At the end of each year, I like to try and sit down and look back at my year in reading and blogging. Two things that I love getting at the end of each year that help me to do this, is the year in blogging report that wordpress sends me and for the first time this year (that I remember), a feature from Goodreads called “see your year in books.” I’m not going to regurgitate everything that is included in those reports, but maybe a few of the key items or funny things that I noticed. But, in the infamous words of Maria Von Trapp, let’s start at the very beginning…
Goals for Reading in 2015
Over the last few years, I have set my reading (and listening) goal at 365 books. However, this is the first year that I won’t quite make it – I mean, I’ll come close (right, now i’m sitting at 356 with several books in progress), but won’t quite be there. But at the same time, I’m not planning on adjusting my goal for 2016, because I do think 365 is totally doable.
Of those 356 books, 73 of them were audiobooks (so 20.5% of my total yearly total). Of those, 352 books, the longest one I have marked as finished was The Aeronaut’s Windlass by Jim Butcher (which came in 630pgs). The shortest book that I read (or again listened to) was The Interview by Silk Jones at 24pgs. Those 356 books totalled 97,888 pages (ohhh, so close to 100k), with an average of 291pgs per book.
The only book I rated 5 stars in 2015 was The Edge of Lost by Kristina McMorris (and a well-deserved 5 star it was); but I did have lots of 4 star reads (135 to be exact). I was also more likely to either DNF or rate a book low if I didn’t like it (2 stars seemed to be another fairly common rating on my shelves). I know some people would say, why do you keep reading books if you aren’t enjoying them – sometimes its because they fit a challenge that I am working on; sometimes its for a review and I want to give honest feedback and sometimes, it is just me being stubborn…lol! (ask my mom, she’ll tell you how stubborn I can be). In 2015, I had an average rating of 3.3 out of 5, which is slightly lower than my overall GR average (3.42 avg from 2364 ratings).
Moving From Reading to Blogging
I had a productive year in 2015, with 150 new blog posts (compared to 77 in 2014). My longest blogging streak this year was in March with 9 days, compared to 6 days in 2014. However, even though I had more blog posts during the year, I actually had less overall views for the year (5400, compares to 5700 last year).
One of the most interesting stats that I came across while looking at my blog stats was the popularity of different blog posts. For the second year in a row, 2 of my top 5 blog posts were ones that I wrote when my blog was relatively young (in 2011 and 2012 respectively). My reviews for 2 peace corps memoirs (The Ponds of Kalambayi and Monique and the Mango Rains were again popular. To me this shows that while I enjoy blogging all the different romances out there, sometime there are more unique books I could consider writing reviews of. Two of my other top 5 posts were my brief blog feature, Featured Author Friday – where I did a Q&A with different authors. I would love to start this back up in 2016 but didn’t get a lot of takers to be featured when I posted previously (oh well, something to consider).
And finally, taking a look at how people found my blog – since I always like to know how all my readers ended up here…for the second year in a row, facebook, twitter and amazon were 3 of my top referrers. I also was excited to see both Barb Drozdowich’s Book Blogger List and Kate Tilton also in my top sources for clicks. I didn’t really start putting my blog out there until late 2014, so seeing that those places do gain you clicks, was nice to see.
Goals for 2016
On the reading front, I’m going to leave my goal at 365 books, so roughly a book a day, but that will also taken into account any audiobooks that I listen to. On the blogging front, I want to try and post at least 200 new posts in 2016 (so 50 more than this year). That might be a bit of a leap, but its doable, I think. But no matter what happens, or how many books I read, I want to wish everyone a Happy New Years. May your 2016 be full of live, love, adventures and of course, great reading!