Reading Goals #1

I want to motivate myself to read books evenly across my shelves. So I decided that the best course of action would be to sort my books out into categories and choose a small and achievable list for each. This will by no means be a monthly list, as I know that I occasionally encounter reading slumps. However, I want to try and discipline myself to read the books on a given list before moving onto a new list of books. Here are the categories that I set for myself:

  • Classics Club: I have challenged myself to fifty books in five years, ending on July 30, 2024.
  • ARCs: My NetGalley percentage is ABYSSMAL, so I want to try and read a mix of recently received releases as well as some of the old ARCs in my backlog to try and recover my sorry percentage. I have also recently started at Book Sirens, so we will see how that goes!
  • My Shelf: I might have an issue with massive book hauls, especially when I seem to be going through depressive episodes. I have now amassed over 200 books on my physical shelves, and heavens know how many ebooks. I want to steadily get through my personal backlog of books I have actually paid for little by little.

Classics Club Challenge

I fell way behind on my classics club challenge last year! I’m already off to a terrible start for my first of five years to read fifty classics. I had a lot of huge life changes and a massive reading slump starting Fall last year that lasted up until this summer. I plan to spend a good portion of this year trying to catch up on as many titles as I can to put myself in a good position to tackle the longer books on my list later on. From here on I want to try and complete at least one book each month, more if possible! For this month, I am going to try and make-up a little for lost time by reading Dracula by Bram Stoker and The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins. Altogether these works would come in just under 200 pages, so I feel that it is a very attainable goal.

New NetGalley

I have three brand new ARCs that will be have either just been published or will be published in the Fall. I plan to tackle Sex Industry Slavery by Robert Chrismas first, since the ARC copy that I received has a time limit. I’ve been blazing through They Didn’t See Us Coming by Lisa Levenstein and so I think this one will be another fast read, this is second on my priority list for this month. Lastly, Smash It! by Francina Simone is on my anticipated list, I am a huge fan of Simone’s booktube channel and I want to support her work! I have just started it and have had mixed feelings so far, but I’m hoping for the story to pick up a bit more as it goes along.

Backlogged NetGalley

I don’t want to neglect my backlog, but it can be difficult with the constant stream of brand new books being published month after month. I still want to focus on my newest ARC acquisitions, since those reviews are more timely. However, I still want to make sure that I am reading at least one backlogged book along with my new ARCs.

I have been digging non-fiction books lately, and now that I am coming to the end of my degree program in just two weeks, I can feel the burnout coming. I have a bad habit of feeling so guilty about schoolwork that I am unable to enjoy any of my usual hobbies. After I graduated with my bachelor’s degree, it took me a solid two weeks to de-program myself from this guilt. Do Nothing by Celeste Headlee is a self-help book all about how we defeat ourselves by focusing so hard on being productive. It seems like the perfect read to help me in this de-programming process and help relax my anxiety.

My Shelf

I have been in a big mood for gothic novels, and I decided to start another essential book by one of my favorite authors – We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson. I have been loving it so far and I anticipate this one to be a quick read.

As a stretch goal, I plan to at least start one other book from my physical shelf if possible. It seems that Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia has been on everyone’s reading list at the moment, I have seen this book literally EVERYWHERE. I was fortunate enough to receive this beautiful book from my husband for my birthday. I plan to start this one once I finish the other books that are on my goal list for the month.

Let’s Discuss!

  • What are you reading this month?
  • Are you participating in any readalongs or challenges?
  • Which new releases do you plan to pick up this month?


  1. Hallo, Hallo Jamie,

    Sorry I’ve lost track of you – I was trying to follow you for awhile there but your feeds were wonky on my WP Reader and with migraines, life and all that became 2020 – I can honestly say, I simply lost traction with where you were with the blog. Amended now! Saw you’re following me again as well – maybe the WP Reader didn’t work for either of for awhile? Hmm. I wanted to respond to this post because I’m also in #theclassicsclub – though at this point, nearly a defunct member as I revived my original list in 2018, then 2yrs have gone past and I’m still treading water on my list of goals… mind you, I went up and beyond the usual 50x! lol You’ll find my list under “#JorieReads, Self-Directed, Book Blogosphere — click “Stepping Back into the Folds of Time | tCC”.

    This month I’m requeing my #JaneAustenJuly reads into a homage of reading Jane Austen for #AustenInAugust as Adam @ Roof Beam Reader used to host this wicked lovely annual event. I’m posting my first reading for this tonight (*fingers crossed*) which is an inspired by Regency (‘Josette’ by Danielle Thorne) of whom I had the loveliest time chatting with during my chat @SatBookChat (see ‘Moments’ for transcript). I am hoping to read through more retellings/sequels/inspired bys as well as hopefully “Northanger Abbey” and “Mansfield Park” – however, I might have to choose between those two lovelies as I was *approved!* to listen to new narration for “Persuasion” by Mike Read via NetGalley!

    And, top cheers – I’m now an active member of NetGalley! I joined back in Feb I think? Whenever they first announced they were going to have audiobooks by Summer, I decided to take the plunge! Now I am stacking the audiobooks I was approved to listen/review per their archive dates and settling into the vibe of finding new authors, new publishers and just enjoying the experience. I was blocked from joining due to my chronic migraines, so this is really awesome for me!

    Challenges for me this month are: #AustenInAugust, #CFSRS20 (my annual INSPY/Christian Fiction readathon) and #ARCAugust (as my backlogue is out of control, too!). Next month is Self Pub Fantasy Month alongside @Mythothon and a personal goal of finishing Jane Eyre in the month I originally began reading it 7yrs ago — whilst October brings #SpooktasticReads (I’m co-hosting; its part of @WyrdAndWonder).

    I haven’t even had the chance to finish my LibroFM audios (as an influencer) – so ideally I’d like some of the new releases I read come from that collection of titles. Plus, I’ve put Mexican Gothic on my list of #mustreads as I read a review by another book blogger (ie. The Lit Bitch) who convinced me its ‘my kind of Gothic’ storyline!! At first I wasn’t sure but wow. Sounds brilliant!

    Ooh! I want to read Dracula & Woman in White too — I might have to read ‘Woman in White’ during #SpooktasticReads this year… the former I was going to read solo or in a buddy read but Mum wants to read it with me and so that’s tabled for awhile. Welcome to the Classics Club, btw!! I want to start joining their memes/posts and reconnect to the community in September.

    Sounds like you are in-line with your goals this month — I hope the stories you’ve reading are ones that are resonating well with you. I heart my first INSPY novel for the readathon – a new author I’ve just read for the first time and it was a credit to this readathon 2yrs ago because I won it in the bookaway attached to the event! Very timely too as it is about a woman who suffers PTSD (undisclosed) post-Katrina and is trying to repair her internal wounds from the after effects of that storm which upturnt her world in more than one way. Its currently pinned on my Twitter profile.

    Eek. Glad we’re both finding our groove again with blogging and reading – I was struck down recently by two migraines so here’s to both of us keeping to our goals and enjoying the journey into the stories!! Welcome back and now I need to make sure I’m following you via WP!!
    Jorie recently posted…An INSPY Book Review during #CFSRS20 | Diving into the Coastal Hearts series by Janet W. Ferguson whilst reading “Magnolia Storms”My Profile

    1. Hi again Jorie! I’m glad to see you, and I admit I lost touch with the book blogging world for a while as well. I was posting reviews still, but with 2020 I’ve just had so much going on this year it has been overwhelming for my mental health. I’m not sure what happened with WP feeds, it could be perhaps because I had moved hosts – I was on an indie hosting plan before, but I moved to DreamHost and have been loving it!

      I’m so glad to see you’re joined NetGalley! I have always loved NetGalley for helping me find new books and authors and expanding my reading horizons. ARCs from NetGalley introduced me to mystery thrillers which I was never interested in before and it has become one of my favorite genres. I was so surprised when I logged on recently and saw audiobooks! I’ve been really hesitant to try them, my attention wanders so easily and I live in a noisy household, but I think I might enjoy it, and NetGalley will give me a good excuse to try. That makes me really happy to hear that audiobooks don’t cause flare ups with your migraines, I can’t even imagine how hard that must be! The idea of not being able to read physical or ebooks scares me, though I’ve been coming to terms with that possibility someday with my poor eyesight.

      A Jane Austen readalong sounds fun! I’ve only read part of Sense and Sensibility back in high school and that was eons ago. I hadn’t added any Austen books to my classics challenge, and an audiobook might be really nice to listen to. You keep up with so many themed readalongs and challenges! I struggle with those, I’m a big time mood reader and my mood changes seemingly every day. But I’m working on being more disciplined and focusing on specific books.

      I’m glad we have a lot of overlap on the books we want to read! Maybe we can read Mexican Gothic together! I’ve been wanting to get to Woman in White for a while and plan to pick it up after Dracula.

      Thank you for the welcome back, I’ve missed reading and blogging so much but I’ve been doing much better lately. It has felt like a breath of fresh air breaking my reading slump and reading a lot again. I’ll pop in to your blog more soon!

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