Coffee and … Reflecting on my 2021 Reading

For this first week of 2021, I’m concentrating on wrapping up last year’s reading starting with my first “Coffee and…” post looking at how my 2021 reading went and whether I achieved my goals for last year. Join me?

The Coffee:

To kick off the year, we’re drinking Steampunk’s Ethiopian Bale Mountain (natural) which has tasting notes of black cherry, blueberry jam and dark chocolate. An excellent coffee to start 2022 with.

The Wrap Up:

The obvious place to start with this wrap up is with the sporadic and then non-existent blogging in the latter part of 2021. We had a family bereavement and things were really busy and really hard for a good while, and then I just needed some time to be myself again without the pressure of reading to review or feeling like I had to sit and blog when I really wasn’t feeling it. I shared my reading goals (or resolutions) for the year in this #SixforSunday post last January, and set myself some pretty radical goals for the year. Here’s how they went:

1. Make the switch from Goodreads to Storygraph – I made the switch at the start of last year, and I could not be happier with that decision. I initially said that I wouldn’t move my library to Storygraph, but I did that pretty early in the year as all the recommendations I was getting were for books I had already read and loved. I deleted Goodreads soon after and I have no regrets at all.

2. Read 100 books – 2020 was the first year I didn’t achieve the goal I set for myself, so I set my reading goal at 100 books. When I achieved that I increased it to 150 based on the number of books ahead of schedule I was at the time. I read 165 books, and I’m more than happy with that.

3. Trial not doing star reviews – This has worked so much better than I thought it would. I still add star ratings on retail websites where they are needed, but not on my blog or Storygraph. My star ratings were always a bit erratic and I find sharing my thoughts without them is a much fairer system.

4. Put less pressure on myself to review every book I read on my blog – Considering I gave up on reviews in August (ish) last year, I think it’s safe to say this went well! The reviews I wrote last year were of books I had a more to say about and really wanted to give some space to, and this did work really well for me. It was much more enjoyable.

5. Read more diversely – I joined two diverse reading challenges on Storygraph last year and completed them both. One of the things I noticed was that I was reading a lot of books I had already added to my TBR or were recommended by people I follow. Not to say that I couldn’t diversify my reading more, but it was nice to discover this and I will definitely be paying more attention to what I am reading this year.

6. Reduce my TBR – This is the first year I have said this and actually made good progress. I slipped a few times with my rule around buying one new book for every five I read, and then abandoned it completely in December, but I was certainly more conscious of buying books. I started last year with 174 books on my TBR and ended with 53, a reduction of 121 and I am so pleased with that.

I’m really pleased with how this went last year and I am looking forward to sharing my 2022 reading goals with you in a future #SixforSunday post. Do you set any reading goals? How did your reading go last year?

6 thoughts on “Coffee and … Reflecting on my 2021 Reading

Add yours

  1. I’m glad to have moved to Story graph too – I think it was you who pointed me in the direction, so thank you!
    165 books is amazing! Well done!
    And totally agree on needing to not put so much pressure on ourselves to review EVERYTHING! I’m getting better at this but there’s room for improvement!

    Liked by 1 person

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