Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday: 2018 Bookish Resolutions

Happy Tuesday!! This week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic (now brought to us by That Artsy Reader Girl) asks us to share our bookish resolutions for 2018. Now that the new year is well underway and I’ve done some reflecting on 2017, I think it’s time to set some new goals. I don’t like to put an exorbitant amount of pressure on myself to meet unrealistically high expectations, so these are ten relatively simple goals that I’d like to keep in mind throughout the next year.

1. Read 24 books. I’ve made this my Reading Challenge goal on Goodreads for the past few years now and it’s worked out really well. This is a number that I can meet without any added stress, which is precisely what I need from a yearly goal.

2. Balance reading for classes, reading for fun, and blogging. I absolutely LOVE studying abroad at Oxford, but when term is in session I miss blogging and reading for fun so much! I’m hoping I can figure out a way to balance all of these things better during my last two terms there.

The main library at Mansfield College, Oxford.

3. Be more engaged with the blogging community. This goal is one that I wish I had done better at in 2017… so I’m carrying it over into 2018! As with the previous resolution, I’m hoping that I can find a way to make this work while balancing everything else I have to do.

4. Read more nonfiction. I’ve read some really great nonfiction books recently, which makes me feel motivated to read even more of them in the new year. Any recommendations would definitely be appreciated!

5. Read A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin. Now, what would a Holly resolution list be without this novel inevitably included? I vow that someday I will read this book!

6. Continue writing discussion posts regularly. This is a resolution I accomplished in 2017, but I would really love to keep it up this year as well. Creating interesting, thought-provoking content that sparks engaging discussions is something that I want to always strive towards with this blog.

7.  Keep better track of the books I want to read. More often than not I forget to write a book title down when someone recommends it to me, leaving me without a list of books I want to read whenever I go into a bookstore or decide to order books online. Putting them on a list in my phone or something similar would be so helpful!

8. Be more creative with my bookstagram posts. I love taking photos and updating my bookstagram, but in the midst of writing pages and pages of essays it’s easy to revert back to posting the same kinds of photos every single time. This year I’d like to be more creative with my books, props, scenery, etc.

9. Be more open to talking about this blog IRL. I rarely ever mention my blog to people unless they bring it up first, and even when they do I’m pretty hesitant to talk about it (as I’ve discussed in this post from a while back). In 2018, I’d like to be more open about talking about my blog if people bring it up.

10. HAVE FUN!! As always– what’s reading without a little (or a lot!!) of fun?

Happy New Year, everyone!!

What are your resolutions for 2018? What do you think of mine? Any advice on how to accomplish them? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

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Bookish

2017 Resolutions: How did I do?

Last January I made this list of my top ten bookish resolutions for 2017… and now the time has come to see how I did! I’ve completely forgotten what my resolutions were, so this should be an interesting trip down memory lane.

1. Read 24 books. Done! Somehow the stars aligned this year and I actually managed to read THIS MANY books… don’t ask me how! (Come to think of it, I know exactly how: SO MUCH required reading for college!) Although I don’t really care about the number of books I read, I can’t help but be pleased with this count!

2. Read more classics. Done! This goal can also be credited to the many books I was required to read for my courses this year, especially for my tutorials at Oxford. So much Victorian literature!

3. Read something by Zadie Smith. Done! Luckily enough, White Teeth was on the list of assigned reading for the Writing Feminisms tutorial I’m taking this upcoming term so I finally got around to reading something by Zadie Smith. (Also, it was AMAZING. Would definitely recommend!)

4. Read more by Charles Dickens. Done! I ended up reading two more novels by Dickens this year: Hard Times and Oliver Twist. I enjoyed both, though not as much as Great Expectations. (How I love that novel…)

5. Read A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin. Nope! I feel as though I’m just destined to not read this book. Despite my incessant inclusion of this novel in countless TBR lists, for some reason I can’t seem to get around to reading it. Will 2018 finally be the year???

6. Continue posting to my bookstagram. Done! I’ve had such a blast updating my bookstagram, especially now that I have the privilege of being surrounded by so many beautiful buildings and scenes at Oxford.

7. Write more discussion posts. Done! I feel like I’ve definitely made an improvement by writing longer posts about my study abroad experiences and introducing weekly features like Feminist Fridays onto my blog. (Pssst! Any feedback on this point would be very appreciated!)

8. Be more engaged with the online book community. Unfortunately, I’m going to have to go with a no for this one. Although I’ve had an amazing time studying abroad, being at Oxford does mean that I have less time to blog. I’ve really missed reading and commenting on everyone’s posts!

9. Read slowly. Hmm…. probably not. Again, having so much work at Oxford means that I really can’t afford to spend my time slowly wading through novels like I’d love to do. So much to read, so little time!

10. Have fun!! DEFINITELY! One reason I love blogging is that it always reminds me to have fun with what I read. After all, what good is reading if you don’t enjoy it?

I unknowingly achieved over half of my bookish resolutions 2017– who would have thought?

What were your resolutions for 2017? Did you achieve them? Will you carry them over into 2018? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday: Books Set in the City

Foodie Facts About Me-6Happy Tuesday!! Once again we have some freedom with this week’s Top Ten Tuesday theme, since the prompt is “Books with X Setting.” I’ve decided to go with a rather broad one: Top Ten Books Set in the City. I live in a pretty rural area and, while I enjoy visiting cities for day trips and short stays, I don’t know that I would necessarily choose to live in one. I much prefer the quiet, peaceful countryside, but that’s just me! However, cities do make fantastic settings for stories, as these books certainly show.

New York City

New York City-2

New York City-3

New York City-4

New York City-5

New York City-6

New York City-7

New York City-8

New York City-9

New York City-10

What are your favorite books set in cities? What do you think of the books on my list? Do you like cities? What’s your favorite city to visit? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Bookish

Are we all on the same page?

are we all on the same pageIt happens every year: as soon as the new year is rung in, blogs are flooded with posts about New Year’s resolutions, goals, and expectations. In the book blogging world this usually entails TBR lists, Goodreads challenges, individual bookish aspirations and even collaborative projects. I love making these goals every year, and I especially like reading about the goals that other people are setting for themselves.

This year while reading countless New Year’s posts I noticed a pattern forming in the majority of lists I read. Somehow it seems as though the book blogging community collectively decided that this year would be the year of cleansing ourselves of TBR lists, purging our bookshelves, and reading whatever we feel like it, whenever we feel like it. These were some of my goals, and I was really surprised that so many other people had the same ideas in mind for 2015.

It got me thinking: What is it about 2015 that makes us all on the same page? (pun may or may not be intended 🙂 )

I think it’s great that many of us are moving in the same direction this year with our reading habits, but I can’t help but wonder why that is. What was it about 2014 that made a bunch of us want to read all of the books we currently own and take a breather when it comes to our reading schedules? I have never thought about trends like this in the reading habits among book bloggers, book-tubers, and readers and general, and I think it’s absolutely fascinating.

Are you on the same page with your reading habits, or do they differ from what I have seen so much of so far in 2015? Why do you think we all unknowingly made such similar goals? Do you think I’m reading into this to much? (Another pun- look at me go!) Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Rambles

resolutions.

Happy New Year, everyone! It’s time to thank you all once more for reading my blog, commenting, and being your bookish selves. Without all of you, this would be nothing more than me spewing my thoughts into the nothingness of the internet.

Like most people, I have created some resolutions for 2014. Sure, I want to exercise more, eat healthier, be happier, blah, blah, blah… but those are so basic and standard! I won’t bore you with any of those. Instead, I’m going to focus on the more bookish ones, of which there are several.

  1. Read books by different authors. I have this habit of resorting back to the same authors and books over and over again. I tend to only read books by the same authors or to reread books over and over again because I know that I will enjoy them. I know that rereading can be very valuable, and I will always reread my favorite John Green books, Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, etc. However, there are so many books out there that I want to read, and I’ll never get the chance to do so if I don’t start branching out. To help with this, I’ve decided to join the First Reads challenge, in which I will challenge myself to read at least 25 books by authors I have never read before. To learn more about this challenge, click here. Wish me luck!FirstReads 2014
  2. Be more analytical while reading. I have a tendency to get lost in the story of a novel, and sometimes I don’t do a good job of actually thinking over what happened as far as character development, plot structure, setting, writing style, etc. One of my resolutions for 2014 is to ask more questions concerning these aspects and actually think more about the story.
  3. Find more time to read during the school year. My schedule during the school year is crazy. And by crazy, I mean insanely busy. Between my extremely time-consuming APUSH class, my job at the library, all my other classes, and my extra activities, I often feel as though I hardly have time to breath. However, this year I am going to put in a lot of effort to find time to read, whether it be on the bus to school or at night for twenty minutes before I (finally) fall asleep.
  4. Read at least fifty books in 2014. I had this same goal in 2013, and I reached it with no problem. It’s a happy balance between reading a lot and being realistic, which puts less pressure on me to read short books just so I can say that I read a certain number of books in the year. Plus, it allows for plenty of reviews on this blog, which is always a good thing.

Those are some of my bookish resolutions! What are yours? What are your resolutions that don’t have to do with reading? Let me know in the comments, or tweet me @Nutfreenerd.

I hope you all have a wonderful year in 2014!!!

Yours,

HOLLY