2019 Reading Goals

But I’ve been doing a lot of reflecting about my reading goals for 2019, and after looking back at 2017 and 2018, and considering my school reading load, I’ve determined to set a couple of rather loose goals for next year.

  1. Aim for Slow Reading. I have a tendency to read quickly, bolting books and piling up the numbers. I’d like to work away from that for a couple of reasons.
    • I want to read some long books that I’ve been putting off because they’ll take a while.
    • I often grab whatever sounds interesting in the moment, which leads to my reading a lot of okay books that are, frankly, forgettable.
    • Speaking of forgetting, I also forget (or miss) the finer points of the good books I do read.
    • have to read quickly and at high volume for school. This past semester I ended up, out of a sheer lack of time, having a for-fun book simmering along in the background and I rather enjoyed reading a chapter or even a few pages before bed. While the quantity of my reading tanked Sept-Nov, the quality was much better, because I didn’t want to waste time with books I knew I’d only sort of enjoy.
  2. Genre/Category focuses (yes, I know technically it’s foci): In 2019, I’d like to read more classics and am participating in the Back to the Classics challenge to that end. I would also like to read more adult books, especially fantasy, historical fiction, and literary fiction. After long avoiding the previous three genres for a number of reasons, I feel like my deeper immersion into the bookish world this year has better equipped me to find the kinds of books I want to read.
  3. More Nonfiction I always say this, and then I never do. But I think part of that is because it takes me much longer to read nonfiction. By reading slower, I hope I can do better here.
  4. Goodreads Goal: 75 books
    • Since I count any whole books I read for school as well as my personal reading, I think this will be achievable (it sounds like in just one of my classes next semester, we might be reading 20 or more plays!) but also encourage me to slow down.
    • My personal reading goal is 2-3 books/month or about 1/3 of the total

And that’s it! An intense Spring semester and some over-ambitious goals in the previous years has led me to be a bit more broad and vague than before. My overall goal is to be more deliberate with my book selections and more attentive when I do read for fun.

In my next post, I’m going to list out more specifically some of the authors and books I’d like to read.

 

Back to the Classics 2019 Challenge

Books and Chocolate is hosting an awesome read-the-classics challenge for 2019, and as one of my reading goals is to continue to read more classics, I thought this would be a fun way to encourage myself to continue to read broadly.

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There are twelve challenges, so one book/month, roughly. I’m going to aim for all of them, but if I can get to half, that would be great!

Here are my (tentative) books:

  1. A 19th century classicThe Mill on the Floss by George Eliot (1860).
  2. 20th century classicThe Moviegoer by Walker Percy (1961). I’ve been meaning to read this for ages.
  3. A classic by a female authorRomola by George Eliot
  4. A classic in translation: Either The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoyevsky, or Kristin Lavransdatter by Sigrid Undset. I’d like to read both next year, but they are Very Large, so we’ll see which one I’m in the mood for. Or maybe I’ll unearth something shorter.
  5. Classic comic novelCold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons
  6. Classic tragic novelJude the Obscure by Thomas Hardy
  7. A Very Long classicDaniel Deronda by George Eliot (around 750 pages). You’ve noticed there’s a lot of George Eliot on this list? It’s because of another 2019 goal of mine.
  8. Classic novella: A Dickens Christmas story. I’ve been reading one each year, so my 2019 story will count for this challenge.
  9. Classic from the AmericasWide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys. I keep intending to read this novel and never getting around to it.
  10. Classic from Africa, Asia, or Oceana: The Sound of the Mountain by Yasunari Kawabata.
  11. Classic from a place you’ve lived: The Heart is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers (Georgia!)
  12. Classic PlayTamburlaine by Christopher Marlowe

And that’s it! Since I know my selections will change, I’ll come back and update as I go, and will write a review of each book here. I’ll also review and discuss these on my YouTube channel, so go and check that out (*shameless plug*).

In fact, if you are interested in my thoughts on classics and all sorts of books, definitely check out my YouTube channel. School has kept me very busy, so I’ve not been as active as I’d like to be in either place, but I’m more active there than here.

That said, stay tuned for some 2018 wrap-up and 2019 reading goals posts!

 

** updated 19 April — changed #10 from The Tale of Genji, 11 from ??, and 12 from “something by Shakespeare idk.” Still not sure about the “classic in translation” choices.