2017 Reading Goals

stack of books photo
Photo by Au Kirk

I always like to write up my reading goals in my first blog post of the year.

2017 Reading Challenge

Dana has
read 0 books toward
her goal of
46 books.
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I have decided to try to read 46 books this year, since I’ll be turning 46 in September. My sister also set the same goal, but she had the idea first. She is NOT turning 46, however.

I have created my 2017 Reading Challenges page. I will not be joining any more challenges until the R. I. P. Challenge this fall. All of the reading challenges I have chosen have some freedom and flexibility, so I’m not too worried about getting bogged down trying to meet challenge goals.

One general reading goal I have is to read more books written by African and Asian authors and/or set in African or Asian countries. In particular, I want to read books by Salman Rushdie and Chimimanda Ngozi Adichie. I also want to read more classics of African-American literature, including Jean Toomer’s Cane, James Baldwin’s The Fire Next Time, and Ralph Ellison’s The Invisible Man. I also want to try to get to some classics I haven’t read, namely Middlemarch by George Eliot. I don’t know if this is my year to try the Russians again or not. I have been told by a wise authority that the best translators are Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky. I know a good translator is very important, and it could be why I have not had luck before.

Another reading goal I have is to try to be more active in the reading challenges in which I participate. Typically, all I do is keep track of the books that meet the challenges, but often challenge hosts have special linkup posts and other activities on their own blogs, and I rarely participate. I want to do better this year. I am terrible in general at keeping up with other blogs. I would like to do better.

Another related goal: I need to cull books I don’t want to keep from my stacks and do something with them. I have a lot of books. I am never going to say too many (no such thing). There are a lot of books I don’t think I will ever re-read and don’t need to consult again, either. I just need to get rid of them. I suppose I could be more active on PaperBackSwap, but I’m disappointed they are charging money for the service now—beyond the price of postage. I suppose they have to sustain themselves, but it soured me on them a bit.

A final goal: stop messing around with books that are not grabbing me. I bought some books this year, and they didn’t grab me, so I felt like I should read them since I bought them. That’s silly. I should just get rid of them if they aren’t grabbing me, and I shouldn’t be giving them more than 50 pages. I need to remember there are a lot of books out there I want to read—good ones—and I need to be better about wasting time on books that are not working for me, even if I spent money on them. I know I should go to the library, but I always think I might need the books longer than they allow, and what if I want to keep them (yes, I know I could always buy them after the fact if that’s the case). I should probably make it a goal to use my library more, actually. They do have Overdrive, and I enjoyed reading books that way in the past.

What are your reading goals for the year?

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6 thoughts on “2017 Reading Goals

  1. I took a look at your challenge page and am fascinated by these platforms. The only challenge I’ve ever joined is the Goodreads one. Maybe I should consider some others, too.

    1. I like them for spicing things up with my reading or for holding me to goals, like going through my older books that I haven’t read. I love them. My favorite one is the R. I. P. Challenge every fall.

  2. Might as well add a Jerome Charyn book to your challenge, because he’ll want to send you his new one, Jerzy, out in March, or perhaps a book you may have missed – maybe the Lincoln novel? It’s on Jerome as a thank you.

  3. I always support people DNFing more books! Life’s too short to persist with books that aren’t working for you! (I say that, but just this week I made myself continue with a book I was bored by, and it turned out to have a lot of interesting stuff in the second half and I was glad I had persisted. Life is a rich tapestry.)

    I’ll also add re: PaperbackSwap, I haven’t regretted continuing to use them. They were free for almost a decade, and I recognize that websites of a certain size do require administrative costs to keep the lights on. It was an adjustment, but I still love them.
    Jenny @ Reading the End recently posted…Review: Golden Boy, Abigail TarttelinMy Profile

    1. I am still trying to decide what I want to do about PaperbackSwap. It’s hard with books when you think, well, it might get better. That was the case for me with The Club Dumas. I thought there was going to be a payoff if I stuck with it. I actually felt more ripped off for investing the time.

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