Yakkety Yak – Gaining Ground On My Book Goals

Yakkety Yak...Let's Chat

At the beginning of each year, I try to think of things I want to focus on in all aspects of my life.  I have broad goals with specific actions toward those goals. 

Now under these goals, I have actions that relate specifically to reading and books.

  • Under ‘find ways to save’, don’t buy any more books until you finish what you’ve got, Sophia.
  •  Under ‘keep it simple’, don’t take more review commitments than you can handle.
  •  Under ‘simplify’, again, finish what you’ve got and give away what will not become a re-read.
  •  Under ‘get healthy’, listen to books while you walk.  And yes, actually walk, Sophia.

 

So, the big question is, how am I doing on all that, right?

  • We’ll start with the fail one.  I do not walk more than once a week on a regular basis.  There are occasions, yes, I get more in.  Summer is here and I do better this time of the year so we will live in hope.
  •  Book buying, well there we have some happy news.  I’ve bought a total of 16 books for $40 and most were low price audios I caught on sale back in January and haven’t bought a book in over two months.  I really have stuck to what I already have on my shelves or received by freebie, gifts and giveaways.  I have read/listened to 57 books from my own shelves since January.
  • And that brings me to reviews.  There are a few actions I wanted to take with reviews.  I have to share this because I’m pretty jazzed that I’ve hit or nearly reached what I wanted to do here.
    • – I wanted to get my Net Galley score up to 98% and maintain it.  I have done that for nearly two months.
    • I also wanted to catch up on all my older review books, including the unsolicited copies I decided that I would like to read.  I have three left of those I actually committed to review and three that are unsolicited that I will finish in the next two months hopefully.
    • I wanted to take less review books and read more from my own shelves and I have done that.  Some weeks I am 50/50 balance on this.  I truly believe that the balance I have found will give me reviewer longevity and enjoyment.

Credit where credit is do

One of the reasons I am tackling these bookish resolutions so well are book challenges.  Thank you so much to those who put these together and host them.  Blogger Shame, COYER, Clean Sweep & Take Back Control, Mt. TBR, Audio, Oldies But Goodies, Read All the Books, Series, Romance Roundabout, New Releases, and Outlander all made a significant contribution in my numbers.  Gracias, gals!

Now, how are you doing?  Book Budgets, Clearing Shelves, Finishing Reviews?  Do tell!

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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.
  • You’re doing great on your challenges. It can be really hard to get out exercise. I have same issues. Keep working towards it. I’ve been good on that this week. Now, just have to keep it up next week.

    Melanie @ Hot Listens & Rabid Reads

    • Thanks, Melanie!

      I’ve really been hitting them hard and it was great to check progress and see I am doing well. yeah, we’ll work on that exercise one. I need them if for no other reason than exercise keeps the stress levels down. LOL Good luck to you on that one, too.

  • This is just awesome!!! I am so glad that you are making an effort to accomplish your goals….even the random walks. I like walks, but I normally like doing it with someone or while listening to an audiobook. I do love trying out older books on my TBR that have been on my shelves forever. Good luck with these.

    • Thanks, Renee! I’ve found the walks and doing some exercise with DVDs and my exercise ball and mat at home are more my speed than a gym membership. But that said… I need to do it. LOL

      You do great getting to the older ones from what I can tell. I need to keep going with this.

  • Michelle

    Great job on your goals!! I need to focus more on the books that I already own… well once they’re out of boxes that is.

    • LOL! Yeah, its tough to be motivated to get to the older ones when you have to unbury them to even pick one. Thanks, Michelle!

  • That’s not too bad. I used my Mother’s Day gift cards to buy more books so I’m doing good with that and I found some freebies.

    • Oh hey, yeah, you’re doing great with your book budget then, Mary. I remember you said you read some and then get more which I think is a great budgetary discipline to have. 🙂

  • good luck for everything!

    • Thanks a bunch, Melliane! 🙂 I’m still working at it.

  • You are doing amazingly well with your goals, Sophia! I am in awe of your 98% NetGalley rating. I didn’t even think that was possible. Let’s just say that I am no where near that number. I do buy books and I shouldn’t because I have so many that I need to read. I get a lot of Amazon gift cards so most of the books that I buy don’t come out of my bank account so that is a positive.

    • A year ago I would have thought that percentage was impossible too, Carole. 🙂 I really went after it and got it well within what I’m more comfortable with for commitment books. I like the freedom of being able to pick up what I’m more in the mood for now. Its always a huge temptation to pile a bunch more on now that I’ve got it down. LOL

      Oh yes, using the gift cards definitely isn’t as bad on the budget. Neat that you have those so you can add books without hitting the bank account.

  • Congratulations on your goals! I have a Netgalley goal, not as high as yours yet, but I’m getting really close. My list of books to review is still really long even after doing the May Clean Sweep ARC Challenge. I’m trying to work on those, but some new releases of my favorite series are calling my name. I have had slip ups on my book buying the last couple of months, and I already know of two books I will be buying in June. I did much better with book buying last year. I’m trying to save the book money for when I got to NOLA Storycon in September. You have a lot of challenges here, I might have to check some of these out! #GetSocial17

    • Thanks, Tanya!
      The Net Galley percentage is a tough one because it is such a tempting place. Wishing you well on that one.
      Yes, the book budget is a real struggle when favorite series are coming out. I get hit by that around late Feb and early Mar when my favorite series release.

      Oooh, neat! Your NOLA Storycon sounds neat.

      Yes, do check out our challenges. You’re welcome to still join us if you like, Tanya.

      Thanks for stopping by for #GetSocial17

  • You’re doing great with your goals. And hopefully with summer here you can walk a bit more as well. I also did well by buying very few new books, but I am still struggling with the review books a bit. I mostly have a big backlog I don’t get to, but I’ve gotten better at accepting less new review copies and focus mostly on the arc teams I am part of now. I recently started trying to read more of my own books except for only review copies as I did really good so far this year with reading review copies. I hope the rest of the year you do well with your goals as well!

    • That’s what I’m hoping, too, Lola!

      I am glad to see you’re doing well with your book budget, too. Yeah, the review stack can be a tough one. As much as I eagerly wanted to read those books, as soon as I commit to review, it can become a task so the reading of both from my shelf and the review stack is really a good thing.

      Good luck on your stack, too, Lola!

  • Sophia you are rocking it! That is awesome! I’m so jealous of your review piles. lol I’m making headway thankfully and have been way light on taking new ones on. Part of that is not reading as much in general. I’m down from like 20 a month to maybe 11. Not sure what’s going on but it’s okay. NG I’m around 92% and only have 2 active on that list but they’re read and reviews are being finished. Then the rest are blogger shame that I’m catching up on (one a month). Again I’m happy with it.

    Hope your June reading rocks and you get a lot more off your list!

    • Thanks, Anna!
      Reading less can be a good thing when you are busy with other projects and also it probably makes each book you do get read stand out more for you.
      Your NG score is great. The way you are taking less; you’ll winnow it down in no time. You’ve got a nice Blogger Shame goal of finishing one each month that’s doable and not impossible so you’ll see the satisfying results. Though I hope you don’t run into the trouble I did with many of the older ones- I wasn’t interested any more. ): But I read them- or tried to read them any way. 🙂

  • Sophia, you’re making great progress! I’m jealous at how you’re catching up with older books 🙂 I wish I had that drive. I’ve done better on NetGalley, but my list has grown in the last few months. I don’t accept review requests from authors since I don’t like to commit because I never know what mood I’ll be in for books I want to read (LOL) so I’m good on that end. I just wish I had more time to read all of those I’ve requested through NG. I’ll probably join you on walking more this Summer. I’m so not a walker but it’s good for my health ha!

    • NG is the tough one for me, too, Evie. So hard to not request more. 🙂 I still take author requests- mostly for those who have become regulars b/c they know that it might take me three months and they don’t mind.
      Yes! Walking to keep up the health even if I want to talk myself out of it. 🙂 Good luck on your goals, too.

  • Trying to do the same in accepting review requests. I want to do less of it and more reading from my tbr pile. Tend to forget the good stuff already there.

    • It has definitely worked much better for me. No guilt and no drudgery feelings to contend with. 🙂 Wishing you well on the same endeavor, Velvet.

  • Karen

    My goal this year is to cut my existing physical books in half. They’ve been there for years and I need to either read them or pass them on. It’s ridiculous to keep getting new books and then let them become old books lol Vicious cycle.

    I got control of the review books last year. I only accept 2 per month. I’ll request more (netgalley) if I read/and review them before the end of the month.

    Sounds like you’re on your way!! Good luck.

    For What It’s Worth

    • Very nice, Karen! You have some challenging, but achievable goals there. I like that you have a good set of rules, too, particularly for the NG requests- come back and request after the 2-limit is read. I might have to snitch that idea. Thanks!

  • reviews? well….not so good on, lols. But I do plan on getting back in the grove. I’ve been good with my book buying and health wise, the gym is working out perfectly 😀

    Great job with your goals Sophia and keep it up!

    • Two out of three is great, Sharonda! Impressive with the working out. That’s my tough one. Cheering you on with your review one. 🙂