TSS: Reading Deliberately & A Few Reading Resolutions

Ringing in the New Year wearing Linus's Blanket blue.
Ringing in the New Year wearing Linus's Blanket blue.

Happy New Year everyone- again!

I can’t even believe that we are in the year 2010.  It has such a science fiction sounding ring to it, doesn’t it?  I feel so futuristic.  I hope that everyone has had wonderful holidays and a Happy New Year! I always love starting fresh and I take the opportunity to start over every chance I get.  Every minute. Every day.  Every week. Every month. Every year.  There is always the opportunity to take stock and to make changes.

I am always thinking about reading.  Buying books, talking to people about books, accepting review copies, coveting the new releases in the catalogs, attending author readings and book club meetings.  All of this is fun stuff, but it also makes it really easy get away from some of my conscious reading goals.  That’s not always a bad thing, but too much of that upsets the balance and is not a good thing either.

I have definitely expanded my horizons this last year and a half that I have been blogging.  I have always been an eclectic reader and a lot of the genres that I have experimented with over the past year have been ones that I cut my teeth on in high school and when I was even younger, but then abandoned as I started reading increasingly more serious, dare I call it literary, fiction.

Reading Deliberately & 2010 Reading Goals

As always, the ubiquitous Twitter spawned a discussion on reading goals and taking more care in the choice of reading material for 2010.  If there is a way to balance library books with review copies, classics reading with contemporary, and adult fiction with young adult and children’s fiction then several intrepid bloggers want to find it (Jen,Vasilly, Carrie). There are some books which I am committed to read for blogging projects I am working on, but other than those commitments I intend to choose with care and according to some guidelines.

  • Continue to expand my reading to quality books in different genres – Last year I ended up reading 160 books. I think the uptick accounted for the fact that I expanded my reading to include some YA, middle grade fiction and revisited some fairytales and children’s books that I read growing up. This was also the year of the audio book.  I love those things!  They definitely helped quite a lot in allowing me to read a lot more while I was exercising, traveling and doing chores around the house.  My apartment has never been cleaner and a lot of that is because I took every opportunity to listen to a little bit more of The Help, by Katherine Stockett.
  • Continue to read fiction that includes a multitude of cultures and ethnicities – I read some really good fiction from other cultures in 2009 which really helped me to expand and grow as a reader.  I loved different types of rich storytelling and the glimpse of mythology and style of writing which was outside the comfort zone of my normal fare.  Complex and fascinating narratives have me hungry for more.
  • Have less books going at the same time – I think that 3 needs to be my max at any one time this year.  This last year I was so glad to have gotten past my year of monogamous reading (which was a goal of mine for 2008)  that I went completely overboard.  I am going to be working on a quarterly challenge to make sure that I am reading and finishing the books that I have in a more timely manner, and letting go of that which I am not going to read.
  • Read and review more cookbooks & recipesCandace, Dawn and I are already in the process of cooking up a little cooking project, but this year you will see a lot more food on the Blanket.  I would like to do a progressive dinner party seasonally and have a lot more literary feasts.  I had thought of starting a food centered blog as its own separate thing, but I am just not that talented.  I can’t run more than one blog at a time, so I hope you like food.
  • Don’t make so many resolutions – 🙂 I want this to be fun!  I think I am off to a good start.

What are you going to be reading more of this year?  Do you have plans to read more deliberately?

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    1. A lot of times the books I am reading will give me ideas on what I want to eat. Might books be fattening the way that TV is fattening?

  1. I had not thought about the sound of “2010” being futuristic, but you are right! Sure wish we had those flying cars of the Jetsons invented already 🙂

    I have just recently discovered audiobooks as well. I am hoping these help me attain a slim svelte figure first — then I’ll try for the clean house.

    I am VERY excited to hear about the culinary project! I would love to get back into more cooking (and I NEED to for health and financial reasons as well).

    I very much look forward to reading all your posts in this upcoming year, Nicole!
    .-= Molly´s last blog ..Reflections on Reading in 2009 =-.

    1. I had told myself that I was going to get out and go walking more in the park now that I have my ipod and audiobooks but that hasn’t happened quite yet. This year!

  2. I agree, too many rules and it gets to be too much work! My goal is to be very careful about the challenges I accept. I ended up being a slave to my challenges the last few months of 2009 and I regretted it! Happy New Year!
    .-= Tricia´s last blog ..Weekly Household Reads =-.

    1. It is no fun being a slave to things. I have signed up for quite a few challenges but they were all overlapping and quite a few of them will be featuring all of the same books. It’s important to keep the fun and not be overwhelmed.

  3. These are excellent resolutions. I can’t wait to see what you’ve got cooking up!

    I’m excited to read for the Twenty Minute Book Club Challenge. I’ve gotten my first of the year completed — I read Liar yesterday in preparation for Tuesday.

    Happy New Year once again. Best of luck for 2010!
    .-= Michelle´s last blog ..Sunday Salon – 1/3 =-.

  4. I absolutely love to cook, and I really need to put some more focus on that with my blog this year. I think I’ve only participated in one Weekend Cooking meme, just because I am usually running around crazed. I just need to SLOW DOWN! You’ve got a great set of goals for next year…not too severe, but more directional, which seem to work better generally.
    .-= Sandy´s last blog ..Sunday Salon: Reflecting =-.

  5. LOL, love your last resolution! 🙂
    .-= J.T. Oldfield´s last blog ..Sense & Sensibility Mini-Series =-.

  6. I plan to have fun with my reading this year. I want to get caught up and dive slowly into the books that I’d like to read in 2010. I’m going to stop reading books that I don’t like and not feel obligated to finish them if I hate them.

    Happy New Year!
    .-= sheri´s last blog ..The Sunday Salon: Rantings of An Unhinged Mother!!! =-.

  7. I wish you luck with your goals this year, Nicole. I almost–just almost–wished I liked cooking so I could enjoy the the cookbook and recipe feature that you, Dawn and Beth/Candace are planning. I’ll just drool over the pictures (which you just have to have) of food and hope that in my next life I’m born with a love to cook.

    My plan this year is to deliberately read less deliberately.

    Have a great week, Nicole!
    .-= Literary Feline´s last blog ..Sunday Salon: Christmas Loot, First and Last Books of the Year & A Blogging Break =-.

  8. hey Nicole,

    I am a little late in stopping by to wish you a Happy New Year (cute picture) –to be young and celebrate New Years Eve –seems long ago that we dressed up and painted the town…LOL

    Good luck with your resolutions, they certainly seem attainable. Hope 2010 is a good year fro you 🙂
    .-= diane´s last blog ..Sunday Salon – January 3, 2010 =-.

  9. Happy New year! Hope your holidays were spectacular.

    I like the idea of a fresh start. It makes you re-evaluate things, restate goals, and get back on track, with whatever it may be. I must admit, I was bedazzled by the amount of review copies last year. However, I have realized what types of books are for me.
    I would love to say I could help you with the cooking thing, but I’m not good with the cooking 🙂 Chips and dip: I can help with. Main dishes, not so much.
    Have a good week!
    .-= jennygirl´s last blog ..Sunday Reflections (Jan. 3) =-.