One of my favorite things to do is chart out my reading plans for the year. I don’t want to be rigid about them: I like flexibility to pick up something unexpected during the year. But being intentional with my plans helps me get to the books I’ve long wanted to read plus expands my reading horizons.
Last year I participated in several reading challenges, thinking that they’d be easy to do since they overlapped and I could list the same books for several of them. But the record-keeping took way too much time and thought. Then one host just stopped blogging in February and one took her blog down during the year. So this year, I am back to the tried and true plans I have used for years plus a couple of new ones that worked out well last year.
Karen at Books and Chocolate hosts the Back to the Classics Challenge. Books have to be 50 years old and fit within the categories chosen for the year in order to qualify. Karen draws a name from participants at the end of the year to receive a $30 gift card towards books, and the number of categories you finish determines how many entries you get.
Here are the categories for this year. We don’t have to name what books we’ll read yet, but I have a couple of ideas (subject to change!)
7. New-to-you classic by a favorite author — a new book by an author whose works you have already read. I’m working on reading what Dickens books I haven’t read yet. Maybe Nicholas Nickleby.
8. A classic about an animal, or with an animal in the title. The animal can be real or metaphorical. (i.e., To Kill a Mockingbird).
9. A children’s classic. Thinking about either Peter Pan or Tarzan.
10. A humorous or satirical classic.
12. A classic play. Plays will only count in this category.
Bev at My Reader’s Block hosts the Mount TBR Challenge to encourage us to read the books we already own.. Every 12 books read is another level or “mountain” climbed. We don’t have to list the books yet, but we do have to commit to a level. I am committing to Mt. Vancouver (36 books). The one main rule here is that the books have to have been owned by us before January 1, 2021.
The Backlist Reader Challenge hosted by The Bookwyrm’s Hoard has the same idea as Mt. TBR. The main difference is we don’t have to own the books–they can be on our TBR list as well as actually on our shelves.
We don’t have to list what books we’ll read for the TBR or Backlist challenges, but these are some that I want to get to. I only asked for two books for Christmas—a record low for me!—because I had so many stacked up from previous gifts.
- Essay Collection
- Indigenous Cultures
- Wartime Experiences
- Published in 2021
There are different levels to choose from for goals. Though I know I’ll read more than 12, I am only going to aim for the Nonfiction Nibbler (6 books). If I come up with titles to fit the other categories–titles that I want to read for themselves and not just for the challenge—I’ll see how far I can get.
Finally, Tarissa at In the Bookcase hosts a Louisa May Alcott Reading Challenge in June and a Literary Christmas Challenge in November and December. I’ll say more about those when they come up.
So that the plan for this year. I am excited!
Do you have any plans for reading this year? Do you participate in any reading challenges? I’d love to hear about them.
(Sharing with Senior Salon)