I just went back and reread my reading plan for 2020. Then I had a good laugh.
I did relatively well with Part I: Specific Challenges and Goals. I didn’t meet most of the goals, but I’m being gentle with myself in evaluating how well I did under the COVID-19 circumstances.
Here’s a look at those original goals, with my current assessments presented in the white paragraphs.
Part I: Specific Challenges and Goals
1. Goodreads Challenge
Since I easily exceeded my 2019 goal of 50 books, I’m cautiously raising my 2020 goal to 55.
I did make this goal, even though I resorted to a couple of books from my “short-enough-to-be-read-in-one-day” TBR shelf.
Here are my stats, according to Goodreads:
- books read: 58 pages read: 19,629
- shortest book: How Should One Read a Book? by Virginia Woolf, 64 pages
- longest book: 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami, 1,157 pages
- average book length: 338 pages
- my average rating: 3.9
2. The Classics Club
Even though I just met my goal of 4 books read from this list last year, for 2020 I’m increasing my goal to 6. If I don’t increase my efforts, I might not get through my Classics Club list in my lifetime.
I failed miserably at this one. I only read 2 books from my list, and I didn’t write the follow-up reviews (although I have high hopes of catching up on this omission in 2021).
3. 2020 Book Blog Discussion Challenge
Although I’m staying away from most challenges that require me to read books in specific categories, I’ve signed up for this challenge to motivate myself to write more substantive blog posts in 2020. I’m aiming to write 2 discussion posts per month.
Two posts per month would total 24 such posts. My final count, including this post, will be 12. That’s not too bad, considering that my pandemic experience included the lack of ability to focus on one idea long enough to write about it.
You can find the list of my discussion posts here.
Part II: The Calendar
I’m setting myself specific monthly challenges. I hope that these projections will allow me sufficient time each month to read other works, such as my monthly book club selection and my monthly choice from Book of the Month, in addition to new releases.
The Jackson Brody novels by Kate Atkinson:
- Case Histories
- One Good Turn
- When Will There Be Good News?
- Started Early, Took My Dog
- Big Sky
And here is where we end. I did finish Atkinson’s 5 Jackson Brody novels, but, once again, I didn’t blog about them. The rest of my carefully constructed dated assignments dissipated in the pandemic fog.
For 10 of the first 15 days of March I couldn’t read at all. When I thought I was once again ready to pick up a book, I told myself to just choose the book that interested me the most (which turned out to be Long Bright River by Liz Moore). For the rest of the year I followed the same procedure, standing in front of my TBR shelves and choosing whatever book seemed to call to me at that time.
The experience of this past year will affect how I formulate a reading plan for 2021, but I’m still processing exactly how. Thanks for listening, and I hope that, if you evaluate your own 2020 year in reading, you’ll be gentle with yourself. Congratulate yourself on what you did accomplish and don’t worry about what you didn’t. Whatever, if you’re still around to read in 2021, you’re one of the lucky ones.
© 2020 by Mary Daniels Brown