Archives: motivation

Reading Retrospective

Reading Retrospective

In 2013, I didn’t read much in the science fiction and fantasy genre (or outside of it). I did much better in 2012, when I actually set a reading list for myself and went about completing it.

This post is part of a series:

Goodreads Reading Challenge

Goodreads 2013 Reader Challenge

If you like competitions, things like NaNoWriMo and the Goodreads Reading Challenge get you pumped about writing and reading. But for people like me, who really don’t like competition, the Goodreads Reading Challenge is still the best way to see:

  • how many books you plan to read
  • whether you accomplished that goal
  • a list of the books you actually did read that year

You can see in my blog post called Binge-Reading that in March 2012, I was concerned about my declining reading habit. Lots of authors have said their reading declines once they start writing seriously, which is depressing, really.

So I decided to counteract that with the 2012 Goodreads Reader Challenge. If I’m going to be a writer in this genre, I want to be an avid reader in it as well, even if I don’t read as much as I used to as a teen/young adult.

Book List 2012

I mostly succeeded at reading about 20 books in 2012. (In my Binge-Reading post, I planned on reading at least 15 books by authors I hadn’t read before.) Here are my stats:

    Dust By Elizabeth Bear, a SciFi Space Opera Fantasy

  • All of the books were science fiction or fantasy. 
  • Almost all were novels.
  • 1 was a post-apocalyptic anthology. 
  • 3 or 4 I couldn’t finish. 
  • 13 were written by dudes.
  • 7 were written by females.
  • I think only 2 or maybe 3 were by indie authors. 
  • Most had been on my to-read list for quite some time. 
  • Almost none were by authors I’d read previously.

You can see my 2012 reading list on Goodreads even if you don’t log in.

Book List 2013

I failed miserably at 2013. It’s November, and it’s safe to say I won’t reach my goal unless I do some actual binge-reading. I think the fact that I didn’t plan my reading habits this year was partly to blame.

But a larger reason for my decline in reading this year was that I desperately tried to maintain my writing schedule, even in the face of planning my steampunk wedding! So something had to give, and it was reading. As well as house work. ūüėČ

Of the 18 I’ve attempted to read in 2013:

    Feed By Mira Grant, a Post-Apocalyptic Zombie Novel

  • All but 1 of the books were science fiction or fantasy.
  • 13 were novels. 
  • 3 were novellas. 
  • 1 was a graphic novel. 
  • 1 was a nonfic about the post-apocalypse.
  • I couldn’t finish 4 of the novels. 
  • 11 were written by dudes.
  • 7 were written by females.
  • I think 3 were by indie authors. 
  • Some were books I’d been meaning to read for a while. 
  • A few were picked up on a whimsy or by recommendations from friends. 
  • Several were ones I’d heard about over the Internet, at cons, on podcasts, etc. 
  • 6 were by authors I’d read previously. 
  • The other 12 I tried to diversify and read new stuff.

You can see my 2013 reading list on Goodreads even if you don’t log in.

My next few posts will talk about why I used to (as a teenager) discriminate against my own gender and avoid reading books by female authors. As you can see above, I do read female authors now, but I recognize my ratio is still skewed. Because of that, I’ve decided 2014 will be the year of the female author.

(A quick note: The genders of the authors above are as listed on Goodreads. I did not check to see if any were pseudonyms, but I think they’re fairly accurate.)

When you look back at your own reading habits, is your ratio of male to female authors as skewed as mine?

Leave a comment below or find me as +Traci Loudin on Google+, the perfect place for fans of science fiction and fantasy to hang out. I’m also obviously on Goodreads, as well as Twitter and Facebook to a lesser extent.

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    The Big Con Roundup: Worldcon & DragonCon

    The Big Con Roundup: Worldcon & DragonCon

    Since I didn’t have a chance to attend WorldCon or Dragon*Con this year, I’ve been jealously watching other people’s adventures. So I thought I’d do a round-up, in case you’re doing the same. Plus, there’s lots and lots of great fantasy and science fiction writing and publishing advice in these posts.

    But first, +Scott Edelman tells us one small thing we can do to make others feel welcome at cons.

    Moaning Myrtle cosplay photo via

    Dragon*Con Fan Posts

    TONS of Worldcon posts after the jump!

    Worldcon: Mostly Writing Posts

    If you’ve made it this far, you should definitely check out this Dragon*Con Justice League vs. Avengers cosplay video:

    Have you been to a Dragon*Con or WorldCon before? Would you recommend the experience to other fans of science fiction and fantasy? Leave a comment below.

    And if you’d like a link to your Dragon*Con or Worldcon post to appear here, just leave me the link!

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      Obstacles in Writing

      640px-Sulley-blue-monsterWriting a novel is a strange experience, start to finish. Moments of euphoria ‚ÄĒ a character does something unexpected, you attain extra depth in a scene with one well-placed word, or a scene is easier to write than you expected ‚ÄĒ intersperse with moments of disdain ‚ÄĒ a character’s dialogue falls flat, a scene refuses to come ‘alive’ with detail or action, and you lose¬†motivation.

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