Wednesday, January 1, 2014

2014 challenges [+ 2013 review!]

2013 has come and gone and it is now time to create a new list of goals that we would like to accomplish in the coming year. Personally, I will not be making a list of resolutions like I did last year because I always end up pushing them to the side a few months after I make them; which, lets be honest, is actually kind of depressing. So, instead, I have comprised a list of bookish (and not) challenges that I would like to complete by 2014's end. But, before that, a review of the reading goals that I had set during 2013.

2013 Review:

Reading Challenge -

1. Read 65 books: I completed this goal—and my original goal of 40—several months before 2014; finishing the year with a grand total of 82 books (plus 5-6 novellas which were not included in that count).

2. Read at least one classic: Unfortunately, I did not get around to finishing this goal. I picked up quite a few books from a library sale over the summer that I had every intention of reading, but ended up being distracted by newer, more exciting reads. Perhaps classics are not a reading goal I should force myself to complete, but rather something that I pick up when I feel like it.

3. Read at least three books that have been on my physical TBR shelf for a while: I was SO. CLOSE. Reached by Ally Condie and The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey were two books that had been sitting on my shelf for quite some time, staring me down every time I bypassed and grabbed another book. I was also planning to pick up Silence by Becca Fitzpatrick—which is the oldest book on my TBR shelf—but was not really up for getting back into the story at that time.

4. Read at least three books/series from the Science Fiction genre: I have stated it on this blog a thousand times, but I made this goal because I have a bad habit of writing off all Science Fiction books as clich├ęd or boring. Due to this goal, however, I discovered quite a few amazing series this year that fall under that genre, including: the Across the Universe trilogy by Beth Revis, books one and two in the Chaos Walking trilogy, and The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey.

5. Finish ten series/trilogies: Whoop, whoop! To see the entire list, click here.

6. Read The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak: I honestly did not think I would finish this book before 2013 came to an end. The Book Thief was so intimidating going into (which is one of the reasons I put off reading it so long in the first place), but when I finally did pick it up—during the first few weeks of December—I fell in love.

Overall, I would definitely call this year a success, reading-wise. I have always had a love for reading, but it was not until the middle of 2012 that I actually started collecting books and viewing my thoughts and opinions as more than just a hobby, and rather as something that I generally enjoy doing and consider a passion. My collection has grown so much in the last two years, and I have discovered so many amazing books and series through BookTube, my blog, Goodreads and the bookish community that I foresee nothing but continuous growth for the future. I absolutely enjoy discussing my opinions and hearing the thoughts of others as they pertain to certain books, raving over gorgeous book covers, reveling in sneaky book snippets, and counting down the favorites of a certain genre. But, most of all, I enjoy reading, and I look forward to the worlds and characters I will discover in 2014; whether those worlds are new or old; just beginning or coming to an end.

2014 Goals:

Reading Challenge -

1. Read 70 books: I think this is manageable, considering the number I ended the year with in 2013.

2. Read three books that have been on my physical TBR shelf for at least six months: This widens the time-gap and gives me more of a choice when it comes to completing this goal.

3. Reread three books (not including Harry Potter): Honestly, I do not think I reread any books in 2013 and I would really like to rediscover some of my favorites; particularly those that have sequels/conclusions being released in the near future.

4. Finish ten series/trilogies.

5. Read I Am the Messenger by Marcus Zusak: I loved The Book Thief so much that I decided to check out some more of Zusak's work, and this book has received a lot of great reviews.

6. Read Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen: Another book I have heard great things about.

Harry Potter Reading Challenge -

It has been a few years since I have read the entire series, altogether—usually I just pick out my favorites and reread those—so I would like to rediscover the world and characters and magic as a whole, rather than in bits and pieces. Also, I have yet to watch the final two movies (ouch, my childhood...), so I am hoping this helps me jump the hurdle of not wanting them to end.

. . . . 

And there you have it! What goals are you setting for yourself this year, reading or otherwise?

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