New Year’s Reading Resolutions

I generally don’t make New Year’s resolutions for all the usual reasons. I do get regular exercise and watch my weight. But making plans at the beginning of the year don’t seem to get me very far.

One exception is reading. One tool I’ve found that helps keep me making progress is the Goodreads Reading Challenge. Goodreads is social networking site that is just about books. Friends post what they want to read, what they have read, give books a rating, and sometimes offer a review. I don’t try to get thousands of “friends.” Just a few hundred is plenty.

As each year begins, Goodreads (owned by Amazon) invites people to set a target for the number of books they’d like to read. Some pick ten, some twenty, some a hundred. Then each time you log on, you get a reminder of how you’re doing.

In recent years I’ve aimed at about fifty, and I’ve hit that target. This year I only read forty. That’s no cause to beat myself up. I’m sure I’ve been reading more than I would have otherwise just because that target is out there.

One friend recently told me that he thinks reading huge quantities is a mistake. Much better to read deeply. There is much merit in that. The beauty of a target like the Goodreads Reading Challenge is that we can pick a number that is right for us. It’s not the only way to measure how well we are reading. It can, however, be one helpful way.

photo credit: Pixabay geralt

Author: Andy Le Peau

I've been an editor and writer for over forty years. I am passionate about ideas and how we can express them clearly, beautifully, and persuasively. I love reading good books, talking about them, and recommending them. I thoroughly enjoy my family who help me continue on the path of a lifelong learner.

4 thoughts on “New Year’s Reading Resolutions”

  1. I read 30 books this year (so far–hoping for 31 before January 1 rolls around!). I agree that Goodreads is helpful. Do you just set a number, or do you also make a goal to read books in various different categories? I’ve tried to do the latter, without much success, but I’m still going to try it again this year. 🙂

    Congrats on reading 40 books, and all the best for a rich reading life next year!

    1. I don’t set goals for types or categories of books, though there are certain genres I gravitate toward–history, science fiction, and biblical studies. Other than that I also watch Goodreads to see what books friends rate highly. After I see a book three or four times get positive comments, I make a note to put that on my list. In addition, as I’m reading one book I’ll see another book quoted or referenced that looks helpful or interesting, and that will go on the list too.

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