“I should read more” “I should read that” “I should have already read that” So many shoulds- how effective are they? I’m aware of the punitive and unfun nature of “shoulds.” It doesn’t matter if they’re well-meaning, would be beneficial, and/or just need to happen. A “should” is both an impetus and a stalling mechanism. You should but you aren’t– what’s stopping you?
For me lists help. They help by providing a path, momentum, progress, and other intangibles. Along those lines and with many thanks to the Modern Mrs. Darcy, I’ll be participating in the 2018 Reading Challenge, which you can join: here
I had a lot of fun looking for books for each category and I encourage you to make your own list. Along those lines, I thought of six more categories- that would bring the total to 18 books in 2018, if you like.
The 2018 Reading Challenge categories are:
1. A classic you’ve been meaning to read:
2. A book recommended by someone with great taste:
3. A book in translation:
4. A book nominated for an award in 2018:
To find this pick I used: This Twitter search
5. A book of poetry, a play, or an essay collection:
6. A book you can read in a day:
7. A book that’s more than 500 pages:
8. A book by a favorite author:
9. A book recommended by a librarian or indie bookseller: (I’m broadening this to include “recommended by a podcast host”)
10. A banned book:
To find this pick I used: This Wikipedia resource
11. A memoir, biography, or book of creative nonfiction:
12. A book by an author of a different race, ethnicity, or religion than your own:
My additional category prompts are:
13. A book about a talent you admire- For example, drumming, photography, dance- (and a strong nudge to try it yourself).
14. An illustrated book- Extra credit move: pick a page from it and make your own drawing, post it to Twitter, thank the artist, and include a link so that others can buy the book.
15. A book that addresses a source of pain connected to your family- For example, understanding dysfunction, abandonment, alcoholism- How would you benefit from acknowledging something and being reminded that you’re not alone in your experience?
16. A cookbook- Yes, read it. Don’t just look at the pictures, don’t cherry-pick the easy bits, read it the whole way through- look at how it’s organized, the steps and the tips, what ingredients are included, how times in life are connected to certain foods- festive desserts, refreshing breakfasts, nourishing lunches, and more.
17. A book written before 1500- Extra credit move- who translated it? What can you learn about them? Their context, motivations, strengths, and restrictions?
Stumped? Check out: This GoodReads link here
18. A book you’re embarrassed to admit you want to read- Whatever you are intrigued by but also consider cheesy- be it self-help, young adult fiction, romance novel- whatever! Life is too short to only stick to the Great Classical Works of Yore.
Here are the books I’ll be reading this year, using the prompt list from the wonderful Modern Mrs. Darcy to start and adding 6 more of my own to bring it to 18 in 2018:
- A classic you’ve been meaning to read:
Tao Te Ching, Lao Tzu, Gia-Fu Feng (Specifically the translation by Ursula K Le Guin yassss)
- A book recommended by someone with great taste:
The Well of Ascension (Mistborn, #2), Brandon Sanderson
- A book in translation:
Invisible Planets: Contemporary Chinese Science Fiction in Translation Ken Liu (Editor, Translator), Chen Qiufan, Xia Jia, Ma Boyong, Hao Jingfang, Tang Fei, Cheng Jingbo, Liu Cixin
- A book nominated for an award in 2018: To find this pick I used: This Twitter search and picked
Shark Lady: The True Story of How Eugenie Clark Became the Ocean’s Most Fearless Scientist, Jess Keating
- A book of poetry, a play, or an essay collection:
My Dearest Hurricane: Love and Things that Looked like It, Morgan Nikola-Wren
- A book you can read in a day:
The More of Less: Finding the Life You Want Under Everything You Own, Joshua Becker
- A book that’s more than 500 pages:
Wolf Hall, Hilary Mantel
- A book by a favorite author:
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Newt Scamander (Pseudonym), J.K. Rowling, Albus Dumbledore (Foreword)
- A book recommended by a librarian or indie bookseller: (I’m broadening this to include “recommended in a podcast”)
The Art of Money: A Life-Changing Guide to Financial Happiness, Bari Tessler
- A banned book: To find this pick I used: This Wikipedia resource and choose
The Lottery, Shirley Jackson
- A memoir, biography, or book of creative nonfiction:
Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?, Mindy Kaling
- A book by an author of a different race, ethnicity, or religion than your own:
Little Fires Everywhere, Celeste Ng
- A book about a talent you admire:
Ice Skating Basics, Aaron Foeste
- An illustrated book:
Flotsam, David Wiesner
- A book that addresses a source of pain connected to your family:
Emotional Blackmail: When the People in Your Life Use Fear, Obligation, and Guilt to Manipulate You, Susan Forward, Donna Frazier
- A cookbook:
The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook: From Cauldron Cakes to Knickerbocker Glory–More Than 150 Magical Recipes for Wizards and Non-Wizards Alike, Dinah Bucholz
- A book written before 1500:
The Odyssey, Homer, specifically the new translation by Emily Wilson
- A book you’re embarrassed to admit you want to read:
The Adventures of Samurai Cat, Mark E. Rogers
My additional category choices are:
Well, those are my picks! Read what you want, enjoy what you read, and have an excellent 2018~
and buy this book- doesn’t it look great?