I Understand It Now

Y’all! I just realized something and it’s life changing!

The books that got me hooked on reading were mysteries. PIs. Homicide detectives. Murder mysteries solved by the ex cop who left the department under a cloud. You know what I’m talking about. And back in the first couple of years after high school when I was reading the most, I was reading mysteries exclusively. No young adult. No literary fiction. No classics. No nonfiction. I was reading what I enjoyed reading the most.

Then I tried branching out. Tried to become more “well read”, whatever the hell that means. And I hit a wall. I’ve been clawing at it now for several years. When I was in college I wouldn’t read textbooks or review notes. Every break I had I’d pull out my current novel on campus and read! Not sure how you are, but usually after I read I want a nap. Fell asleep numerous times in class because I wasn’t about to talk about Alexander the Great’s empire right after reading about the unsolved murder of a kid buried in the hillside. Like, priorities!

Call me stupid or crazy or just not “well read”, but I’m going back to what made me love books to begin with. I have plenty of non mystery books to pick from when I feel the time is right, but it isn’t right now. I’m currently reading my third detective novel in a row. Not stopping even if I have to buy more.

PS: I have a rule to not read any author twice within any 5 books, but I think I’m breaking it.

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Back to Being Myself?

Over the weekend I finished my first TWO books of the year! Remember guys, I read a grand total of 5 throughout ALL of 2018! It’d take a monumental disaster to not fly right past that number in the coming weeks.

But how is this back to being myself? Well I’ll tell ya. I was in college from August, 2010 until May, 2013. During those four calendar years I read 123 books. In the five calendar years ending in 2018 I read 51. For some reason I’ve gotten away from being me. I love books more than anyone I’ve ever met in person. I have two book-related tattoos and want more. I have my YouTube channel, about books. I have my IG, about books. This blog.

So I’m saying fuck it. I am who I am. I remember those years. I don’t know if happy is the best word, but I was happy. Happy to be reading quite a bit. Happy to be building this blog. And happy to be me.

What’s all this mean? More reading (as evidenced by this previous weekend). And consistent online. Here. IG (posted twice yesterday after almost two years). YouTube. So follow me everywhere at those links!

First Charity of 2019 is…

I told y’all my intention is to donate to different non-profit organizations each month with the goal of donating $1000 for the calendar year. I’ve selected my first one. The Barbara Bush Houston Literacy Foundation.

Their primary focus is to have Houston area children reading at grade level by third grade. They’ve created an online tool that enables anyone to find literacy-related volunteer opportunities in their area. And my favorite of all, children can create a wish list of books they want and the organization will work to fulfill the wish list by working with partners and donors.

They have a high rating on both Charity Navigator and Guidestar.

Very happy to support an organization tackling literacy in my city and will use their online tool to volunteer later this year!

Broken Promise, But Not Really

I haven’t made a goal of not buying any new books in 2019. Which means I’m almost certainly going to buy some. I have a disease. 😂

Besides my favorite authors and series, whenever I enjoy an adaptation before reading the book I always want to go back and read it. Every single time. I know I’m not the only one, and don’t yell at me for not reading the book first to begin with. Sometimes we don’t even know there’s a book until afterward.

Recently I’ve watched two adaptations I really enjoyed. One was a movie and one was a series. Now I want both books. But I’m stingy. I never pay regular price and prefer to have Half Price coupons when I go. They only come out four times a year. Hmm.

Do you always read the book first when there’s an adaptation out or on the way?

How Many of 2018’s Bestselling Books Did You Read?

I told y’all I bought a grand total of one book last year. So I’ll be the first to answer my own question. Uno! Only because it was an old one that wasn’t a new release.

But I was curious to know which books made it among the bestselling.

Even before looking up the list I already knew Michelle Obama far outpaced everyone else, but those other political books making this list were a bit surprising. Although when I really think about it, it isn’t surprising at all.

If I recall, book sales were up in 2018 over 2017. With that in mind I was also expecting just a few more titles over the 1 million mark. But let’s be honest, a million books is A LOT of books. So maybe I’m just silly.

How many of the bestselling books of 2018 have you read? (The list isn’t mine, so if you find a different one with different rankings, okay by me).

Travel…Books?

I learned yesterday that I have about a month and a half of paid time off in 2019. Since I only work weekdays, that actually comes out to 6 9-day trips if I want it to. And oh boy, I think I do.

I’ve never read a travel book. I can think of a few super crazy popular ones off the top of my head. But now I’m curious. Are they any good? Honestly, I almost think a travel IG account would be more interesting than a book. Not those accounts with attractive people that get thousands of likes and followers because people find them attractive. But more of the regular person who gets to travel around and documents those activities through photos.

But back to books. Have you read any travel books? Secondly, have you read one before/after a trip and thought it would have created and better experience?

So It Begins

I started reading my first book of the new year last night. I know what it takes to reach my goal. I just have to actually do it.

A few years ago in the midst of my busiest semester in college I came closest to hitting my annual target of 50 books. I read 44 even though I had several calendar months of no reading at all.

I know the simplest way to look at a 50 book goal is essentially to read a book a week for the duration of the year. That’s the easy way, but unrealistic for me. No matter how much I read, I know there are going to be blank periods. It’s just how I am. My focus is to read as much as I can during my active periods because a down one is around the corner.

What’s your reading goal for this year and is it the same every year?