I’ve had an… interesting 2021. I feel like nothing much happened but I’ve also had a few realizations. A fair warning, like my brain at the moment, this post is a little all over the place. It’s really like three blog posts shoved into one.
In this post, I’ll go over my 2021, my goals for 2022, and my plan moving forward.
Anyways, here’s to a better 2022.
2021 End of Year Survey
The End of Year Survey was created by Jamie at The Perpetual Page-Turner. I’ve filled it out a few times over the years and it’s always interesting to have to look back on it. I didn’t have the most spectacular reading year in 2021 so this is an abridged version.
2021 READING STATS
Number Of Books You Read: 23.5
The 0.5 is for the half of Echoes & Empires by Morgan Rhodes I managed to get through before the year ended. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to finish it before the ball dropped in NYC.
But yeah, I didn’t have the best reading year in 2021. 23.5 is less than half my goal of 65 books. 😭
In my defense, I’ve been reading around 60 books a year since 2018 so 65 didn’t seem like too much of a reach when I was setting my goals for 2021. I just failed to factor in the fact that 2021 would be my first full year of working full-time. Working full time meant I was more mentally drained every day which resulted in me choosing to enjoy more passive activities like watching tv, over reading after I got off work.
Number of Re-Reads: 6
About a quarter of my reads were rereads. I guess I was just in the mood to revisit old favorites.
I’m probably going to be rereading a lot more in 2022. One of my goals for the new year is to finally finish reading some of the series I started. That’s going to require a lot of rereading because I’m terrible at remembering what happens in books.
Other Fun Stats
- I completely failed my goal of reading books off my phsyical tbr (zero books read)
- Full age range breakdown
- Adult: 40%
- New Adult: 13%
- Young Adult: 47%
- Full breakdown of genres read:
- Romance: 52%
- Fantasy: 31%
- Mystery / thriller: 17%
- First read of the year: Lore by Alexandra Bracken
- Last read of the year: Echoes & Empires by Morgan Rhodes (finished reading in 2022)
Best in Books
Best Book I Read In 2021
Not sure if it’s the best, but Punk 57 was my favorite, I think.
Book I Was Excited About & Thought Was Going to Love More
Sky in the Deep by Adrienne Young. I actually had a lot of thoughts about this one so I might post a full review on it later.
Best Book From a Genre I Don’t Typically Read
Bound by Honor? It was the first mafia romance I’ve read that wasn’t published on Wattpad lol. But if we’re being honest, the mafia setting isn’t too different than a dystopian novel – it’s just set in the present, not the future. Both genres are set in the “real world” but also not really.
Book I Read In 2021 That I’d Be MOST Likely To Re-Read Next Year
Serpent & Dove. I want to read the rest of the series now that it’s completed and my library finally got a copy of the third book.
Shortest & Longest Book I Read In 2021
Shortest: Once More Upon a Time by Roshani Chokshi
Longest: Stray by Rachel Vincent
Blogging / Bookish Life
Favorite Post I Wrote 2021
I published exactly two blog posts in 2021 so it’s not like I have a lot to choose from. 😅
Favorite Bookish-related Photo I Took in 2021
Not exactly a photo I took, but more like an edit I made. I’m really proud of how this cover recreation of When Night Breaks by Janella Angeles turned out.
I created an edit for the first book in the series, Where Dreams Descend, back when it was published in 2020, so I thought it’d be fun to recreate the sequel to have a finished set.
Most Challenging Thing About Blogging or Reading in 2021
I was stuck in a massive reading slump for most of the year. As for blogging, well I’ll get into that more later in this post.
Book I Didn’t Get to in 2021 But Will Be My #1 Priority in 2022
Echoes & Empires which I need to finish and These Deadly Games by Diana Urban. I’ve been approved to read These Deadly Games since before fall started so I definitely need to get on that before it’s published in February.
2022 Goals & Resolutions
I have six bookish / reading-related goals for this year.
Read at least 15 min every day
I want to try to build a habit of reading every day. I feel like a lot of the reading slumps I went through in 2021 could have been beaten if I just picked up a book. If I end up reading more than 15 minutes, great (unless of course, it’s 3 AM). If not, that’s cool too but at least I tried.
Read 26 books
My reading goal for the year is 26 books. It should be doable – I almost read that amount in 2021. If I start to outpace it, I’ll raise it, but I learned the hard way it’s best if I set a more manageable goal in the beginning.
Update: If I’m able to sustain my current rate of reading through March, I will raise my goal to 52 books. We’re two weeks into January and because I’ve been reading for at least 15 minutes every day, I’ve already finished 3 books and one novella.
Read books off my physical TBR
My shelves are starting to haunt me. Assuming I counted all my books correctly, I’ve only read 124 out of 298 books. That’s only 42%. Ideally, I would have read close to 75%.
I’m also running out of space on my shelves and really need to start unhauling some of them. Problem is, the hoarder in me can’t let any unread books go because “what if I read it later and enjoy it?”. So I guess the only solution is to read everything and decide then.
Limit book buying
I need to be more intentional about which books I buy because like I said, I’m out of shelf space. Plus, it just makes no sense to buy books only for them to sit on my shelves unread for 5 years.
So not only am I going to limit book buying to the balance that’s left on my Barnes & Noble gift card, but I’m also not going to allow myself to buy a new book until I read one I already own, if that makes sense.
I’m also going to try to only buy books I’ve read and enjoyed and will probably reread. Look, I want to support authors, but at this point in my life, it doesn’t make sense for me to buy every pretty book out there when I clearly have a problem reading whatever I buy.
Finish at least three series
I want to start checking series off my tbr list again. I own a few complete sets of series I still need to start / finish so I really have no excuse not to accomplish this goal this year.
Be more consistent on Instagram and this blog
This is really two goals in one since I have different targets for Instagram and the blog, but the general gist is the same – I want to be more consistent. In 2021 I didn’t really blog at all and I posted on my #bookstagram account kind of erratically – I’d post every day for a month and then dip for another.
This year I want to try posting three days a week on Instagram (much more manageable than every day) and at least once a month on the blog. But out of the goals listed here, this is the one I care about the least. In 2022 I want to focus more on actually reading instead of just talking about reading. So if I don’t have time to blog because I’m too busy exploring a fictional world, that’s absolutely fine.
Going Back to Basics
I’m going to be going back to basics in terms of how I run my #bookstagram and blog this year. To be honest, this topic probably deserves its own post and I might write a more in-depth one on it later. But the general idea is to stop worrying about growing on either platform and just focus on delivering quality content.
I took three months off Instagram at the end of last year and I had a couple of epiphanies. For starters, you don’t need to have a large audience to have meaningful interactions with other bookworms. And that’s something I struggled with understanding.
Everyone and their mom seem to emphasize growing, gaining more followers, and continuously “leveling up”. All the Instagram gurus out there always hammer in the idea that you need a large audience and that you should always be focused on building one. Growth is cool and all but it’s so tiring to think that way. Especially since if I’m being completely honest, having more followers doesn’t really benefit me the way all the social media experts seem to believe.
Truth is, I’ve been thinking of quitting #bookstagram (and blogging) for a while. I haven’t had any net gain in followers in years. But at the end of day, I love how #bookstagram gives me the opportunity to interact with the bookish community. Things get too heated sometimes on Twitter and blogging is always in its own separate bubble. Instagram is still my platform of choice, and without it, I wouldn’t really have anywhere to talk about books.
As for blogging, well, I haven’t exactly been a good book blogger since like 2016. Moving forward, there are definitely some best practices that I need to update myself on. But I still find having my own blog valuable. It’s like my own corner on the internet. Unlike my #bookstgram account, which Instagram can suspend anytime they want, this blog is mostly in my own control. And there’s something freeing about that.
Also, it’s just a better place for long-form content. This post is so long – there’s no way I’d be able to fit this whole thing in an Instagram caption.
How was your 2021? What are some of your goals for 2022?