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Sunday, January 1, 2012

Sunday Salon: Opening the Book on 2012!

The Sunday Salon.com

Happy New Year, y’all! If that Mayan calendar is to be believed, we’ve got 355 days left before it all goes away, so I suppose we’d better get to it, hadn’t we? Whatever “it” is...

I guess that opens up a big question:

“If you knew you had only one year left to read, what books would you want to make sure you didn’t miss?”

Personally, I don’t know which specific titles would be on my list, but if i were left totally to my own devices, I’m pretty sure I’d focus on what was already on my shelves (and tables, and ledges), as the current population of TBR Purgatory now exceeds 400. Almost 25% of those are review copies, and that raises another question: "Would those review commitments become less important if you knew you were running out of time to read at all?" Truthfully, under those circumstances, I really think I’d shift the “reading for (less) fun and (more) profit” balance in the opposite direction. You can’t take either the books or the money with you, right?

Not counting today’s, my first few posts of 2012 will reflect back on 2011, a year in which my reading habits shifted somewhat. Thanks to my involvement with the Indie Lit Awards and reviewing gig for Shelf Awareness, it felt like I read more current-year in 2011 books than ever before, but I read the same number as I did in 2010. But my reading media shifted a bit, as I read as many e-books in 2011 as I did in 2009 and 2010 combined, especially in the first couple of months, when I was recuperating from shoulder surgery and found one-handed reading much easier on my Kindle. 2011 was also "The Year I Discovered Audiobooks," and I’m pretty sure they’ll stay in the mix; for one thing, they’ve quickly become my favorite way to indulge in my guilty-pleasure genre of choice, the celebrity memoir. (Speaking of the Kindle: I received a new Kindle Touch for Christmas, and discovered that it will also accommodate my Audible audiobooks--I was excited to find out that it’s a multitasker!)

But today I want to look at the year ahead of us, and ponder my reading goals for 2012. It won’t take long, as they’re pretty modest:

  • I want to read more than 50 books (in any format) by the end of the year, for the third consecutive year
  • I want to re-read 5 books (a goal I had, and missed, in 2011)
  • I want to read 1 “discretionary” book each month--one not specifically sent to me for review purposes (although I’ll review it on the blog anyway)

I don’t join many reading challenges, and I tend to pick the ones I do because they fit goals I already have. I’m following my friend Melissa’s lead and announcing all my sign-ups in one post, as follows:

Melissa’s Memorable Memoirs Reading Challenge (hosted at The Betty and Boo Chronicles)
I’ve done this one every year since it started, as memoir is my favorite non-fiction reading, and am in again at the Diarist level (1-4 memoirs).


Sarah’s Ebook Challenge (hosted at Workaday Reads)
I’m joining this one at the Floppy Disk level (5 e-books) to push myself to read a minimum number of e-books in 2012 (although I’ll shoot for more!).


Teresa’s 2012 Audiobook Challenge (hosted at Teresa’s Reading Corner)
I want to continue my explorations in audiobooks--and with an 80-mile daily round-trip commute, why didn’t I start them sooner?--but since I’ve also got a podcast habit going, I don’t want to overcommit to the longer listens either. Therefore, I’m signing up at the Flirting level (6 audiobooks).

I have a feeling that the second and third challenges I’m joining could be a lot of help in meeting that “one discretionary read per month” goal.

Have you set any reading goals for the New Year?