So, it’s that time of year again when everyone is setting their goals and resolutions for the New Year. And whilst most people want to lose weight, or eat healthier, or quit smoking, us bookworms just want to read lots of books in the coming year! And not only that, but we want to formalise that goal by publicly setting ourselves a target on Goodreads!
But how exactly do you go about setting that target? In a post I wrote a couple of weeks ago about being a slow reader in the blogosphere, I touched on this issue, and about how reading isn’t a race or competition, and how enjoying books was more important than numbers and statistics.
However, I definitely think the Goodreads Challenge is a fun way of getting involved in the online reading community, and a great way to keep track of your reading. Setting a target is also a great way to encourage yourself to read more, and it’s extra motivation having the accountability of all your reader friends being able to see it.
But at the same time, reading is meant to be a fun and relaxing hobby, so surely putting pressure on yourself is a bad thing? Especially when you find that it’s affecting your reading choices, eg. you are avoiding longer books you really want to read, and sticking primarily with short, quick reads.
The past couple of years I’ve set my targets at a comfortable level for me: 50 books in 2017 (but I read 60), and 60 in 2018 (currently I’m edging up to 62). This is an amount of books I know I’ll reasonably be able to read in a year, but also doesn’t allow me much scope to slack off.
However, I’ve recently been wondering whether to up my target to challenge myself more, and try and make a bigger dent in my TBR in 2019, or whether to go the other way and lower it to decrease the pressure.
The fact that it’s called the Goodsreads ‘Challenge’ makes you feel like you should be setting a target that you consider to be a challenge… But at the same time the Goodreads platform is more about keeping track of books you’ve read, seeing ratings and reviews and interacting with other readers. In short, it’s about enjoying reading, and if there’s a chance that a challenging target is going to get in the way of your enjoyment, then that’s not really in the spirit of the website.
So I’d love to know: what’s your approach when setting your Goodreads Challenge target? Do you like to challenge yourself, or stick to a target that’s more comfortable and use it mainly just to keep track of your reading?