Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday: Bookish Resolutions for 2017

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly linkup of book bloggers hosted by The Broke and The Bookish! This week's topic is a freebie, so I'm going to use the opportunity to make my reading resolutions for 2017. I know it's typical to do this a little closer to the beginning of January, but here we are.

Read 50 books: This is always my goal (though I "count" my years beginning and ending on my birthday for the purpose of this blog). Last calendar year, though, I read 101 books. I don't expect this year to be so robust for job-related reasons, but 50 is definitely something that I can do.

Buy fewer books: I own several hundred books that I haven't actually read, both in hard copy and on my Kindle. I know, but almost all of them are secondhand so it's not quite as horrifying in the bank account as you might think. I don't need any more books, but I know that won't stop me from buying them. I'm just going to try to buy less often.

Read more ARCs: I'm really bad at ARCs, you guys. I read about so many awesome books, so I request and sometimes get review copies, but then I have so many backlist books, too! I'm resolving to both work my way through the ones I have and be much more judicious about requesting new ones so I feel less guilty about being a bad ARC reader (I definitely do plug the books, if I like them, once I've read them, so I don't feel abjectly terrible).

Keep better statistics: I love reading other people's year-end posts with charts and graphs about their reading, but I keep only pretty minimal statistics on my own. I'm going to do a much better job of finding some metrics that matter to me and tracking them in 2017, and try an infographic to sum it up!

Read more authors that aren't like me: I'm a middle class, able, heterosexual, cisgendered, white lady. The experiences people like me have are mostly easily accessible. But of course, they are far from the only ones in the world. I'd like to read more books by people who have different experiences, that show me the world in a way other than the one I usually see it.

Interact more with the bookish community: I've got a dedicated Twitter for this blog, but I don't do nearly enough to keep up with all the bright, witty people I follow there. And I know that there have been times where I read a good post on another blog and don't bother to say anything about it. I'd like to be more present among the book lovers of the internet this year!

Do more re-reading on audio: I've finally found my speed for audiobooks- celebrity memoirs and re-reading the books I love but haven't had much time, with all the reading-for-the-first-time I do, to dive back into. Hearing His Dark Materials in Phillip Pullman's own voice is pretty magical and an excellent way to revisit the books I love while I'm walking the dog or driving to work.

Make room for mood reading: I tend to stick to a strict reading schedule, based on approximately when I bought the books in question (oldest books first), with ARCs rotated in as well. While I'm not often a mood reader, there are some books I'm holding back on reading that I'm interested in now, simply because I bought them "too recently". That's silly. Maybe I'll rotate in at least one "mood read" per month going forward.

Go to a bookish event: Reno doesn't tend to be much of a literary hotbed, but there are authors who come through and do speeches and/or signings (Stephen King came last year...on my wedding day). Maybe one of these days I'll make it a priority to get to a literary conference (I do really want to go to one), but for this year, I'm going to try to make it out for at least one event!

Read more outside my comfort zone: I know what I like- mostly contemporary literary fiction, some historical fiction, and a bit of nonfiction history. And that's generally the wheelhouse I like to stick to, because it's the one where I'm most likely to find books I enjoy. But the pool of "books I loved" can only be broadened by getting regular doses of sci-fi/fantasy (like A Song of Ice and Fire), or mystery/thrillers (like Gone Girl), or romance (like the Southern Vampire Mysteries), or YA (like The Hunger Games), and so I owe it to myself as a reader to pick up the occasional book that doesn't fit my usual pattern so I discover more books like the ones I highlighted, which are favorites.


  1. Bookish events are so fun, I hope you are able to keep that resolution! I am also a stat lover for reading. My favorite stat is pages read- mostly because sometimes the number of books I read is skewed because I am reading 600 page books. I like that goodreads keeps track of that for me and it's the way I measure my reading year success versus number of books read. Good luck with your resolutions!

    1. I do like the Goodreads stats about things like pages read...I read War and Peace and Les Miserables in the same year, which drove my number of books read down because holy smokes those are long books. I really do hope that I get to go do something bookish besides book club this year! I like being around book nerds because they are my people!

  2. Definitely give mood reading a try! I was reading on a schedule a couple years ago and partway through last year loosened up on that bigtime. I still start with a schedule, but give myself the freedom to divert based on my mood. Its helped my reading a ton.
    Good list of goals!

    1. I know that unless I make myself read some of my older books, I'll have a hard time getting to them (I put off A Tree Grows in Brooklyn forever and I loved it once I read it but I was never overwhelmed with an urge to read it). But I think maybe adding one monthly "just because" read might do me some good!