2014 Reading Challenge

6 Jan

Happy New Year!

Most years I make resolutions, and one of them is usually to “read more” or “to read the books I own.” If you’ve been following along, in 2013 I visited a lot of bookstores and bought a lot of books. I haven’t even mentioned my trip to Midtown Scholar in Harrisburg, PA or the annual day-after-Christmas family trip to Barnes & Noble.  Oddly enough, neither resulted in major purchases, which is probably a good thing.

Needless to say, my stack of “to read” books is very tall. It’s literally a teetering stack sitting on my office floor — I don’t even have room on my shelves for these new books, so I want to read them and make some decisions as to what stays on the shelves or what goes.

That’s all fine and dandy, except then I read a couple of Media Bistro blogs about geographical reading challenges. The first is from Somerset Books in Texas and is a “50 states” challenge: Read one book by an author from every state in the country. Birthplace defines where an author’s from. The second is a journalist’s personal challenge to read a book from every country in the world.

While they’re both really intriguing, I’m still more concerned with reading what I own; however, it’d be interesting to see how my stacks and shelves of unread books fit into these two challenges. I’ve decided to track them here, and I invite you to play along. I’d love to see where your reading takes you this year and get some ideas for new books to read. To me it doesn’t matter if the book is fiction or non-fiction (I’ve got some of both). I’m just curious to see how much of the country I’ll cover. I’ve got some international authors as well, so I may add countries as I go along, and maybe even provinces, if I’ve got a bunch of books from one particular country.

I don’t plan to let the “50 books in a year” concept hold me back either. I have real doubts as to whether I’ll read 50 books. I’ve tried it before–years ago I signed up for a newspaper columnist’s “do something now” challenge, vowing to read a book a week.  It wasn’t long before I couldn’t keep up, and that’s when the challenge stopped being enjoyable, and I soon quit. Last year I read maybe 15 or so books, and I consider that to be a pretty good year. I just would like to track what I’ve read in a manner that Goodreads doesn’t do and see if I need to expand my reading horizons just a little more. No pressure otherwise. If you feel the same way, please join in.


One Response to “2014 Reading Challenge”


  1. 2014 Reading Challenge Recap | Jill Jaracz - January 2, 2015

    […] a few people’s geographical reading challenges, I also thought it would be interesting to see where the authors of the books I read came from. So, while I was tracking like a geographical challenge, I wasn’t trying to make sure I […]


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