Life

2016 Reading Goals

My main goal for this year is not only to read more, but to read more of the kind of books I enjoy. That is: fun, adventurous fantasy. On top of that, I’d also like to broaden my horizon and read from a diverse array of authors.

To assemble my own list, I rifled through the 2015 year-end best of lists for fantasy and diverse authors, tacked on a few I’d been interested in from earlier years, and came up with the following 21 definitely-gonna-read books (in no particular order):

  • Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard (YA)
  • Uprooted by Naomi Novik
  • The Sorcerer of the Wildeeps by Kai Ashante Wilson
  • A Darker Shade of Magic by VE Schwab
  • Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo (YA)
  • Gates of Thread and Stone by Lori M Lee
  • The Traitor Baru Cormorant by Seth Dickinson
  • The Accidental Terrorist by William Shunn
  • The Three Body Problem by Liu Cixin
  • Lagoon by Nnedi Okorafor
  • The Sons of Thesian by ME Vaughan
  • Too Like the Lightning Ada Palmer
  • The Shadowed Sun by NK Jemisin
  • Signal to Noise by Silvia Moreno-Garcia (YA)
  • The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen
  • Twelve Kings in Sharakhai by Bradley P. Beaulieu
  • The Icarus Girl by Helen Oyeyemi
  • Prophecy by Ellen Oh
  • The Ghost Bride by Yangsze Choo
  • Flex by Ferrett Steinmetz
  • On the Edge of Gone by Corinne Duyviss (YA – 2016)

My total book goal for the year is 50, so this gives me some wiggle room. I have a tendency to just pick books up randomly and on a whim as I come across them online or in the world. This way, I have the ability to still do that, but also a core reading list that will help me a) stay up to date with recent fantasy, b) diversify my reading, and c) be a ton of fun to read through.

Do you have a reading goal for 2016?

Life

December Lull

twinkle lights Christmas tree

After writing daily since June, it’s about time to take a breather. In those six months, I wrote the first draft of a short story, finished a round of really intense edits, and wrote another first draft of a novel. Having wrapped up said first draft, there’s a little wiggle room before the next big project and I intend to grab on to that with both hands and not let go until the holidays are over and the new year has begun.

That doesn’t mean I won’t write at all – I just won’t have a daily word count goal. Writing will come in bits and pieces as I turn my brain from this last project to the next one – a darker fantasy revenge story. I have some research to do and an old, tired draft to pick apart and figure out exactly how to fix. The beauty of writing is that it’s just like any other skill you hone over the years: you continue to get better. Which means looking back at this draft from – *gasp* – early 2014 is making me cringe, but also helping me realize that I have improved and am continuing to improve. And: I know exactly how to fix it.

So. December goals. Research. Re-read. Restructure. Then begin rewriting. But also:

I’m going to read. It is quiet and cold and perfect blanket snuggling weather and I have a pile of books to read. Goodness, there is just nothing more perfect in the world than wrapping yourself in a warm blanket while sipping hot cocoa and reading. Well, aside from cold morning runs. 🙂

What are your plans for December?