Reading Resolutions

HPIM1517 In my work life, I couldn’t survive without being relentlessly organized. My office bookcase is alphabetized and arranged by subject. My home? Um, not quite so orderly. The books in that picture on the left may not have been stacked up quite like that until right before I took the picture. Also, Laura Lee Guhrke and Cheryl St. John apparently have a feline fan who needed to be flushed out of the TBR, where she was curled up around their latest releases. So, while I’m not normally into New Year’s resolutions, I did find myself getting very into the idea of reading resolutions. Here are mine:

1. For every book coming in, one will go out. Sounds simple enough; I’ll just have to learn to be a more ruthless weeder.

2. Read a book that I haven’t read for at least 10 years and see if it stands up. This might help with the weeding. Also, I tend to get sentimental over books I loved in high school, and I’m not sure they deserve it.

3. Read a ginormous doorstopper book. I love big sagas, but taking that initial plunge is tough for me. I haven’t decided which big book to read yet, but I’m leaning toward either The Name of the Wind or Into the Wilderness.

4. Read a non-historical Blaze book. I keep hearing how awesome this line is, but I haven’t read any modern-day Blazes. I don’t have anything against the line; I just don’t know much about most of the authors. If anyone has suggestions, do tell!

5. Read an author that fits into the “should have read this author by now” category. There are some authors whose books get raved about that I just have never tried. Confession time: I’ve never read Susan Elizabeth Phillips.

6. At least one bookcase in the house will be organized. It may not be properly catalogued to the satisfaction of a librarian, but we’ll go for some basic alphabetical order, or at least organization by subgenre.

7. Get caught up in at least one series. I have a tendency to read a few books in a series and then fall hopelessly behind. There are so many different series out there, and I can’t keep up with everything I want to. I don’t know if the series I pick will be romance, mystery or fantasy, but I will catch up on one!

8. Read something random. The TBR is overwhelming. I just need to reach in there and pull out something and read it, no matter what it is.

9. Read something in a subgenre I don’t read very often. For me, that would probably be single-title contemporary. I read a fair amount of category romance, but most of my single title reading tends to be historical or paranormal. My contemporaries tend to have some type of suspense plot in them. So, for this year, I’m determined to try more single-title, non-suspense straight contemporaries.

Those are my great big goals for the year. Do you all do New Year’s resolutions? What are your reading resolutions or goals this year?

Happy 2010 to everyone!

-Lynn Spencer

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25 Responses to “Reading Resolutions”

  1. Tee says:

    With no TBR pile to sneak into and considering the months-long reading dryspell I’ve been experiencing (both in lack of desire and having something of substance to read), my reading resolution for the coming year is uncomplicated. It’s simply to find a well-written book telling a good story and enjoying the heck out of it (hopefully that will be plural and not singular). LOL

  2. anon101 says:

    I recommend Sarah Mayberry for the Blaze author to try.

    My only resolution is going to be to read more debut authors starting with Sinful Surrender by Beverly Kendall and Sara Lindsey’s new book in February.

  3. Janet says:

    I second Sarah Mayberry for Blaze author. I have loved all of hers but ‘She’s Got it Bad’ was especially good.

    Only resolution is to significantly decreased my # of already read books that I have been keeping even though I don’t re-read them like I planned.

  4. Jill says:

    My writing goal for this year is short stories, lots and lots of them. So, my reading goal matches accordingly, read lots and lots short stories. I’m also trying to broaden my writing/reading horizons, so a lot may not be romance, but I’m intrigued by Ellora’s Cave and Harlequin Historical Undone.

  5. Heather W. says:

    Reading your resolutions prompts me to adopt one of them for myself! I too will read an author that I should have read by now. And for me its Lisa Kleypas! I have several of her books on my TBR list and I keep putting them off for other new books that sound more interesting! So my resolution is to finally read Lisa Kleypas.

  6. I’m with you — I want to read one book for every new one that I buy just so I can keep the TBR pile under control. And I’m hoping to read at least 75 books this year. More reading, less TV! ;-)

  7. LeeB. says:

    I must say I am quite surprised you’ve never read Susan Elizabeth Phillips. Any particular reason why not?

  8. Claire says:

    I resolve to try a vampire book. Maybe a Black Dagger Brotherhood book as I really like JR Ward as Jessica Bird.

  9. Azure says:

    I’m also one of those who needs to get the TBR pile under control. I currently have about 80 books unread, and I’m going to get to them this year. I swear it! I have books I’ve wanted to reread for years going neglected because I know I’ll feel guilty about reading them before something I haven’t read before.

  10. Trish says:

    I, too, was rather shocked that you’d never read SEP. But then I’ve never read Nora Roberts, Linda Howard or Elizabeth Lowell, so I suppose that’s pretty shocking! Okay, I listened to Howard’s Mr Perfect on tape :~)

  11. Katie Mack says:

    Adding to the list of people recommending Sarah Mayberry as the contemp Blaze author you must try. Seriously, she’s fantastic.

  12. Karen says:

    My new year’s resolution is to read a book a week in 2010. I really fell off in my reading this year, particularly since June when I moved and started a new job. I think I need a specific goal to get me back into reading mode. My plan is to block off a few hours every weekend as reading time – I find it difficult to read in short bursts, and to really “get into” a book, I need to read at least an hour at a stretch. But I have to make that a priority instead of just saying I’ll do it “sometime”.

    My other goal is to read one older book out of my TBR pile for every newer book I read. I was finally able to get my TBR pile out of boxes and onto bookshelves, but all too often, I buy new books and my TBR never gets smaller!

  13. Nancy says:

    My resolution is to read at least 3 TBR books for each new release I buy, have a bookcase, plus boxes of TBR. And to buy and organize the bookcases I’ve been planning for the last six months!

  14. Uncle Walter says:

    I kind of fell into the romance game when I started my little blogs http://romance.unclewaltersrants.com and http://covers.unclewaltersrants.com and I have run into problems keeping my books organized. Do you have any suggestions? I have roughly 1500 at this point of all genres, I don’t actually read them, but I pull quotes and scan covers from them. I have never gotten rid of any before. Your image of the stack of books is what caught my eye that you may have some idea how to keep it all organized. I just seem to have too much to keep it alphabetized and more come in every week. Any suggestions?

  15. Lynn Spencer says:

    Thanks for all the Sarah Mayberry recommendations. I’ll have to try one of hers!

    Re: SEP – I’m not sure why I haven’t read any of hers. I’ve read Nora Roberts, Linda Howard, and quite of few of the more well-known contemporary authors. For some reason, I’ve just never wound up with one of her books. Which one would be a good place to start?

    @Heather W. – oh, Lisa Kleypas writes wonderful books! I was a little late to the party, but ever since I started reading her books, I’ve really come to enjoy her writing.

    Having fun reading everyone’s resolutions. Happy New Year!

  16. Katie Mack says:

    Where to start on SEP… That will depend on who you ask! Seriously though, I get the impression that one of her most universally liked books is “Match Me if You Can” — which, incidentally is supposed to be fantastic on audio — so that would probably be a good one to start with.

  17. SandyH says:

    If you want to start a series, I recommend the Darkyn series by Lynn Viehl. The series is only 7 books long. She also is finishing her Stardoc series this year with one last book (writing as S. L. Viehl) only 10 books. I like a series with an ending (except for J. D. Robb’s In Death).

  18. Cindy says:

    For your doorstopper, I would strongly recommend “Into the Wilderness.” I liked it almost as much as “Outlander” and have followed both series faithfully. I have one big beef with both though. “An Echo in the Bone” and the last couple in Sara Donati’s series have ended with HUGE cliffhangers. Major-characters-in-major peril-type cliffhangers. I know authors want us to return to see what happened when they put out the next book in the series, but this makes me cranky and less likely to come back. OK, I still have read and will probably continue to read Gabaldon and Donati, but I gave up on Debbie Macomber’s Cedar Cove Series for similar reasons (well, not exactly – not the kidnapping thing!). Does this bug anyone else or am I unreasonable?

  19. ElaineK says:

    Re: SEP: From reading comments on these boards, I think readers generally have liked It Had to Be You, while the reactions have been mixed on her other books. I’ve enjoyed most of them, but I didn’t care for the newest one, What I Did for Love. Anna Fields does a superlative job on SEP audio books. I was doubtful whether I would like Ain’t She Sweet but the audiobook was great.

    As for resolutions, my house is so overrun with books, my goal is to weed out ruthlessly. No more boxes–everything on shelves! Hah! Not so very likely but worth aiming for.

  20. Nana says:

    SEP has two primary types of heroine – the tough broad and the scrappy girl. Personally, I’m not a big fan of scrappy (it’s only a stone’s throw from feisty) so books like Match Me If You Can, Natural Born Charmer, and This Heart of Mine are not so much my thing. (I do love Heaven, Texas, though). These girls are always falling into screwball comedy setups and coming up swinging. The hero finds them refreshing and unconventional. If you like that kind of heroine when she shows up in Julia Quinn or Lisa Kleypas, then you’d probably like that book.

    I prefer the tough broad books. It Had To Be You is always on my top 10 romances of all time list, and I loved Ain’t She Sweet as well. I’d say that these heroines are a bit more like Linda Howard contemp heroines, although that’s not a perfect analogy. I like them for their resilience, their sense of humor, and their competence (the others are often willfully ditzy, like when Molly gave away her entire inheritance to spite her dead father).

    Often, though, whichever heroine you don’t get as the main character is the secondary lead (like Match Me, which has a fabulous tough broad secondary, and Dream a Little Dream, where I like the nice girl secondary romance more than the heroine). So it’s hard to find an SEP where you don’t like anything.

  21. Katie Mack says:

    I forgot about Heaven, Texas until Nana mentioned it. That would be another excellent one to start with.

  22. katie bug says:

    I LOVE all of SEP’s audio books with Anna Fields narrating. My New Year’s resolution is to listen to as many audio romances as I can.

  23. Cheryl St.John says:

    >> For every book coming in, one will go out. <<

    Oh, the PAIN!!!!!!

  24. Regina says:

    Into the Wilderness was amazing. You’ll love it.

  25. NicoleD says:

    I’ve made the resolution to try and read all the Jane Austen novels. I don’t want to start with P&P, since I know and love the story, but another, maybe Emma. And, to broaden my TBR pile too. I have a love of Scottish romances, but I’d like to read more romantic suspense this year. And, if you want to try a vampire series..JR Ward’s is great, and so is Lara Adrian’s the Breed series..good reads. I have my books categorized too..and they are getting to be a mess again..so cleaning up that and “purging” those I won’t read again.

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