2016 was my first year of reading a lot and of blogging. I surprised myself by finishing my goal of reading 50 books back in September and by posting as frequently as I have, putting a lot of energy into reading and blogging. I didn’t have a ton of explicit goals for myself during 2016 but now that I’ve had a year to see what my reading and blogging habits are like, I’ve come up with a few clear goals to focus on during 2017.
Read More Diversely
This is without a doubt my #1 goal for 2017. I managed to read somewhat diversely during 2016 but definitely could do a lot better. My goal is to read at least one “diverse” book every month, but, ideally, I’ll read one “diverse” book for every nondiverse book I read. I’m defining diverse as having a main character or author who is a person of color, identifies as LGBTQIAP, has a disability (including physical or mental disabilities as well as chronic or mental illnesses), or is a religious or ethnic minority. That’s about as specific as I can get it since there are so many different identities that I want to incorporate. I’m going to try to make as many of these books as possible own voices, but I’m not sure how well that will work out, especially since it can be hard to tell if a book is own voices or not. But I definitely want to make more of an effort to help support marginalized authors. I’m also going to try not to make too many of these choices books that talk about depression because I tend to read a lot of those already and one of the reasons I want to work on diversifying my reading is to expose myself to narratives and stories that I haven’t really read about before. A couple of books that I plan on reading to help with this goal are The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas and Someone Knows My Name by Lawrence Hill.
Read 50 Books
This is the same number of books I set as my goal for 2016 and while I did this with no problem, reaching my goal back in September, I decided to keep it the same rather than increase it because I want to read some bigger books and/or more intimidating books that may take a bit longer to read instead of just trying to cram as many books into the year as possible. If I made my goal higher, I don’t think I’d do very well with that. 50 books is still a lot of books anyway. 🙂
Don’t Buy So Many Books!
This is a big one for me and I tried to come up with some clear guidelines so I don’t end up copping out by changing my definition of what “too many books” is throughout the year. Knowing me I would just keep telling myself that buying 20 books a month is totally fine and I’m not buying too many, haha. I’m going to try to force myself to read 1 of my own books or a book I got from the library for every book I buy. I’m not sure how well this will work out for me, but this is my goal.
Read More Classics, Nonfiction, and Longer Books
I’m going pretty easy with this goal and only aiming to read 5 classics, 5 nonfiction books, and 5 books that are over 500 pages during 2017. That’s still a total of 15 books which will make up about a third of my reading goal of 50 books. I tend to get really intimidated with these kinds of books and so I just don’t pick them up, but I really want to change that this year. Some books I might read to help with this goal are 1984 by George Orwell, The Republic of Pirates by Colin Woodard (which I just got for Christmas from my older brother and my sister-in-law!), and A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin.
Beat the Backlist Challenge
A couple of weeks ago I posted my sign-up and TBR post for this. This is a pretty low-pressure challenge. The goal is to read books that were published before 2017 rather than only read new releases. Since I still have a TON of books that I own but haven’t read yet, this really shouldn’t be a problem at all. My goal right now is to read 20 books for this challenge, but I may end up increasing that depending on how well I do with it.
Book Riot Read Harder Challenge
I’m not sure how much I’ll participate in this, but I’d like to check off at least a couple of those boxes. There are some that I think will be pretty easy like “read a debut novel” but there are also some, like “read a book about sports,” that could be kind of difficult, mostly because it doesn’t interest me very much, haha. There are also a few that could help with my goal to read more diversely, like “read a YA or MG book by an author who identifies as LGBTQ+” and “read a book set in Central or South America written by a Central or South American author.” Here’s the post on Book Riot if you want to learn more.
Interact More with Other Bloggers
This is something that I’ve been working on a lot recently and that I want to continue throughout 2017. I used to do pretty terribly with this and would only comment on posts from a couple of bloggers. As much as I love those bloggers, I want to interact with other people and get to know more of you! I’m hoping to also extend this to bloggers that I don’t currently follow and try to see more of the book blogging community that’s outside of my little bubble. 🙂