Top Ten Tuesday # 37: Blogging Goals and Resolutions for 2014

January 6, 2014 On blogging, Top Ten Tuesday 21

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme created by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week a new topic is given, and this week’s topic is:

 Blogging Goals For 2014

1) ARCs are taking up valuable space, and I need to get rid of them. Giveaways are always an option, but I’d also like to try to donate them to organizations in my community.  I’ve looked at websites for hospitals and  shelters, and neither listed books as a need.  I haven’t tried to call yet, so maybe the omission is an oversight.  If anyone has other ideas, please let me know!

2) Listen to more audiobooks!  I’ve purchased a some on sale at Audible, including The Hunger Games Trilogy.  I’ve already read them, but I’m enjoying the audiobooks in a new way.  I actually started listening to Catching Fire right after the film, and now I’m listening to Mockingjay.  I’d planned to stay away from MJ before seeing the film.  It’s been a few years since I last read it, and I think that helps to make the movie experience fresh.  But I just can’t wait that long for MJ, so I’m hoping I forget some of it by the time the film comes out.  I’ve also recently purchased the following on Audible: Code Name Verity, Dust & Decay, The Silver Linings Playbook, World After, and The Virgin Suicides.

3) Blog (more) about TV and movies.  Maybe no one wants to read that stuff, but I will have fun writing about it.

4) Read the books on my bookshelf!  You know, the ones I actually purchased.  I’m embarrassed to look around my house and see so many gorgeous (and untouched) books sitting on my shelves.  A while back, I thought I could set up a rotating routine of ARC, Library Book, Purchased Book.  I quickly realized it wouldn’t work because I have a major ARC problem.  So everything else gets pushed aside, and I get mad at myself when I read a string of poor ARCs.  I still try to work in a library book on occasion, but my purchased books are at the bottom of the totem pole.  Here are just some of the books I purchased in 2013, but still have no idea when I will be able to read them:

  • Cinder and Scarlet
  • The Archived
  • Beth Revis’s Trilogy
  • The Name of the Star and The Madness Underneath
  • The Distance Between Us
  • The Madman’s Daughter
  • Outlander
  • Doctor Sleep
  • The Help
  • And many, many more

You get the idea.  There are more purchased books, as well as books I won, and books I got at BEA.  The only way to get this done is to request fewer ARCs.  So, I’m going to focus primarily on authors I’ve read and others with great buzz.  I won’t die if I have to wait for the hardcover.

5) Since I already mentioned Harry Potter, this would be a good time to mention that I intend to read at least the first book from that series, as well as the first book from A Song of Ice and Fire.  I’m so obsessed with the HBO show, and it’s only a lack of time that has prevented me from starting the books.  That will change in 2014.

6) Consider DNF’ing.  I can’t promise I’ll do this, but I will think about it!  I’m past the point where I feel like I need to worry that this could hurt me with publishers.  My problem is that after I’ve invested myself in the story to a certain point, I feel like I might as well finish.  (This is the situation I’m in with Enders by Lissa Price right now.)

7) Stop feeling pressure to post daily.  I’ve already decided to eliminate the Waiting on Wednesday post.  I just haven’t been having fun with it lately.  And considering that this is supposed to be FUN, since I’m certainly not getting $$$, I think that’s a good reason to eliminate it.

8) Teach myself to use GIMP for creating images.  I currently use PicMonkey, which I hope is a decent introduction to the more complex GIMP.

9) Go to BEA.  I went last year for my first time.  I’d only been blogging for a few months, and I hardly knew anyone, but I still had a wonderful time.  Then, it was all about books, books, books!  But this time, since I have other avenues for getting ARCs, I’d be more interested in meeting bloggers and hopefully getting to chat with publishers.  (Of course, I still want THE BOOKS!)  But here’s the problem, and here’s where I’m going to get uncomfortably personal.  I’ve gained a lot of weight over the last two years.  A LOT.  Trust me, whatever number your’re guessing, you’re not even close.  I was already “bad” at BEA in 2013, and it’s worse now.  I don’t feel like I deserve to go, looking like this, and perhaps that’s a sentiment only an overweight person could understand.  So, I put this out here in the hopes that by writing it, I am somehow committing myself to work on it.  We’ll see how that goes!  Wish me luck! 🙂

As always with goals and me, these are subject to change at any moment, due to any whim.


21 Responses to “Top Ten Tuesday # 37: Blogging Goals and Resolutions for 2014”

  1. Lianne @

    Great list of resolutions! I’ve been sort of wondering about the stack of ARCs I’ve accumulated last year; many of them I’m keeping anyways but there’s a few that I haven’t quite figured out what to do…

    And I’m also thinking about DNF’ing (though I didn’t list it in my list this week). It doesn’t happen too often but I do wonder what I will do should it happen to an ARC I’m reading or whatnot.
    Lianne @ recently posted…Meme: Top Ten TuesdaysMy Profile

    • Stephanie

      I imagine that it’s not a big deal to occasionally DNF an ARC, though it’s not a habit I’d like to get into frequently.

  2. Susan (Bloggin' 'bout Books)

    That’s the tough thing about ARCs — they can’t really be donated. What about setting up a trade thing with other bloggers who also have a lot of ARCs? I usually keep or hand off the good ones to IRL reader friends and toss the rest in the recycle bin. It’s hard to see a book (I mean, it’s a BOOK!) in the trash, but it’s impossible to keep all those ARCs.

    Good luck with all your goals. Happy New Year!
    Susan (Bloggin’ ’bout Books) recently posted…TTT: My Reading ResolutionMy Profile

    • Stephanie

      At least one publisher put forth the hospital/shelter idea. If either of those facilities near me expressed a need for books, I’d be perfectly fine donating ARCs.

      I’d hate to toss them, too. It seems like they could find a good home somewhere!

  3. Lanaia

    I hope you’ll like Harry Potter and Song of Ice & Fire, they’re among my favorite series! I need to start listening to audiobooks, too. I already managed to stop pressuring myself to post daily, what matters the most is to have fun blogging 🙂 Good luck!
    Lanaia recently posted…Top Ten Goals/Resolutions For 2014My Profile

    • Stephanie

      I hope you’re happier now that you’re not blogging every day! It seems like such a silly “rule.” For those who have the time and the desire to do it, they should go for it. But for everyone else, we should not feel pressured to do it.

  4. Kristen@My Friends Are Fiction

    I think these are great goals for 2014 🙂 You’ll have to let me know how dropping WoW works for you. It was freeing for me. I hope you have the same experience.

    I have so many books I need to read that are sitting on my shelves too. I wish there could be more time for reading but so it goes. I can’t wait to hear what you think of Martin’s series.

    I think you should go to BEA. I just wish I could be there with you. One day we’ll go together. I think it would be such a different experience and so much fun. I would get completely nervous to meet other bloggers because it’s so much easier for me to chat over the internet than in person. Crap, I’d even be nervous talking to you in person! I plan on utilizing some form of exercise this year…we can motivate each other perhaps?
    Kristen@My Friends Are Fiction recently posted…Review of Cress by Marissa MeyerMy Profile

    • Stephanie

      Nervous meeting me??? No way! 🙂 We will absolutely have to go to BEA together one year…soon! As for exercise, I’ll take any motivation I can get. If you have any ideas, let me know. I could always use someone yelling at me. 🙂

    • Stephanie

      I keep a list of all my ARC upcoming pub dates in my phone, and it stresses me out every time I look at it. Why do we do this to ourselves???

  5. Nikki @ Foil the Plot

    I think these are really wonderful goals, Stephanie! As for where to donate books, are you solely looking for local places? I’ve donated several of mine to the local libraries as well as to a local non-profit called ‘The Book Thing.’ They are Baltimore based and give away free books to those who have an interest in all things literary. I’m sure there are a ton of nearby non-profits if you search long/hard enough.

    If you’re ever up for audiobook recs, let me know, because I’m FULL of them! I LOVED the Hunger Games trilogy and am always happy to share suggestions. And have no fear about the DNF. I’m very much like you in that I tend to give books the benefit of the doubt until the bitter end. I know the world is full of good books but I’ve been pleasantly surprised by books in the past and I just can’t bear to put a book away knowing that it could, at some point, turn it around.

    And when it comes to blogging, you definitely have to do what works best for you. If it’s killing features or not posting daily, then so be it. This is supposed to be fun! It should NEVER EVER feel like a chore. I know it’s hard to not let the pressure get to you (we all do) but the stress at the end of the day isn’t worth it. We all need to maintain a good work/life/blog balance and you should never feel bad about that.

    Good luck in all of your goals and here’s to a happy, healthy, positive new year!

    • Stephanie

      I’d prefer to donate locally, but if I can’t find a place, I’ll definitely take a look at The Book Thing. Thanks for the suggestion! I’ve also found two organizations that donate books to soldiers serving abroad, but – shocker – not too many of them are looking for YA books!

      Thank you for the reality check about feeling blogging pressure. It would be easy to get burned out by feeling like we need to keep up with the Joneses. I haven’t reached that point yet, but I could certainly see it happening.

  6. Greg

    I know the hospitals around here take donated magazines, not sure about books. Maybe they do in your area… I’ve been thinking of blogging more about movies, and maybe graphic novels and other geeky stuff too, so I can relate to that. 🙂

    Will look forward to your thoughts on Game of Thrones- the book. Some of the nuances should be fun for someone who already knows the characters. I need to tackle HP this year too…
    Greg recently posted…Downton Abbey ThoughtsMy Profile

  7. Stephanie

    You should definitely blog about movies and graphic novels. I’m sure a lot of people would enjoy reading it. I’d like to read more graphic novels. I’ve only read The Walking Dead, so I know I would enjoy reading others’ recommendations.

  8. Lisa @ Bookshelf Fantasies

    In terms of the ARCs, does your local library do a big fundraiser sale? Our does, and I always see a ton of donated ARCs there. All the proceeds from the sale go back into the library system, and I always feel good about donating books for the sale (and then going and picking up a whole lot of new ones). I understand about the weight thing — I have a couple of family events coming up this year, and it suddenly hit me that I will not feel good about seeing these people unless I do something about my weight and getting in shape beforehand. And yes, I absolutely agree that this is supposed to be fun!!! I’m also taking a look at whether I should change/drop some of the things I do regularly for my blog that I maybe enjoy less now than when I started. Good luck with your resolutions! It’s really a great list. 🙂
    Lisa @ Bookshelf Fantasies recently posted…Book Review: The Golem and the JinniMy Profile

  9. Robyn Jones

    Your personal comment hit me because I really understand. I hope you go, deserving or not. I loved reading about your experience (sorry that sounds so freaking selfish-go because I want to read about it-Ack).

    As far as the excessive ARC’s, have you looked into literacy programs? I was a literacy tutor during college and one of my clients was 17. That would have been fun as the tutor and fun for the student. Oh, and I would so love posts on TV shows and movies. I’m a total TV/movie girl. Happy blogging, Stephanie!!
    Robyn Jones recently posted…YA with a New Adult edge to it! robgirlbooks’ review of Where the Stars Still Shine by Trish DollerMy Profile

  10. Jessica@Lovin' Los Libros

    These are great Stephanie! I plan on going to BEA this year myself. I want you to go! I definitely understand your feelings though, because I gained back all my weight I worked so hard to lose last year and I’m quite ashamed after looking at last year’s pictures and looking at myself now. And I don’t want to meet everyone at the weight I’m at now. I’m starting back my WW this week! I am determined! I also need to request less and I am going to DNF if I can’t get through a book. I feel awful about it, but I read one book I could NOT deal with. It was my first DNF ever and I know I’ll probably have more and I need to learn to be ok with it.
    Jessica@Lovin’ Los Libros recently posted…ARC Review: Where You’ll Find Me by Erin FletcherMy Profile

  11. Nicole

    Wonderful goals for 2014! #7 is really important I think for all bloggers. And I personally love audiobooks – I am going to try to use them more for re-reading, I had never really thought to do that until recently! And I do hope you go to BEA. I would love to meet up there!

    Nicole @ The Quiet Concert
    Nicole recently posted…Stacking the Shelves (54) – Jan 11thMy Profile

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