It’s that time of year when I start reflecting on what I’ve accomplished this year and what I hope to accomplish next year. For me, a big part of this is looking at what I’ve read. I’m a fan of reading challenges (who doesn’t love checking things off lists??) and I highly recommend trying one out in 2017 if you’re interested in upping your reading game. In 2016 I worked on completing four reading challenges:
Goodreads – This is the most straightforward of all the challenges: decide how many books you want to read over the course of the year and stick to it. You certainly don’t have to use Goodreads to count how many books you read, but if you do they provide tracker that tells you how many books you’re ahead of or behind your goal throughout the year.
50/50 Challenge – This is the second most straightforward of the challenges I participate in: read 50 books and watch 50 movies. I only count new-to-me books and movies, and for this challenge I don’t count comic books toward my 50 book total (that helps me differentiate it a bit from the Goodreads challenge and makes it a little harder). I like this challenge a lot because I tend to watch the same old movies over and over again if left to my own devices.
Book Riot Read Harder – Now we’re getting into the less straightforward challenges. Book Riot’s Read Harder Challenge has 24 wide ranging tasks — categories like, “read a book over 500 pages,” “read a book that is by an author from Southeast Asia,” and “read a book originally published in the decade you were born.” I love Read Harder because it really pushes me out of my reading comfort zones and they always pick great new categories for the challenge every year; I’m anxiously awaiting the release of 2017’s categories.
Panels Read Harder – Similar to Book Riot’s Read Harder Challenge, but for comic books. The Panels Read Harder challenge features 18 tasks like “read a superhero comic NOT by one of the Big Two,” and “read a collected webcomic.” (Note: Panels morphed into Book Riot Comics this year, so I’m not sure if they’ll be continuing this challenge in the future).
Yes, I read a lot, but I totally double-count books between these four challenges (e.g. books I read for Read Harder count toward my totals for Goodreads and 50/50), but I don’t double-count within a single challenge. If you’re new to reading challenges, pick one and start there! Next year, I’m hoping to add at least one new reading challenge to my list – here are the ones I’m thinking about trying:
Litsy A to Z — (FYI – Litsy is a book-ish app that’s basically a mashup of Instagram and Goodreads). Read one book for every letter of the alphabet. The letter can be the first in the title (articles don’t count!) or the first letter of the author’s last name. I really like this challenge because 26 feels like an accomplishable goal and I’ve already made a list of books for it!
Modern Mrs. Darcy — Similar to the Read Harder Challenge, but shorter. Features 12 categories like, “a book you previously abandoned,” and “a book published this year.” Honestly, the categories in this one just don’t appeal to me as much as the challenges I’m already doing, so I’ll probably skip it.
POPSUGAR — The POPSUGAR reading challenge features 40 prompts to help expand your reading, plus an “advanced” section with 12 more prompts for hardcore readers. Oooof. Adding an additional 40 or 52 books to what I already read in a given year is asking A LOT. But I do like a good challenge…
Do you have any bookish resolutions for 2017? Let me know in the comments!
Until next time, find the stories that make you stronger. #WorkOutNerdOut