It’s been months since I last did an Overview post because I lost the desire to do them after my half-year post. For the most part, that was because of all the formatting that went into these posts.
Then, after moving from dudettereads.com to wordrevel.com, I couldn’t convince myself to reformat them. Yep, if you take a look at my past Overview posts, they are in a mess!
In any case, I decided to revive my monthly wrap-up posts because I do like having an overview of what went down. And it’s the beginning of the year, so I’m still fresh-faced and ambitious when it comes to these things.
On the bright side, I’ve figured out a few more useful formula which automate a lot of my stats computations in Excel. That makes compiling the numbers a little faster. Also, as much as the feedback for my infographics was very positive, I’m not going to spend time anymore on putting elaborate ones together.
Trouble with Adobe Illustrator
Besides, even if I wanted to, ever since I installed Yosemite OS X on my Mac, I’ve not been able to launch Adobe Illustrator CS6. When I try to download Adobe Illustrator CC, the installer keeps hanging. I don’t know when I’ll be able to resolve these issues. It’s downright annoying when you’re paying for something but can’t access it.
No book cover: Leave the Window Open (The Archived #2.5) by Victoria Schwab
Altogether, I finished 12 books, of which 4 were audiobooks. I alternated one book between the audiobook and ebook versions. For the purposes of my reading statistics, I treated it as an audiobook. 10 books were fiction while the other 2 books were non-fiction. I read 1327 pages and listened 50 hours and 37 minutes. If I convert the listening hours to pages, then I would've read a grand total of 3005 pages.
The books I read had an average of 190 pages and the audiobooks I listened to were on average 12 hours and 39 minutes long. The reason the page numbers are so low is that Leave the Window Open is a very short story that Victoria Schwab published on her blog. Based on the word count, it's about ten pages long.
What I noticed is that more than half of my reading time was actually spent listening. While I love audiobooks, this still surprised me. I guess this happened because I didn't have a lot of time to sit down and do nothing but read. With audiobooks I tend to multitask, so it's easier to schedule listening time.
Not one of the books I finished reading in January was a hardcover. That's expected. When it comes to hardcovers, I only pick them up at the library when the paperback versions aren't out yet. When I do buy hardcovers, it's because they're marked down or have much nicer covers than the paperback versions.
In the end I read 4 paperbacks, 2 ebooks, 4 audiobooks, 1 online and I alternated 1 book.
Targets and Genres
Interestingly, I read 2 adult fiction books. YA still stood out though as I read 7 YA fiction books. I classified The Devil Wears Prada by Lauren Weisberger as New Adult because age-wise and in terms of experiences, I felt Andrea's story fit in with my understanding of what New Adult should entail.
Can you believe that I only read 2 YA Contemporary books in January? The books I read were far more eclectic than usual, which I think is a good thing. Bearing in mind that genres aren't mutually exclusive, here's what I read in terms of genres.
- Classics: 1
- Contemporary: 2
- Fantasy: 4
- Holiday: 1
- Mental Health: 1
- Roman à clef: 1
- Science Fiction: 4
- Women's Fiction: 1
- Philosophy: 1
- Photography: 2
I own Cruel Beauty thanks to last year's SYNC by AudioFile. Of the books I read in January, I bought 4 books myself. Of those, 1 ebook was free on Amazon and another ebook was heavily discounted.
My local library added 3 books to my reading pile and a 4th as an audiobook to complement the ebook I bought on Amazon. And I got 3 audiobooks through Overdrive.
Saved through the Library
When I added up the amount of money that I saved, I picked out the prices for the identical format around the time that I started reading each particular book. Turns out I saved USD 118 through library and Overdrive loans.
For all the money that the library saved me, I managed to match that cost with my own book purchases. I bought 11 books totalling USD 137. Two books are somewhat related to my work though, so I could peg 9 books totalling USD 85.
I bought a good mix of books — printed books, ebooks and audiobooks — spanning fiction and non-fiction. So far I finished The Glass Magician (earlier today) and Cress. I was most excited about All the Bright Places, which I won from Penguin Books Singapore on Instagram. Some of the books are still shipping though and have yet to arrive.
My lack of blogging clearly was made up through reading as I've not fallen behind on anything yet. Of course, it's too early to tell what this means for 2015. Nonetheless, I started the year off well.
My goal is 85 books. I read 12 books last month. That put me 5 books ahead of schedule.
Since I aim to read 20 non-fiction books last year, I'm in good stead with 2 books.
Technically one book a month isn't difficult to achieve. Yet I still failed at it last year. No matter, I read 2 adult fiction books in January, so all is good for now.
I set out to read 6 classics this year. So far I've read 1 — The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath.
Goal is 12. Current tally is 0. But I can make up for it some time, I think...
Popsugar Reading Challenge
One huge motivating factor for the Popsugar Reading Challenge is that I'm not doing this alone. Doing this alongside Elaine, Sana, Crini and Lillian satisfies my competitive spirit and more importantly, they're very helpful when it comes to looking for titles that fit the prompts. In fact, we're planning on a read-a-long or two, which will push us to read books that we wouldn't necessarily pick up ourselves.
At the end of January, my tally was ten. Here are the prompts that I completed: