Welcome back friends!
It’s the start of a new year and I am HERE for it! Last year was a really great reading year for me. Actually, the last 2 years have been really great years of reading! I met ALL of my goals in 2020, and almost all of them in 2021. It’s been a challenge, but for someone who loves to read, it’s been so much fun!
I’ve kept a reading journal since 2016. Now, don’t go getting too excited about it. It’s nothing special and calling it a “journal” makes it sound so official and fancy. Really, all it is, is a battered old notebook that I bought at from who knows where (probably Wal-Mart), and I write down my list of goals for each year along with all of the books I read each month. You might think I’m crazy and some of you might be saying, “ummm Earth to Maria, you do realize that’s what Good Reads is for, right?” You are right. Good Reads its pretty dang amazing and I love tracking my reading on there. But having a journal is my own special, tangible way of tracking my reading. Something about putting ink on paper myself is so…satisfying. That’s honestly the only reason I keep doing it. LOL!
I also make a list (check it twice ;P) of all the sub-goals I have for the books I plan to read throughout the upcoming year. So, not only do I have a numeric goal of books to read in a year, but the books I read have to meet a certain “criteria” that I’ve set for the year as well. Make sense?
Here’s where ALL of you are probably saying, “Okay, now this girl is real EXTRA!” And again you’d be right. You don’t HAVE to do this. But for me, I find doing it this way not only challenges me to read more; it also challenges me to step out of my comfort zone and read books that I don’t normally gravitate towards. I am a romantic at heart and have always loved a classic romance novel, but by having these sub-goals, I’ve learned that I actually like a little bit of sci-fi every now and again.
This year, I challenge YOU to try making a list of sub-goals and see where it leads you. You never know what you’ll find.
1. Read 20 books : This has been my goal for the last 2 years and so far, I’ve managed to complete it every time.
2. Read 2 historical fiction novels: LOVE historical fiction. If you’re ever looking for a good one try reading SALT TO THE SEA by Ruta Sepatis, you won’t be disappointed!
3. Read 1 autobiography/memoir: I was in a rut one year and NONE of my usual genres were connecting with me, but once I read THE LAST BLACK UNICORN by Tiffany Haddish, I find myself picking up more biographies from some of my favorite entertainers.
4. Read 1 classic novel: I love me some classics, Jane Austen is my favorite, but I think this year I am going to read Little Women, because while I’ve seen the movie a thousand times, I can honestly say that I don’t think I’ve read read the book!
5. Read 1 book to fit adaptation: ….so I think it goes without saying that I”ll definitely knock this one out based off the previous statement lol
6. Start/Finish 3 duology/trilogies/series: I have so many of these that I am currently in the middle of or waiting on the latest book to come out! If you are ever looking for a really great series to start & you enjoy fantasy I HIGHLY suggest checking out ACOTAR by Sarah J Maas. She has quickly become one of my all-time favorite writers and I love just about everything she has ever written!
7. Read 1 physical book without the audiobook: I have always LOVED reading, but these days it’s just 10x easier to listen to a book rather than read one myself. But I find so much joy in physically holding a book, so this challenge is on here for the solo purpose of making my heart happy!
8. Read 1 graphic novel: This is something I don’t typically reach for when looking for something new to read. BUT I have found that sometimes when I need a little pick-me-up and a way to jump back into reading after a slump, a graphic novel is a good way to do it!
9. Read books by 2 new authors: We ALL have our FAVORITE authors of books that we love to read and re-read over and over. We become so accustomed to their style of writing and the way they bring their characters and stories to life. But there are so many incredible writers out there just waiting for youth find them & support them. So what better way to do that than to challenge yourself to come out of your comfort zone and read a book by someone you’ve never read before.
10. Read 2 books that have been on your shelf or TBR for over a year: Some people have the philosophy that if you haven’t read it by now, they ain’t ever gonna read it! But as I stated previously, you never know what hidden gem you have on your tbr if you don’t try!
11. Read 1 book by Kasie West, Colleen Hoover & Kristin Hannah: These lovely women have so many books & are always coming out with something new. I love their work and they are definitely on my list of favorite authors to read. I love their work so much have this goal dedicated just for them.
12. Read 1 new book to Scarlett each month: Reading is such an important tool to have & I love being able to share my love of books with my daughter. We are frequent fliers are our public library, and Scarlett actually just reached her 400 mark of 1,000 books before Kindergarten. So it’s a no brainer to add something to the list just for my girl!
I b-b–be- be-bel-believe, that’s all folks! If you took the time to read this list or visit my blog at all, THANK YOU!! I truly appreciate you taking time out of your day to be here.
I hope you have a HAPPY NEW YEAR & if you decide to set some reading goals for yourself, I wish you all the luck in completing them!
❤ Riaa Isabel