It’s that time of the year again where we make all sorts of promises to better ourselves in the new year. If books are a huge part of your life, why not include them in your self-improvement regimen by making some reading goals for 2017? For your inspiration, here are my 2017 Reading Resolutions:
- Choose Quality over Quantity
I’m still reeling from that 2015 Goodreads Reading Challenge, when I picked a reach goal of 100 books, spent all year reading like mad anything I could get my hands on, especially if it was short and quick, and finished out the year with an impressive 86 books. If I started a book, I felt guilted into finishing it and the whole thing felt kind of forced. This year, I pledge to abandon a book if it doesn’t catch my interest after 50 pages and has no other literary value to me. There are so many books to read out there, why waste time on bad ones? I informally upheld this principle in 2016, but now I’m making it official.
- Read More Diverse Books!
In 2015, I participated in We Need Diverse Books’s New Year’s Resolution, and I plan to make it part of my reading goals every year. Fifteen was a good number, so I’ll aim for that again. This year, I hope to include more diverse authors on my list, not just straight, white authors writing diverse characters. Also, reading more works from authors around the world, especially works-in-translation from non-English-speaking countries, will be a good way to get out of my America/England reading bubble. This year, I read the popular Chinese Sci-fi book The Three Body Problem and really enjoyed it. There’s such a great world of literature outside our own country!
- Do More Genre-Based Mini Reading Challenges
This year, I participated in Fortified by Books’ Sci-Fi Summer challenge and invented my own Nonfic November one. These are a great way to delve deeply into genres I don’t have a lot of expertise in and peek out from my sci-fi/fantasy rut every once in a while. One of the genres I would like to tackle in 2017 is Historical Fiction.
- Use Year-Long Reading Challenges as Inspiration, Not a Checklist
I am intrigued by Book Riot’s Read Harder challenge, but I know it could end up feeling as stifling as the Goodreads and Pop Sugar challenges I have done in the past. Book Riot is doing something new this year by asking some great authors whose works I really respect, such as Roxanne Gay and Daniel José Older, to contribute categories to the challenge. But I can already see there are some categories that would just be a burden to me, such as “read a book about sports” (unless I found some creative way around it). It might also be fun to see how many categories I naturally fill, without deliberately choosing books to match it. So this year I plan to look to this list whenever I am struggling to choose my next read or feel like I’m in a rut, but won’t hold myself responsible for meeting every single category whether I like it or not.
- Recommend More Books to Friends
There are few pleasures as satisfying as sharing a book you love with a friend and hearing back from them that they enjoyed it. This year, as I read, I plan to keep my friends in mind and try to think who I know that would particularly appreciate each book. Many of the books that had the biggest impact on me were recommendations from friends, and it’s time to pay it forward. Spread the reading love! Let’s make 2017 a bookish, love-filled year.
Bonus Challenge: Finally finish Anna Karenina, the audiobook of which I have been slowly plodding through in between faster-paced books since 2015.
What are your Reading Resolutions for the New Year? Will you add any of mine to your list? Let me know in the comments below!