Friday, January 2, 2015

2015 Goals & Reading Challenges

Happy New Year! As we welcome 2015 and reflect on 2014, I wanted to take some time to talk about my goals and challenges for the new year. Last year was such an amazing year for my blog. More amazing than I could ever imagine. In July, I started counting down to my 300th blog post. At the same time, I was also nearing in on 10,000 page reviews. Small accomplishments compared to some of the more established book blogs out there, but these were milestones I'm very proud of. In August of 2014, I celebrated the blog's 2nd anniversary. And thanks to some very busy months, it didn't take long for me to pass 400 posts and 20,000 views. I was on cloud 9. Sadly, the same can't be said for the reading challenges I tried to complete in 2014. Out of the 6 or so I mentioned last January, the only challenge I managed to complete was my Goodreads challenge of 130 books. Let's hope 2015 will be nicer...

Now that 2015 has officially begun, here are some of my goals and reading challenges I hope to complete this year...

2015 Goals

  1. Read Consistently - I want to read more and to do that, I need to be more consistent on the time I spend reading. No more picking up a book at 11pm only to be awake at 2am because I can't put it down. Not only is it bad for my sleep patterns, I'm also not finishing as many books as I probably could. Instead, I hope to spend at least 3 hours a day reading...during the day...or maybe at night...but not at midnight! I'm not going to set a specific time frame. I just want to spend the time reading when the mood strikes.
  2. Review More - Towards the end of the year, I realized that the majority of my reviews were for blog tours. I adore blog tours, but I need to review more books that are not from tours. These books will come from my own library, Edelweiss, Netgalley, or directly from authors/publishers. I started doing this for a couple months last year and I hope to continue in 2015.
  3. Goodreads/Amazon/B&N - I need to be better at moving my reviews to other websites, such as those listed. Authors, please feel free to remind me to post my reviews on any site. If possible, I will do so as quickly as I can. I have a plan to remind myself of the reviews that need to be moved, but that'll come later in my challenges.
  4. Facebook/Twitter - I want to be more involved on social media. To my followers, I am so sorry that I've neglected Facebook and Twitter for most of 2014. I will be better next year.
  5. Just Have Fun! - No more comparing myself to more accomplished bloggers. No more discouraging myself. I'm going to have fun watching my little blog grow over the next year.

2015 Reading Challenges

I love reading challenges. They help me branch out to other genres and open my Kindle to a more wide variety of books and authors. In 2015, I'm going to start doing monthly wrap-ups. They are going to be very informal blog posts to chat about which books I read that month and the challenges they fit into. This will also remind me to move reviews to other websites (as mentioned in my 3rd goal). We're going to wipe the slate clean and start 2015 with these fabulous reading challenges...

1. Erotic Romance Reading Challenge from Herding Cats & Burning Soup

I love this challenge! I didn't get to read as much erotic romance last year has I had hoped, but that will change this year. Bring on the sexy! Anna has lowered the page requirement, so I have set my goal with at least 24 books and novellas.

2. New to You Reading Challenge from Herding Cats & Burning Soup

I love finding new authors. It is like meeting a new friend. It can be someone that'll be with you for years to come or a fleeting acquaintance that you'll look back with mystery. The best thing about this challenge is that it can also be a new series or a new genre that you haven't read before. My goal is to have at least 36 new to me authors, series, and maybe even a genre.

3. Historical Romance Reading Challenge from Herding Cats & Burning Soup

I need to read more historical romance. Thanks to Avon Romance and Kensington, I have a lot of historical romance books on my TBR and I think they multiply when I'm not looking. Dukes... Lords... Where do I begin? I don't know, but I'll have fun diving into the pile. I'm going to start off easy with this one and my goal will be at least 12 books.

I have an addiction... I love browsing through Amazon's top 100 free books. Great, right? Well, I love finding them... I rarely ever read them. I actually just read a free Amazon book that I picked up who know's when and I loved it. So, my goal is to read at least 1 free book each month. These will all be books I find on Amazon and not ARC's I get to review. For the year, my goal is at least 12 books at the coupon clipper level.

5. Romantic Suspense Reading Challenge from The Book Vixen

I have been sadly ignoring a lot of my favorite romantic suspense authors. I'm sorry, Lisa Jackson. My apologies, Tess Gerritsen. While I have found some fabulous new authors in the genre (Lena Diaz, Dixie Lee Brown), I want to get caught up with some of my favorites as well as pick up some new ones. For this challenge, I'm aiming at the marksman level with 11 to 15 books.

6. Goodreads Reading Challenge

It's back! Along with my goal to put more of my reviews on Goodreads, I also want to do more reading updates. The main reason why I didn't do updates was because of the odd hours I was reading. With my goal to read more consistently, I think it'll be easier to do more updates on Goodreads. I was fairly successful with my goal of 130 books last year and I was always a couple books ahead. And this year, I have upped my goal 10 books to 140. Wish me luck!

So, there you have it... My goals and reading challenges for 2015. When I went through and selected challenges for this year, I wanted ones that would actually challenge me. I had originally planned to also do a contemporary romance challenge, but when I stopped and remembered that 90% of the books I do read are contemporary romance, it wouldn't be much of a challenge. I'd probably finish it by March. Ok, maybe not that quickly, but I would still have it done fairly early in the year. Those are not my only challenges... I do have a couple more personal challenges for myself. The first is finally finishing my Gibson Project and re-read the rest of Rachel Gibson's books. And my second personal challenge is to read Pamela Palmer's Feral Warriors series. I have the entire series in paperback (Thanks Avon!) so I have no more excuses. Yeah!

How about you? Are you doing any reading challenges? What's your number on Goodreads? Leave a comment below with your links and we can cheer each other on. Good Luck!

1 comment: