To be honest, I’ve never been much of a resolutions person. I never really made New Year Resolutions, or if I did I tended to break them pretty early on. However, I kind of fell off the wagon reading and blogging in 2015 and the break taught me a few things so I’m hoping to put together a few ideas to help keep me more consistent next year and also, keep myself from getting burned out.
- Don’t aim high on Goodreads reading goal: This year, I set my benchmark wayyyyy too high and fell behind pretty quickly and it began to stress me out. I revised it back twice and it made me feel much better so this year I’m going to lowball my aim – around 175 books. I know that’s a number I can comfortably attain, even if I do fall off the wagon again and it’s one that won’t stress me out. Anything over that is just a bonus.
- Read books and not review them: Before, I was aiming to review everything I read and it got super difficult. I took a break and just read some freebies off iBooks and some from my Nan, ones I didn’t really feel like I had to sit down and churn out reviews for. That helped me feel refreshed for the next time I picked up a book for review.
- Read one book a month from my TBR pile: I probably have over 500 books in a TBR bookcase at home and every year I say oh, I should read some of these. This year I am going to make a conscious effort to choose one a month, a book I’ve owned for years, and read it.
- Find a couple of new challenges: I failed almost all my 2015 challenges, with the exception of the Australian Womens Writer Challenge and to be honest, I only passed that one because it takes no effort on my part to read Australian women authors. They’re typically the books I am most often sent for review, or the ones that are most accessible to me at the moment. And I’m reading a lot of rural type romance and romantic suspense, so it adds up to a lot of books read. For 2016, I’d like to find a challenge I’ve never done before, something that will get me interested in different types of books.
- Read more with my boys: The school readers for my eldest son got quite tedious and I have to admit, I dropped the ball reading with him. His reading is excellent, so he’s graduated to some middle grade fiction but his comprehension still needs work so it’s good for us to read together. Ideally I’d like us to be able to read a book together a month or so, something that we’ll both enjoy.
- Pay my library fine: I have an embarrassingly large library fine at the moment and my aim is to get it paid off so that I can actually begin using the library again.
- Be a bit more picky: ie don’t request more than I can legitimately read. Sometimes I tend to go a bit crazy accepting books for review or loading up on NetGalley and then it just makes me feel overwhelmed. I’m going to try and limit the amount of books I have for each month so that it doesn’t just end up stressing me out.
- Be more organised: I do have a blog planner and that helps me keep track of what reviews I have scheduled for when and if I have guest posts or Q&A’s to do as well as what books arrive. But I need to be a bit more organised with my time. So often I sit down to write a review and two hours later I’ve browsed facebook, watched ten YouTube videos, bought seven things off Etsy and haven’t even started my post. So I need to block my time a bit better, that way I can spend less time at the computer but get more things done. I am yet to figure out precisely how I am going to do this though.
- Visit more book shops: This can be hard because there aren’t really any near me – but next year my littlest starts kinder/pre-school and that means two whole days where it’s just my husband and I. I foresee trips to the city for lunch and book shopping. At least, that’s what I plan to suggest!
- Just….enjoy it: Reading should always be pleasurable. Life is too short for books that aren’t my thing, for reading the ‘right’ books.
Okay so these are my little goals for 2016. I plan to print this post and pin it up above my desk where I do all my work so that I can always remember it and make sure that these things stick in my brain! Sometimes I just need a bit of a kick up the backside!