I read 16 books in February. February was also the month of challenges. I’m doing 3, but I’ll be done with one in April, one in May, and one in June.
I started reading Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace as part of a read-along hosted by Flannery at The Readventurer. How ambitious, to make one of my adult novels this 1000 page tome? I have to say, it’s slow going, and funny in a crazy kind of way. We’ll see if I can make it through. My friend Maggie has ambitiously made it her goal to find connections between all these randomly appearing details and to extrapolate a theme—she’s my hero.
Last month I read the Sookie Stackhouse short stories in An Apple for Creature, Death’s Excellent Vacation, and Home Improvement: Undead Edition, edited by Charlaine Harris. This month I re-read Dead Until Dark and Living Dead in Dallas. I’m planning to re-read the series before the final book comes out in May. So much nostalgia-love going on for this series, which was my first foray into genre fiction of any kind.
I’m also participating in the 2013 The Hub reading challenge, and will be documenting my progress here. I’m doing this one to push myself into genres I don’t usually read (like graphic novels and non-fiction) and so that I’ve read a good sampling of what made YALSA/ALA award lists. It’s like killing two birds with one stone, because I get the opportunity to make other personal goals I had for this year, like reading adult books and audiobooks, part of my routine. Some of the titles were even already on my list of 2012 titles I missed and wanted to read this year. I read Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe — and I thought it was fabulous.
I read all the February new releases I had slated. I didn’t review The Different Girl and Dance of Shadows because I didn’t like them at all and could think of little to say in a review, but I loved Out of the Easy and 39 Deaths of Adam Strand. In keeping with my goals, 2 were debuts. I also read The Reece Malcolm List and White Cat but my favorite of February was Graffiti Moon. I’ve got a good start on my list for March (I reviewed The Sin-Eater’s Confession already, because it comes out early in the month, and I loved it!)
Even though I am behind in my competition with one of the book club members, I’m still on track to meet my revised goal of 200 books for the year. I’m still enjoying most of the books I read and not feeling the pressure on the ARCs or otherwise stressing out about reading. Yay for reading!
I’ve made less progress than I wanted towards finishing my WIP, but I’ve still made progress. In order to ensure I write every day, I’m setting a timer on my phone and turning off notifications (really, what email/text/tweet can’t wait an hour for a response?), turning off the Internet, maximizing my Scrivener screen, and making sure I make it to 1000 words in that hour.
I’ve been happy with how blogging is going. I’ve started formatting my reviews instead of just writing in an essay style. I also blog for my library, and one of my co-workers complimented one of my posts (the one on José Saramago, which I also shared here) by calling it “intimidating” (okay, I took it as a compliment). I’m really enjoying writing for The Hub (you can find my posts here). I’m rotating between two features, one on book club picks in different genres and one on nonfiction read-alikes for popular/award winning YA novels, and occasionally writing on other topics. I’m really excited for the two topics in particular in upcoming posts, so if you don’t follow The Hub, you should, and not just for my posts. All the content is awesome. Blogging may take time away from writing fiction, but I don’t think it’s time wasted.
If you set goals for reading or writing at the beginning on the year, how are they going? Are you participating in any reading challenges?