Goals and the end of the year and stuff


Happy 2013 everyone! It’s that time again where everyone discusses the best of last year and their goals for the next.

2012 goodreads stats detailsEdited this post to add this chart, with *hat tip* to Heidi @ BunburyintheStacks

I had just as many books on my favorites list this year as in previous years, but 2012 wasn’t what I’d call a stellar year in reading quantity. I read 52 books, which is low for me Here is a visual aid (click to embiggen):

books read chart 2012

Upward trajectory halted! But that’s OK. Over 50 is pretty good when I think back and remember what 2012 was like.

Here are my excuses:

  1. Rampant TV watching. I know, but I can’t help it. Last year Spring-Summer was all cycling and the Olympics, Fall was rediscovering Friends, and Winter involved little Holiday movie addiction I have. I’ll try to get some help, but we just bought a snazzier, fancier, bigger TV recently. Wish me luck for 2013.
  2. Job. This is a valid reason and the biggest one – long meetings held at night really did a number on my free time and my reading routines. I was also very busy in general.
  3. A certain ennui brought on by excuses 1 and 2 and by all the drama that went on in the middle of 2012 (I think that took up some head space because it made book blogging less of a “happy place” it used to be for me. I’m beyond that now though).
  4. I still haven’t figured out how to be faster at writing reviews. If anything, it takes me longer.  Reviewer time management fail. It’s a work in progress.

Well it’s 2013, I have a brand new job. I think the big problem I had last year with work hours and personal time won’t be such an issue in this one. So far it is looking good, but we shall see. And I had a really nice long break in December between jobs in which I did NOTHING. I have no regrets about that because it means I feel a lot more invigorated about reading and reviewing now.

The goals for this year are.. well maybe “general idea” rather than goals, but here’s what I’m thinking:

  • Keep going for 100 books read per year
  • Work on SERIES reading. I have a lot of series I am very behind on but I have all the books. I think I’m going to maybe start getting on reading those things.
  • Finish up those reviews I’m behind on from last year

to review strip
Oh, so those reviews I need to do. This is the list below. I have a few to write and I was thinking if people gave me the puppy-dog eyes about certain books, I’ll probably work on those first. Anything take your fancy? Let me know!

Heart’s Blood by Juliet Marillier
Gunmetal Magic by Ilona Andrews
Ashes of Honor by Seanan McGuire
Polymer by Sally Rogers-Davidson
Yours to Keep by Shannon Stacey
Epic Fail by Claire LaZebnik
The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater
Adorkable by Sarra Manning
Dark and Stormy Nights anthology
Seeing Me Naked by Liza Palmer

… I am really behind.

16 thoughts on “Goals and the end of the year and stuff

  1. Happy New Year! Congratulations on the new job. That’s great that you had a chance to take some time out after all the work craziness of this year.

    I have had the SAME exact experience with reviews lately! It’s always taken me a long time to write them, but I feel like it takes me forever lately. I think I’ve spent more time on reviews the last year than previous years and written fewer of them. I’d like to learn the secret to writing faster reviews that I don’t think are terrible.

    Gunmetal Magic is on my to-review list as well. In fact, I was just wrapping up a revision of it. 🙂 I am also really behind…

    • Thank you. 🙂 Yeah, you know what I mean with the hair-pulling involved with translating thoughts to words.

      I enjoyed Gunmetal Magic – I wanted to strangle Raphael at first, but I also found the reason for how he was acting and how Andrea was acting back believable for both their characters. Which made me like the overall book more: that there was that balance between action and character relationships. That Ilona Andrews… always does well with this.

      • Ilona Andrews does very well with balancing action/adventure with character development and relationships. I felt the same way about Raphael. He really bugged me at first, but I also understood where both he and Andrea were coming from later when he and Andrea talked about it some more.

  2. Congratulations on your new job! I’m actually in a similar situation…I start a new position Monday! Also, I’d love to see your thoughts on Adorkable and The Raven Boys in particular, hint hint. 🙂

  3. Happy New Year and good luck with the new job! Ha – I’m with you on the TV thing, I will always remember the summer of 2012 as the one where I was glued to the telly, watching the most random sports ever.

    I am curious about ADORKABLE (I’ve yet to pick up a Manning but have been meaning to) and would also *love* to get your take on ASHES OF HONOR, if that helps.


    • Thanks! Happy New Year to you too. Yes, I was not alone in getting sucked into the Olympics! I watched sports I usually never even think about that summer.

      Oo, two votes for Ashes of Honor! OK, that bumps that one up.

  4. Bah, I totally know what you mean about all of the drama making blogging a less happy environment! I really backed off a bit myself around that time, and you were working like crazy last year so of course that’s a valid excuse! I’m super behind on reviews too, I just didn’t feel like writing them toward the end of the year, even for books I was loving. Still, I think you’ve made some great goals for 2013 and I wish you the best of luck completing them!

    I’m nearly caught up on October Daye (brought home One Salt Sea yesterday), so I’d love to see your thoughts on Ashes of Honor. Also I want to hear what you thought of the Kate Daniels story in Dark and Stormy Knights, and of course Gunmetal Magic.

    Happy New Year!

    • Yeah, I think we all have different opinions about what side we may have been on with the drama, but it was emotionally tiring all around, even for the people who weren’t actively wading into it.

      You’re behind with reviewing too? Ah, the solidarity makes me feel better! 😀

      Ooo, almost caught up! Well, Ashes of Honor may be my favorite one so far. I mean: asgdfhjffhshssgh!!!! That would be a summary of the review I’m going to write. Three votes to see a review of Ashes of Honor now!

      Happy New Year!

  5. I LOVEDD Heart’s Blood (obviously, JM is my homegirl) and I would love to hear your thoughts on Raven Boys..I have a copy but have been wary. Honestly I am afraid to start a new series because then I have to WAIT. Selfish, I KNOW!! I am glad that you are happy blogging again, you know that I went through something similar last year! I am also having a hard time with reviews…they take me a REALLY long time because I work really hard on them and honestly I am always proud of my end results but I am always a tad overwhelmed before writing! Good luck!

    • I liked Heart’s Blood too! Especially the way it began. So awesomely atmospheric. One of my favorite beginnings. Re: The Raven Boys yeah you’re going to want to read book 2 after, so I understand what you’re saying there. *nod*.
      About reviewing taking a long time: OMG, seriously. It’s not as bad when I either loved or hated a book, but it’s REALLY difficult when I am lukewarm or I have just… *emotions* about the book, not a response that is easy to articulate. It takes me time to ponder and translate the emotions into WORDS. Also my first drafts are always seem terrible and stilted-sounding (at least to me).

  6. Um I may have missed all the drama. If it happened middle of last year then that was around the time I was preparing to move to Singapore. I think it’s a good thing I missed it. 😛 Congrats on the new job! Sorry to hear that work was very work-ish last year. But good to know that you won’t have the same problem this year. I really need to work on my reviews as well, I’m super behind. Would love to see your review of Seeing Me Naked though. 🙂

    • Ah, that’s probably why you missed it. 🙂

      Thanks, I’m excited about the new job. Still learning what it entails, but I’m happy so far. OK, putting it on the list. Hope to see a review from you soon too! *nudges*.

  7. I request Adorkable and Seeing Me Naked reviews. 🙂 I’m sorry you were so busy last year. My goal was to read 80 books but I only read 65, the exact same number I read in 2011. And I tried so hard to read more! Go figure. 100 is my dream. One day…probably when the kids are older.

    • Oo, Adorkable now has 3 votes. Busy is OK – I think I was just tired of what being busy entailed, so I’m glad I’m doing something different now.

      I keep saying “100” per year but I think 80 would make me happy. Yeah, I can imagine it’s difficult to get reading time in with kids. I’m not sure how a lot of bloggers who are moms and also have careers on top of that do it!

  8. Not that I’d want anyone else to experience a similar blogging drought, but…I’m kinda glad I wasn’t alone in it. And look! We’re both coming back ’round the same time. 🙂 Whichever book you choose, I’ll happily read the review. It feels good to be back in the swing – both writing posts and reading friends’.

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