So, I’m a total slacker in many ways. Over the past year, fluctuations in my work schedule and in trying to have a life, I definitely let my blog fall off by the wayside. I give many kudos to the people who post every day, with how creative your topics have been, and cheers to you all for giving me ideas on what I can write about. In the last few weeks I’ve been trying to be better, and write more. And I’m making it a new blogging/writing goal to not just post as part of the memes I participate in. But to actually put my thoughts and opinions out there to the world.
To start off , I’m going to chat a bit today about my reading goals for this year. While I haven’t been writing much, I am still reading. I’ve actually been doing lots, and lots of reading. At the start of the year, I wasn’t sure how ambitious I wanted to be. In 2014 I met my goal for the first time, reading 156 books (an average of 3 a week). I thought that was a pretty solid, ambitious goal. I also tried not to include too many picture books because that felt, to me, like cheating. So I thought maybe I would relax my goals this year and just read whatever appealed, maybe do less books and give myself more time and increase the amount if/when I reached those goals…
Yeah, that definitely didn’t happen.
As you can see from the challenge widget up above, I somehow wound up giving myself a goal of 300 books for the year, which is slightly less than double what I did last year. How did I manage to give myself a goal this ridiculously high in comparison to my past reading efforts, you might wonder? Well, let’s just say I blame GoodReads. I can’t remember if I was at work or at home when I was setting this goal, but I had a huge problem updating it in either January or February. I would input a larger number (I think I was attempting to go from 150 to 200 books for the year) and it wouldn’t accept my changes. So of course, I got frustrated. I started inputting random numbers and hitting enter and refresh a bunch of times until I finally gave up and left the site.
Cut to a couple days later and I go back for some reason or other (I can’t remember anymore) and low and behold but the number that is now my official reading challenge goal is 300. Somehow, that’s the number that stuck. And of course, several friends on the site have “liked” my goal. (I’m assuming they were very impressed with my faux-ambition.) And now I’m stuck.
Well, technically, yes, I suppose I’m not stuck and could change it at any point in time as I had planned to do, and I would have but but for the social pressure that exists only in my head. Here’s where you realize I’m probably a little crazy. My brain goes off in several directions. I could on the one hand, ignore all outside influences and imaginary people who are clearly watching my reading goals and change it. I could consider how much reading I really think I’m going to do and set a more reasonable amount. Or I could keep the goal and really go all-in, just power through as many books as I can and see if I can really make this happen. It seems impossible, but I could still strive for that, right? No one will really care besides me whether I make it or not. And even if they do care for some weird reason, it’s not like I have any responsibility to them. And this goes on and on, with my brain firing at all synapses to leave it or change it, to consider social implications or ignore them, to question myself on what I’m doing and how sane it is that I’m thinking this much about it… (This is quite the insight into my mind, isn’t it? Reading this you may believe I need to stop over-thinking such a small piece of my life. To that I say, yes. I’m quite aware of just how nutty I am.)
So, I kept my goal. I’m actually not doing as badly as I thought I would. This time around there are many more picture books on the list, and it doesn’t feel like cheating anymore! I just hit the 200 mark too (which is the most books I’ve ever read in a year, whoo hoo!!) Only 100 more to go.
For the rest of the year, I think I’m going to focus on a couple areas of reading. The first includes series that I discovered this year. They’re not new by any means, but I’d never gotten around to reading them before. The first is the Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs. I’m four books in and really digging the stories so far. This is very urban fantasy with a dash of romantic subplots a la Kate Daniels (or any series by Ilona Andrews really). I’m also going to try to get caught up with the rest of the Psy-Changeling series by Nalini Singh which is sort of the reverse in that it’s a paranormal romance series with some really great fantasy elements. There’s at least 5 more books in each series for me to get caught up with, but they’re pretty fast reads. The second area is to get more books read from all the YA titles that I said I was going to read at the start of the year. There are quite a few I just never got around to, or I put them off to prolong the agony of them being over. (Plus, this way if they do continue a series I will have less time to wait for the next one to come out.) But I need to get ’em done. I also am trying to delve deeper into the comic book scene, so there’s plenty of graphic novels and superheroes on my horizon.
Wish me luck, and we’ll see how close I get to making my goal!