Tuesday, February 21, 2012

2012 Outdo Yourself Reading Challenge

I love Fridays.  Not just because it’s the end of the work week which, of course, is vital.  But because it marks the time when I am thoroughly reminded of how many truly amazing writers there are out there.  I have the blog roll and it reminds me, too.  But I don’t check as often as I feel like I should and Friday provides that terribly needed kick in the ass to go and read and remember.  And what I’m remembering is that reading other writers is just as important as writing.  That’s something I forget sometimes.

Like last year when I was so busy trying to meet my self-mandated blog post count that my reading list was disturbingly small.  Of all the amazing books I had sitting and waiting on my book shelf I only read… maybe five of them?  A terribly low number, considering that the whole point of all this is to get better at writing.

But thankfully, I am not alone in this.  Many other people feel like they should be reading more, and one of my fellow bloggers relayed me to a useful tool to assist with this.  I came upon it last Friday when I was trolling my blog roll for new posts and I came upon an interesting side bar over at Eric J. Krause’s Writing Spot.  Eric is a good writer and in order to become a better writer he, in his infinite wisdom, has set a challenge for himself to read more.

That challenge has a name, because another blogger I discovered thanks to Eric’s link, created it: The 2012 Outdo Yourself Reading Challenge.  I had never run across the Book Vixen before clicking on the link in Eric’s sidebar.  But I’m glad I did because it reminded me of how vitally important that reading piece is- not just for my writing, but for my brain.

So, I am officially signing up to outdo myself.  I’m going to blow last year’s measly list of books out of the water by reading a total of 12 books this year.  Why 12 books?  Because it’s 2012.  And, more practically, because a book a month seems reasonable to expect of myself.  And because I already read one so I technically only have 11 to go.  And because I figure this blog needs more book reviews.

I actually started reading Elizabeth Gilbert’s Committed before I finished Pride and Prejudice because I was so disgusted with the marriage obsession that I needed to read the words of someone coming from the other end of the spectrum.   But now it’s just that on my reading list, and I’m giving myself a week to finish it because of the need to outdo myself.

Thanks to The Book Vixen for creating this challenge and thanks to Eric J. Krause for linking me up with it!  And if you too would like to outdo yourself, click here or on the icon to your right.  You can sign up at any time and challenge yourself to whatever number you see fit.  Happy reading!


  1. Do you have all twelve lined up? I've gotten precious little reading done this year, except for the two off-weeks in my writing cycle during which I might have overread. I'm looking forward to having the time and literary energy to consume again.

    1. No, I don't have them all lined up yet. There are two or three definites that will be there, but the rest will require me to actually look through the stacks of books I have received over the past year for my birthday and Christmas and prioritize those that most desperately need to be read. Google reminded me that it's really about damned time I read Nicholas Nickleby which has been sitting for years at this point and there will be at least one Christopher Moore on the list because I have five or six of his books that I haven't read yet. Same for Chuck Palahniuk, come to think of it. Maybe I'll be doing two by those authors... so much reading. But I still got ten months, right?


Thank you for your comment! I will love it and hug it and pet it and call it George. Or, you know, just read and reply to it. But still- you rock!