Sunday, November 20, 2016

Can't Resist a Challenge

All right, I have to admit I sort of bombed out with my reading challenges this year. For various reasons (some good, some not so), I just never really got going. Well, to be honest, I had a pretty "meh" year when it comes to reading in general and blogging too.

And since I had so much trouble with my 2016 challenges, I really shouldn't be paying any attention to all those shiny new 2017 models being rolled out. But I'm incorrigible and just can't help myself. (Sort of a challenge junkie, I guess.) And naturally I'm hoping to do MUCH better next year. (Where have I heard that before?) Also, I really like to use reading challenges as a way to nudge myself into spending more time reading, and less time in front of the TV/computer screen. And at my advanced age, anything that helps exercise the old brain cells is definitely of value.

So, I'm watching the new challenges beginning to appear and getting very excited. BUT I'm also trying to keep myself a little more realistic for next year. I really don't want to go overboard again, really want to hold it down to just a few challenges I'll be able to keep track of and stick with all year. Right now, I haven't signed up for anything, but these are some I'm looking at.

Actually, there are a few I'm pretty sure about.

The European Reading Challenge, hosted by Gillion at Rose City Reader, is always one of my favorites — I usually do manage to read all the books for the challenge, even if I don't get all the reviews posted. Barring any disasters, I'll be signing up again for 2017.

Bev at My Reader's Block hosts several challenges every year. All of them are interesting, but there are a couple I love. I didn't do very well on either the Mount TBR Challenge or the Vintage Mystery Cover Scavenger Hunt for 2016, but I'm still thinking of signing up for both of them again in 2017 and trying to improve my record.

And here are a group I'm interested in, but haven't really decided about yet:

I tried the Alphabet Soup Reading Challenge (over at Escape With Dollycas) once, a few years back, and had fun but never actually finished it. I love the idea of an alphabet challenge and matching up titles, but I have such a backlog of books I want to get to in 2017, I'm just not sure I'm ready for that much structure. Still, it's very tempting.

The Retellings Reading Challenge (hosted by Jo at Once Upon a Bookcase) has a very intriguing theme — retellings/reworkings (and prequels or sequels) of well-known stories, in addition to works that use real people or well-known fictional characters in new stories. But again, I'm afraid the focus might be just a little too strict for me. Of course, there's a basic level of just 1-4 books, which sounds doable. So ... a definite maybe.

The Wired Into Sci-Fi Reading Challenge (at Sci-Fi and Scary) caught my eye because I'm planning to read more science fiction next year. But the basic level ("Dabbler") calls for reading ten books, and I'm not sure I'll want to read that much sci-fi. Also, the books have to come from a set list, and I really prefer to choose my own challenge books. So that one is interesting, but probably not for me. Probably.

The You Read How Many Books? Challenge is being hosted back at Book Dragon's Lair for 2017. This a pretty simple challenge (which I love) — just read as many books as you can, and keep a public list somewhere (blog, GoodReads, etc). The thing is, the goal is to read at least 100 books, and that's just not realistic for me — my best number in recent years is just barely over 50. So I'd go into the challenge knowing I'd never be able to truly complete it. But that lofty goal might be just what I need to spur me on. Ya think? So, another maybe?

Well, that's enough for now, though I'm sure I'll be coming up with more lovely possibilities for my 2017 challenge list. But right now, I gotta get back to my reading.


  1. Enjoy! I stopped signing up for most challenges for the reasons you mentioned, although I have enjoyed one challenge this year: Read the Books You Buy Challenge. (Another version of Bev's Mt. TBR Challenge).

    I've managed to read 87 books I far.

    Have fun!

  2. I believe my only new year resolution will be to not join any challenges-- even the Goodreads one. I am not going to complete mine for this year -- I don't think-- and I have found that I enjoy reading more when not trying to complete a goal. I might change my mind but I don't know -- I am getting less and less structured and organized the older I get.


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