Resolved: A Better Reading Year

When I think about my reading life in 2022, it feels like a blur. I really enjoyed some books, went through an alarming number of slumps, and had one glorious stretch where every title was an absolute delight. But overall, my year in books felt sparse and unsatisfying – something I’m determined to change. After mulling it over, here are three ways I’m hoping to improve my reading life in 2023.

  1. Revive my reading log. I used to faithfully track my reading in a notebook. Nothing fancy, just the date, title, and author. But during the pandemic I stopped, and I’m determined to start again. The value of a reading log (especially a dated one) is that it can show you trends and patterns and slumps. You can look back at the year and recall which authors worked well, which ones stopped working, which ones surprised you and which ones sustained you. A reading log serves as both a time capsule and a guide for future choices. It’s a small habit that pays big dividends, and I would encourage you to give it a try. 
  2. Widen my horizons. My reading tastes lean toward quirky, unexpected takes on my favorite genres, or under-the radar hidden gems. But I also have blind spots — stories I don’t naturally gravitate towards, but enjoy once I start reading them. So this year, I’m pushing myself to choose books that are a little out of my comfort zone — something that will challenge me and my expectations, or that I might typically overlook. I’m looking forward to seeing what I discover (and recording it in my reading log).
  3. Tackle my TBR Pile: One of the delights (and dangers) of working at the library is that there is never a shortage of books to choose from – which means my pile of books to be read is actually many precarious piles. Every year, I say I’m going to read them, and instead I just…add more to the tower. This year, though, will be different. No, really. In 2023, I’m going to go through all the piles and shelves and decide which books I’m still genuinely excited to read. The rest will be lovingly rehomed, because every book deserves a reader who won’t abandon it to the dust bunnies.

Maybe you had a great reading year in 2022 – I very much hope so! But if you’re looking to make 2023 even better, I invite you to consider making a resolution – big or small, serious or silly – that will let you look at your reading life with fresh eyes. Maybe you want to read the complete works of Agatha Christie. Maybe you want to learn more about speculative fiction. Maybe you want to open a Goodreads account (and friend the library). Whatever it is, we’re here to help. And if you’re looking for a place to discuss resolutions, reading logs, and new-to-you recommendations, consider stopping by Shelftalkers, our no-homework book club where members talk about what they’ve been reading and loving lately. 

Here’s to a new year, new books, new friends…and plenty of time to enjoy them! Happy 2023, everybody!

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