Last year (2018), my Goodreads “Year in Review” wrap-up horrified me: I’d only read 18 books the entire year. EIGHTEEN. Sure, I’d written and published enough to make me happy, but if a writer isn’t feeding herself other people’s words, then she’s really missing out, and potentially living in a vacuum of her own words! Reading for pleasure has always been one of my biggest hobbies, and this year I swore I’d fix things. My goal was to read 50 books in 2019, and I’m happy to say that (with another week to go of Winter Break and a stack of unread books still to be conquered) I’m at 54 completed.
Plenty of people read more voraciously than me–54 books is slightly more than a book a week for the whole year–but I’m still proud of that number. My writing dropped drastically (I think this year I published one full-length book in my Christmas Key series as well as one novella, and I also finished a standalone work of fiction that I’ve been writing since 2013 that’s still unpublished) but I’ve had so many weekends and evenings where I’m completely lost in a book that I loved that it’s been worth it to take a little breather from the writing.
Some of my favorites this year have been: well…all of them! I loved the dark and twisty books I read about serial killers and FBI profiling; I adored the memoirs; I fell headlong into literary fiction, and I even sampled some mystery (probably my least favorite, to be honest.) I went on a reading jag with “beach books”–as in books that take place on beaches (specifically tropical places) and I found a series that I bought in one fell swoop because it reminded me a little of my own tropical beach series and it seemed like a good idea to read in my own genre! So it was a busy reading year, and I loved every minute of it.
As for writing…I think in 2020 I’ll aim to strike a balance. I need to start waking up early before work to get my writing time in again (totally dropped the ball on that) and then use my evenings for reading, as I’ve been doing. And now, I’m off to finish book #55 before New Year’s and to keep adding chapters to the first draft of the next book in my series, which I just officially started today!
Happy New Year and happy reading!