Sunday Salon: A Year of Deliberately Reading and 2011 Plans

Good morning! I hope wherever you’re at, you’re having a great holiday weekend. As I write this, it’s Christmas afternoon. I’m trying to read as much as possible while on vacation from school, so I’m writing many of my posts ahead of time.

So far I’ve read eight books since my break began two weeks ago. It’s not a bad total but I wanted to read more than that. The surprising part is that I’m finding more books to add to my “favorites of 2010” list like Beloved by Toni Morrison and Rita Williams-Garcia’s One Crazy Summer, a middle-grade novel set in Oakland, California during the 1960s.  Kathy from The Brain Lair and I agree that One Crazy Summer is a definite contender for the Newbery prize. Earlier this year the book was nominated for the National Book Award in Children’s Literature. If you haven’t read either book, I hope you do so. I’m also planning a Toni Morrison read-along for next year. I should have details posted sometime in January, so stay on the lookout for it.

Last year around this time, I was contemplating my reading goals for 2010. Now I’m looking back to see how well  I did. I’m realizing that I should have been more specific when I set my goals. Instead of just saying that I wanted more diversity in my reading, I should have also specified how many books I wanted to read. I read 23 books by and about people of color and different sexual orientations but I’ve read 176 books so far this year so I could have done a lot better.

Rereading. I reread a pitiful six books this year including one of my favorites as a teenager, Are you there God? It’s me, Margaret by Judy Blume. I’m glad to say I still love it.

Project Fill-in-the-Gaps. The goal of my two-year-old list is to become a well-rounded reader. Sadly I’ve only read two books on my list this year with at least eighty left to read by 2014.

Pulitzer Prize-winning plays. I hit a home run in this category, reading five plays. Most of the plays I read are going to be featured as part of my favorites list this week. You can rarely go wrong with a play that’s won the Pulitzer prize.

Reading Deliberately in 2011

My goals for next year are pretty much the same as this year with a few changes:

Diversity. If I can read over 100 books a year, I can easily read 50 books in this category.

Project Fill-in-the-Gaps. I really like this project, so I plan on reading 25 books off my list. I would hate to wait until the last minute and devote most of 2014 to reading just the books off this list.

TBR pile. The past couple of months I’ve bought a ton of books, so next year I need to read as many of these books as possible. I’m hoping to read anywhere  between 50-100 books off my shelves.

Classics. It’s rare when I read a classic, so I’m hoping to read 20 in 2011.

I know that my goals may seem a little ambitious but many of the books I own can be placed in all four categories. So that’s some of my reading goals for 2011. What direction will your reading go in 2011?


About Vasilly

Mother, daughter, sister, college student, bookworm, lover of chocolate and coffee.
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24 Responses to Sunday Salon: A Year of Deliberately Reading and 2011 Plans

  1. Michelle says:

    Sounds like you have a fantastic year of reading ahead. Hope 2011 is a great year for you 🙂

  2. Amy says:

    My goal is to actually read fewer books. I hit a personal best this year–nowhere near as many as you! But I did it by reading lots of short books and YA. I have several long books languishing on the shelves, so my goal is to have fewer, but much longer, books on the completed list at the end of the year.

  3. Well, let me list your goals and compare and contrast with my own reading:

    Rereading: Ugh. I hardly have time for reading the first time. 🙂

    Fill-In-The-Gaps: I must admit there are a ton more classics I need to read, but I get too distracted by the “trivial” books — and now reading challenges and readalongs.

    Pulitzer-winning Plays: Now here’s one I might could do. Did August Wilson win a Pulitzer? I think I enjoyed his work.

    As for 2011, with diversity and TBR pile, I can relate. I don’t read enough authors of “diversity,” and my TBR pile (a bookshelf behind me in my office as I write this) hasn’t grown any smaller since last year, so I’m with you on both of them too.

  4. Ash says:

    Wow! You read a lot this year! In 2011 I would like to read more books in translation, I think I only read 1 in 2010. I’m going to do a post on this later, but I would really like to read more books I already own. I read a little over 100 books this year and about 65% of them were book I purchased in 2010. I’d like to get it down to more like 50% with the other 50% made up of books I already owned, review copies, and books from the library. I hope you do well on you goals.

  5. Andi says:

    Great 2011 goals. I do plan to read more deliberately, I just need to define what that means a bit more.

  6. Edi says:

    I like the ‘project fill in the gaps’ idea. To me, that’s what good reading does, or should do.

  7. Carrie K. says:

    I love your goals – sounds like you’ve really given it a lot of thought. I’m looking forward to our read-alongs in 2011!

  8. Frances says:

    I actually want to read with no plan at all except for monthly book group. Maybe read through my shelves a little more than from new acquisitions. Backlist, mid-list stuff. Like how you have such a thoughtful approach to next year’s reading.

  9. It sounds to me like you have done great with your goals – or, way better than I did, at any rate! Hope you have a wonderful and even more successful 2011!

  10. bookmagic says:

    I can’t set any goals because then I feel guilty if I don’t live up to them. I just hope to come across great books next year. I always want to read more classics and my Kindle is loaded with them. I did recently start Dracula but got distracted by other books.
    Good luck with your 2011 goals

  11. Christina says:

    I honestly haven’t given it much thought, but I’m sure reading more classics and off my TBR pile (like you) will be on my list.

  12. amymckie says:

    2011 sounds like it will be fantastic for you. Best of luck!

  13. Jenny says:

    I’ve always felt like setting blogging goals makes me likely to disappoint myself later in the year. Not sure that’s the right attitude for me to have! :p But yours sound like very good goals.

  14. I haven’t set any reading goals for next year, though I’m working on a list of the Ten Books I Will Read in 2011.

    Good luck with your goals and thanks for the recommendation for Crazy Summer (now on my wishlist).

  15. JoAnn says:

    I have been meaning to read Toni Morrison for years! Will look forward to your read-along details.

  16. Florinda says:

    Good luck with your 2011 goals! I don’t have many to speak of, other than cutting back even more on accepting review books. I averaged reading a little over a book a week this year, and I’d like to keep up that pace, at least. I also want to read more nonfiction.

    It’s always good to have a plan :-).

  17. Anastasia says:

    I sort of agree with Jenny– especially because I always try to set really specific goals for myself and I can almost never meet them! But for 2011 I’m going to focus on reading books from my TBR, cutting back on buying paper books, and trying to get more audiobooks and rereads in my reading list. I think I’ll start the year off with some Diana Wynne Jones– I don’t think I’ve reread the Chrestomanci books in almost a year, so it’s time. 😀

  18. zibilee says:

    Good Luck with all your reading resolutions! This year, I would like to read more of the books on my TBR stack, and I am hoping that I can succeed with that as planned!

  19. Erin says:

    Ooh, I’ll definitely watch for Toni Morrison readalong details!

    We do have some similar goals, as well as a similar structure, with many books fitting into several categories. Good luck with your goals! I look forward to seeing how they unfold.

  20. iliana says:

    Happy Holidays! Sounds like you are having a great time reading. You’ve got some great reading plans for next year so good luck meeting your personal goals!

  21. I mean this in all seriousness although it may not sound like it, but the direction I plan for 2011 is to head more often *toward* my bookshelves and my blog than away from them.

    After I started working again, everything seemed to fall by the wayside. Except reading of course. I still read a lot, but found myself stymied when talking about it.

    Now that I’ve found my stride again, I like what goals you’ve talked about and find myself I will be doing the same: reading more of my Fill In The Gap books, more award winners which include the Pulitzer’s, more “literary classic” selections, as well as adding in more non-fiction. I love history and felt I put it too far on the back burner.

    Great post Natasha!

  22. Memory says:

    I think those sound like doable goals. Good luck!

    Next year, I want to read more classic lit, more nonfiction and at least a graphic novel a week (or fifty-two). Basically, the same goals I set for myself every year, and so rarely come close to completing! I’m sure I have a shot at the graphic novels, but I always hold myself back from classic lit and nonfiction because I know they’ll take me longer to read. Sigh.

  23. Kathleen says:

    I will definitely be reading more books off my shelf this year and I’m hoping to read a few classics too!

  24. Wallace says:

    Well, we’re having a conversation about my goal right now on Twitter… turn off the TV and read more. However, my TV is off at the moment but I’ve replaced it with my computer. Hmmm…

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