At the beginning of the year (2022) I decided I was going to keep track of all the books I read, physical books and audio books, in list form on a simple NOTE on my phone, month by month. I wanted to not only see how many books I actually read (vs how many I “think” I read), and to also keep track of the books I read (because I’ve been using the local library to read more and thus don’t have them sitting on my shelf to look at once finished) but also to prioritize reading more with visible accountability… to ultimately read more.
Keeping track of the books I’ve read has actually done all the things I’ve wanted it to do. I’ve read more consistently throughout 2022, checked out more library books, looked for new titles and stories I may not have given a chance before and listened to more audiobooks as well.
QUICK TIP: You can actually find quite a lot of full audiobooks on Youtube for free. If I’m looking for a short audiobook (4 hours or so) and I don’t want to pay a full credit on Audible, I check youtube first. For instance, I re-read The Alchemist in January for the millionth time because it’s my favorite book and I read it about once a year, but I wanted to see if it hit differently if I listened to it and found a full version on Youtube for free narrated by Jeremy Irons, which was pretty fantastic.
Last month I bought this book light from amazon and it’s been a game changer for reading at night. I’m probably a little behind on this because duh but I used to be able to see in my dim living room lighting and now my 46 year old eyes need more light shining on the pages to be able to see the words… unless it’s a YA book because the font is ten times larger and the pages shorter and much quicker to read. I kind of wish all books were written in that style to be honest, it makes it so much easier to read than tiny small fonts. Anyway, there are tons of book light options… I like this one because it’s rechargeable (USB) and large enough that I can also use it on notepads for drawing at night as well.
Earlier this month, Haley Nahman, writer of Maybe Baby shared this post called The new quantified self – Read 200 books, expand your consciousness 200x! and I thought it was interesting that just the day before I was talking to someone about keeping track of all the books I’m reading this year and wondered why I had never thought of it before AND wondered if other people keep track of their reading efforts and was pleased to read that I wasn’t the only nerd on the internet.
Haley has read 19 books that she also uses her phone’s notes app to keep track of… and as hard as I have tried to get more reading in, I’ve only managed about half of that. I’m on book 9 now, which makes about one book a month. However, I’ve also listened to 12 audiobooks, which totals 21 (if listening to books counts as much as reading does).
I’m not in the business of comparing myself to others, especially when it comes to my reading habits, BUT since I don’t consider myself a slow reader, but a person who doesn’t always prioritize reading time, I’m happy that I’ve at least kept my word and read more than I would have if I hadn’t been listing them as I go.
I currently have the three books in the top photo checked out from the library and am about halfway through Screen Tests by Kate Zambeno, which is a quick and fun book of short stories that almost reads as a diary. I’m not sure I’ll make it through the other two (My Broken Language and Rebel Spy) by the end of September, but I’m going to try for October 🙂
I’ve included other books I finished this year as well as some that I’ve read in the past and adore… as recommended reading in the widget below if you’re looking for a new read.
Looking for more? Check out my Amazon Book List here