“What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals.” Henry David Thoreau
I’ve been hearing Barry Manilow singing looks like you made it in my ear ever since I finished Ethan Frome this morning. And just like that my first 30 Day Challenge in the books. Get it? Yesterday I read John Sandford’s Extreme Prey after I saw it at the library and couldn’t resist picking it up. It’s about some fringe, crazy people trying to take out politicians that are running against their favorite. It was a little scary since I’ve seen some of those feelings come out this election cycle and the end didn’t exactly leave me with loads of hope. As with all Lucan Davenport books it teases a new job for the currently retired Minneapolis cop.
This morning I read the classic Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton and was surprised by how much I liked it. I chose it because it was short, on my shelves, and counted for my classics reading challenge, but after a few pages I was hooked. I can’t wait to see the movie (Maybe there was more than one? I only remember seeing the promos for the one with Uma Thurman) I took myself to breakfast this morning to finish the book and celebrate.
What worked – Having a stack of books to choose from was great. Otherwise I would have spent way too much time each morning going through all of my shelves. The extra time spent pulling books out beforehand was worth it. Not being married to the stack was good too. I ended up reading four books that weren’t there originally and that’s okay. Making 250 pages my rough limit for pages was a good idea. I’m not a fast reader. I reached my Goodreads goal for the year! So far I’ve read 62 books.
What didn’t work – Well, to be honest, I wasn’t prepared for the isolation. Reading is not a social activity so the hours I spent on the challenge every day, while rewarding, did grow tiresome by the end. My initial book pile also grew problematic by the end. I mean I’m looking at the same 50 books every and by day 20 I’ve repeatedly skipped over the same books. They didn’t get more appealing on day 25. This is why it’s best not to be too attached to the stack.
What would I have done differently – Looking back at what I read I wish I’d read a few more non-fiction books. I only read nine and wish it had been more like 12. And this challenge was probably not the best one to start the blog with. Reading and blogging take time and I haven’t found the time to focus on getting the blog in order. I could have started with something easier!
I’m so glad I did it, it for no other reason to prove to myself that I could. Knowing that it was for 30 days gave me the confidence to keep going on the hard days. That and those of you who came by to cheer me on. Thank you so much!!! I’m hoping to convince some of you to join me in these challenges 🙂
The month by the numbers
Books read – 30
Pages – 7185 (that averages out to almost 240 pages per book)
Shortest book – 74 pages
Longest book – 406 pages
29- Extreme Prey by John Sandford
30- Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton
Tempted to give this challenge a try?