According to Goodreads, over 2.8 million reads pledged to participate in the 2018 Goodreads Reading Challenge. Hopefully that number will go up for 2019!! GR did a thing last July where they “interviewed” people who consistently meet and exceed their challenges. As 2018 winds down, I thought that information would be beneficial as many of you are about to pledge your challenge goal for the upcoming year.
In 2018, despite getting to read half the amount of normal, I met my goal of 100 books and managed to go over, reading 132 books in total.
I’m starting my first year of college next fall, so although I’m tempted to raise my challenge goal to 130, I’m very well aware that I have no way of predicting how much I read next year as I’m thrust into an entirely new lifestyle.
So let’s go … 110? Higher than this year, but not too high :)
Reading slumps are a very real threat to avid readers. Life happens to everyone, and it can sometimes be hard to take time for yourself to sit down and enjoy a warm drink and a book. Especially after reading a really fantastic book that sends you into a severe hangover or slump, it can be hard to break.
Audiobooks – I’ve only listened to a few, but all four times they were well-executed and still enjoyable, allowing me to “read” while driving to work, working, doing stuff around the house and other things. The only threat is falling asleep and zoning out. Because no matter how thrilling the book may be, it’s inevitable for me.
Have a variety – change it up! Mix your genre’s so you don’t get stuck in the same old rut. You know when the holiday season comes around you do nothing but watch Hallmark movies? And like they’re good and all, but then you just get tired of the same old story and then you don’t watch another Hallmark movie until the next Holiday season? It’s kind of like that. Change up your stories! Don’t read only vampire books, don’t read only contemporary romances or whatever your cup of tea is. Diversify your readings of varying genre’s, lengths and types. That doesn’t mean you need to read a non-fiction essays on biological functions. Read things you like, but diversify to keep your interests alive. Switching it up every now and again is healthy and fun – and if it doesn’t work, run back into the comforting arms of your genre of choice.
Reread old favorites – one of the easiest ways to break a slump to reread something you loved originally. That works with hangovers too. If you just read something you either really hated or really loved, and are a in a bit of a slump, read something you already know to be great.
Always have a book on hand – no matter where you go or what you’re doing, take your book with you! Whether it’s in novel form or as an ebook, anytime you have a spare second, pull it out and get some reading done instead of scrolling around on social media. Another great point – instead of spending time playing games or scrolling through your feed, pick up your book.
Don’t be so concerned with the number – the challenge should be fun and motivating, not stressful to read a non-existent “high bar.” People set their challenges at three, fifteen and three-hundred. There is no “magic number” that you have to read. There’s no amount of books to consume to be a successful reader. I’ve been down that rabbit hole, and as I’ve slowly watched my number dwindle year-after-year, it’s disappointing to think that I’m not as big of a reader as I used to be. Instead of being disappointed, celebrate the number of books you get to read despite your busy life.
Read what you want to read, not what you think you should read – Goodreads and Bookstagram and other blogs are a great way to discuss books as a community, but they can also put pressure on you to read the popular books that you think you “should” be reading. Don’t let that pressure get to you and read what you want to read.
Nothing will break you from your slump like a really great book. I love anything by Kristen Ashley, Nalini Singh, Penny Reid, Sarah J. Maas, Jennifer L. Armentrout, Ilona Andrews, VE Schwab, Bec McMaster, Erin Watt, and of course the Six of Crows series by Leigh Bardugo is always a win with me :)
What are you currently reading? Do you have any recommendations for book-slump busters? Do you have any reading challenge tips? Let me know in the comments below, I’d love to hear from you!