On Reading: My Own Personal Reading Challenge

by Jennifer


Do you participate in reading challenges (If you’d like to share — link your challenge goals in the comment for as many challenges as you are participating in this year)? I love the community and the focus of reading challenges, but since so much of my reading is skewed by review reading (and I’m fine with that), I can’t add that into the mix. I try to participate in Katrina’s Fall into Reading Challenge and Spring Reading Thing each year for a couple of reasons: she’s one of my real-life BFFs, and it was her very first Fall into Reading Challenge that put my love of reading back into practice. That first fall, 2006, I went from being an occasional reader to constantly having a book in hand (Here’s my recap of that success, which I really enjoyed reading all these years later.)

I’ve also joined in the S. Krishna’s South Asian Authors challenge (two years in a row and planning on a third), because I like to read South Asian literature, and I like connecting with others who feel the same way, and it can easily dovetail with my review reading, since I’m drawn to those titles anyway.

But this year, I’m challenging myself in my own way. I’m going to read at least 12 books this year that are absolutely only solely just for me. No review copies, no deadlines, no reports. Twelve doesn’t sound like all that much considering I read over 150 books this year (including those audiobooks and lots of kids’ fiction). But I want to show myself that I can do it. It’s a goal that I put on my What’s on Your Nightstand posts throughout the year as well as those Fall and Spring challenges, but then I fall short.

Why? Why don’t I just read what I want to read?

There are good reasons for this, the top one being that I’m a book reviewer. I like being a book reviewer. I love the books that come across my desk via my inbox or unsolicited deliveries. Once I accept them, I have an obligation to follow-through in a timely fashion, so other books get pushed aside. But I can take time with twelve books over the course of 2012, and perhaps like that first Fall into Reading Challenge 5 years ago, this goal will just be the tip of the iceberg.

I’d also like to challenge myself to accurately track the number of books I read. I loved jotting thoughts, pages read, and when I started and finished my books in my Reader’s Notebook the last couple of years, but I was never 100% accurate about tracking it, and never had a good collection of my reviews either. Though I was planning to just use a page on my personal blog, after reading that post, and the post about buying my second reader’s notebook, I think I might keep it in paper once again, with just a list of links online (and duh–I guess I could use goodreads for that, right??).

To recap — in 2012 I’m challenging myself to read at least 12 books just for me, and I’m also challenging myself to keep an accurate record of what I’ve read.

What about you? Link to your reading goals for 2012 below, including any challenges that you are joining in.

Jennifer Donovan is grateful that she has the time to read and that she is surrounded by so many wonderful options. She’s shared some of her other personal goals for 2012 at her blog Snapshot.

Email Author    |    Website About Jennifer

Jennifer lives in Houston with her family. In addition to reading, she enjoys travel, Bible study, food, and fun. She blogs about some of these things -- when her nose isn't in a book -- at Snapshot.

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