Apparently, I’m Reading Too Much

No, this isn’t a post about a forlorn loved one feeling shunned and pushed aside because of my precious paperbacks and handsome hardbacks, but rather a post about my Goodreads 2014 Challenge. I’ve mentioned before that I was an avid reader when I was younger, but that I slowed down when I got into my late teens, and especially when I was at Uni, only really getting into it again in 2012. Then blogging happened.

so many books gif

This is quite literally how I manoeuvre through my dining room, AKA my book storage facility. It would appear my beloved “wall-of-books” has now become a mountain. But, I digress.

I created my Goodreads 2014 Challenge in January, and set the target at 52 books for the year – which I thought would be challenging enough, as I also work full time, study part time, and somewhere in between I need to do those other life-things like have a social life, buy and cook food etc. When I started blogging in March I had no idea of the time-commitment involved, and I assumed the number of books I read would actually decrease, but apparently the opposite has happened.

Sometime in September, I hit my goal of 52 books, which I’m a little amazed at, and also a little proud of. But it did get me thinking – is it possible that I’m reading too much? According to some people there are things to do in life other than read, I’m not sure who these people are, but there is evidence that they exist. Maybe my reading goal for next year should be just that, a goal to achieve and not go over, as well as under?

Aside from the questions I’m pondering above, what do you do if you hit your target early? Do you move the goalpost? Or leave it as is and just continue to read beyond the original target? Let me know in the comments!

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38 comments

  1. I think you are reading just as much as you want to! I don’t think you are “reading too much” unless you are reading more than you want to be and it isn’t fun for you anymore. I actually recently hit my goal books for the year on goodreads and I just left my challenge where it was. I didn’t want to feel pressure to meet a new challenge. Just wanted to keep reading books. Maybe I will up my challenge next year, but maybe not πŸ™‚

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    1. That’s a really good point that I don’t think a lot of us admit, or even recognise, when we read because it’s what we are used to doing, but actually we could do with taking a break. Thanks for commenting πŸ™‚

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  2. I feel the same way sometimes. My Goodreads Challenge for this year was fifty books, and I hit that at the very beginning of September. This has happened to me before, and I usually just keep reading. I’ve contemplated setting myself a higher goal, but I think that would put too much pressure on me to read a lot. Now that I’ve passed the goal I can read at a more leisurely pace and focus on the assigned reading that I have to do for school. Great post! πŸ™‚

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    1. I think the same, we never know what could creep up on us throughout the course of a whole year, so if you set it too high and make it too much of a challenge, then you could end up stressing. I think I’ll leave it for this year, and see just how many books I do read, and then adjust next year’s but still make it reasonably comfortable? Just SO many good books and series I’ve found this year that I’ve bought and now they’re staring at me!! Lol

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  3. As long as you’re still functioning in life there’s no such thing as reading too much! Good job meeting your goal already! I’d say don’t do anything thus year, but maybe up it a few next year. Just my thoughts. Haha sorry about your mountain.

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    1. Thanks! πŸ™‚ I think that’s exactly what I’m going to do! I was going to hold-off posting any pics until the bookcases are built (if they’re ever built) but I might take some of my mountain to show before and after… lol R x

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    1. I’m afraid of moving the goalpost and then not hitting it! Lol at least this way I achieved what I set out to, and next year I can increase based on my final figure at the end of 2014? R x

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  4. Congrats on meeting your goal early!! And one can NEVER read too much! That’s just absurd!! Lol.

    I set my goal low every year, in case I have a bad year or get in too many book slumps. I don’t want to not meet my goal and be disappointed. That being said – I set my goal this year at 50 and already surpassed it. So, yay! I don’t increase it once I meet it. Everything I read after I meet my goal is just a bonus. Maybe next year I’ll increase it to 75. Maybe. πŸ™‚

    It’s really great that you can read souch while working and studying and everything else. When I finish a book it gives me a sense of accomplishment. And when I read, it’s my one escape/stress reliever. I wouldn’t give it up for anything.

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    1. Thanks, Brandie! I’m going to have a think about what I have coming up next year and plan around it so I don’t set a goal too high, but I’d like to stretch myself a little – I’d like to tackle some bigger books next year too though. Reading 70 contemporaries isn’t the same as 70 high fantasies or literary pieces in terms of time taken. It can be a bit of a struggle sometimes fitting it all in, I think whatever my final figure is for the year, that will be my peak because I have read so much more than usual this year, so I’ll not set a target over that figure. I use reading as aform of escapism too, I can’t imagine not being a reader! R x

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  5. Congrats on hitting your target!
    I only just scraped my reading goal last year (60 books), but I think I would have left it as it was and see how far I could go over… But reading too much? Never!

    The only time I think I’ve read too much was when I had a year long reading competition with a friend… I read around 70 books that year and think I burned myself out. I did win a bottle of vodka though, so all is well that ends well!

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    1. YOU are my kinda reader!! Lol

      Thanks, I wasn’t sure if I would at the start of the year, and didn’t know what to set it at, so went for one a week. I think I might leave it at 52, and see how far I go over and adjust slightly for next year… I have quite a few I hope to get to before the end of the year, and I have a (crazy) plan to clear all my NetGalley review books by the end of the year too… R x

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  6. I think blogging has caused me to read more this year too. As of today I’m 14 books ahead of schedule. I will probably reach my goal in the next couple of weeks and have actually been contemplatung spending December rereading Harry Potter.

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    1. That would be a lovely reward almost for achieving target, enjoying a HP read at your own pace in December, and a great time of year to do it too! Ohh, that sounds lovely actually… Could be tempted to join you πŸ™‚

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  7. I’m actually in a mostly similar place. I work full-time, study part-time, and yes, occasionally have to do those other social things. And I thought I also would read less but no. I’ve read 96 books (I can’t even…) so far and no stopping yet. lol πŸ™‚ But happy reading for us!

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  8. What are these things outside of reading you speak of? Surely you jest.

    I’ve challenged myself to read 100 books for the third time this year, and so far I always make it with 1 or 2 books to spare. Right now, I’m 16 books ahead, so I don’t know what I’ll do yet. I might up it just a little bit, but 100 is just a really nice number, so I might keep it.

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    1. Haha I have no idea what these other things are either!

      Because I’d never done the challenge before I set myself the goal of one book per week as a baseline, it has gone well, I just don’t know if I should increase my challenge this year or leave it as is, keep reading and modify my target for next year… Sounds like the best plan. R x

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  9. I hit my goal on goodreads, which was a modest 30 books. I am now at 58 and I am sure it will be closer to 100 by the time the year is out. I started my reading blog in May and I work full time outside the home and have 4 kids. I don’t think you are reading too much. It is your life to do what you want with. If reading is your passion, then why not indulge. I still make time for my kids, and have a great social life. I see it as this: some people watch tv to fill up their empty time, I read. I think reading is the lesser of two evils.

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  10. Well, I’m not sure if I’m the right person to ask if you can read too much. Because for me, the answer is almost always no. I do think that if you do nothing else but read, eat, sleep and work, then maybe you should cut down on the reading slightly and try to go off and experience life. But if you just cut back on reading and end up watching TV more, well, that doesn’t seem like a great thing. Not that I don’t love TV because I do.

    But I do think it’s important to interact with people and do other things, even if it’s only a small part of your time. πŸ™‚

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  11. My reading also picked up when I started blogging. I think that’s because I became more interested in actively participating in read-a-thons, and then when I started getting followers, I wanted to have more to write about. Now, I’m reading even more because I’m getting ARCs and I’m working towards turning my blogging into a professional writing career.
    I haven’t hit my goal for the year yet, but I already know that when I pass it, I will adjust my goal for next year. This is because I firmly believe that the more I read, the faster I’ll get at reading, and there’s no such thing as reading too much since my TBR pile continues to outpace the amount of books I do read.

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    1. I think engaging with the community just causes more excitement, and we find more recommended reads, and we can talk to others who “get” how much we love reading, and I know I have a TON of posts in my head I want/need to get on here at some point, and TONS of reading I can’t wait to do!!

      That’s really exciting that you want to turn it into a career!

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  12. I also set my Goodreads goal for this year at 52 books. I teach and put it at minimum 60 hours each week. I reached that in mid-July. I read across almost all genres, including children’s, so a few of those were included in that count…but I am already up to 76 books and it’s only the beginning of October. I got a LOT of reading done last year at Christmastime.

    I am not going to change my goal for this year.

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    1. That’s some achievement considering your workload! I’ve decided not to change mine either, I guess we need to think of it as more of a guide than a strict target – people who love epic fantasies will not get as many books read as people who love contemporaries, I wish Goodreads did a page goal per year instead! Lol

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  13. I have definitely read less since I started blogging. I read 252 books one year and I now can’t imagine being able to hit that target. I definitely feel I am reading less than I’d like, because of work, blogging and trying to have some semblance of a social life. If I reach my target then I usually just leave it where it is, instead of giving myself another goal to reach for. I just like to read as much as I can when I want to.

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    1. Are you for reals?! 252 books!? I can’t even comprehend that?! I guess I can’t really know for sure, because when I got back into reading I started blogging at the same time, and blogging is a time-drain! Even though we all love it. It would be interesting to see just what I could read if it weren’t for blogging, tonight for example I’m catching up on cross-posting and scheduling for the week ahead. Le sigh. I’ve definitely made the executive decision to leave this year’s target at 52, any I read from now til the year end are a bonus! R x

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  14. A couple of years ago I read over 300 books in one year. You’ve got lots of wiggle room before you’re labeled crazy book lady yet, lol.

    I no longer set yearly reading goals because I don’t like the added pressure. However, just doing some mental math I’m over 100 books so far this year. Am I reading too much? Heck no! Reading is something that I enjoy doing and I don’t let it interfere with other aspects in my life. I’m a wife and mom first, reader and blogger second and then keeper of a clean house and laundry a distant third πŸ˜€

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  15. I’ve set my goal at 50 books for most years, and surpassed the goal almost every year. This year, however, I decided that I didn’t want Goodreads constantly nagging me about how many books I was ahead or behind so, even though I figured I would read more than 50 books, I purposely set my goal at 20. So I finished by May, I think, but I wasn’t too concerned over the total number read. I wanted to read some chunkier reads this year, and was able to do so with confidence because I wasn’t worried about taking 3 weeks to read one book!

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    1. I think it would be a great idea for Goodreads to offer a pages-read-per-year challenge instead/as well as books read, because I face the same problem with wanting to read chunkier reads that take longer to get through. Though I suppose I could just try to account for that in my goal. Part of me agrees that it can be distracting or add a certain amount of pressure, but I’m a really goal-orientated person and I find it motivational too, and rewarding when you hit the target! What were some of the chunkier reads you got through? I’ve a couple on my TBR I keep putting off!

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  16. I adjust my reading goal as I evaluate my progress. I started the year with a goal to read 50 books, but when I realized I was going to surpass considerably my initial goal I increased it to 80, and as it turns out I was right, because I already achieved that first goal. But now, so close to the end of the year I realized I may have gotten a little too ambitious and lower the stakes a bit to 70. And this doesn’t bother me a bit because several unexpected things happened to me this year that I couldn’t have guessed when I set my goal, so i just adapt it to what feels right at the moment being.

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    1. I debated being an adapter or a sticker. For this year I’m being a sticker I think. This was my first year setting the goal, so I went realistic, but still ambitious based on my usual reading levels. I’ll amend for next year maybe, but anything I read from now is a bonus. I think I want to see it grow, so if I increase next year, and the year after that I can track progress, in case I start forgetting what my original goals were if I were to start adapting them. Thanks for commenting πŸ™‚

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