Happy New Year! In some ways it really sneaked up on me this year – where has the time gone this past week?!
I always find it a good time to look back before I look ahead, and this year is no different.
My goals for the year were few:
Non-reading Goals, 2018
This year is one I want to make more about being deliberate: with how I spend my time, in what I acquire (or get rid of), in what I create, in what I read.
Ouch. I didn’t do this as well as I would like – except in one area: I made a conscious decision in the spring to really emphasize my reading, and it definitely paid off.
And it is a year when I want to focus on finishing: all those many projects and lists I feel are constantly hanging over my head.
Mixed. I finished some projects (mostly knitting!), but there are still many on the TBR list. I’ve decided, for now, to just consolidate lists and get to them as I can, without making it a dreaded obligation.
Reading Goals, 2018
The 2018 TBR Pile Challenge
I read and posted about (5) books for the challenge [A Wrinkle in Time , A Wind in the Door, Lady Susan, The Case Book of Sherlock Holmes, The Warden]. One title was abandoned and permanently removed from my shelves. I also finished (3) additional books that I haven’t yet written anything for [A Swiftly Tilting Planet, Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell, The Woman in White]. Considering that I wandered away from focusing on this challenge about halfway through the year, I’m actually pretty happy with what I accomplished.
Back to the Classics Challenge
In addition to the (6) books I read and posted about [The Warden, The Case Book of Sherlock Holmes, Lady Susan, A Wrinkle in Time, Crooked House, Cold Comfort Farm], I read another two qualifying titles that I haven’t (yet) written about [The Woman in White, Tess of the D’Urbervilles]. Which is actually better than I’d hoped for at the start of the year.
Read great books. Not just books I love or enjoy or comfort reads, but GREAT BOOKS.
I read books I enjoyed, books I love(d), books that made me work for it (and that may perhaps be great books – but they beat me up too much to appreciate at the time) – but no one book really stands out to me as a GREAT BOOK. I feel like perhaps Tess of the D’Urbervilles or The Warden or perhaps Cold Comfort Farm belongs here…but none of them is really sticking with me the way I was hoping for.
Overall, I DID read more in 2018 than I’ve read in a long time–31 started and finished in the calendar year, matching my best year since I started blogging. Not one of these was a translation, however. (This should be remedied in 2019, however – see my TBR Challenge list!)
- 21 by women (or roughly 2/3) – this was chance, not planned!
- 8 rereads
- 8 non-fiction books – this was the big surprise of 2018. I hadn’t expected to read more than one or two non-fiction books, especially since they tend to take me longer than fiction, but instead they made up a good chunk of my reading time
My favorite reads for the year, in order I read them (* = reread):
- A Wrinkle in Time – Madeleine L’Engle (1962, US)*
- Murder on the Orient Express – Agatha Christie (1934, England)*
- Cold Comfort Farm – Stella Gibbons (1932, England)
- Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban – J.K. Rowling (1999, Britain)*
- Understanding Exposure: How to Shoot Great Photographs With Any Camera – Bryan Peterson (4th Ed., 2016, US)
- Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire – J.K. Rowling (2000, Britain)*
- Off the Clock – Laura Vanderkam (2018, US)
- Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell – Susanna Clarke (2004, Britain)
- The Cuckoo’s Calling – Robert Galbraith [J.K. Rowling](2013, Britain)
- Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde – Robert Louis Stevenson (1886, Scotland)
- Crazy Rich Asians – Kevin Kwan (2013, US)
- The Woman in White – Wilkie Collins (1859, England)
So now I turn my eyes to the new year. New plans. My goals, again, are slight:
- 2019 TBR Challenge
- 2019 Back to the Classics Challenge
- Building on my successful reading year, I’m hoping for 36 books in 2019, or an average of 3 a month. If I stay away from non-fiction, this might be doable! And hopefully, one of those, at least, will be a GREAT BOOK!
- Finish the (4) knitting projects I currently have started + (1) yet-to-be determined project
- Continue taking ceramics classes, aiming for greater consistency
- And to echo 2018, being more deliberate in my use of time
All very doable, I think.