Hello All! I’m back and ready to write. I took a very significant break from this blog and from my YouTube channel. Needless to say, it was a lot. I was everywhere and nowhere and that wasn’t what I wanted. Having taken the time to reflect and to make some changes to my blog, I feel I’m more clear-headed about what I want to achieve through blogging. But before I tell you all about those goals, let me take you back briefly through my year reading in 2017 because despite not blogging I was reading.
Now my reading goals for 2017 were specific and sadly I didn’t accomplish them completely. However I’m still pretty happy about what I read and how much I read. I had a goal to read all of Bernice McFadden’s novels and I failed. I read all of her novels except, My Name is a Butterfly (out of print but is being released this year :)) and Finding Amos. I didn’t reread The Book of Harlan and Glorious. Although, I’m sure I’ll reread The Book of Harlan one day. As for the others I read for the first time, they were all very good and each had something special about them. They are like her children. McFadden really has a way with telling a story and inventing characters. Of all the ones I read I think Glorious is the book I least preferred and that was because I felt it was too short.
I encourage you all to take a year to read one author in order of publication. It’s a wonderful way to learn about writing and how an author hones her/his skills over time. We are all passionate readers but when we sit down to write we forget about the challenge of the exercise of writing. It’s not easy and it is quite a solitary activity for most of the time.
My next challenge was to read more Caribbean authors. Unfortunately I didn’t read as many as I wanted to, but I’m not giving up on that one. I also wanted to read more pages last year than I did in 2016 but failed at that too. I was short about 200 pages. Oh well but I read 59 books and almost got to the page count so I read more big books this year. That really showed for my Goodreads Big Book challenge last year when I read 13 and had pledged to read 10. I was really happy about that. I read some great big books and only 2 of them were disappointing – American Pastoral by Philip Roth and Small Great Things by Jodi Piccoult. Let’s just try not to dwell on those 2. Two duds out of 59 ain’t bad! Lastly I pledged to read at least one Russian novel and that just never happened. Every time I culled my shelves for something to read, I skipped right over the Russian novels – too daunting. One day…
Now on to my goals for 2018, I have set my Goodreads challenge to read 60 books this year. I usually set my goal at 50 and always go over. I hope this will push me to read more and watch less YouTube and television. I’m primarily looking forward to increasing my page count significantly. Next challenge will be to read more Caribbean authors. I hope to read at least ten. My last reading challenge is to participate in #readingblackout which is spearheaded by Denise D. Cooper at Art Books Live Denise D. Cooper on YouTube. She’ll be reading only African – American writers this year. I’ll be joining her for January, February, and March. I may join in again later on in the year. If you’re interested I encourage you to join in too if only for a month.
You know #readsoullit will be going on in February in honor of Black History Month as usual with a photo challenge on Instagram and a read along on YouTube. I’ll be posting on that shortly. Now another literary challenge will be for me to keep a bullet journal of my reading and my life and most of all to continue writing the novel I’ve been working on. I’d really liked to write more and to eventually get to the point where I finish something – short story collection, novel, etc. anything!
So that’s all on what I’m reading and on what I’m doing literary wise for the year. I hope I haven’t once again bitten off more than I can chew but I think I can make these challenges work for me. What about you? Have you decided to make any plans to read or to write something? Or are you one of those people who clams up once the challenge has been announced? If you are no worries. I can be like that sometimes too. You know I’m Fickle Fred. 😉
Happy New Year to you all!!! I wish you loads of excellent reading and writing in 2018!!!