Quarterly Update on My 2015 Reading Goals

2015 Reading GoalsI’m not doing monthly updates this year, but quarterly seems about the right length of time to go between check-ins:

  1. Read 156 books.
    That’s 3 books a week, children’s titles over 100 pages count towards the total.
    I’m behind on this one, even with counting children’s titles, but not so far behind that it’s time for me to rethink this goal. ๐Ÿ™‚
  2. Read all book club selections.
    With one exception: if there is one book that I absolutely hate, I can not finish. I call that the “House of Mirth” rule in honor of the book that inspired it. ๐Ÿ˜‰
    I’ve already invoked my one exception to this, so I have to finish everything else this year. Or else go back and finish A Prayer for Owen Meany, which I do not want to do.
  3. Attempt to read all of the books I mentioned I was looking forward to reading.
    If I don’t like the book, I don’t have to finish it, but I do want to at least give them all a shot.
    I’ve read As You Wish (And loved it!), ordered one of them, and this month got three other titles in from the library. Four others are on request, and the other ones aren’t available at the library (at least not yet; they may be later closer to their release dates).
  4. Get new children’s books monthly to share with the kids.
    No numbers here – just want to keep fresh material coming in, along with the books we already own.
    Done – this is the easiest goal for me to meet, as my kids love getting new library books. ๐Ÿ™‚
  5. Read the New Testament
    I want to say read the entire Bible, but I’m trying to not be overly ambitious, and I don’t want to set myself up where I’m reading it for speed over anything else.
    I’ve made very little progress with this one.
  6. Promptly share books that I’ve finished via my Pinterest board.
    I did so well at this goal this year, at least pre-baby. And then this got ignored in favor of more pressing needs. We’ll give it another try this year.
    Doing ok with this one, although I seem to do pinning binges every two/three weeks to get it caught up, instead of pinning daily as I finish a book.
  7. Clear 12 more books off of my TBR stack at home.
    I don’t have to finish them – if I start one and decide it isn’t for me and I’m going to get rid of it, that counts too. I just want to whittle down the stack some more one way or another. They do need to be physical books however – the point of this is to clear out the backlog of books on my bookcases.
    Uh, I kind of forgot all about this goal. I’ve made zero progress on it.

So, overall I’m not doing all that well on my goals, but it’s not a total disaster. Perhaps I was too hasty in thinking I could check in on them quarterly and still make progress, because YIKES. I totally forgot about that last TBR goal.

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2014 Reading Goals: The Results

2014 Reading Goals

  1. Participate in my 2014 Reading Challenge.
    This was a complete non-success. I lost all motivation to read these, and bailed on it by the first quarter. It’s embarrassing to admit it, but the embarrassment wasn’t strong enough to make me read the books when I wasn’t in the mood to tackle them.
  2. Read 208 books.
    I quickly made plans to revise it down to 156 books (3 a week instead of 4) because I knew pregnancy + new baby = less reading time. I ended up easily passing 156, but wouldn’t have reached that original 208 number. I’m at 185 books finished, although it’s possible I could finish another one today and have to adjust that total. ๐Ÿ™‚
  3. Read 40,000 pages.
    I passed this, even without revising it post-baby news. I almost reached 50,000 pages. And thinking about all the kids’ books I read which didn’t count for this, I know I read over 50,000 pages this year.
  4. Read all book club selections.
    Did this!
  5. Get new children’s books monthly to share with the kids.
    Did this, even with having the baby and not being able to drive for a bit. Yes, I’m proud of myself for managing to keep up with this goal during that stretch.
  6. Listen to 1 audio book.
    I listened to two audio books completely, and parts of a couple of others. This isn’t the best season for me and audio books, but if I can fit them into my schedule I do still love them when the narrator is strong.
  7. Read through the New Testament in a new edition.
    (After learning I was expecting, I revised this one to just the NT, instead of the entire Bible). Finished this.
  8. Promptly share books that I’ve finished via my Pinterest board.
    Did great at this until about August. And then… not so much. You probably don’t need to guess what happened in August, do you? ๐Ÿ˜‰ I did eventually get caught up with this though, so I’m still counting it done.
  9. Clear 24 more books off of my TBR stack at home.
    Did this.
  10. A subgoal of number 9: 12 of those 24 books need to be from my Christianity stacks.
    Did this.

So, other than not finishing up my own reading challenge I accomplished these goals. And I’m not too upset about not meeting that goal, or my original reading total goal because the main reason I missed them is pretty wonderful. And well worth a year of diminished reading accomplishments. ๐Ÿ™‚

Update on Books I Was Looking Forward to Reading in 2014

Way back in January I shared a list of titles that I was looking forward to reading during the year. Let’s look back at that and laugh at how few of them I actually read. On the plus side, some of the ones I did read I enjoyed, so at least there’s that.

Only one fiction title

Looking Forward to Reading in 2014: CressCressLooking Forward to Reading in 2014: Cress (The Lunar Chronicles) by Marissa Meyer by Marissa Meyer

Original thoughts: Loved the previous books in the series, so of course I wanted to read this one.

The verdict: Read it. Loved it. Impatiently waiting for the next ones in the series.

Books from Bloggers

Looking Forward to Reading in 2014: Notes from a Blue BikeNotes from a Blue Bike: The Art of Living Intentionally in a Chaotic WorldLooking Forward to Reading in 2014: Notes from a Blue Bike: The Art of Living Intentionally in a Chaotic World by Tsh Oxenreider by Tsh Oxenreider

Original thoughts: I loved her earlier book One Bite at a TimeOne Bite at a Time: 52 Projects for Making Life Simpler by Tsh Oxenreider, read her blog, and like the premise of the book. Why wouldn’t I like this one?

The verdict: It was ok, but if you’ve read her blog much at all not much of it is new. Overall I was kind of disappointed in it.

Looking Forward to Reading in 2014: Girl at the End of the WorldGirl at the End of the World: My Escape from Fundamentalism in Search of Faith with a FutureLooking Forward to Reading in 2014: Girl at the End of the World: My Escape from Fundamentalism in Search of Faith with a Future by Elizabeth Esther by Elizabeth Esther

Original thoughts: Her blog, is thought-provoking if a bit hard to read at times (I get occasional flashbacks to my upbringing, in not-a-good-way).

The verdict: Haven’t read it. The library recently added it to their collection, so I should be able to give it a try soon. Whether or not I’ll finish it is up in the air.

Looking Forward to Reading in 2014: Something Other Than GodSomething Other Than God: How I Passionately Sought Happiness and Accidentally Found ItLooking Forward to Reading in 2014: Something Other Than God: How I Passionately Sought Happiness and Accidentally Found It by Jennifer Fulwiler by Jennifer Fulwiler

Original thoughts: Love love love her blog, and have been reading it for years. Plus, conversion stories fascinate me.

The verdict: Two thumbs up!

History is Awesome

Looking Forward to Reading in 2014: A History of the World in Twelve MapsA History of the World in 12 MapsLooking Forward to Reading in 2014: A History of the World in 12 Maps by Jerri Brotton by Jerry Brotton

Original thoughts: My library career included a stint cataloging maps, and I love history, so combining the two sounded heavenly.

The verdict: Borrowed in on the kindle and it was not a good pick in that version. Then I had a baby and my virtually all my reading had to be done via the kindle. So this title has to wait.

Looking Forward to Reading in 2014: One Summer America, 1927One Summer: America, 1927Looking Forward to Reading in 2014: One Summer: America, 1927 by Bill Bryson by Bill Bryson
Original thoughts: Love his books A Walk in the Woods and In a Sunburned Country, and this sounded like just my sort of history book.

The verdict: Borrowed it from the library, but then had a baby and couldn’t focus on it like it needed. Most of my reading post-baby has been of the lighter variety. Hope to get this one again in 2015.

Looking Forward to Reading in 2014: The Bully PulpitThe Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and the Golden Age of JournalismLooking Forward to Reading in 2014: The Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and the Golden Age of Journalism by Doris Kearns Goodwin by Doris Kearns Goodwin
Original thoughts: She’s written another favorite title of mine, so I expected to love her latest.

The verdict: Didn’t even try it. Once again I’ll just blame the baby – this is a big work of nonfiction and will need more brain power than I had last year to give it. I’m not even sure I’ll get to it in 2015.

People are Fascinating

Looking Forward to Reading in 2014: The Heir ApparentThe Heir Apparent: A Life of Edward VII, the Playboy PrinceLooking Forward to Reading in 2014: The Heir Apparent: A Life of Edward VII, the Playboy Prince by Jane Ridley by Jane Ridley

Original thoughts: Sounded interesting, about a historical figure all but unknown to me.

The verdict: Borrowed it, and returned it unread. I’m such a mood reader, and I never felt in the mood to even try this one. Apparently I’m not as interested in Edward VII as I thought back in January.

Looking Forward to Reading in 2014: Elizabeth of YorkElizabeth of York: A Tudor Queen and Her WorldLooking Forward to Reading in 2014: Elizabeth of York: A Tudor Queen and Her World by Alison Weir by Alison Weir

Original thoughts: I do love Weir’s books, and Tudor history.

The verdict: Borrowed it, didn’t read it. See above regarding brain power and it being lacking.

No, really, I think this sounds fantastic

Looking Forward to Reading in 2014: The King of SportsThe King of Sports: Football’s Impact on AmericaLooking Forward to Reading in 2014: The King of Sports: Football's Impact on America by Gregg Easterbrook by Gregg Easterbrook

Original thoughts: I am a former (pre-children) devoted NFL fan and used to read Easterbrook’s Tuesday Morning Quarterback column every week.

The verdict: Borrowed it, and read the first quarter. Then I had a baby and had to return the book before I finished it, and haven’t borrowed it again. I’m not sure I want to honestly – it’s so depressing about the negatives regarding the football industry that it’s hard to read.

Faith

Looking Forward to Reading in 2014: Encounters with JesusEncounters with Jesus: Unexpected Answers to Life’s Biggest QuestionsLooking Forward to Reading in 2014: Encounters with Jesus: Unexpected Answers to Life's Biggest Questions by Timothy Keller by Timothy Keller

Original thoughts: Keller’s books are fantastic. This one probably is too, right?

The verdict: It was good, but not as great as I expected. This is perhaps just a reflection of my very high expectations for his books.

And, a bonus one, because it doesn’t even have a title yet (as far as I know), but apparently Rachel Held Evans has another book coming out next Fall. I find her books very thought-provoking, and whenever it releases, I’ll be anxious to read it.

The verdict: This one got pushed back to a 2015 release, so now I have it to look forward to next year!

So let’s see, out of 11 titles available in 2014, I read (as in completed) 4 of them. I read at least a chapter of 3 others, and read nothing at all of the final 4. That is really unimpressive, but probably what I get for being somewhat ambitious with my nonfiction selections in a year when I was having a baby.

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2015 Reading Goals

2015 Reading GoalsI’m keeping it very simple this year:

  1. Read 156 books.
    That’s 3 books a week, children’s titles over 100 pages count towards the total.
  2. Read all book club selections.
    With one exception: if there is one book that I absolutely hate, I can not finish. I call that the “House of Mirth” rule in honor of the book that inspired it. ๐Ÿ˜‰
  3. Attempt to read all of the books I mentioned I was looking forward to reading.
    If I don’t like the book, I don’t have to finish it, but I do want to at least give them all a shot.
  4. Get new children’s books monthly to share with the kids.
    No numbers here – just want to keep fresh material coming in, along with the books we already own.
  5. Read the New Testament
    I want to say read the entire Bible, but I’m trying to not be overly ambitious, and I don’t want to set myself up where I’m reading it for speed over anything else.
  6. Promptly share books that I’ve finished via my Pinterest board.
    I did so well at this goal this year, at least pre-baby. And then this got ignored in favor of more pressing needs. We’ll give it another try this year.
  7. Clear 12 more books off of my TBR stack at home.
    I don’t have to finish them – if I start one and decide it isn’t for me and I’m going to get rid of it, that counts too. I just want to whittle down the stack some more one way or another. They do need to be physical books however – the point of this is to clear out the backlog of books on my bookcases.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!

2014 Reading Goals: March Progress

2014 Reading Goals

  1. Participate in my 2014 Reading Challenge.
    I should have finished Pride and Prejudice in time to post about it March 19. I did not. (insert sad face here)
  2. Read 208 books.
    Goodreads tells me I’m behind schedule, but only by one book.
  3. Read 40,000 pages.
    I’m actually ahead on this one. Apparently I’ve read several books so far that are quite long and are helping out my stats in this area. Three Musketeers, I’m looking at you. ๐Ÿ™‚
  4. Read all book club selections.
    Still on track with this one!
  5. Get new children’s books monthly to share with the kids.
    Still on track with this one!
  6. Listen to 1 audio book.
    I’ve listened to one chapter. That’s progress I guess…
  7. Read through the entire Bible in a new edition.
    As with last month, I’m still so behind on this one. My morning quiet time has been nonexistent lately, and I’m about ready to concede that this won’t happen and figure out how to revamp this goal. Maybe the New Testament only?
  8. Promptly share books that I’ve finished via my Pinterest board.
    It’s a good thing this is on my goals list, because that’s all that reminded me to do it this month. Ha!
  9. Clear 24 more books off of my TBR stack at home.
    I got two off my TBR stack, one only by trying it and disliking it enough to say that I will not be reading it, but this year I got smart and stated up front that that counted. ๐Ÿ™‚
  10. A subgoal of number 9: 12 of those 24 books need to be from my Christianity stacks.
    Yes, still on track with this one.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!

2014 Reading Goals: February Progress

2014 Reading Goals

I know, I said that there was no way I was going to reach all of my goals, thanks to the big news for our family. For now though, I’m still leaving the goals as-is, and will wait to see how I want to adjust them later.

  1. Participate in my 2014 Reading Challenge.
    I’ve started book one – Pride and Prejudice – and have to finish it in time for my promised blog post about it March 19. Now I really have to post about it on that date. ๐Ÿ™‚
  2. Read 208 books.
    Still behind, but not quite as badly as I was in January. ๐Ÿ™‚
  3. Read 40,000 pages.
    Thanks to The Three Musketeers my pages-read total is better for February than it was in January.
  4. Read all book club selections.
    I made it, mostly because I didn’t want to have to confess here that I didn’t. Ha – the power of public goals!
  5. Get new children’s books monthly to share with the kids.
    Yes, still doing this, although the batch I got for February were all duds as far as my kids were concerned.
  6. Listen to 1 audio book.
    The book is now on my phone. And I’ve listened to two tracks from it. This really might take me all year at this rate.
  7. Read through the entire Bible in a new edition.
    So behind on this one. My morning quiet time has been nonexistent lately.
  8. Promptly share books that I’ve finished via my Pinterest board.
    I’m doing better at keeping up with this, and not sharing them all in one big flood of pins at the end of the month like last month. Now it’s just a bunch of pins on the weekend. ๐Ÿ™‚
  9. Clear 24 more books off of my TBR stack at home.
    Need to have finished four to be on track, and I have finished … four! Hooray.
  10. A subgoal of number 9: 12 of those 24 books need to be from my Christianity stacks.
    Yes, I carefully selected that last book to make sure it met this goal as well.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!

2014 Reading Goals: January Progress

2014 Reading Goals

I’m hoping that by reporting back monthly on my progress, I’ll actually meet all the reading goals I set for the year.

Here’s how I’m doing so far, and unfortunately I’m off to a shaky start for the year. Hopefully next month will be better!

  1. Participate in my 2014 Reading Challenge.
    I have the first book – Pride and Prejudice – from the library, and will be starting it after I finish February’s book club book.
  2. Read 208 books.
    I’m a little bit behind track on this one. January was kind of a rough month as far as reading time went.
  3. Read 40,000 pages.
    I fully expect to be behind on this one all year, because I’m working on several super long books that I won’t finish until much later in the year. And then once I finish them it’ll add a bunch to this total. Still, I’m definitely behind on this one.
  4. Read all book club selections.
    January’s pick was a book I read last year, so no problem meeting this goal so far. ๐Ÿ™‚ However, I’m behind on February’s pick. The Three Musketeers is taking me forever to get through! I need more focused reading time for it, and that’s often hard to come by.
  5. Get new children’s books monthly to share with the kids.
    Yup, got a big stack at my last library trip.
  6. Listen to 1 audio book.
    Um, I have a book on CD out from the library. Need to figure out how to get it from the CDs onto my phone for a chance to actually listen to it.
  7. Read through the entire Bible in a new edition.
    Working on it. I’m a little bit behind with this as well. My usual Bible reading time is in the morning, and if I don’t get up before my kids I don’t have that time. This month has been bad as far as me getting up early.
  8. Promptly share books that I’ve finished via my Pinterest board.
    Ha. ha ha ha. I stink at this, but at least seeing the goal did remind me, so I quickly got them all added yesterday. Sorry for the flood of book pins, anyone who follows me.
  9. Clear 24 more books off of my TBR stack at home.
    To keep on pace, that’s 2 a month, and I managed only one. I have started a second book though.
  10. A subgoal of number 9: 12 of those 24 books need to be from my Christianity stacks.
    Um, the book I started is.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!