Our Readerly New Year’s Resolutions

Are you setting any bookish goals for the new year, or trying to have new/better/different reading habits? Here’s what some of us Team Riot are shooting for in 2013.

Peter Damien: My bookish resolutions for the coming year are 1) to become organized again. Everything is a disaster. Heaps of books everywhere. It’s amazing I haven’t lost a child or cat in a biblioavalanche yet. I want to buy two or three more shelves, get things neatly alphabetized and get the nonfiction finally organized into categories. Finally have some extra space so that when new books come into the house, as they do on a steady basis, they’ll all have somewhere to go. And 2) I’ve also spent far too much of 2012 letting things which are not reading (or writing) get in the way of writing (or reading), and I’m gonna stop letting that happen. Last, 3) I really adore audiobooks. I love the way they can reshape an already-treasured book. Somehow in the past few years, I’ve stopped listening to them, and I miss it. 2013 is the year I get back into them.

Brenna Gray: I’m going to finally join Goodreads! I know I’m like the last one in line and I’m not even sure why I’ve hesitated, but I would like to keep better track of the books I read. I have no idea what I read this year. None. If my Kobo didn’t keep some track, I wouldn’t be able to name 10 — and yet if I go back through all my blogging and teaching records I know it’s closer to 65. What the hell is that? So I’m hoping Goodreads will help (but if you know of something better, would you tweet me please [@mittenstrings]?).

Amanda Nelson: I want to delve into the ephemera of the classics this year- letters, journals, maybe even some biographies (specifically of Dickens, and Elizabeth Gaskell’s bio of Charlotte Bronte). I also resolve to not buy more books until my un-read shelf is under 200 books. ←-same thing I resolved last year, which did not happen.

Liberty Hardy: I’m going to read Moby-Dick. I know I’ve said that before, but for realsies this time. And Kristin Lavransdatter. I love big, fat books. I’d also like to re-read all of John Steinbeck, ending with East of Eden, which is the only one of his books I have not read. (Inorite?!) Most of the Steinbeck I’ve read was in middle school, so it will be like reading it for the first time. I’d also like to memorize all of ‘Jabberwock’ because I realized most of what I can recite from memory is from The Whedonverse. (JOSS IS BOSS.) It would be nice to recite something literary, other than Dorothy Parker’s ‘Resume.’ Ambitions – I has them.

Kit Steinkellner– On Sunday nights, when I’m tired and flipping through Netflix Instant and thinking to myself “I haven’t seen Dawson’s Creek/Ally McBeal/ Scrubs for a while” I am going to take a deep breath, close my laptop, and read a book instead.

Kim Ukura: In 2013, I want to read more ebooks and audiobooks. I have a Nook, a tablet, a smartphone, a subscription to Audible, and a tendency to bulk-buy ebooks when they’re on sale, but I still cannot seem to find a way to integrate ereading into my reading life. When I buy books in electronic formats, they seem to languish on my devices and in the cloud because the books on my shelves are in my face and calling for my attention. If I can read one ebook and listen to one audiobook per month, I’d call it a win.

Greg Zimmerman: Every year, I make a list of classics that have somehow escaped me, and read those throughout the year. This year was Sophie’s Choice, Underworld, East of Eden, and Winter’s Tale. In 2013, I’m going older school: 19th-century old school — Pride and Prejudice, Jane Eyre (‘cause I’m an idiot and still get Jane Austen and Jane Eyre mixed up, and so reading them is the only way to fix that), Great Expectations, David Copperfield, and Tess of the D’Urbervilles, to start. Wish me luck! (Or don’t, ‘cause you’re probably mad at me for that Jane Austen/Eyre thing.)

Cassandra Neace: 2013 is going to be the year of no obligations. I’m going to read what I want to read when I want to read it. This past year, I made too many commitments and was a bit burned out by the time summer rolled around. I want to enjoy my reading all year long. I also want to learn how to listen to audiobooks while I am doing things other than driving. That would get me through my TBL list so much faster! Oh, and I’m going to read a classic that I’ve been avoiding – the great Moby-Dick.  Really. I promise.

Jodi Chromey: In 2013, I’m going to make an active effort to be open to books outside my taste, try books I don’t think are “for me,” and listen to recommendations from people who I usually ignore. Reading Cheryl Strayed’s Tiny Beautiful Things was a revelation for me, because it reminded me so much of reading as a child, specifically collections of Dear Abby columns, when my reading was wild and unfettered. I’m old and stuck in my ways, in 2013 I will get unstuck.

Rebecca Joines Schinsky: My resolution for 2012 was to give into my reading whims more and let myself go down the rabbit hole when I wanted to. I thought this would mean allowing myself to get on topical reading jags, but it turned out that what I really wanted was to dive into new-to-me authors’ backlists after reading their latest releases. So for 2013, my resolution is to do more of that. More backlist from authors whose work I’ve just met, and more backlist from favorites.

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