Reading Plans and Goals (Weekly Geeks 2009-35, BBAW Day 5)

This week on Weekly Geeks, Terri asks about reading plans for the rest of the year:[WG Relaxing URL[5].jpg]

It’s hard to believe we’re approaching the last quarter of 2009. Soon those of us in the northern hemisphere will be curled up in front of the fire (or solar heater) with our favorite wintry reads, and those in the southern will be off to the beaches with their summer books.

Do you have a plan of what you’re going to read the rest of the year? Have you had a master plan all along? If so, have you stuck to it? What helps you to decide what you’re going to read next? Challenges? Book groups? Or do you have the luxury of closing your eyes and picking any book off your shelf?

I never used to be one to plan my reading, and I still don’t like to do it very much, which is one reason I don’t usually participate in reading challenges (except for the one I’ll mention later in this post). However, accepting review books usually means accepting responsibility to post their reviews in a timely manner, and that has caused me to plan my reading more than I used to.

My first priority is catching up on the reviews for books I’ve received from LibraryThing’s Early Reviewers Program, since posting those on LT affects my getting more books from them! I got one of them up there this week, and then I have just two more to get done:

The Last Bridge by Teri Coyne (already on LT, scheduled to post here 9/28)
The Cellist of Sarajevo by Steven Galloway (currently reading)
Loved Me Once by Gail Hewitt

I have one book to read and review for an October TLC Book Tour spot:

Goldengrove: A Novel, by Francine Prose

There are two ARCs in the TBR stack that are scheduled for autumn publication, so my goal is to post their reviews close to the time they’ll become available. Both are memoirs:

The Possibility of Everything, by Hope Edelman (just published this month)
Lift, by Rebecca K. O’Connor (November publication)

I still have to read five of “my own” books – meaning books that weren’t sent to me for review, since library books aren’t a factor in my case – to achieve my goal of 20 for the 2009 RYOB Challenge. I usually don’t plan for this one, other than trying to make sure I get a couple in after a streak of review-book reads, but there is one book already on the calendar for October:

Still Alice, by Lisa Genova

Still Alice by Lisa Genova I’ve asked my sister to read this novel about an early-onset Alzheimer’s patient along with me, and I hope to entice her into posting a guest review or discussing it with me here on the blog. If you’ve been reading here for awhile, you may remember that my mother died of Alzheimer’s at the age of 69. This year is the tenth anniversary of her passing, and as has become our tradition, we will remember her by participating in our local Alzheimer’s Association Memory Walk. My mom died on October 8, and the Walk will take place on October 17; reading this novel during that month is a way of tying my reading to my cause. (And if you’d like to support our family team in our efforts to raise funds to help defeat this disease, I have a donation page – there’s a link to it, and our team’s progress, in the right sidebar of the blog now.)

Aside from these commitments, I have other review books to get to and plenty of my own books on the shelves – I just hope to read whenever I can, and whatever I find appealing.

Today’s official BBAW Blogging Theme is “setting goals.” Although it was intended for blogging goals, I think this discussion of reading goals isn’t completely out of keeping with the spirit of the day.

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  1. I am doing the Goldengrove tour as well!

    I have a lot of books that I just need to hunker down with this weekend and read. Time is such a valuable item and carving out enough without throwing off the delicate balance that is called "Ti" is difficult. LOL.

  2. Ti – I totally get the "delicate balance" thing :-). One of my challenges continues to be finding the one between reading and blogging time – it's easier for me to hunker down with books if my computer is somewhere else!

    Marie – Same here. It's the "organization as self-defense against chaos" principle.

    Kathy (Bermudaonion) – I'm really only doing tours for TLC these days, because I like Trish and Lisa :-). But I'm cutting back on review books in general for now.

  3. Since I started accepting review books, my reading has been much more planned than it was before–although I admit I still pick up books according to mood more often than not–unless it's for a tour with a set date. My first year of blogging, challenges dictated much of my reading, but that fell by the wayside quickly.

    I was sent a review copy of Still Alice awhile ago but have not yet read it. My husband's uncle has early onset Alzheimer's and its been so hard on the family. My grandfather had Alzheimer's and my grandmother suffered from vascular dementia–different, but similar symptom wise. I think what you are doing is wonderful, Florinda, and I wish you luck reaching your goal!

  4. Wendy (Literary Feline) – That need to plan my reading even more is the major reason I really don't do challenges. I don't mind doing some planning – my accounting brain tends to prefer structure 🙂 – but I don't want to take all the fun out of it.

    As for my fund-raising goal, I need to let my mother-in-law know we're signed up to walk again this year. She's always a generous donor. I hope you'll consider reading Still Alice along with me, if you can find that review copy :-).