Sunday, January 4, 2015

(Bout of Books 12) Sharon's Goals & Updates


As some of you may have noticed, I've been MIA lately; I also haven't been doing much reading. Of books, that is. Blame Once Upon a Time and its amazingly talented fanfiction writers. But I spent the second half of December catching up on my reading (it was a close call, but I made it to 100 books for the year!), and it was great! I'm getting back into reading more, trying to find a good balance between fangirling and being a book blogger (and, you know, work and a life and those crazy things). I've missed reading more books and spending time with you all! So Bout of Books really comes at the perfect time for me!

I'm taking it pretty easy this time around. They're actually doing this awesome thing where you don't have to set goals, so if they stress you out or you just don't know what to do with them, you can just skip them altogether! I decided to go ahead and keep them, if for no other reason than my irrationally fanatic love of lists. I'm also a Bout of Books expert, so if you have any questions, feel free to ask me here or on Twitter (@starsaloft)!


My Goals for Bout of Books 12
   • Read 1,000 pages
   • Discover some awesome new blogs and friends
   • Participate in at least one of the Twitter chats (Hopefully I can! I haven't double-checked them against my work schedule.)
   • Participate in four or more challenges

Books To Read

No, I'm not insane. I doubt even Kelly could make it through this many books during the short duration of awesomeness that is Bout of Books. But what I am doing is setting a limit: I'm only allowed to read books I already own! I have a terrible habit of picking up boatloads of books at used book sales, then never reading a large chunk of them. I've been wanting to do dedicate a BOB to this for a while, and now seems like the perfect time! Plus, I just bought Gone Girl, which is probably the only thing I'm 100% absolutely going to read.

Updates

1/5
Well, I failed right off the bat at my self-imposed restrictions, because the first thing I read was from the library. WHOOPS? Haha. I'd meant to finish it last night, but I got home super late due to car troubles, and I was exhausted, so I only wound up reading about 5 pages. OH WELL. So I read the last 100ish pages of TFIOS during Bout of Books. Not the end of the world! I shall just make sure not to cheat again...probably.

Books Read Today:
  Completed: The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (103 pages)
  In-Progress: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn (50 pages)
Challenge:
#1: Bookshelf Scavenger Hunt, hosted at Caught Read Handed.

1. Find an author with the same initials as you
Her Best Friend by Sarah Mayberry. My initials are SM, and I had a moment of sad panic when I read through this challenge list the first time, because I figured I wouldn't have anything. Even though my initials are pretty common. But lo and behold, SO MANY AWESOME AUTHORS share my initials! Sarah J. Maas, Sarah Morgan, Sarah Mayberry. I went ahead and picked Mayberry because I've loved her the longest of the three. But still, it made me so happy!

2. Find a book with the color yellow on it
Sugar Daddy by Lisa Kleypas. Because you know if I have an opportunity, I am going to include a Travis book.

3. Find an author’s name with the letter “S” in it
Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas. I already had HoF pulled out as a possibility for the first category, so I went ahead and used her here. Because LOVE. (Even though I actually haven't read this one yet? Whoops?) Plus, pretty cover is pretty!

4. Find a book with a female protagonist
Rebecca by Daphne DuMaurier. I wanted to include a variety of genres, so I decided to go with a classic. The most addicting classic I've ever read; SO GOOD.

5. Find the longest book you own
Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand. Not counting compendiums or Bibles, I am 99% sure this book is the longest one I own.

6. Find a book with a map in it or on it
Graceling by Kristin Cashore. This was another category I wasn't sure I would be able to fill, but Katsa to the rescue with the first YA fantasy book I read!

7. Find a book with a face on it (photograph or illustrated)
The Morning Gift by Eva Ibbotson. I have a LOT of books with faces on them, but this one is featured the most predominantly without being cut off (due to the massive Showing Half the Face cover trend).

Bonus: Find something on your shelf that isn’t a book.
My Friends DVDs! They always stay on shelf #1 in the living room, as you can see from the above pictures of my bookshelves.

#2: New Years Resolution, hosted at The Book That...
This is perfectly related to Bout of Books for me, because I have two main bookish resolutions this year (besides the obvious one, to read more books and slightly less fanfiction), and I'm using BOB to get a jump on both!

The first is to actually read hyped books. I tend to avoid super hyped books for a variety of reasons: I'm afraid they won't live up to the hype; I just get sick of hearing about them; I talk about/hear about/see them so much that I start to feel like I've actually read them (no, seriously, be a book blogger and work part time at a library and full time at a bookstore, and see if that doesn't happen to you); I don't want to be That Person Who Jumped on the Bandwagon Just Because It Was Cool (which is ridiculous, and I hate that I even sometimes think that because seriously, SO WHAT? But that is another rant for another time.). But I know I am missing out on some good books this way, so I am resolving to read more of them in 2015!
Books related to this challenge: The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (just finished) and Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn (just started).

My second resolution is to read the books I own! The books I own but have yet to read are piling up to the point where it's embarrassing, so I need to actually read some of them! A perfect example: Love, Come to Me, because seriously. Gorgeous cover, check. Historical romance, check. Civil war romance, even! Check. LISA FREAKING KLEYPAS, check. Yet it has been sitting on my shelves for 2+ years. WHY HAVE I NOT READ THIS BOOK YET? In 2015, I shall put an end to the madness!
Total Books Read: ~.5
Total Pages Read: 153

1/6
Books Read Today:
  Completed: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn (372 pages)
  In-Progress:
Challenge: N/A.
Total Books Read: 1.3
Total Pages Read: 525

1/7
Books Read Today:
  Completed:
  In-Progress: The Ruin of a Rogue by Miranda Neville (210 pages)
Challenge: Character Coupling Challenge, hosted at Writing My Own Fairy Tale. This was a fun one! I tried not to overthink it, but there are just so many possibilities! I decided to just go with one of my first thoughts: Katsa from Graceling and Celaena from Throne of Glass. Neither of these ladies is used to having female friends, so I think it would take a while to warm up to each other, maybe. But then they would gradually start to talk about fighting strategies and whatnot and realize what all they have in common. They could be fabulous friends! And pity the enemy they go up against because ouch.
Total Books Read: 1.86
Total Pages Read: 735

1/8
Books Read Today:
  Completed: The Ruin of a Rogue by Miranda Neville (162 pages)
  In-Progress: Racing Savannah by Miranda Kenneally (20 pages)
Challenge: Synopsis Challenge, hosted at Lulo Fangirl. I'm going to create my synopsis for Gone Girl.
A woman stands in the kitchen, making crepes for her husband on their fifth wedding anniversary.
Hours later, she's gone.
What happened?
Something you will never see coming.
Total Books Read: ~2.4
Total Pages Read: 917

1/9
Books Read Today:
  Completed: Racing Savannah by Miranda Kenneally (284 pages)
  In-Progress: Match Me If You Can by Susan Elizabeth Phillips (14 pages - DNF)
Challenge: Describe Your Book in Pictures, hosted at The Book Monsters. For this challenge, I'm describing the first book I read today: Racing Savannah.

Total Books Read: ~3.3
Total Pages Read: 1,215

1/10
Books Read Today:
  Completed:
  In-Progress: Fancy Pants by Cathy Marie Hake (50 pages)
Challenge: N/A
Total Books Read: ~3.5
Total Pages Read: 1,265

1/11
Books Read Today:
  Completed:
  In-Progress: Fancy Pants by Cathy Marie Hake (120 pages)
Challenge: N/A
Total Books Read: ~3.75
Total Pages Read: 1,385

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, January 5th and runs through Sunday, January 11th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure, and the only reading competition is between you and your usual number of books read in a week. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 6.0 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. - From the Bout of Books team

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