2018 Blogging & Reading Drought
2018 was a whirlwind of a year for me with incredible highs and some of my worst lows. Looking back, there’s a lot to be grateful for but also a lot I wish I had dealt with differently. It’s because of these that this blog took quite a hit.
I published significantly fewer posts last year compared to 2017, 2016, 2015 and possibly even 2014. I didn’t feel much like reading for over 6 months, and didn’t update my reading spreadsheet during that time. It’s sheer habit that drove me to finish at least one book a week, mainly on audio. So yep, I’m still filling in the gaps, and hope to post my 2018 reading statistics anyway.
Despite my near disappearance, however, a lot of you stuck around. In fact, my readership maintained compared to the two years prior, so thank you for not giving up and being patent with me! I intend to post a lot more in 2019!
Staying Motivated in 2019
On the personal front, I’m excited about a number of projects, events and travels this year. This in turn makes me a feel a lot more motivated to get back into the swing of things over here as well. However, I’m under no delusions that my mood will stay this way throughout the year. To keep myself motivated, I’m joining a couple of challenges and am setting some goals as well.
Blogging Challenges & Goals
2019 Discussion Challenge
Discussions are some of my favourite blogposts to read! Sadly, I hardly posted any of these last year. Truth be told, I didn’t have much to say because I felt like every topic related to books has been beaten to death. But who cares? I love books, and I love talking about books. So long as one or two people humour me to initiate a discussion based on what’s been on my mind, I’ve achieved my goal. With that, I’m aiming for 21–30 posts (Chatty Kathy). You can sign up too at Feed Your Fiction Addiction or at It Starts at Midnight.
Reviving Bookstagram 101 & Photography
Besides getting back in to discussions, I also want to write tutorials again. Even though I didn’t write a single tutorial since November 2017, Bookstagram 101 and Photography still draws a lot of readers. Some even reached out personally to me to tell me my posts encouraged them to join bookstagram. It gives me so much joy to see the community grow, so I want to expand my library of posts.
Do you have any questions or topics you want me to address? Feel free to comment below or fill out my contact form!
Reading Challenges & Goals
2019 Goodreads Reading Challenge
As usual, I’m joining the Goodreads Reading Challenge. The past five years, my goal was always to read 100 books that year. If I cut out mindlessly refreshing my social media feeds, I’m sure I can easily outdo that, which is why my goal is to read 120 books this year.
2019 Popsugar Reading Challenge
Joining the Popsugar Reading Challenge has basically become tradition. A bunch of blogger friends and I tried it in 2015 when Popsugar first came up with those prompts. Back then, we tweaked them to be more relevant to us. Each year we’ve tweaked the prompts less and less, till last year we stuck to the original, save for two acceptable variations. This year, we’re in to the deep end, following it to a T.
My goal is to complete all 50 prompts. I think they’re pretty doable compared to the 2018 challenge, for which I read true crime and nordic noir — both of which I had pointedly avoided before. The hardest prompts I foresee are “Two books that share the same title (1) & (2)” and “A book with no chapters, unusual chapter headings, or unconventionally numbered chapters.”
Here we go with my yearly resolution: read books I own. Last year I coupled that with limiting the number of books I was allowed to buy. Turns out that it did help to reduce the damage to my TBR pile. My TBR pile reduction tally for 2018 is -6, bringing my total number of books to read to 393. That’s hardly a reduction, of course, but it’s a start. For the first time in years, my TBR pile didn’t increase through the end of the year. Part of the reason I didn’t make a dent either is that I listened to a lot of audiobooks that I had borrowed instead of turning to my bookshelves.
My goal this year is to reduce my TBR by 53 books, down to 340.
Around the World
This one’s not an official challenge anymore. Crini used to host it, challenging participants to visit as many places through books as possible. The more obscure the places, the better. I enjoy tracking places because I love seeing why world map covered in pins at the end of the year.
My goal is to read a book for each continent. The majority of the books I read are set in North America and Europe. I hope this challenge will remind me to explore different settings more. Besides that, I’m just curious to see where the books I read this year will take me.
What about a book of poetry for the “book with no chapters” ?
Your problem prompts sparked a thought: Joyland by Emily Schultz/Stephen King and Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders. Good luck with whatever books you choose!
Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction says
Sorry that 2018 was a rough year for you, but I hope that this year is much more positive! I’m glad you’ll be joining us for the Discussion Challenge in 2019, and I hope it motivates you!
Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction recently posted Things I Learned About Fairy Tales By Reading the Grimm’s Versions
Monica Rose says
Pop Sugar always sounded good to me but then I don’t do it lol I just don’t know if I like using prompts to pick my books for me because it sounds a bit too tedious personally. Maybe another time for me. I am definitely on board with the reading my bookshelf books though, I have 500+ and I’m tired of the clutter so everything I don’t like will be donated.
Monica Rose recently posted The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid — the tea!
Tasya @ The Literary Huntress says
I’ve been meaning to sign up for the discussion challenge too but keep forgetting it so thanks for the reminder :D I set my goodreads goal to 50 this year, I’ve been decreasing it since last year in an effort to explore more hobbies outside of reading. I did a book buying ban last year and I think I did pretty well, so I’m doing it again this year! I also want to read my owned books, last year I read quite a lot towards the end of the year, so this year I really want to read the leftovers and hopefully start 2020 with a clean slate :)
Tasya @ The Literary Huntress recently posted December 2018 Wrap up & January 2019 TBR
I took a year off, but I am back in for Pop Sugar this year, and I am sticking with the discussion challenge too. It’s a good motivator for me. I love your around the world goal. I read a lot of books set in the US and Europe, but seldom others. Good luck!
I go back and forth between wanting to blog again and not having any motivation to sit down, because it feels like the whole community is in a slump. I’m happy to see a new post of yours in my feed though :)!
All 50 for Popsugar, go you! I’m going with 42 (no specific reasons for that number, haha), because I foresee a few problems with some of the prompts. I think these will provide some challenges for me:
Book written by musician.
Book published posthumously.
Book that inspired common phrase or idom.
Mel@thedailyprophecy recently posted Grow Old With Me | Wedding Edition.