2017 Literary Goals

2016 has been a trying year. Much has happened in my personal life (and in the wider world) and sadly the majority of it has been bad. It’s hard to carry on with the things you love when you can think of nothing other than the bad stuff going on (or it’s hard for me anyway). Unfortunately I didn’t read much in 2016 and, even worse, I didn’t track any of my reading so I don’t really know what I did and whether I read what I wanted to. 2017, hopefully, will be different. And so, with this in mind, I made some goals for the coming year. Hopefully I’ll be able to keep up with them! Here’s to next year, hopefully it’s better than last year.

Goal #1 – Listen to at least 6 audio books. 

I’ve had an audible account for a while now and I’m racking up the audio books, but I haven’t actually listened to any for a while. I used to listen to them at the gym but then I discovered some amazing podcasts and they pretty much took over my life. I’d like to get back into listening to audio books, and hopefully one every two months will be a more than achievable goal.

Goal #2 – Keep up with reviews.

Reviews aren’t just fun for me, they’re actually pretty helpful. I like to read but unless I become obsessed with a book it can be hard for me to remember everything that happens and what I like and dislike. If I write it all down in a review I can look back on it in the future and know what I did and did not enjoy. I also know that reading reviews can be helpful for others when they’re deciding whether to pick up a book and I love being able to guide people into finding books they love. Hopefully I’ll be doing far more reviews this coming year so watch out for them!

Goal #3 – Start a spreadsheet to track my reading and read a wider variety.

Like I said before, I didn’t track my reading at all this past year and so I really have no idea what I read. In 2017 I may go a tiiiiiny bit overboard in the opposite direction – I’ve created a huge spreadsheet to document my reading. It has around 26 columns from title, author and date published all the way through to various forms of representation. I’m tracking a lot. It may end up being too much, and maybe half my columns will lie unused for most of the year, but I think it’s important to me to try and get all of this information down. It also ties in to the goal of wider reading. I want to read a wider variety of authors and characters (not just straight white teens written by straight white adults), I want to read more genres and get out of my comfort zone, and I really want to read more non fiction. Hopefully by charting all of this information I can really see whether I’m being more diverse and, if not, I can change things up so that I am.

Goal #4 – Participate in the POPSUGAR 2017 Reading Challenge AND the Book Riot 2017 Read Harder Challenge. 

I’ve never really done a reading challenge like this before, but I figure it may help me expand my reading a bit (and so ties in nicely with my previous goal). I probably won’t be able to read a separate book for each part of each challenge, but hopefully I will for most of them! I’m aiming to complete the Book Riot challenge fully, and complete the main section of the POPSUGAR one. I may not get onto the “Advanced” section for POPSUGAR but here’s hoping! If you guys are interested in these challenges you can find the Book Riot challenge here and the POPSUGAR challenge here.

Goal #5 – Read (at some point this year) THESE specific books.

I usually don’t make lists of books I “HAVE” to read within a certain month/year because it puts pressure on to just “get it done” and then I might not enjoy them as much as I would usually. There are certain books I really want to read this year so I really hope I’ll find time for them at some point in 2017. They are:

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – yes I still haven’t read it (not my fault, my copy was delivered to my parents home not my flat and this is the first time I’ve been back to my family home this year) but I need to. I. Need. To.

The Light Between Oceans by M L Stedman – I started this book a while back but I never finished it and now I’ve forgotten most of it. Hopefully at some point this year I can restart it and actually finish it this time!

Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult – Jodi came to do a talk about this book in Edinburgh and my flatmate and I went along. It was brilliant! She had great insight and her talk was beautiful. I can’t wait to get the chance to read this one.

Fast Food Nation by Eric Schlosser // Bad Food Britain by Joanna Blythman // The Shape We’re In by Sarah Boseley – these all fit under the same category really, but they’re all factual books about the food industry that I’m really interested to read and see how accurate and unbiased they are. I haven’t really read much about the food/diet industry but it’s a field that does interest me so hopefully I’ll get my teeth into these three this year.

Do you guys have any reading goals for 2017? Mine aren’t very specific (apart from the last one) but hopefully I’ll get back into reading for pleasure and interest this year and it’ll be a great year! Here’s hoping, eh?

 

 

 

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Currently Reading

Hey everyone! I’m going to do a quick post about the books I’m currently reading – what they’re about, how far into them I am, whether I’m enjoying them, that sort of thing. I’m also thinking of starting to watch the TV show Grimm today, and possibly doing a “watch with me” type post, where I write about what’s happening in the episode and my thoughts, and we can discuss it in the comments? If that’s something that will interest you, stay tuned!

But now for my current reads. From top to bottom:
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Withering Tights by Louise Rennison – this is the first book in a series about Tallulah Casey, wannabe starlet and completely relatable awkward teenage girl. I’ve read this before but decided to skip through it again before reading the next in the series. Withering Tights is a nice, quick read with both drama and laugh-out-loud bits.

Vicious by V. E. Schwab – this is about two college roommates, Victor and Eli, who plan their dissertation around the hypothetical notion that, under the right “conditions”, people can develop supernatural powers. Their problems arise when they start exploring the…practical…side to their notion and not just the hypothetical side. I haven’t read too much of this yet, but it skips between Victor and Eli in college and Victor several years later, newly escaped from prison and attempting to find Eli. It seems really good so far, and I can’t wait to keep reading and see what happens.

Plain Truth by Jodi Picoult – an Amish teenager gives birth in the middle of the night and when she wakes up, the baby is gone. It seems that God has answered her frantic prayers…until the dead baby’s body is found. I love Jodi Picoult, and this book is no exception. Again, I haven’t read too much of it, but it’s intriguing and saddening in equal measure.

Black Cat by Kentaro Yabuki – this is the first manga I’ve ever read, and it’s a pretty good one! It’s about an ex assassin turned bounty hunter, who’s attempting to track down a dangerous weapons smuggler. He is aided by his bounty hunter partner Sven, and a new allegiance with a burglar. This is going really well, once I got used to the different style of reading! I’m enjoying this a lot, and can’t wait to dive into some other manga too.

Finally, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs – a teenage boy, haunted by stories and his grandfather’s death, travels to a little island off the coast of Wales to find out more about his family’s mysterious past. I’m enjoying this book, as well as the beautiful if eery photographs, and am looking forward to seeing what happens at the end. It’s taken me a while to get through because of numerous things getting in the way of my reading but hopefully now I’ll have the chance to finish!

So that’s all the books I’m reading at the moment. Hopefully now that my lectures are over, I’ll have more time to read in between my revision. I hope you enjoyed this post, and let me know if you’ve read any of these books and what you thought of them!