2012 by the Numbers

Happy New Year!

From being a finalist in the Goodreads awards to participating in World Book Night to meeting Junot again, I definitely had my share of bookish highlights in 2012. One of my biggest accomplishments was the number of books I read: 134! It’s weird and completely unheard of (for me, anyway), but yeah…somehow I managed to get through 134 books this year. That’s 37,236 pages and somewhere in the neighborhood of 202 hours of audiobook listening! This is what my year in reading boiled down to:

2012 end of year Goodreads screen grab

I think I’m getting better at finding books I like and putting down books I don’t like (I used to be one of those people who always finished a book no matter what, and I’m trying to let that go). I ended up reading 13 short story collections, 35 general nonfiction books (this is kind of a misnomer, but anything that isn’t a memoir or essay collection is lumped in here), 16 memoirs, 62 novels, 7 essay collections, and 1 anthology of both fiction and nonfiction. The most surprising thing of this year was how many novels I read. There was a big jump up from last year and I couldn’t figure out what it was.

Pie chart of the type of books I read in 2012

Then it hit me: the audiobooks. I read 85 printed books, 30 ebooks, and listened to 19 audiobooks. Never in my life have I listened to so many audiobooks in a year, and most of those audiobooks were fiction. Without them, my stats would look a lot more like last year’s: roughly half fiction, half nonfiction. Nonfiction audiobooks can be hit or miss for me. If there’s a lot of data, I prefer to read it rather than listen to it, and it’s a lot easier to refer back to a book when it comes time to write a review. So next year, I’ll probably be throwing more memoirs and narrative nonfiction into the audiobook mix.

Pie chart of books I read it in 2012 according to format (print, ebook, audiobook)

And finally, the one that made me laugh. Here’s a breakdown of the sources of my books:

Pie chart of sources of books read in 2012 (ARC, own, or library)

Y’all. I actually thought I was doing good this year. After seeing that 47% of my reads in 2011 were advance review copies, my goal for this year was to cut back on ARCs. Even though I could have sworn to you that I was cutting back, apparently I went up by 2% in 2012. I need to make this happen in 2013! My shelves are overflowing!

One thought on “2012 by the Numbers

  1. Happy new year! And congrats on an amazing reading year in 2012 🙂

    I read 85 books, 43 nonfiction and 42 fiction (I alternate so I always end up close to even). The fiction was almost all novels, which I prefer, with a couple short story collections, which I want to try out more this year. The NF was mostly general stuff – politics, history, etc – with a handful of memoirs and a couple essay collections.

    I made an effort to read books by women, and it shows – 58 women authors (3 books by one woman), 25 male (2 by one). I also wanted to try to read more books by POC – it’s a little harder to total since I can’t always be sure of someone’s ethnicity or how they identify, but for those I am sure of, there were 25. I feel like I need to do better on that still – I tend to get a lot of book recommendations from book review sections of media like the NYT, the SF Chronicle, etc, and it would not shock me if they featured way more white authors…

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