite book and just savor it. Then I feel ready to jump into things again.

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    1. There are too many things going on in my brain and life I think? I'm hoping it won't last long :) I do like the idea of reading something beloved from my past.

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  7. And, I love the Marie gif!

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    1. Thanks Kate! Thanks for stopping by and commenting as well :)

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  8. It probably has something to do with the weather too. Just relax and you'll be fine.

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    1. Ahhh, relax. I like the sound of that! ::::Ommmm:::: <~~ me, meditating ;)

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  9. Pressure to write reviews is often a reason I get into a slump. I can't relax and enjoy the books I'm reading because I know there were umpteen reviews I MEANT to write first, and I'm not reading the digital ARCs I requested for review, so I feel guilty about that.

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    1. Ah yes, I can see why that would put you in a slump. Knowing that you have a million things to do doesn't help the reading process at all does it?? And guilt only makes it worse. Blargh.

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  10. I don't have any advice, but I'm sure you'll find your way -- probably quicker than you imagine!

    Joy's Book Blog

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  11. Sometime we forget that reading triggers our emotions--all types: happiness, anger, sadness, grief...and this can be taxing to our bodies when we read lots of books like bloggers do. Add to that the pressure of reviews and our minds want a break--time to slump. I think it's our body's way of saying: Give me time to digest all that!

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    1. That is such a great point Laura. We do feel all of those things and now and then I think our minds shout ENOUGH!

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  12. This has been happening to me for about a month and I'm only just getting out of it now. I just felt 'meh' about reading.
    I think your brain is telling you that it needs a break and requires you to watch trashy TV and eat lots of ice-cream :)

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    1. A month! Gah, that's so long :( I'm glad to hear you're coming out of it!

      Ice cream! LOL, yes. I think that's exactly what my brain is telling me!

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  13. I've always been a multi-book reader, but I'm definitely feeling the crunch of an over-review scheduled June and it's starting to weigh on me, too. It's hard to enjoy what you're reading when you are thinking about the other books you could or should be reading, too. I'm just trying to remind myself that this is meant to be fun and enjoyable...regardless of the books I might let slip by.

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    1. "It's hard to enjoy what you're reading when you are thinking about the other books you could or should be reading, too." <~~ Yes, that!

      I let May get bonkers and I feel like I've been playing catch-up since then.

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  14. This was me all over a month or so ago. It really sucks. I just kind of rolled with it in the end, didn't worry or try to force myself to read. That seemed to work. Eventually! I hope you come out of it soon! Being a reader yet unable to read is completely rubbish. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for you that is a quickie slump :)

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    1. Thanks Ellie! I did a bit of reading last night (Under the Dome) and it felt good. I'm hoping that I'm snapping out of it!

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  15. I get that way too when I have too many books at once. I can usually handle one nonfiction and one fiction at a time, but sometimes I start reading a few more and then I get all frustrated ;) I like the ideas on here to grab a favorite book and take it easy again! Good luck!

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    1. I won't be reading two books at a time anymore. I just don't like it, lol. Let's call it a failed experiment. ;)

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  16. Yea, I've got a little case of that going on myself. I'm reading some books to review and they are mostly nonfiction. I'm craving some fiction, but am in the middle of two others. So I find myself just staring at the stack of books...blah as you said. I've decided to just get through these few review books and hope that's the cause.

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    1. Ohhh yes. I love nonfiction but you can only read so many of them in a row before you need some fiction. Staring at the stacks, lol, I can relate ;)

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  17. Clear the slate and start over. Also drop reviews. Read what you want. I know it's helped me. :)

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    1. Bryan, you might be onto something there. I've been having some thoughts about that very subject. Thanks!

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  18. Maybe just a 1 or 2 day break will help. No book bloggy fun like Twitter and such included in the break!

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  19. I meant included in the break would be "no book bloggy fun" (too much wine ha!)

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    1. LOL! It sounds like you had a fun Saturday evening Monika ;)

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  20. I've got no advice. I'm considering taking a social media break sometime this summer. It means I still plan to read/review/blog, but skipping the twitter/fb promotion and chatter.
    Give yourself time...it's all good. Read what you want, at your own pace..enjoy!

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    1. That's not a bad idea Anita. I think we could all use a break like that now and then :) Thanks!

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  21. Book slumps are the WORST!

    Read some YA - quick! (Flavia??) :)

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    1. Aren't they? Blech! I really do want to read the next Flavia!! Hmmm ;)

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  22. Though it has not happened to me in a while I think that everyone gets into a funk like you describe every once in a while. My suggestion is go with the flow.Maybe watch some movies or do other things that you like. Before you know it the reading bug will return.

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    1. I've started watching Glee on Netflix :) I'm hoping that will help! What a darling show!

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  23. I fall into slumps when my review pile feels too big. I just get resentful and so in my head the best way to combat that is to watch a ton of television. No productive :) The best way I know how to combat it is pick a book I'm excited about -- regardless of whether it's a review book or my book or whatever -- and just sit down and read it. That sometimes re-energizes me. Or, I just don't read for awhile :)

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    1. Not productive, but fun! I blew through all of the Arrested Development seasons. I just mentioned above that I've started watching Glee on Netflix. Oh my word, what a show. It's adorable! I'm hoping that it will give my brain a little kick-start ;)

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  24. Slumps SUCK. My advice is usually to let yourself veg out on some tv, and after a while pick up new books until one just grabs your attention completely.

    Oooo and buying new books! Whenever I buy a new book I get super excited and can't wait to read it. Also, shopping is always fun :)

    Good luck girl!

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    1. That's exactly what I'm doing now. I've started watching Glee. Sing it kids, sing me right out of this stupid slump!!

      Ohhh buying new books :) That's always a good idea, lol.

      Thanks Sarah!

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  25. I been in much the same situation lately. As much as I love reviewing books, I've gotten into a situation where I can't keep up (my own fault), and it's starting to feel onerous. To address this I've simply stopping requesting or agreeing to review books for the time being. My hope is that this will allow me to clear up my current backlog and then focus on my own books for a chance.

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    1. I'm in the same situation and I know it's my own fault as well. Sigh. Why do we do this to ourselves?

      I hear you Melissa! I'm not allowing myself to request library books for the time being. I'm not going to accept any more books for review unless the pitch KNOCKS MY SOCKS OFF.

      After I get through the current review books on my pile I'm going to do some serious thinking about my process. Perhaps I'll stop accepting review books? I don't know yet. Something has to change though.

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  26. Too many review books is a mood killer, you feel under pressure. I have felt that too and its not worth it. I'd put down both books and just reread an old favourite. You'll get to the ARC's in time and better late than never.

    BookishTrish @ Between the Lines
     

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    1. You're so right about that ;) And I have only myself to blame. I will NOT let this happen again.

      Thanks for visiting Trish!

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  27. Pressure can definitely put me into a slump, whether it's pressure from my freelance job or knowing I have too many ARCs and review copies to get through. I agree with the suggest to read something well-loved and familiar, preferably something you can get through relatively quickly (like a children's book, or a mystery. I also have some romances and fantasy novels I use for this purpose.)

    As for reading more than one book at a time, some readers are more comfortable with that than others. I usually have at least two going at a time -- a print or ebook, and an audiobook. If I'm working, I've also got whatever nonfiction book I'm creating the index for. Sometimes I can handle adding another print or ebook or another audiobook, but not always. And sometimes even one of each is too much.

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    1. I can't remember feeling this way before and I really don't like it one bit. I'm sure it's a combination of things. And that combination is something that I have to stay away from from now on!

      I can see how certain books can work when read in conjunction. I don't think I've found that balance quite yet ;)

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  28. You can take a short break! I do push through most of the time when I get into a slump. Sometimes I resort to reading just a small bit at a certain time each day. Eventually I finish the book, even though I don't feel like reading.

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    1. I'm allowed to do that?? ;) I'm trying to push through because I have obligations to do so. Sadly, I think that is part of the problem.

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  29. I'm in a slump too and when it happens I tend not to want to write reviews - which then makes my review pile worse. It's a vicious cycle!

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    1. Ah yes, I know just what you mean. Then begins that never-ending feeling!

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  30. It happens, but hang in there!

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    1. Thanks Chris :) I'm riding it out! It can't last much longer, right?? ;)

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  31. Whenever I get into a reading slump - I simply stop reading. I know this is difficult because you have a book blog, but possibly try audio books or a book completely out of the norm for you? It's hard when something we enjoy so much turns into an obligation (for short periods of time). Just try to shake it up a little and you'll be feeling bookish in no time!

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    1. That's nearly what I've done. I've been reading in dribs and drabs over the past few days. I have a feeling that this slump is almost over! Thanks!!

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  32. Ughhh reading slumps are the worst. They tend to happen to me when I'm reading too many things at once, even if they're good...and since you've not read 2 at a time before, maybe that's the culprit? I hope when one of them finishes up, you get your mojo back. :)

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    1. I'm fairly certain that's the problem. I don't think that reading more than one book at a time is for me. :/ I feel like I'm cheating on the first book! And it didn't help that one of them wasn't exactly my cup of tea. Thanks Kelly!

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    2. "I don't think that reading more than one book at a time is for me. :/ I feel like I'm cheating on the first book!"

      Exactly how I feel! I can't do it. I also feel that inevitably I'd give up on one book.

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    3. Yes! I can't seem to wrap my little mind around more than one book at a time, lol.

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  33. Oh this is me right now!! I have too much work that I'm too tired to read in the evenings. I do pick up a book, but hardly get through the first 50 pages before I fall asleep! I need to get some more reading done, because my blog can't come to a standstill. I feel your pain!

    I am also "reading" two books at the moment, I don't think that's working out for me though. I have no tips for you, because I'm looking for some myself ;)

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    1. Good luck with the whole 2 book thing. I don't think it's going to be something I'll be trying again anytime soon, lol.

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  34. We talked about this, and I totally slumped, too. My issue for sure if the review book thing. . . luckily, I spent this past week reading those books like crazy to get those books out of the way!

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    1. I'm glad you got them out of the way. Onward and upward for both of us!!

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  35. I feeling like this a bit myself right now—probably the two-at-a-time thing too for me. Also, I'm reading "Under the Dome" which of course you're familiar with, and the other one is "Under the Banner of Heaven" by Jon Krakauer. I love Krakauer, and the subject matter of this book is fascinating and enraging me, getting me all riled up, so it's exhausting my emotions a bit. I think I need a fun, happy read after this, but I just checked out two more horror/sci-fi books from the library... oh my! sigh.

    Also I have to concur with another commenter about the weather—it's just so beautiful outside! Wanna go out an play in the sunshine!

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    1. You might be stuffing yourself with too many bad vibes by reading those books at the same time! By the way, that Krakauer sounds fantastic. And more spooky books coming up...eeek! You'll have to stick some mindless something in between all of those as a literary palate cleanser!

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  36. This is why I severely limit my ARCs. Review pile pressure kills my mojo every time!

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    1. The pressure! Blech. I'm going to be doing the same. I need to be even pickier and choosier than I already am!

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  37. Hahaha, I love the Marie gif too. That was one of those lines my siblings and I quoted at each other FOREVER after watching the movie. I can't do two books at a time myself, unless they're very different (perhaps fiction and non-fiction) or one is an audiobook. Usually a break will shake me out of a slump every time. Good luck with yours!

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    1. I'm going to get through a couple of obligations and then READ WHATEVER I WANT!! :D Ahhh, that sounds so good! :D Thanks!

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  38. I hear ya. I'm currently in the midst of a blogging/reading slump too. I've read a few good books lately, but it took me too long to focus and sit and read them. And have you seen my blog lately? I've been MIA. I think it is because I've got too many reviews pending, it makes me not want to read at all sometimes. Depressing eh? lol. I think setting a goal might help. That's what I'm doing anyway. I've set a goal of reading as many review books this month, then I'm taking the entire month of July for 'just for me reads'. No review books next month and I'm not scheduling any tour stops, interviews...etc. Just books that are for me. I might even re-read an old fav. It'll be like a book reviewers vacation, expect I'll still read of course...lol.
    I hope your slump ends soon.

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    1. Yes, I have seen that you've been MIA!

      I love your idea to get the obligations out of the way and then read for YOU in July. That sounds great :)

      I think my slump came about for a few reasons but I've got some strategies in mind to prevent it from happening again. :)

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  39. Unfortunately yes. This is part of the reason why I don't focus all of my energy on reading anymore--I got so burned out with blogging and reading a few years ago that it became more of a chore than a pleasure. Now I really try to focus on reading from my shelf and on whimsy (or readalong) rather than feeling the pressures of ARCs. I don't know how some of the bloggers do it with ALL THE REQUIRED READING FOR ARCS! I'M STRESSING JUST THINKING OF THEIR OWN READING SCHEDULES! ;) Keep it fun--take a break if you need to. It's so easy to get bogged down and let it feel stressful. And maybe just focus on the one book. Or maybe switch it up to something completely different like a fun graphic novel? Good luck--I know how frustrating that feeling is.

    (not that ARCs are bad...I just can't read fast enough for them to feel like fun...)

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    1. I seriously do NOT want to burn out. I don't think I will, but I'm going to change some things to make sure that it doesn't happen! I love ARCs. I didn't even know that was a thing when I started blogging, lol. BONUS! But I can't keep scheduling myself to death. That leads to yucky pressure-filled feelings. I've got a few strategies in mind. Like learning how to say NO. (I'm awful at that!)

      Thanks Trish :) I'm going to keep it easy and breezy around here from now on.

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  40. I'm also in a slump! I just finished The Wolves of Mercy Falls trilogy and loved it, and thought that reading a more serious, adult book would be best - so I broke out my copy of The Cider House Rules. And sure, the writing isn't bad and the story might look promising...but I just don't care! I have half a mind to go read another book in between this one, but I'm afraid if I do that, I won't come back (like I didn't come back for The Birth House). UGH.
    Like you, my list of review books is piling up high, but I'm feeling like I want to read my own books first, before I tackle the books publishers send me. That's bad, isn't it? TERRIBLE!

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    1. I'm finally out of my slump but man oh man do I feel your pain. Hey, if those books are unsolicited don't worry about them! Read what you want :) They'll still be there when you feel like getting to them.

      I hope your slump ends soon. It's the yuckiest feeling!

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