Hello, 2011!

Although I’ve been blogging elsewhere for four or five years now, this particular blog turns a year old at the end of this month! I started it because I was reading more and wanted a place to write all my bookish thoughts. I also had a goal of reading 50 books in 2010, a goal I’ve made for the past 2 or 3 years, but never stuck with.

Well…last year I read 72 books! I started out with about a book a week, but as the year progressed, so did my ability/obsession to devour books. I was already a pretty fast reader, but lately I’ve been averaging about 3-4 books a week (I also watch lots of movies, so I think 3-4 per week is as good as it gets). I don’t think I’ll be able to keep going at this rate when the semester starts and I get back to teaching, but I’m gonna keep trying! That said, I’m going to keep my goal for 2011 at 50 books. I’m sure I’ll surpass it again, but if I do fall behind, I don’t want to have to sacrifice quality for quantity.

A big reason I read so much this year is because of all the challenges I signed up for. I’m doing a bunch of challenges again this year, but with a couple of exceptions, I tried to only sign up for challenges that give me a lot of room to choose what I want to read. I don’t want to feel like I have to read something. These are the challenges I signed up for:

A lot of them allow me to read books I already want to read, or force me to read books that help me accomplish my long-term goals (like reading all the Pulitzer winners). There are also a couple of challenges that began last year and end this year:

There’s only one “challenge” that I think is way too ambitious for me: the TBR Dare. From now until April 1, I can only read books from my TBR pile. Like most bookworms, I have more than enough unread books on my shelfs and on my nook to keep me busy until April 1 (and then some), but the itch to acquire more books–from the library or otherwise–is always there! I’m pretty sure I can last until the end of February, but that’s pushing it! 😉

Other goals for 2011: keep up with reviews! I’m horrible at this. I either start reviews and don’t finish them, or just don’t write anything at all until way after I’ve read the book (I am a pro at procrastinating). I also want to stay on top of my book quote tumblr, where I started collecting of all my favorite passages from books. I like having all my favorites on hand to browse through, but I suck at actually adding in the passages! Ah, well. We’ll see how that turns out.

I also want need to read more non-U.S. authors. I read a lot of books by POC in 2010, but overall my reading is still extremely Western-centric. For instance, I signed up for BrownGirl’s ongoing Reading Africa Challenge (one of my long-term projects), and I didn’t even read one book by an African author in 2010. That’s just wrong, and I’m going to work on balancing out my reading in 2011.

Finally, I have one more goal that I’m going to try really, really hard to follow through with…socialize more! I swear: if you comment here regularly or tweet with me from time to time, I can almost guarantee that your blog is on my Google Reader; I’ve just always been more of a lurker. I’m like this in real life, too. Bad, bad habit. I’ve gotta talk more!

Happy New Year and happy reading, everyone! Hope it’s better than 2010.

3 thoughts on “Hello, 2011!

  1. I will follow your example of being more social and comment here – I’ve been lurking for a couple of days! Happy New Year! You have some great challenges for 2011. I was going to try the TBR dare, but work in a library and think I might be tempted too much to succeed!

  2. Good luck with the challenges! I tried to do a few last year and quickly realized I shouldn’t have ever signed up. I enjoy reading about your progress and the books you’re reading. I’ll be looking for your progress this year as well!

  3. Great goals! Congrats on reading more than 50 last year – you got a lot higher than 50 too! And great goals for the next year. I’m also doing the TBR dare and scared 🙂 Best of luck!

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