Setting Reading Goals

The most common tip to improve your writing is Reading more. It’s absolutely true. Reading not only inspires you, but it teaches you how to tell different types stories. If you want to write mysteries, read those. learn to leave a trail for your reader. If you want to write romance, read those and learn how to soothe and delight your reader’s heart. if you want to write unicorn stories, read unicorn stories.

I love to read.
I just got out of the habit.

Gone were the days of childlessness where I could shut out the world and read for hours. Days. now I have responsibilities. and people get really annoying when they are hungry.

It was actually easier to write with children than to read. Whenever I read something it felt like I borrowed a plot more than just craft from them. So I stopped reading. 

It’s about time I got back into it. The main is that I need to find comp titles. The second is that I need to learn to write better. I struggle to stay focused. There is always something more important. I should be writing. I should be cleaning. But then I looked at my collection of ebooks and the few hard copy books I have started back buying. I have to get back in the habit. 

I researched goal setting and creating habits, as one does when they want to start a new habit. There is always mention of SMART goals and I am a fan of tracking. So I looked back at my previous attempts to read more.  Every year Goodreads asks me to set a goal of how many books I want to read. I think I started with 12. The next year it went down to six, and now I don’t even bother.

How will I rebuild my reading habit?

Time goals work better for me than page or total books read. My kids are older now, 12 and 14. so saying, “I’ll be done in a few minutes,” has meaning to them. I can say, lets see how much we can get done in 5 minutes and we have them both cleaning. 

You can do anything for 5 minutes.

Some of my apps ask for a page goal and divide out the book to help you finish by a certain date. To be honest, the page goal worked when I was going to the gym.

Besides reading for CP partners, there are writing buddies whose books I really want to read. Let’s not forget the other books I have been hoarding accumulating.

The kids started back at school and in the morning I don’t want to be all distracting they are working. This would be the time to get reading done. I can start with 5 minutes and have my coffee and read something fun, CP work, and educational. Then I can reevaluate to see how to change that for October.

I use Leio to track my pages. The ui is clear and clean, giving me choices for what to track. I wish for monthly and yearly goals I could track time. But it’s not like I can’t add that up myself. If the book you are reading isn’t found in the database you can add it in and choose how you are reading along with how you want to track it. Leio is only available on iOS on the iPhone and iPad. (I do not make money from this link I just really like this app.

My current read is Darkness falling by RR Willica. It’s a fantasy with sci-fi tech elements and high tension throughout. The story, the second book in its series, has a strong friendship bond theme.  I fell for one of the secondary POV characters named Kevie. This book is no longer available.

You should write because you love the shape of stories and sentences and the creation of different words on a page. Writing comes from reading, and reading is the finest teacher of how to write. 

Annie Proulx

What kind of reading goals do you set? How have those goals evolved with your life? Share below!

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3 thoughts on “Setting Reading Goals

  • A.S. Akkalon

    Honesty, I’ve never set a reading goal and I don’t track how many books I read. I’m pretty sure I go through phases, though. At times I’ll finish a book every few days, at other times I might advance only a page in a week. But like you I need to find comps for my WIP. Perhaps I should start keeping track. 🙂

    • erikafrose Post author

      It helps if I didn’t have a list I might was the same thing over, lol. There are a few I had already bought and then DNF. I like tracking stuff though. Maybe you just need a note app for thought on the books?

      • A.S. Akkalon

        A note app’s a thought, though feeling like I need to make notes could make reading a bit of a chore. Maybe I’m just lazy. 🙂