Of the many goals that you all probably have for this year, I invite you readers to squeeze in some goals that revolve around the books. I’ve suggested some for you below. Take a look!
Focus on the quality of stories instead of the quantity. I’ve found, especially in the reading communities, that people are focusing a great deal on how many books they should read for the year, how many they can read in a week, etc. While I’m all for setting reading goals and I know that reading many books is important for book-bloggers like myself, I find that worrying about how many books I can read sort of sucks the joy out of whichever story I am reading at the time.
Read books where you learn something. This can be done with primary sources, articles, and nonfiction. It can also be constructive when the books you read (fiction or otherwise) include resources at the end that shows the research that the authors put into their stories. This is another way you can research the topic further for yourselves.
Find the best books. If you aren’t liking a book you are reading, do not feel obligated to finish it. You’d be taking time away from getting acquainted with a book that could become a good friend to you instead. Seek for opportunities to find books that inspire you: those that show the dichotomy between good vs. evil, humanity at its best and worst, or ones that inspire you to write your own stories.
Branch out of your preferred genre. Being the historical fiction nut I am, I plan to read a lot more of my preferred genre, but I hope to try more of the genres I may have trouble getting into, like fantasy. Reach out on Facebook or other social media groups for some recommendations if you are unfamiliar with a certain genre or don’t know where to find books in another genre.
Rent books more often than buying them. I have found that some books I buy from thrift shops on a whim (and I did this a lot last year) aren’t as good as I thought and then I’m stuck with them. When you rent books from the library or on a library app, you may find that you can avoid this problem through renting a couple of books simultaneously and if you do end up dropping one, then you may return it and have another to work on.
Give away/sell the books that no longer hold any value to you. This leads me to my next challenge, which could not only help you declutter your life, but also let go of the books that you do not enjoy and make room for the ones you do love. This can also be a chance to share with others books that you liked and think that they would like too (a good option for duplicates too).
Keep a reading journal or annotate your books. You can fill these journals with your favorite quotes, characters, and personal revelations you get from the stories you read. While marking books up may cause some of you to squirm, it may also be a good idea to take notes directly in the book you are reading (whether it is a hard copy or a book app).
Read more children’s literature. C.S. Lewis said, “A children’s story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children’s story in the slightest.” Children’s literature brings out the best themes, characters, and plots of humanity and sometimes teaches the best lessons. As adults, why not be reminded of this from time to time?
Learn more about the authors you read. Learning about the historical context and the lives of the authors of the literature you read could help you understand the context of the literature itself.
I hope that some of these ideas will help you meet your reading goals for 2022.
Happy Reading, everybody!