2017 Reading Challenges!

Hi, everyone! Today’s post is EXTRA-SPECIAL and VERY EXCITING to me: It’s all about the reading challenges I signed up for this year! I aim to make 2017 my best reading year yet and I can’t wait to read books upon books that count toward these challenges. Naturally, since it’s January ninth, I’ve already begun working towards my reading goals.

As usual, I signed up for Goodreads’ annual reading challenge, setting my goal to one hundred books. I’ve done this challenge every year since 2014 and thoroughly enjoyed it but since I also wanted something more this year, I added two other challenges.

The first reading challenge I signed up for is Book Riot’s 2017 Read Harder Challenge:

  1. Read a book about sports
  2. Read a debut novel
  3. Read a book about books
  4. Read a book set in Central or South America written by an author who is from there
  5. Read a book by an immigrant or with a central immigration narrative
  6. Read an all-ages comic
  7. Read a book published between 1900 and 1950
  8. Read a travel memoir
  9. Read a book you’ve read before
  10. Read a book that is set within one hundred miles of your location
  11. Read a book that is set more than five thousand miles from your location
  12. Read a fantasy novel
  13. Read a nonfiction book about technology
  14. Read a book about war
  15. Read a YA or middle grade novel by an author who identifies as LGBTQ+
  16. Read a book that has been banned or frequently challenged in your country
  17. Read a classic by an author of color
  18. Read a superhero comic with a female lead
  19. Read a book in which a character of color goes on a spiritual journey
  20. Read an LGBTQ+ romance novel
  21. Read a book published by a micropress
  22. Read a collection of stories by a woman
  23. Read a collection of poetry in translation on a theme other than love
  24. Read a book wherein all point-of-view characters are people of color

The second reading challenge is called Around The Year In 52 Books:

  1. A book from the 2016 Goodreads Choice Awards
  2. A book with at least two perspectives
  3. A book you meant to read in 2016
  4. A title that doesn’t contain the letter “E”
  5. A work of historical fiction
  6. A book being released as a movie in 2017
  7. A book with an animal on the cover or in the title
  8. A book written by a person of color
  9. A book in the middle of your TBR list
  10. A dual-timeline novel
  11. A category from another challenge
  12. A book based on a myth
  13. A book recommended by one of your favorite authors
  14. A book with a strong female character
  15. A book written or set in Scandinavia
  16. A mystery
  17. A book with illustrations
  18. A really long book (600+ pages)
  19. A New York Times best-seller
  20. A book that you’ve owned for a while but haven’t gotten around to reading
  21. A book that is a continuation of a book you’ve already read
  22. A book by an author you haven’t read before
  23. A book from the BBC’s “The Big Read” list
  24. A book written by at least two authors
  25. A book about a famous historical figure
  26. An adventure book
  27. A book by one of your favorite authors
  28. A nonfiction book
  29. A book published outside of the four major publishing houses
  30. A book from Goodreads’ Top 100 YA Books
  31. A book from a sub-genre of your favorite genre
  32. A book with a long title (5+ words, excluding subtitle)
  33. A magical realism novel
  34. A book set in or by an author from the Southern Hemisphere
  35. A book where one of the main characters is royalty
  36. A Hugo Award winner or nominee
  37. A book you chose randomly
  38. A novel inspired by a work of classic literature
  39. A work of epistolary fiction
  40. A book published in 2017
  41. A book with an unreliable narrator
  42. A best book of the 21st century (so far)
  43. A book with a chilling atmosphere
  44. A recommendation from “What Should I Read Next?”
  45. A book with a one-word title
  46. A time travel novel
  47. A past suggestion that didn’t win
  48. A banned book
  49. A book from someone else’s bookshelf
  50. A Penguin Modern Classic, any edition
  51. A collection (e.g. of essays, short stories, poetry, plays, et cetera)
  52. A book set in a fictional location

Together the two challenges add up to only seventy-six* of the one hundred books I intend to read this year, which gives me plenty of wiggle room to choose books that don’t count toward either.

*Assuming I don’t double-count any books, which I’m not planning on doing unless I get particularly desperate.

While it’s entirely possible that I’ve bitten off more than I can chew – especially considering how greatly depression affected my reading habits in both 2015 and 2016 – it’s really important to me that I at least try these challenges.

Since we’re several days into the new year by now, I’ve already begun both of them and look forward to seeing how I progress from here. I’ve been posting on the respective forums and enjoyed seeing what everyone else is reading – although, unlike some other participants, I haven’t created elaborate checklists with every single book I plan to read for these challenges. I do have a vague list in my head of some of the books I’d like to get to this year, but I know that I wouldn’t be able to stick to a predetermined list for months: I’d get bored or distracted. So I just didn’t make one.

I want to change up my reading habits and, in discovering new and exciting books to read, rediscover why I loved reading in the first place. I want to stretch my mind by selecting books outside the categories from which I normally read.

For instance, I read a lot of #OwnVoices books and diverse lit, but I haven’t read much historical fiction lately. Or poetry. Or long books, for that matter. I also hope that participating in these challenges will help me find the motivation to read steadily instead of taking breaks that last for weeks or even months as I have in the past. (Reading slumps are THE WORST.)

I hope that these challenges lend greater structure to my reading habits.

I hope that this year, I read more widely, more voraciously, and more rewardingly.

Are you doing any reading challenges in 2017? What are they and what made you decide to sign up for them?

P.S. Become my friend on Goodreads to follow along with my reading challenge progress throughout the year! I think I’d like to post periodic updates about both of these challenges on this blog, but haven’t yet decided just how often that should happen. Stay tuned!


About nevillegirl

Elizabeth. University of Iowa class of 2019. Triple majoring in English & Creative Writing, Journalism, and Gender, Women's, & Sexuality Studies. Twenty-one-year-old daydreamer, introvert, voracious reader, aspiring writer, and lesbian. Passionate about feminism, mental health, comic books, and cats.
This entry was posted in Books and Reading!, Nevillegirl's Adventures!, Non-Neville Posts, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to 2017 Reading Challenges!

  1. LyfWithEm says:

    This looks so exciting! Good luck!! 😀 x

  2. themagicviolinist says:

    Although I haven’t signed up for any particular challenge (besides my usual Goodreads one), these look like lots of fun! It’d definitely be hard to keep my attention with certain ones (like a book about sports–eh), but I guess that’s the point. Good luck! 🙂

  3. Good luck with all of your challenges! I’m the same as you, I haven’t read a really long book in a while. It’s hard to spend so much time on one book when there is so much to read and only so much time to do it. I hope you enjoy all of your challenges and that you discover some amazing novels (or graphic novel and comics).

    • nevillegirl says:

      Thank you! 😀

      EXACTLY! Over the next year I’m going to have to relearn how to take my time with books, which means spending a long time on ones that I enjoy (even if it takes absolutely forever to finish them) instead of plowing through books I don’t really care for just to hit my Goodreads challenge goal. 🙂

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