My Confessions: Oh the Questions

How do you do it?

How do you finish that many books in a year?

How do you find the time between being a wife, significant other, partner, mother, father, friend, employee, employer, to have the ability to finish so many books? So. Many. Books.

The other day I took note that I am one book away from increasing my Goodreads counter to one-hundred. Which is a great feat considering I only started with 20 books thinking that was a lot and I had no chance of succeeding.

I’ve noticed a lot of people will have two- or three-hundred books and I’m just floored when they have the “audacity” to increase their goal by another 10 or 20. What are you doing that I’ve missed in the reading equation.

Am I blogging too much and reading too little? Am I too detail oriented or just not a fast enough reader. These are questions I started pondering nearly a year ago, and I’ve yet to find the answer amongst the Blogger Confessions of my book-blogging colleagues.

Perhaps a passerby will be able to enlighten me on the how-to’s of the book blogging industry. I’ve clearly been doing this for a while now and thought I had a good amount of knowledge in what needed to be known, but now I don’t. What’s the trick, the catch to be able to read such an astronomical amount of literature and still manage to get the right amount of sleep every night. Do my books have too many pages? But I promise I make up for that by reading children’s picture books. What do I need to know? What have I missed?

There is no toolbox you can pick up at the Google Store to help a reviewer get started. There are things you pick up along the way. Maybe I took the wrong path or just didn’t ask enough questions in the beginning. Oh the questions, there will always be questions. I hope one day I can find somebody to answer them all.



About Black ' n Write Reviewer

Library Tech grad who is currently working on a BA in Political Science and filling all her time with books.
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37 Responses to My Confessions: Oh the Questions

  1. Kelley says:

    Okay, first of all, I think it is awesome that you are well on your way to reading 100 books in one year. My sister has set that same goal for herself for the past few years now and this is the first year she’s actually going to meet it (and she basically has all the free time for reading that she wants). This year I’m also somehow approaching 100, which kind of amazes me, because I didn’t think I could do that!

    So, all I’m saying is — your current numbers are freaking AWESOME. As for how others do it, reading 200+ books in a year? Pshh… I wish I knew! I suspect part of it is that they are just faster readers than I am. And they probably have a lot more free time on their hands.

    • *Phew*
      The way you started this conversation, I totally thought you were gonna cuss me out! lol

      Thank you, I’m quite shocked that I’ve managed to achieve the number of books read. Hoping that if I make that happen this year, next year my optimal goal will go up by five. (It’s a small number, but I think 5 book increments will make it less stressful)
      So how is your sister coming along with her goal?
      You’re probably right about the others: more time + faster reading = more books. Or perhaps the equation is faster reading = more books? Who knows, I supposed in the grand scheme of things, we, as book bloggers, are not out to compete with everybody else. We read what we like and blog about the things we love.

      • Kelley says:

        You’re absolutely right! Most of the time I just feel like if I’m competing with anyone, it’s my own looming TBR pile! My sister’s at 98/100 right now, so I’m super proud of her! I’m at 101, but at least a dozen of those are novellas or short stories, which don’t count all on their own, imo.

        Anyway, best of luck with your goal for this year, and for increasing it next year! Honestly, I think smaller increments are good. That way there’s a better chance that you’ll meet the new goal. 😉

  2. Lizzy' says:

    It depends. I had originally planned on reading 150 books this year, but cut it back after family issues took up a large chunk of my time for 2 months. Right now, I’m at 103 of 125. I’m behind schedule due to Nanowrimo, but I know I’ll be able to pump out the rest next month and hit that number.

    I stay at home with my kid. I work from home. When I have a spare minute, I read. I don’t watch much television or play any of those time-consuming Facebook games (although, I have been known to get horribly addicted to them). Reading and writing are my only hobbies. Some days I don’t even leave the house and socialization with other human beings only happens on weekends when my hubby is home. I guess I’m a happy recluse. Book characters are my friends. 🙂

    • Haha
      I love the “book characters are my friends” comment. I can completely identify with this. I try to avoid Facebook in general, way too much drama. I go to work. I will, shamefully admit, I sometimes read at stop lights. Yup, I’m that person. Or drive-thrus. But glad you have managed to admit a secret: must be a stay-at-home-somebody 😉
      I don’t do NaNoWriMo.. not my gig, but I am doing really well at attempting to participate in NaNoBloMo 🙂 How many more words do you have left to pump out?

  3. My goal is to read 100 books this year. Originally it was 150 but then I got pregnant and exhausted all the time and despite being on track to finish 150, I quickly fell behind and realized that it just wasn’t going to happen. So now I’m on goal, possibly going to fall behind again but I have a few books on the go at the moment.

    You are doing amazing and as for people who read 200+ books a year, I haven’t got a clue how they do

    • I understand the exhaustion thing. Although, I tried to wake up at 5 to get in a workout and I’ve been exhausted for the rest of the week.. Screw consistency! I just want to hit the snooze. It doesn’t help that I have 3 cats, and two of them demand attention at some point in the middle of the night lol

  4. Julie S. says:

    Woohoo at your current numbers! I’m right around that as well, I did notice that since I started book blogging my reading has slowed down a bit. Some of these awesome people who I follow that read 200+ books a year must have a secret like they read or listen to books at work all day and so can get through more books. Some of us only have a few free hours a day heh. So great job with what you can accomplish. I’ve been trying to speed up my reading by not focusing on words so carefully and hearing them in my mind – I’ve seen some tricks online that I’m trying to do but it is hard to remember to do that. So we just do the best we can and keep reading and enjoying. Ok enough of this rambly post.

    • Thank you!
      Honestly, the only way that I’ve managed to get my numbers up so high is children’s books and audiobooks. But you’re right, those 200+ people must have a secret and just don’t want to divulge 😉
      Good luck with your goal! 🙂

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  7. I think a lot of it has to do with priorities — a lot of the 200+ book readers I know don’t really watch TV or have many other hobbies besides blogging. A person’s ability to read quickly must have something to do with it too. Personally I’m a slow reader, so I try not to compare myself to others.

    • Oh for sure. I’m pretty sure in the grand scheme of things, it’s futile to compare yourself to what or how others are conducting their business. Because our reading habits also wind up being affected by several things, including preference of the length of books that we read to the difficulty level of comprehension.

  8. I, too, set my yearly goal at 100 and I’m not going to make it this year (again). My kids are a big distraction for me but also ti’s because I’m a slow reader.

    I know a few readers who read 300+ books a year. It blows me away. You know what holds us slow readers down? Subvocalization. It’s the reading the words aloud inside our head that slows us down. There are ways to stop doing this (like counting 1-2-3-4 over and over in your head while you’re reading), which works, but I can never stick with it.

    • Interesting. I didn’t know about this. For some unknown reason the idea of counting as I read would make it easier for me to forget what I’ve read.
      But I hope that whomever else reads this finds that tip handy, and is able to properly utilize it 🙂

      • I only recently learned of subvocalization but once I read up on it, I was like “that’s what I do!”. LOL And I have the same concern, that I’ll forget what I’ve read if I don’t read aloud in my head. I guess that’s why I have never been able to stop doing it all together.

        • haha
          From what you quickly summarized in your last comment, “reading aloud in my head”, I know this is exactly what I do. At the same time the process of reading this way helps me, especially with bigger less common words (for my vocabulary). It helps me grasp pronunciation and keeps it stuck in the membrane a little longer.

  9. I met my goal a few months ago (and I surprised myself with it), but I decided to leave it and see how far I can go. I think that the most important thing about reading is that you enjoy yourself. It’s not about how many books you read, but how much you loved the ones you’ve read 🙂

    • Couldn’t agree more with you. The more often I’ve had these brief conversations with other bloggers, I’ve learned that it’s just that: it’s about how much you loved the books that you did have a chance to “consume” 🙂

  10. Some people are retired / unemployed / stay at home parent with kids in school some of the day / fast readers. I’m none of the above, and also very purposeful when I read because I have a bad memory. I realize though, even if you blog mostly about books – it really doesn’t matter how many books you read, because there’s a lot of bookishness you can talk about besides reviews. I’m aiming for 52 books – 1 book a week, and that’s all I have the time to do currently.

    • These are very true. I’ve, quite honestly, surprised myself at the number of books I’ve managed to get in so far. I don’t even think I could classify it as forced because they were all books I wanted to read in the first place! Some were disappointments, but that comes with the territory. Interesting way of setting your goal. Do you have a tendency of finishing up 2 in the week?

  11. Hmm my goal since I started blogging is to read 100 books per year, and I try to read 5-10 books a month. I’m a senior in high school, and I read during classes where it’s boring or super easy (my Statistics class and AP Art History) and then I do hw etc. then an hour before I sleep, I read more and I read about 70 pgs. an hour. I normally finish books around 2-3 days.

    • I wish I had that much time to dedicate to reading. Unfortunately, my job consists of checking out/in books more than I can read them. Ha! So I usually wind up reading during red lights and a couple of hours before bed, and weekends between laundry and getting to the nearest coffee shop to take advantage of their better Wifi than I have at home 🙂
      Best of luck with your goal!

  12. Shannelle C. says:

    A hundred! That’s just amazing. That’s what I think whenever I see people have set those as their goals. I don’t think you should beat yourself up about the number of books you can read, because even though you read that many, would it be worth it? And it depends on the situation.

    I don’t buy many books, I’m currently swamped with projects, and even if I had free time, it would go to my computer. But that’s okay with me, because I like reading at my own pace. And I’m happy with it, because I wouldn’t know what to do if i read that many books. I wouldn’t even have the money to buy that much, and my library’s worthless.

    • Interesting. Why do you believe your library is worthless?
      Ebooks are fantastic too. Audiobooks work well too.
      I honestly don’t beat myself up over books I can’t finish this year because I know next year is just as open to my reading schedule as the years last.
      Good luck with finding more time getting lost in another persons world.

      • Shannelle C. says:

        Bit doesn’t ever stock anything new. And it doesn’t have YA, mostly because our school is a Christian school. And that’s the only library I know.

        • Oh that’s interesting. There are a lot of great YA “Christian friendly” books out there though. A lot of times there’s an unfortunate about of limitation for certain libraries and what they can carry. For instance an Islamic elementary school might not carry titles like “Captain Underpants” or “Sir Fartsalot” purely because of their titles, and maybe some content, generally these books are fantastic to encourage students to actually get into reading. I know I have several students that would much rather read “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” than “The Hunger Games”.Have you ever thought about making recommendations that would fit into the library’s book purchasing policy?

          • Shannelle C. says:

            No, the school’s just really rigid about these things. They really wouldn’t approve at all.

          • What kind of books does the library have?

          • Shannelle C. says:

            Old classics that nobody really reads, the books for the book report, and a lot of books with crumbling pages.

          • Interesting. Have you written to the school about their selection? Or spoken to the librarian about this and brought up the lack of newer selection on the shelves? If you are able to get a copy of how books are selected based on the library’s criteria, I believe if you write up a great argument with some suggestions or recommendations that might fit into it, you might be able to not only help improve the library’s selection now, but also leaving a legacy for future students to enjoy.

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