2020 has been a year for everyone hasn’t it? While I know that people come here for the book reviews, 2020 was the roughest year for me – personally & mentally. After many job interviews (which went terribly) in the beginning of the year, the pandemic hit. And all chances of really landing a job went out the window. To cope, the only way I know how, with that upset and the pandemic, I went into full book blogging mode.
But that means that as 2020 came to a close, I was the most burnt out I’ve ever been. I read 357 books in 2020. And I feel it in my bones. But even more so, it made me realize that I attach the most value in my life to being productive. While I have been – finally breaking past the 2k marker on Instagram and 4.5k on Twitter – I feel the worst now. I’ve been pushing myself to focus on being productive and very busy as a measure of success. But it hasn’t left my mental or emotional reserves full or even satisfied.
So I guess, before I even begin my bookish wrap up, I want to say that don’t focus on numbers. Think about your reading year in terms of how you feel about it – not the numbers. I have so many thoughts on how I need to change my whole outlook in 2021, but I’ll have a separate dedicated blog post on that soon!
Late in the year, I started a YouTube Channel! In case you want to follow along, Instagram TV wasn’t working to have people be able to easily watch. I love listening to YouTube videos as I knit, so (in order to give you all the same change) I switched to YouTube! Check out my latest video!
I have been having so much fun creating videos and there will be exclusive content there that I won’t be making into blog posts – in case you’re interested. This includes – book tags, monthly tbrs, and videos of all my five star reads of 2020!
Over on Instagram this year I began showing my face a lot! Every third photo is a picture of my face or me which is a huge change from not really ever featuring my face. Specifically I’ve begun doing book makeup looks! These have been so fun to take photos of and play around with makeup on off days. I’ve also loved bring my face and personality to Instagram – so I hope you’ll come along on the journey with me!
Most Read Genre? How Many 5 Stars? Average Rating?
My most read genre was fantasy, even though I ended up rating more contemporary books as five stars. How many five star reads did you have out of 357 books?
- Fantasy Books – 22
- Science Fiction – 9
- Contemporary – 37
- Romance – 13
- Historical – 3
- Middle Grade – 9
- Series Enders – 10
If you’re interested in all the books I gave five stars to, I’ll be uploading a series of Youtube Videos on my favorite reads of 2020! On average, my rating was 4.2 for all the books. In 2021, I want to get better about writing down the star ratings in my excel sheet, because I have a system of weighted ratings and that I’ll get between star ratings.
Sources of Books? Challenge Totals?
While I am relieved that I was able to stay on top of my e-ARCS in 2020, it came at a cost. I felt the pressure to read so much and it meant that even though I enjoyed the books, I felt like I couldn’t ever give myself a break. In 2020 I wanted to lower my reading pace to a book every two days, from one a day which – looking back at that – was a ridiculous amount and pressure to put on myself.
In 2021, not only do I want to read more backlist books – I have some fun reading challenges I’m joining to help this – but I want to feel less pressure. This is super abstract and I’m not sure yet how I’m going to do that yet, but it’s my goal.
This was the first year I’ve really ever re-read books and I loved it. There’s some special kind of joy and less pressure about re-visiting a favorite. About having less pressure to review? That felt so good. I am surprised I didn’t make it to 100 in terms of YARC books. At the same time, I wish I had gotten to more SARC books – my goal was roughly a third of the YARC book and I’m about 10% down from that.
How Diverse was 2020?
Now we segway to how diverse my reading was. My reading statistics for this are the most difficult to track because I had a huge trouble figuring out how to keep track of it. For example, I read a lot of diverse anthologies and graphic novels, but I wasn’t sure how to mark that in my spreadsheet. So please take these statistics with a grain of salt.
Out of 357 books…
- 202 with BIPOC Main Characters – 56%
- 119 with Queer Main Characters
- 10 Graphic Novels and 5 Anthologies
- 229 Women and Enby Authors
- 148 BIPOC Authors – 67 Asian, 55 Black, 23 Latinx, 2 Indigenous
Author identities are the most difficult for me. Not only does an author not owe it to readers or anyone to come out, information about authors, understandably, can be hard to find sometimes. That’s why you should take the author statistics (as well as the ownvoices totals) with a grain of salt.
Brief 2021 goals?
In 2021, I want to read over 50% BIPOC and over 25% Queer Books. I want to read more Latinx and Indigenous authors/books because those are, historically, always the least read on my shelves.