Would you look at that, 2020 is already half over. It doesn’t feel like it was all that long ago that I wrote my last challenge update, yet here we are. I’m more serious about finishing my reading challenges this year, so I still want to use quarterly updates to keep track of where I’m at. I had a lot of catching up to do in the last post, so let’s get some data together and see how I’m doing.
This looks a little worse than it did the last time I updated. This year I reduced my Goodreads challenge, setting a goal of only 55 books (compared to 70 last year). At the moment, I’ve finished a total of 25 books: 13 text-only books and 12 graphic novels. That increase looks pretty steady, but at the moment I’m lagging behind my goal by 3 books. I always feel like I’m a few graphic novels away from catching up, but all the same I’ve been hovering around this point for a while now, and it doesn’t feel great. I’m confident I’ll reach my goal, all the same.
Scrappy To-Read List
On top of the Goodreads numbers game, I’ve got my personal to-read list I keep on a scrappy piece of paper: 22 books selected at the beginning of the year that I’m committed to actually finishing and striking off the list. I was more worryingly behind on this three months ago, so let’s see how I’m doing.
Since April I have read through The Strings of Murder by Oscar de Muriel, Soul Music by Terry Pratchett, Other Minds by Peter Godfrey-Smith, White Tears by Hari Kunzru, and Hellboy: Unnatural Selection by Tim Lebbon.
Back in April I concluded I needed to read 6 of the listed books every three months to be on track to finish at a steadier pace. I’ve almost done that, falling short of just one. I only did marginally better than the first quarter, but improvement is improvement, so I’ll take it.
I continue to be happy to have kept on track with my Discworld books, having completed one in each quarter so far as I intended.
My big problem is my continuing desire to read books not listed, which I read two of this quarter. Were it not for The Crocodile Hunter and the novelization of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, I’d have likely been on track with a full 6 completed. Both a comforting and perhaps a little frustrating. I already know of a few more books that I want to read outside of my list this year, so I’ll have to plan more carefully still.
As I said last time, I usually reserve these sorts of updates for Writing Reports, but I once again don’t have enough to write a full report for you, so I’ll do another quick update.
I’ve not really been writing at all, much to my chagrin. I feel like my blog posts have suffered too, not just creative writing. I just don’t have the motivation with everything going on, and it does cause some amount of self-loathing, as that just feels like I’m making excuses. I’m sure many of you can relate.
I try to remind myself of a humorous Onion headline, which points out the folly of being vexed that a psychologically taxing time is not inspiring more productivity, but it only helps a little. I do want to push myself to write my novel outline and start some short stories, but I don’t want to agonize over it either, so for now things remain up in the air until I can find my footing.
I hope you’re all doing well and staying safe. Thank you for reading!