I feel like the question that is the title of this post is super loaded but I don’t know how else to really get into a question that I’ve been contemplating for a while. Which all starts with this, GOODREADS CHALLENGES.
Some people love challenging themselves to read more every year and other people don’t want to set a number for how much they are gonna read, lest they ruin it. I am somewhere in the middle? I’ve taken to setting challenges as 1 book a year for the past two years but like, here is the thing. I can set it to 1 to make myself feel good but I’ll always have another ambitious goal where I wanna read like 5,000,000 books.
The most books I’ve ever read in a year is 400 (back in 2013). I am quite proud of this. I always look on this year as my ‘reading goal’ not just because I read the most books I’d ever read in my life but because that entire year, I was not reading books for a number. I was reading books because I KEPT FINDING books I wanted to read and wanted to open my mouth and swallow them whole.
In January of 2018, after I cleaned my shelves out and aimed at getting my TBR to a more manageable amount, I had a v. good time reading books from my backlist. I kept finding that there were books I had on there for years that were worth my attention. I read like 41 or 42 books in January which is A LOT OF BOOKS but I was having a chill time reading.
It never felt like too many books because I was just genuinely happy to be reading??? I read maybe 27 or 28 books in February and that, on the other hand, seemed too large a number for how I was actually feeling. WHICH IS TO SAY, in February, I was basically reading for a number and not for little ole me.
To be entirely honest, I don’t even know where I am going with this post. Am I just venting about my reading problems? Maybe?? But I feel like the question of can you read too many books comes down to how you feel and how happy you are with what you are reading? If you’re basically reading to say you’re reading, that probably means you need to slow the fuck down and chill. I mean, unless you don’t want to. I am just a caterpillar on the internet, what do I know?
Reading is such a complex art that people don’t give enough credit to because it’s just a book but reading a book takes time and patience. Everyone has their own pace. Just because I can read a book a day doesn’t mean I should because that’s probably going to wear me down as I continue to set unrealistic expectations for my final tally for the year.
I am trying to be nicer to myself this month though and try to rediscover that feeling I had in January and Early February. Maybe I just need to find a genre that matches my mood right now or maybe I just need to not read too much.
Those are my goals for myself but you know, I think the general question as to whether you can read too much just depends on the person? Do they feel like they are reading too much? Then they probably are? And to be fair, I’ve read enough that there are times when I don’t even remember if I’ve read a book and then will check my GR to find out if I have but also, I remember a surprisingly amount of details from a book I read in 6th grade and CANNOT FUCKING REMEMBER THE TITLE OF. Okay that’s a rant for another day.