Thursday, January 14, 2021

2020 Resolution Review & 2021 Resolutions

 Every year I like to take a look back at the previous years resolutions, or goals, whichever you like to call them.  When I made my resolutions for 2020 I, like everyone else, had no clue what the year would hold for me. This was definitely quite the year and it taught be a lot about myself, my family and our strengths and priorities.  Before I put those lessons to use in making this year's resolutions and goal, why don't we take a look back at my reading/blogging resolutions for 2020 and how I did overall. You can look back and see my post last year HERE.

1. Read that TBR: I had set a goal to read 100 books off my physical TBR and I really didn't make that, this was one resolution that when shit hit the fan, so did it.  I did manage to read a few books off my list of purchases over the past 3 years.  I did make myself at the end of the year get very real with my reading abilities and ended up unhauling an extra 78 books from my physical TBR.  I think I may have actually reached my goal of reading or removing 100 books but it wasn't exactly the way I had hoped. 

2.  Purchase Less Books: So this is where I really surprised myself, I thought I was doing really poorly since I wasn't meeting my super strict rules of one book purchase per week for a vast majority of the year. (I may have done some retail therapy to get me through the many months of Covid, and I liked being able to support some of my small local bookshops in any way that I could). Anyway, in 2019 I added 236 books to my shelves, yikes! This year, even though I purchased more than I had planned on, it was still nearly a hundred books less than last year at 154! I guess sometimes you just have to look at the big picture to see the progress you really made!

3. Read Big Books: This is one goal I just manage to keep crushing! Every year I set a goal of reading so many books over 500 pages and some how manage to meet that goal or surpass it.  This year I set a goal of 10 books over 500 pages and I ended up managing to read 13! That works out to be one book over 500 pages for each month! Some of those books were even over 700 pages.  This makes me so happy to keep growing every year. 

4. Interact: This was not the year to make this goal Huh?! Anyway, I had really wanted to reach out into the book world and interact more with my fellow readers. I tried, I really did and I felt like I started making some progress, but then Covid hit and I was left floundering through working full time from home, homeschooling my 2nd grader, having my husband working full time outside the home and the fear and anxiety that came with all of those.  All that while still actively reading and blogging. I barely managed to keep my head above the water.  With that said, I do feel like I started connecting with a few other book worms on Instagram.  Not close enough to call friends or be able to buddy read with yet but enough that we chat in DMs from time to time.

So overall, looking at my 2020 goals and how it all went, once I look at the big picture it wasn't as bad as I thought. I kind of feel like that is what happens when I look back at 2020 as a whole, it was awful in the midst and I couldn't see past individual days, but when I look at it all things didn't go nearly as badly as I thought they did. I know, I am fortunate in that aspect, not everyone was so lucky.


Okay, now on with 2021 goals and resolutions. Normally I start thinking about my reading goals in November and December but quite honestly the end of the year snuck up on me.  I haven't really thought much about them, but after a good clean out of my shelves, a re-organization and a purge, I have a good idea where I want to go with my reading.

1. Read that TBR: I know it is a bit of a cop-out that I will be using many of the same goals as last year but I really do need to get that TBR down.  I am officially out of shelf space; I have no more places to put bookshelves in my house and those shelves are pretty much completely out of room.  I have already unhauled all the books I don't think I will read or that I am no longer interested in reading, so the remaining books, over 250 of them just on my physical shelves, are all books I truly want to read. So I am setting a goal of 70 books off my existing TBR (physical, audio or ebook).  Hopefully I will do better in reading those books already on my shelves instead of bringing more books in.

2. Re-Read More: If I learned anything this year is that there is nothing quite as comforting as an old favorite book. I mean that is why I have over 1,000 physical books in my house is it not?! Because they bring me comfort.  Well after the past year, comfort is definitely needed.  So I plan to push myself to re-read more books this year, at a minimum 15 re-reads but I would really like to reach a number closer to 25.

3. Purchase Less Books & Read More of Them: I know, I keep setting this goal every year, but every year the number of books I add to my shelves gets less and less.  I have a bit of a different way of going about it this year.  I plan to allow myself 4 pre-orders per month (I will allow myself to roll them over if I don't use them all in the months of less releases).  I am making lists of the books I will borrow from the library that aren't at the very top of my anticipated releases list. In addition to this, I have a single shelf available on my TBR bookcase for new incoming books.  If that shelf gets full (meaning I haven't read the new books off it yet) then I get no more purchases until there is room again. In all, I would like to try to get my incoming books to about 100 this year, that is a pretty drastic drop from last year but between 2019 and 2020 I double that drop. I can do it, through more selective purchasing and using my library more. 

4. Explore New Genres More: This year I did something I never thought I would do, I picked up a mystery.  I have quickly been consumed by the world of Cozy Mysteries! I never would have expected them to become so much of my reading in such a short period of time but here we are! So, I want to continue to explore Cozy Mysteries, outside of the authors I have already come to love. I also want to dabble more in other genres I don't usually pick up, more poetry, more memoir, more general fiction. It doesn't have to be a lot just a book here or there to see if my reading tastes are changing more. 

There may be more goals in the future but these are the ones that I plan to focus on this year, reading more of the books I have, bringing in less books and when I do, reading them fairly quickly and trying new things.  I think those are some good goals for this year so far and I am pretty excited about them!

What are some of your reading goals or resolutions for 2021?

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