How to Jump Start Your Year of Reading
We don't really believe in resolutions, except when it comes to reading. Its always important to set goals and challenge yourself-- so we have a few suggestions to get you started on the right track.
- •Get a Reading BuddyThe only thing better than reading, is talking about a book after you've read it. Grab a reading buddy to help keep you motivated and inspired. The more the merrier!
- •Read A Book That Intimidates You2017 is the year to stand down intimidation. You know that feeling when you are afraid the water is too cold, or too deep, or too scary? Sometimes you just have to jump to find out how great the water really is. So, quit avoiding eye contact with that copy of Infinite Jest you keep coming back to and give it a go. It won't bite!
- •Read a Book of PoetryReading poetry takes a different kind of focus than a lot of other writing. You have to slow down, sometimes read it few times, and allow the words and rhythms to unfold in their own time. This is exactly the kind of reading experience that you could be missing. We love "The After Party" by Jana Prikryl, Kevin Young's "Blue Laws" and Rupi Kaur's "milk and honey" as great places to start. Let their magic wash over you and renew your love of the written word!
- •Finally Read That Book Everyone Has Told You to ReadThis is the "I swear, this book totally changed my life when I read it" book. You know, the one you keep hearing everyone rave about? The time has come. You really want to read it too so, do them a favor and finally read it so you guys can talk about it already! If you haven't already, we recommend "My Brilliant Friend" by Elena Ferrante, "All the Light We Cannot See" by Anthony Doer, and "Homegoing" by Yaa Gyasi.
- •Actually Read That Book You've Lied About ReadingCome on, you know you've done it. It can be kind of embarrassing to admit you haven't found the time to actually get this book into rotation. Or you've read half of it, but never quite finished. You don't have to tell us what the book is, but now is a great time to save face. Suggestions include "Harry Potter and the Cursed Child" by JK Rowling, John Tiffany and Jack Thorne, "Bad Feminist" by Roxane Gay, "The Sellout" by Paul Beatty.
- •Read More Diverse AuthorsReading who you don't know can expose you to different cultures, dialects, lifestyles, ideas, and points of view all without leaving your house. That's magical, right? And how do we better understand and empathize with each other as human beings than to just step into another's perspective of the world? We suggest Tyehimba Jess's "Olio", "The Year of the Runaways" by Sunjeev Sahota, and "Behold the Dreamers" by Imbolo Mbue.
- •Read More WomenIn a time when misogyny is (sadly) still rearing it's ugly (orange) head, we need to hear the voices, opinions, and experiences of women more than ever. Start your year feeling empowered and connected with your female spirit. We suggest "M Train" by Patti Smith, "Shrill" by Lindy West, "All the Single Ladies" by Rebecca Traister and Diana Athill's memoir, "Alive, Alive Oh!"
- •Read the Book Before the MovieThis idea gives you a deadline AND a reward! The arguments over book v. film are always lively, but there's no shame in liking both! We suggest "Hidden Figures" by Margot Lee Shetterly, "Wonder" by R.J. Palacio or "The Lost City of Z" by David Grann. Find more suggestions: http://buff.ly/2iNbfh8
- •Netflix and Read!We may truly be living in television's golden age of programming. With streaming services accessible and affordable, it's easier than ever to get lost binge watching a show. Try dedicating an hour or two every week to reading the books behind your favorite series. We suggest "Game of Thrones" by George RR Martin, "Orange Is The New Black" by Piper Kerman and "Outlander" by Diana Gabaldon.
- •Read Up On the Issues That Have You Feeling OverwhelmedThe year 2016 brought a lot of very pressing issues to the forefront of our conversations and its easy to feel helpless in the wash of never ending news coverage. Kick start this year by diving into the research on the issues you really care about. Try "This Changes Everything" by Naomi Klein, "White Trash" by Nancy Isenberg, or "How To Survive a Plague" by David France.
- •Finish the Book You Started Last YearWe do it all the time. We start a new book we were super jazzed about, but got lost somewhere along the way. Its not that we didn't like it, sometimes life just has other plans. So go grab that book from your bookcase right now! It may take re-reading a few of the last pages to catch up, but a good book is worth it. Think of how accomplished you'll feel!