Goodreads 2016 Reading Challenge

As a writer, it’s probably pretty obvious that one of my biggest hobbies is reading. Last year, I participated in Goodreads 2015 Reading Challenge. I set a goal of 75 books, and read 77.

Because of that, I set my goal at 80 books this year. I wanted to challenge myself, of course. That is the point, after all, right?

Problem is, I’m already 1 book behind. Yep, the challenge has barely even started and I’m already behind. And as I’ve considered what’s on my reading list for this year, I’ve realized that I will not only continue to be behind, but I probably won’t even come close to meeting the goal this year.

So, what’s on that list?

Well, there’s two book series. One is Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series. I actually bought the whole series a year or so ago, but I was in the midst of reading and reviewing a bunch of other books, and kept finding other books to read that prevented me from feeling like I could really sink into the series.

The other book series is Bernard Cornwell’s The Last Kingdom series. My kids and I have become huge fans of BBC America – we watch Doctor Who and The Three Musketeers, and used to watch Atlantis until they cancelled it. My oldest and I saw commercials for The Last Kingdom and were intrigued. When we watched the first episode, we were instantly hooked. When I realized it was based on a book series, I knew I had to read it.

While The Last Kingdom books are on average with the usual length of a book I read, between 280-400 pages, the Outlander series all weigh in at a minimum of 700+ pages, most 800 or more. One is almost 1,500 pages! Which means that series is going to take up the time that would normally be spent reading 2 or even 3 times as many shorter books.

This is not to say I mind. I like being able to get lost in a world for a long time. And if a book, or a series, is well written, I love lengthier books.

But I’ve realized that I really should have thought about my reading list before I set my reading goal for this year. I’ve seriously overestimated my abilities, I think, given all my other responsibilities.

It is still early January, so I have the whole year ahead of me to miraculously find some extra time and still meet that goal of 80 books. I’m not going to give up yet.

What’s on your reading list this year? Are you challenging yourself when it comes to reading – to read more, or more challenging books, or something else?

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