Thursday, June 30, 2011
Up until recently I've never taken part in one of the myriad of reading challenges that there are around and about in blogworld. I have a few reasons for this but the main one is that my life is already crazy-busy as it is with many demands on my time. I run my own blog at Well Read, another review site with Tam, Brief Encounters reviews where we review m/m romance short stories and I also guest review at Reviews by Jessewave and Three Dollar Bill Reviews. This means I've always got at least two books and 5 short stories a week which I HAVE to read if I'm going to keep up with my blogging commitments. Crazy, huh? Just as crazy as some of you out there who run blogs, I expect. So after all that why would anyone want to then impose further on their reading by taking part in reading challenges? It certainly left me scratching my head.
Something odd happened to me a few weeks ago, which links a little with what Lesley blogged about on Monday. I got bored with reading. I still kept up my reviewing commitments but when I did get the opportunity to choose something from my own personal TBR pile, all I got was a case of the blahs. Nothing appealed. I've got about 300 ebooks on my TBR pile and I didn't fancy reading any of them. I still wanted to read m/m romance but I think I was just so overwhelmed by the size of the TBR pile, I didn't know where to start.
It was at that point that I noticed my blogging mates Lily and Tam were doing a challenge that Lily had made up called the A-Z Challenge. This basically entails choosing a book from your TBR pile beginning with A, reading it and posting a short review on your blog, then you move onto B etc. For some reason this challenge appealed to me - maybe because it's so systematic - and so I decided to give it a go with the added twist that I would choose the book which has been on my TBR pile the longest that began with the right letter. I began with After Anna by Theda Black and haven't looked back since.
The main benefit for me of taking part in the challenge it that it has rejuvenated my reading. I now look forward to choosing the next book in the challenge and I get a little frustrated when I have all my pesky reviewing reading to do first! I'm currently up to N - Nikolai by Angelia Sparrow - and really enjoying it. Another benefit is that I'm shifting the older books from my TBR pile and remembering why I bought them in the first place. It's all been great fun!
I don't think this means I'm going to start taking part in all the reading challenges out there, but this one certainly worked for me. How about you? Have you been taking part in a challenge that revitalised your reading, or have you found them to be just another chore or commitment you wish you hadn't decided to take part in?