The Reader Who Forgot To Read

The title of this post, my first for the year (how did it get to the 13th already? Who let this happen? Was it YOU?), reflects the way I feel about myself over the last 12 months. I have considered myself a reader for most of my life, and while I have always been slightly too ambitious setting goals that I almost never quite make, last year is a bit of an exception. I lowered the goal (due to the whole moving abroad thing) to just 30 books – an easy goal, something I should have had no problems with achieving – and then instead of not quite making it I sort of just exploded upon lift off. I don’t even know what my total read books were for the year, but I’m guessing between 15 and 20 – I did not update my Goodreads account regularly enough to know this figure.

So you’ll notice this year if you look at my sidebar (or visit my GR account) that I have set my goal for 52. It is time to make amends for my severe lack of reading, because….because…well, because I miss it. I feel empty without it, and there are so many books I want to read and so many books constantly being released that I want to read as well as that list of old books that just keeps growing and there’s all my books in Australia I’m going to ship over soon and there’s lots of good books at the library I want to borrow and read and and and I might die soon or something (probably not, but you get my point).

Last year turned out quite different to what I expected (and I’ll explain about that in a later post), and while I had a great year it was also a mentally tiring year as I turned myself into a bit of a sponge, soaking up the culture, history and on occasion the language of this huge country of Sweden I now call home. This in itself gave me plenty of fuel for writing, and so although my writing was erratic I did churn out some 100 blog posts, about 25 short stories, two thirds of a really, really bad novel (which, on reflection, had some really good ideas I need to play with in a different context), and maybe 35 – 40 poems. But now I feel I need to get back to taking some inspiration from the written word again, getting my head into a big variety of different stories and writing styles while I determine where to take my own writing next and how to start pushing it up to the quality I want. After all, I did promise myself I’d publish one of my stories before I turned 30, which is sort of kind of in about 16 months.

So, onwards I march to a year of reading a book a week. I’m already a week behind, which sounds about right, although I am also halfway through two books. The upside of all this is that if I stay on track I’ll actually be able to write weekly book reviews again, something I suspect I haven’t managed to do successfully since my blog began back in 2012. As well as this I have a whole bunch of other blogging goals and projects to work on, and yes I will be adding more recipes to the food blog soon (also, I should properly introduce that blog).

What are your reading goals for the year? For those of you who are bloggers as well, what are your blogging plans?

13 thoughts on “The Reader Who Forgot To Read

  1. Don’t beat yourself up! I feel so inferior that I read 20 books last year, which is good for me, but seemingly pathetic compared to most book bloggers, including you! How does everybody do it?!

    • Naww 20 books is really good, and better than my performance last year. I think the thing is not to compare yourself to the reading goals of others. When I get close to 50 I am quite proud of myself, but I know bloggers who read 100 books, or 150 books, in a single year. Like, I physically cannot do that, I don’t have the time. To make the time I’d have to cut my sleep down to nothing (I already cut out sleep to make time to read).
      Everybody has their own lives I guess which tend to dictate how much time they have to spare. Just reading at all is amazing, in a world which pushes us into so many other distractions and entertainment, so to read 20 books in a year is really very impressive still! 😀

  2. My goal last year was 50 at first, but I was also still getting adjusted to working in Japan and my job and making friends, so in the middle of the year I changed it to 30 and was able to complete it. This year my goal is 40 and I am already ahead of schedule. I hope you reach your goal this year! But don’t be afraid of making adjustments if the pace is too much later on.

    • That’s maybe a better approach, to aim higher but then adjust it if necessary. I think by aiming low initially I destroyed my motivation before I even got going!
      Good luck with your goal, I am sure you’ll get there! 🙂

    • I will definitely write about them, it’ll be nice to get back to book blogging (which is how this blog started once upon a time before I ventured into other topics).
      The challenge on your blog could still be cool to do over a couple of years if it’s too much to do in one year I think. It’s a good way to aim for greater diversity in the books you read, something I am always trying to do myself. It’s so easy to get stuck reading familiar, comfortable literature but often it’s the challenging books that stay with you long after the final page. 🙂

  3. I’ve got my Good Reads Challenge account all set up and I’ve set myself a goal of 50. I’m three in so far. I’ve never actually kept count before. Not sure I’m liking that subtle pressure of “are you reading?”

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