All The Books I Can Read

1 girl….2 many books!

Top 10 Tuesday 16th January

on January 16, 2018

It’s Top 10 Tuesday time! This bookish meme was originally created by The Broke & the Bookish and is now hosted by Jana at That Artsy Reader Girl. This week our topic is:

Bookish Resolutions/Goals

  1. Don’t sweat the GR goal. I sometimes panic about the goodreads goal because it seems to judge you. You’re behind! A couple of times I’ve had to revise the goal down because it was stressing me out. I’ve actually had a really great start to my reading year but it’s school holidays here (summer) and there’s been late nights and lazy mornings sleeping in reading. But it won’t always be like that and I have to accept I’ll have ups and downs in the reading numbers.
  2. Mix review copies with purchases. Since January began I’ve been trying to alternate between review copies and books I’ve purchased myself. Not only does it help me actually read the books I buy instead of them sitting on my shelf, but it also helps break up the obligation I can sometimes feel about review copies and I find it helps maintain my enthusiasm for them when I’m not reading books with a certain pub date one after the other.
  3. Be picky. Don’t be afraid to say no. This is something I’ve been working on in terms of review copies. Sometimes I felt obliged to say yes, or to read something unsolicited if it turned up in my mailbox. They took the time to send it, least I can do is read it? Right? Well sometimes, yeah……but sometimes you have to prioritise. No one can read everything. So I’m saying no to books I don’t think will work for me and looking at NetGalley less. I’m making sure that I only pick things that I really want to read because after all, I want to have time for my own books too. And the easiest way to become overwhelmed is to have more books than you can possibly read.
  4. Be organised. This is a big thing for me. I keep a blogging planner, where I note down what I’m planning to post on the specific day. This helps for blog tours, where I sometimes accept a book months out from the publication and books that arrive well in advance. I can tell at a glance what I’m supposed to be posting this week and I also keep a record of books that arrive and what their publication dates are. The more organised I am, the easier it is to keep on top of the commitments I’ve made and that way I also know what I have going on and I don’t over commit and still leave time for books that I want to read that I don’t have review copies of.
  5. Try new things. Sometimes I tend to stay a little too firmly in my reading comfort zone. The bulk of my reading is probably contemporary fiction written by Australian women, which is awesome, I like that. But it’s nice to broaden the horizons and try something different – when I do, I almost always end up finding new fantastic things. I have to push myself to take that plunge a bit more, pick up books that are a bit outside of my box.
  6. Buy local. I try to do this. Not everything I want to read has an Australian release and sometimes the amount of books I want to read means I have to occasionally buy cheaper. But I do try to support my local bookshops as much as I financially can, for myself and my children. Which actually brings me to my next goal….
  7. Encourage my children to read. I have two boys, 6 and 9. Both are advanced readers – my 9yr old reads at a 13yo level at his last testing. He’s not what I’d call an avid reader though, he tends to read only when made even though he’s so advanced at it. I try to encourage them both to read every day and we provide a wide range of books, both purchased and via trips to our local library in order to sustain their interest. When he finds a book he enjoys, he flies through them – he’s currently on the 4th Harry Potter book. My 6yo is moving into lower level chapter books and is quite happy to sit and read quietly.
  8. Read but not review. Sometimes it’s just nice to read and not have to think about what you might say in a review, etc. Just reading a book knowing I’m not going to review it. I used to try and review everything I read and I probably kept that up for a couple years but it just made reviewing feel like too much of a chore so I started reading books and not reviewing them.
  9. Cull the shelves again. It took me a long time to be able to get to the stage where I thought I could cull books. But it was surprisingly cathartic and limited space means I just have to keep trimming the numbers otherwise books will completely take over my house. I go through and pull out books that I didn’t love or can’t ever see myself reading again and give them away. To be honest I still have way more books than I have shelf space for though!
  10. Take a break from challenges. I think I’ve signed up for one challenge or another every full year since I started blogging (2011) and some I pass, some I fail. This year though, I honestly just needed a break from challenges to just wing it. That’s what 2018 is – the year of winging it!


70 responses to “Top 10 Tuesday 16th January

  1. I love your goals !, especially the first one is so important, I felt the same as your respect to my Goodreads Challenge, so this year I’ve lowered my challenge to 50 book to be comfortable about it because in the end the important thing is to enjoy our readings, right?. I hope you achieve all your goals! 💕

  2. Organization is key. Do you keep a spreadsheet of books? I have for years because I would get lost otherwise. I keep track of my review due date on the spreadsheet and in my calendar too. Looks like everyone is weeding out the bookshelves this year. Good luck with all your goals.

  3. Literary Feline says:

    Good luck with your goals! Last year I set my GR goal at 13. I never set it to an ambitious number. I hate reading toward a numeric goal, and I’d be too tempted to if I did. I started a bullet journal this year for my blog in hopes of being more organized. Fingers crossed it works! I like your #7. I read a lot with my daughter, but want to try to listen more to her. She’s struggling in that area and I don’t want to scare her away from reading by pushing her too hard or in a direction that won’t make it fun for her. I hope you have a great week!

    • Thank you! To be honest a low number is probably a good idea, even when I do set mine to below what I know I can comfortably read in a year I still find myself being a bit competitive about it.

      It can be so hard with kids, there’s such a fine line between encouraging and making too much of it so that it’s like forcing. I want my kids to love reading and pick it up on their own but I feel like in order for that to happen, I have to foster their reading so that love develops.

  4. ChrissiReads says:

    I love that so many of us have put organisation as a goal for this year! 🙂 Being organised is so helpful to a book blogger! Good luck with these goals.

  5. My goal is to try and review half of the books I read. That seems doable. Sometimes I realize that I have no unique thoughts about a book I am reading worthy of sharing. Ha!

    • Half is a good goal I think. Enough so that it gives you regular posting but not so much it becomes a struggle. I feel the same about some books, especially ones like say Harry Potter or something, which already have thousands and thousands of reviews. What could I possibly add to that?

  6. I am trying very hard myself to be organised with my reading and more importantly with my blogging too. That completely got away from me last year. And no 8: I didn’t know I needed that until I saw your list — but so much yes!

  7. Greg Hill says:

    I love trying new genres and branching out of my comfort zone as a reader, so I definitely relate to that one! Same with challenges- I’m totally taking a break this year from those, and it’s kinda nice!

    • It’s very freeing, isn’t it? To break from challenges. I would always sign up to way too many and would be trying to read books just because they might help me tick a challenge off, even if it wasn’t something I was super enthusiastic about reading.

  8. Great goals! I need to learn how to say no, too. It can be so hard!

    😅 I can see how the GR challenge is stressful. It *does* seem like it’s judging you!

  9. Great goals 🙂 I seriously need to learn to say NO too. I have ended up with so many copies which I wouldn’t have picked otherwise. I have to focus on my backlist books more this year 🙂

    Today I have talked about my top ten bookish pet peeves. My TTT:

    • Yes! I was the same. And I was trying to read them and then just finding them so-so and I just ended up thinking why accept books I’m only going to find middle of the road? Sometimes obviously there’s an unexpected hidden gem but a lot of the time I know my own taste and I know when I’m not going to like something. It’s just wasting everyone’s time because I’m too scared to refuse lol.

  10. Jovita says:

    I recently quit my Amazon Prime (using for shipping) just so I can start buying local and supporting small business. That is wonderful that both your children have found the love of reading early. My daughter loved to read and I could never get my son to read anything. Sometimes I think we put too much stress on ourselves, we just need to get back to the joy of reading.

    • I’m not sure the reading will stick around with my eldest. At the moment he’s proud of himself because he can read so far above his age level but that’ll wear off! The good thing is he’s found some friends that all enjoy reading and they spent ages talking about books the other day. Made me so happy!

      • Jovita says:

        It’s probably a matter of finding him books that interest him, sometimes when they get older that is more difficult to do. Here hoping he sticks with it 🙂

  11. I really hope you manage to achieve all your goals! I may try and implement number 2, as it’s a really fantastic idea (I’m always behind on one or the other 🙈😂). I only started blogging last year and didn’t have a Goodreads goal, and decided against it this year. I’d like to reach 100, but I’m not under pressure if I don’t.
    Amy x
    My TTT:

  12. The idea of reading and not reviewing is almost inconceivable to me at this point. I review everything I read, even if it’s only a few sentences on Goodreads, but it would be nice to be able to kick back and not have the thought of what I’m going to say about the book constantly in the back of my head. I’m going to try to do this too!

    You can see my bookish resolutions here.

    • I used to write a full review for everything I read but as I read more books that just got to be unsustainable. I could probably put a sentence or two on GR for the ones I don’t plan to review here but generally just glancing at the star rating is enough for me to remember what I felt about it.

  13. Trying new things is on my list too. I really want to read more widely this year. Let’s see if it happens. Thanks for the post.

  14. Kay says:

    You had some great goals! Love the encourage your children to read. And ‘winging it’. I think we often get so caught up in the ‘shoulds’, we miss out on the ‘fun’. Have fun!

  15. Nothing wrong with winging it! Although I personally love reading challenges / goals way too much to ignore them / put them aside, haha.

    For some reason, I’ve never thought about removing some of my own books. Maybe I should look into it but.. I already know that I’ll just find excuses to keep all of them. I love my books. [It’s at that point where I’m cleaning out our dvd’s so I can use that little case for more books? Oops.]

    Mixing review copies / eARC’s with your own books is liberating! I’ve been doing it for a couple of months now and I honestly love how it takes the pressure off reading. I feel like I have a bit more freedom and enjoy it a lot more now.

    Good look on all your goals!

    • I used to be obsessed with keeping every book. But I have to be realistic these days. I just don’t have enough room in my house for the sheer volume of books that arrive lol. It’s painful but it’s true. So I try to rehome the ones I don’t love and just keep my collection full of books I adore.

      • Haha, I understand! Right now, I still have room for them but I think I really have to look into it decently without finding excuses to maybe make room already before I actually get at the point of “no room left”. :p

  16. I like your goal of encouraging your children to read more. My kids are both in high school and they have so much work that reading is a chore rather than a pleasure and this saddens me because I love to read. I used to read with them all the time.

  17. Great goals! That Goodreads goal is tough. It’s all fine until you get behind and then the notice about the number of books behind you are drives me CRAZY! Good luck getting your boys to read more. That’s one I’ve struggled with.

    • Yeah, I hate being behind! I’ve taken advantage of the summer holidays here to try and push out a few in front because I’ve had so much more reading time. It annoys me so much when it tells me I’m behind.

  18. #2 is awesome and I think I should take a cue from you. Good luck!

  19. Love these goals and I can relate to so many of them. I love that you are planning on spending less time on NetGalley, that is a major time suck and also just a reading hole that I fall down all of the time. They look so interesting and I want to read all the books! I hope you enjoy the books you have purchased and spend time in 2018 reading books that you have chosen instead of feeling weighed down by books you feel obligated to read.

    • Oh my gosh, yes I used to spend so much time obsessively searching NetGalley’s new additions and trying to add as many books to my pile as possible. Now I tend to just check my auto-approval list and pick like 1-2 a month that I most want to read. Otherwise they just pile up on my kindle and I never really get anywhere with them.

  20. jennielyse says:

    I love your goals! I love that they try to help you have a calm and fun year rather than a stressed our year.

    My TTT Post

  21. Happy Writer says:

    Let the year of winging it commence! You’ve got some great resolutions, good luck with them! I especially love your goal to get your boys reading more. Maybe a family reading time, where everyone hunkers down on the couch with blankets and snacks and enjoys their books?

    My TTT

  22. Mix review copies with purchases — this is a big one for me. I was inundated with review requests in 2017 and I want to read a few of the ones that I picked up this year.

  23. Susan says:

    Wow, I’m impressed by how organized you ALREADY are! #lifegoals. I can’t imagine how efficient you’ll be when you’re even more organized. Wow. Also, I feel you on getting your kids to read. My oldest daughter has always been a voracious reader, but my other three are only ho-hum about reading. Who ARE these kids?? Ha ha.

    Happy TTT!


    • Haha I’m glad it comes across as organised! I’ve been blogging for about 8yrs and I’ve only started really sorting out my organisation in the last 4 or so years. One year about 2 yrs ago I forgot to get a blog planner and I really noticed how lazy that made me with posting and actually sitting down to write reviews. So I have to have myself all sorted well before the new year starts.

  24. I so agree with needing to read something to just read and not review. I find myself whenever I start a book thinking about it critically instead of just enjoying it. I already know that I need to take your advice and cull my bookshelf. I have way too many books and it is overwhelming sometimes trying to get through them all.

  25. Kayla says:

    Buy local is a great goal. I really want to do that too ❤

    • It’s easier for me to do now because I have some bookstores again! But a few years ago the only one we had shut down and I had to travel 45m to visit an actual bookstore or just buy from department stores. Now I have a few and they tend to stock different things and I can find a much wider variety.

      • Kayla says:

        It seems that bookstores are slowly becoming a thing again. It’s so wonderful to see, we had a couple pop up here too recently. We’ve always had barnes & noble and half price books but I want to try and buy more from the local vs the chains.

  26. The Miss Charley says:

    I love your goals! While I am participating in a reading challenge this year, I’m trying to remember the purpose of the challenge is to read more backlist titles, not necessarily “win”. I think 2018 will be the year of remembering the joy of reading.

  27. Amber says:

    Culling the shelves is a big one for me this year, too! It’s easier said than done!

    I wish you all the best of luck on these this year! 🙂 NetGalley is sure tempting, but I agree it’s probably better not to check too often.

    • I find it’s easier to ignore NetGalley when I have a large pile of books to already read. I still pick up a couple here and there but I try to make it ones that I really want to read and I can only request one when I’ve uploaded a review for another one. So I’m keeping books acquired level with books reviewed.

  28. Awesome Resolutions!! I’m also trying to balance my purchases with advanced copies this year!!

  29. Angelized1st says:

    Nice list! I also struggle with the idea of not having to review every book I read.

  30. Good luck. I can’t imagine culling my shelves…I should but the thought horrifies me lol.

    • Seriously, neither could I a few years ago. I was obsessive in keeping everything. But it just got to the stage where I couldn’t find anything and there were piles everywhere, nothing looked neat and tidy, even when it was and I couldn’t stand to look at my shelves anymore. Something had to give haha.

  31. Carmen says:

    Good luck with your goals! I`ve reduced my Goodreads goal to 24 because I don`t want to be pressured to read. I`m sure I`ll eventually read double or more, but I also want to give big books a chance. I`d also love to read more for the pleasure of doing that, not just for reviewing.

    Carmen`s Reading Corner

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