Last post left for 2016 is of course a look back at how my bookish life was in 2016. From the get go, I felt it wasn’t a stellar year for me, but brushing off the things I was sad about, I think… sorry, I know there were some things worth celebrating about. This is going to be a very long post, so let’s jump right into it.
1) Statistics. Let’s start with the books I read. Aside from that was indicated on the image above, of the 80 books I read this year, 48 were written by female authors and 24 were written by male authors. I know that won’t add up to 80 because there were multiple books I read that was written by one author (like 3 from Marissa Meyer and 2 by Sarah J. Maas among others), so I only counted them as one. 17 were part of a series; 37 were standalone; 15 were a mix of non-fiction, poetry and play; and 11 were a mix of novellas and short stories. As for the format, 3 were leatherbound, 13 were hardbound, 27 paperbacks, 12 mass market paperbacks, and 25 were eBooks. For my book haul, I acquired 95 books this year, so far. That’s because I have ordered and paid for other books that I still haven’t received yet, so I couldn’t count it for the moment. Of those 90 books, 66 were purchased, 19 were given as gifts, 5 were book swaps, 2 were freebies, and 3 were giveaway winnings. Rewinding a bit on the books I purchased, 15 were bought from physical book stores (7 from Fullybooked, 2 from National Book Store, 6 from Book Sale), 6 were bought from online book shops, and 45 were bought from international online book stores (4 from Barnes & Noble, 1 from Amazon, and a whopping 40 books from Book Outlet). As for the format, 36 were hardbound, 42 were paperbacks, 16 mass market paperback, and one leatherbound.
2) GoodReads Challenge. I didn’t do well this year… I read only 80 books out of the 100 I set myself to do. This wasn’t a difficult target to reach actually, considering I got to read 90 something books back in 2014, but this year I had so many changes in my life and in myself that took most of the time I should be using for reading. No regrets though… I sure loved the time I spent with my family, my friends, my boyfriend, and at the same time I got to watch different movies and TV shows. 80 might be considered a failure, but I am still glad I got to balance many things.
3) Book Challenges. I only took one big reading challenge this year, and that’s the Around the Year in 52 Books. I failed that one, too, and I am think this is what made me sad the most. I am so optimistic I could do this, but in the end I just couldn’t.
4) More Failures. Simply put, I managed to fail more goals and plans I set myself to do – read one non-fiction book a month, read at least 6 Filipino related books, write a review for every book I read, tackle two big books (I only got to read one – Jane Eyre). I also planned to distance myself from YA, but I still got to read a lot of YA books, so I am not sure if I got to tick this off the list…though I would say that this year I just felt myself so disconnected with YA books, I just couldn’t appreciate it as much as I did anymore.
5) Less eBooks. This year, one big triumph was having to read more physical books I own. Ever since I started reading, eBooks has been my go to format, and I don’t have anything against eBooks, it’s just that I have changed my cell phone’s battery numerous times and it’s not good to be using my phone all the time because I also use it to play games, watch videos, and I wanted to release some of the burden from my cell phone. 25 eBooks compared to 55 physical books… sweet!
6) Meet Ups. This year, I got to meet other bookstagrammers (Lei, Janna, Avy, and Jovel – Arra I already met before), as well as meet up with my own bookish sisters Eunice, Gie and Elena. It was so nice to meet people I usually interact with online, and they are just amazing people whom I am glad to be friends with.
7) Buy a Book to Remember the Day By. When I met up with Rexy and Eunice in January, Rexy mentioned about buying a book to remember the day by. I thought it was a wonderful and meaningful way to buy a book (not that I am only looking for a reason to buy books, lol). I bought a book while traveling if it’s possible, but I admit I kind of regret not buying a book when the family celebrated my birthday. It would have been great buying myself a book on my birthday, but this year I didn’t get to do it, also because I was conscious about spending money on books as I do have a limit. This is now a lifelong project I have, and maybe after five or ten years I will do a post listing all the books I bought to remember the day (or moment) by.
8) 85 Book Limit. To lessen my book buying, I set myself a limit on my spending and because I read 84 books in 2015, I decided to put my limit to 85. At first, I was afraid if I could do it, but by the second half of the year it wasn’t so difficult to restrain myself anymore. Like what I mentioned in my statistics, I purchased 66 books this year, but that’s not actually all that I bought. I ordered and paid 12 more books, but I couldn’t include it because I haven’t received them yet. Though, even if I add 12 to 66, I still have 7 more before I hit the limit.
9) Readathons. Setting myself to read 100 books in one year, readathons sure are life savers! However, not all I joined turned out to be successful. I couldn’t recall all those I failed, but the biggest fail would have to be #ayearathon, as I wasn’t able to sustain it the entire year. Of the successful readathons I joined, I think the best was Dewey’s 24-hour Readathon because I was able to join it two times this year.
10) Bookish Pinoys. Our little book club on Instagram is still doing well this year, and I hope it will stay strong for many years to come. This year, we had the biggest anniversary event and we also successfully did two book swaps. Though we encounter difficulty thinking of activities to do, I am happy that we are still very alive.
11) Bookish Discoveries. As more and more establishments cater to different themes, it was a side project to check as much book related places. This year, I got to visit the Book Stop Project in Ayala Triangle and I got to check out The Librewry Cafe in Cagayan de Oro, with the help of my brother and his wife. Though it is still pretty much a side project, something I won’t really put a lot of efforts into, I think it would be great to discover more of this next year. What do you think?
12) Read anywhere. Now this is such a fun thing to do. Inspired from the pictures and suggestions my friends (Eunice, Cath, and Elena) have, I found it to be a great way to showcase the places you’re in and still celebrating your nerdy side. I just love this so much that I am positive this will be a lifelong project as well.
13) Giveaways. I don’t join a lot of giveaways and I pretty much choose the ones I join in, but this year I think is when I joined the most number of giveaways. Of those I joined, I won three times – one from @geemizbooks ($30 credits to the Book Depository), one from @newleafwriter (an iPad mini case from Klever Case, which I gave to my brother), and one from @phamtasticreads (a copy of Gabriels Inferno by Sylvain Reynard). I feel sooo sad not winning any of those big giveaways (especially those sponsored by Juniper), but maybe now’s not the time.
14) Instagram. My bookstagram took a better turn this year. Thanks to my dear friends who constantly share discoveries and Eunice gifting me with a full package of VSCO filters, I was able to come up with a filter recipe using VSCO and Snapseed to make my posts look as uniform as possible. Also, this is the year that I invested on little items for props, and the year that I got to play with flatlay. Although the “algorithm” thingy on Instagram didn’t help my page – before the algorithm, I would get 200+ likes then when the change came in, I have to constantly pray (no kidding) that my post would get at least 100 likes. I know the likes don’t convert to money and basically I am not getting anything from doing Instagram (unlike those who get ARCs and merchandise), but I would be hypocrite if I say the likes don’t matter to me. Of course it matter, because it is where I get my source of confidence. Each like for me is like one pat on the shoulder for a job well done, and it fuels me to do more of it.
15) Book to Movies. This year, there are so many movies adapted from books, and I wasn’t able to jot down all the movies I watched this year that I forgot how many book-to-movies I have watched. The only two movies I remember now is “Me Before You” and “Paper Towns.” Next year, I will definitely take note and track every movies I watch.
16) Changes as a Reader. If I was a slow reader in 2015, I was way too slower this year. Not just that, this year is truly where I felt myself no longer in sync with YA novels. I feel like I am too old for it, but the thing is, whenever I look for new releases, YA novels are usually the ones popping! Very few people blog, vlog, or bookstagram about other literary works (either that or I still haven’t discovered them), so I feel a little helpless for that matter. As for the writing, I am now partial to 3rd person pov as I do get to know different angles that way and not be confined with just one person’s pov. Also, I am loving more of the narration now compared to conversations, a big change for me because ever since, I prefer conversation driven novels (easier to read). This year, I saw myself very much in love with rich narrations, especially those essay type / contemplative ones…not the step by step description of what’s happening. As for the book format, it’s this year that I became more of a paperback person and not much into hardbacks anymore. When I started reading, I want all my books to be hardbacks…now, I am happier having the paperback version, though of course when it comes to price, like if both formats are the same size, I’d still buy the hardback over the paperback because I felt I get the better value that way. I know it sounds weird and contradicting, but it is what it is.
I know there are still so many memories I forgot to share here, but for now, these are all the ones I could recall. It has been a good year despite the few setbacks, and I am now ready for 2017. I will make it the best reading year ever.
This blog is not active, that’s why I wanna say thank you for reading my posts. I will try my best to blog more actively next year, so I hope you will still hang out with me in 2017.