7 Ways to Say I’m on a Blogging Break

Welcome to Amazing Words Wednesday, the day we enter the labyrinth of language and see what we can discover.

As usual, I rushed into summer with big plans of how much I could accomplish, and halfway through I’m looking around at the piles and thinking, “When will I ever get to all of it?” Since summer blog traffic tends to be less, and since my plate is full, I will be taking a break from blogging. But I can’t just leave y’all hanging.

So here are some words to describe what I’m doing.

Beach scene
On a Blog Vacation

Blogcation. Oddly enough, this neologism has not yet been defined in the Urban Dictionary (where I expected to find it). But it’s used by plenty of bloggers to describe a temporary absence from blogging while they focus on other tasks or personal recreation. I’m not crazy about the word, though, simply because it’s somewhat difficult to enunciate.

Furlough. This term is most often connected to military or government workers who are given leave for a time. It comes from the Dutch word verlof which literally means “for permission.” The second part of the word (-lough or -lof) is related to the word translated as “leave.” So a furlough is simply an allowed absence. (Y’all will allow me to take a break, right?)

Holiday. Originally, this was a “holy day,” meaning a day given special meaning for its religious implications. The word dates from the Middle Ages. And now it’s known as the title of Madonna’s cutesy party song. There will not be anything particularly holy about my not blogging, but since one of the reasons for taking a summer break is church volunteer work, maybe I could stretch that connection.

Leave of absence. This is the combination of the Old English leafe (permission) and the Latin word absentia (to be away from). So a leave of absence is permission to be away. I won’t be entirely away, but I won’t be here quite so much. Think of it like a Gone Fishin’ sign hanging on my blog.

Recess. As a child, this word had the awesome connotation of getting to play outside. As a adult, it’s what I hear Congress takes when it decides to stop screwing stuff up and go home for a while. This word is first found in English usage around the mid-1500s. It comes from the Latin word recedere, which means to go back. The noun form is recessus. Why it began to be applied to playtime at school, I have no idea.

Sabbatical. The Greek word sabbatikos means “of the Sabbath.” The Sabbath is the seventh day in Mosaic law on which Israaelites were commanded to rest and worship God. Religious Jews still practice a Sabbath, and Christians sometimes refer to their Lord’s Day (Sunday) as a Sabbath time as well. The meaning of a professor taking time off was first recorded at Harvard in the 1880s. I will not be taking a full year like professors do, but the principle remains the same.

Vacation. From the Latin word vacare, which means “to be empty, free, or at leisure” to “to be unoccupied.” Hmmm. I don’t know about being empty, but free, at leisure, and unoccupied sound pretty good. However, I probably won’t be any of those. I’ll just be juggling other balls.

When will I return? Actually, I’ll still be posting quick ROW80 updates about my writing goals progress, but those won’t be long posts. Otherwise, I’ll be back in about a month–around mid-August.

What are you doing this summer? Have you taken a break from blogging or other normal activities? What do you call it when you step away from your usual duties?

Sources: Online Etymology Dictionary; Oxford Dictionaries

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32 thoughts on “7 Ways to Say I’m on a Blogging Break

  1. Perfect post since I’m about to go on vacation without my computer. I like the the blogcation one, though I agree it’s awkward to pronounce. I think I’ll use it. 😀 Thanks for the tips! In the meantime, I’ll be reading The Emotional Thesaurus. I bought it after your recommendation in your last post. 😀

    1. I get twitches when I’m away from my laptop for too long. LOL. Have a lovely vacation, Shea!

      I hope The Emotion Thesaurus becomes a good reference tool for you!

  2. This is the perfect time to take a blogcation. 🙂
    I’m getting ready for lots of revisions and some new writing, when I’m not spinning 12 other plates. Enjoy the time and gets lots of stuff done!

  3. I’m confused about “blogcation.” “Vacation” you deal with up there, and in addition to those things, it pretty clearly suggests “vacate,” whether it’s intended to or not; if you go on vacation, you leave a place. Thus, “staycation” is necessary in order to indicate the “leisure” elements of “vacation” that you deal with, minus the vacating bit. Then there are “mancations,” which seems like a real stretch (and terribly dull) — male-only vacations. There must also necessarily be “womancations,” though unlike mancation, that one doesn’t have its own Wikipedia page yet.

    But. There’s a perplexing portmanteau problem there. The first part of “staycation” indicates what the -cationer will be doing (staying at home); the first part of “mancation” and “womancation,” who the -cationer will be doing things with (and also without; that is, a mancationer is kind of taking a vacation from women, right?). Under that precedent, wouldn’t a blogcationer be taking a break from all other things in order to blog exclusively?

    Yeah, I’m a little bored. But enjoy your whatever-it-is!

    1. Yeah, I think the word presents problems too. It’s my least favorite, but it’s so often used now by bloggers to mean a leave of absence from their site that I thought it worth mentioning.

      1. Just trying to be a little funny. But, yeah, it’s a weird “word” that doesn’t quite work. I think I’d go with “I’m getting the hell out of here for a while,” and then get the hell out of here for a while. 🙂

  4. Julie, you don’t need an excuse for a break. It’s doesn’t matter what you call it. It’s well deserved. We all need some down time. Although I know you’ll miss it cause you’ve got this blogging thing down girl. A month goes by so quickly. I, as you know, encompass all of those words. lol. I’ll get back to it soon. Enjoy your time off and see you soon! 🙂

  5. I have been on furlough from work for part of the summer, but went back in June. We also had a couple of “furlough days.” We don’t like that word at work very much. I definitely took a break from blogging after my birthday because not only was I working, I had lots of stuff coming up lke m high school reunion and a “parade” celebrating my great friend’s annual 29th birthday. Whew–those parades wear me out — LOL!

      1. Got laid off again as of last Friday, but I’m trying to get more things done and hopefully, it won’t last too long.
        The reunion was fun–I saw a lot of people I hadn’t seen in years, and met some people I never knew when we were in high school.

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