Happy 2023 everyone, and welcome to this third and final installment of my 2022 reading wrap-up!
In Part 1 of my wrap-up, I described my overall reflections as well as my reading stats for the year (with fun graphs!). And in Part 2, I shared my top books of the year.
Finally, in Part 3, I will be reflecting on my reading goals from 2022, updating my goals for 2023, and sharing some plans I have for my blog moving forward into this new year.
Without further ado, here are my final literary reflections of 2022:
To compare with 2021’s reading wrap-up, click HERE.
2022 Reading Goal Reflection
- Read 72 books:
- Final: 66/72
- This is the first time in a few years that I actually didn’t meet my reading goal! However, I’m not really beating myself up about it. I hardly read anything in July because my husband and I went on our big trip to Peru. We were there for about two weeks, during which time I was out exploring and having new experiences (which didn’t give us much time to read). And in the weeks of July leading up to our trip, I was preparing! International travel is a big undertaking, and this was the first big trip we’d done in a long time due to the pandemic. So I was pretty busy that month and didn’t read a lot.
There are a couple other reasons I may not have read as much, including: I took on some longer books this year! The Count of Monte Cristo is an obvious one, but The Help was also pretty long! And both of these ended up being my top books of the year, so I’m realizing that I don’t want to avoid reading longer books just so that I can say I read a higher quantity of books by the end of the year.
Also, I spent more time exploring other hobbies. I played new video games, watched new TV shows… Reading isn’t the only valid hobby, and I’m glad I made time for some new experiences this year!
Finally, in looking back at my previous wrap-up from 2021, I predicted even then that I would read less this year due to my goal of reading more of my own “grown up” books (the books from my personal library). And it looks like I was right! I considered binge reading as many short books as I could in December just to meet my goal, but ultimately decided that that would take the joy out of reading, and if that’s the case then what’s the point? I feel good about how I approached my reading this year, and that’s what matters!
- Read (at least) 25 books that I physically own:
- Final: 25/25
- I’m glad I at least managed to meet this goal! It felt good to prioritize the books that I’ve so lovingly (and painstakingly at times) collected, and several of them even made my top books of this year! I’m excited to see what other gems are hidden in this collection of mine!
- Read more historical fiction:
- Final: 11
- At first, I thought I had failed at this goal, but after looking at my graphs I actually think I did okay! I’m also currently in the middle of a historical fiction book that I didn’t quite manage to finish before the end of the year. So it averages out to about one historical fiction book per month. Which I think is great! I tend to read a pretty diverse array of genres, so the fact that I can say I consistently read historical fiction throughout the year seems like a win to me! Also, several of the books I read for this goal made my list for top books of the year, so that’s pretty great too!
- Read (at least) 5 classic novels:
- Final: 5/5
- This is actually one of my favorite reading goals that I set each year. I love to challenge myself and get out of my comfort zone, and I’ve found that reading classics is a great way to do that. I especially love listening to them as audiobooks, because they’re even more accessible when they have a great narrator. The five that I read this year were The Secret Garden, The Bell Jar, A Little Princess, The Count of Monte Cristo, and Anne of Green Gables. I loved all of them and ended up giving all of them five stars (with the exception of the Bell Jar, which I still rated very close to five stars)!
- Read (at least) 5 books in Spanish:
- Final: 2/5
- Yikes! This was probably my biggest goal-related failure of the year. I think I was partially inhibited by trying to read as many books as I could this year because, similar to being intimidated by the length of a book, I’m sometimes hesitant to read books in Spanish because I’m much slower at reading in a language that isn’t my native tongue. I’m hopeful that 2023 will be my year to finally meet this goal!
2023 Reading Goal Setting
- Read 48 books
- I significantly lowered my overall quantity goal for this year! This is primarily because of the goal I’m setting to read more lengthy books this year (see below), and I want it to feel attainable. Also, I would like to (hopefully) travel more this year and make time for other things that bring me joy, and I don’t want this goal to make me feel stressed. Speaking of stress, I get enough stress from my job and this can sometimes lead to reading slumps. And that’s okay! I don’t want reading slumps to cause me additional stress because I might not be meeting a certain goal.
- Read (at least) 20 books that I physically own:
- This was my husband’s idea from last year and I’m going to repeat it this year! I loved having the extra motivation to read books from my own collection, and I’m excited to see what other new favorites I discover this year! I did lower it slightly from last year, but that’s just to correspond with lower overall quantity goal.
- Read more long books:
- Like the genre goal I usually set, this is really vague. Not only is it vague, but it’s subjective too! What counts as a long book? There’s no right or wrong answer here. My idea with this is that there are books that I’ve had for years that I still haven’t read because they seem long and I worry about how long they’ll take me to get through. But I want to get over that this year! This also includes audiobooks. My general thought right now is that a long book is around 450+ pages, and a long audiobook is around 17+ hours… I’ll be completely up front in admitting that this goal is entirely subjective, but those are the general parameters I’m considering. I can adjust them if necessary! The point is just to get me over my feeling of intimidation when it comes to big books. One long book I’d really like to get to this year is The Hummingbird’s Daughter by Luis Alberto Urrea (which clocks in around 500 pages).
- Read (at least) 5 classic novels:
- I’m repeating this goal again! I think it’s the perfect amount to get me out of my comfort zone without it feeling overwhelming or chore-like. One particular classic novel I’d like to read this year is Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (which could also possibly count toward my big books goal!).
- Read (at least) 5 books in Spanish:
- I’m keeping this goal as well since I didn’t quite accomplish it in 2022 (or in 2021). I think lowering my overall quantity goal will help with this since I’m slower at reading in Spanish. Also, I generally read middle grade Spanish books to work toward this goal, but I have some young adult and adult books in Spanish that I’d really like to try reading! But these will take me even longer, so I’m glad that I decided to really lower that quantity goal.
2023 Blogging Plans
- I have so much fun running this blog! I especially love doing Top 10 Tuesday posts and the Travel Thursday tag. I’ve really fallen behind on posting these, so I’m hoping to get back on track this year.
- I was hoping that since it’s my fourth year of teaching I would be better at managing my time and stress, but alas… I’ve been pretty overwhelmed with work this year, and when it comes to prioritizing reading or blogging, I tend to choose reading (which I think makes sense considering I can’t run a book blog if I’m not reading books). I run this blog for my own enjoyment, so I’m going to continue doing what I need to do to manage my stress and keep this little blogging project fun for myself! Hopefully if I prioritize doing what brings me joy, I’ll naturally get back on track soon! Because I really do love being able to put more time into this blog.
- As far as reviews go, I’m planning on continuing to focus on middle grade reviews. As an elementary educator, this just feels more purposeful for me (and I feel more qualified to write those reviews!). That being said, my husband gave me an idea for a slightly different way to approach my reviews, so I may experiment with that this upcoming year!
- Finally, I have an idea for a new type of tag that I’d like to start! It’s similar to the Travel Thursday tag in that it combines another interest of mine with my interest in books. I’ll keep it a surprise for now, but I’ve actually already drafted one such post and I’m planning to start posting them when I have a few more ready to go. So keep an eye out for that!
How did your reading go this year? Any stand-out books to recommend?
Let me know in the comments! And thanks for reading (my blog, but also just in general)!