Mid Year Check In (2018)

Hi all! It’s July, can you believe it, because I can’t! Anyway as we are now officially halfway through the year, I’m checking in on how I’m doing with the goals I made at the start of the year for my reading/writing life in 2018, it’s something I started doing two years ago, and it helps keep me accountable for my goals throughout the year, plus it’s just quite nice to check in on what I’ve been doing in the first six months of the year. So here we go, this is how my goals have been going:

  1. Complete my Goodreads Challenge

I set my challenge at the beginning of the year at 24 books, but it’s the end of June, and I’ve already read 21, so I’ve upped the challenge to 35, same as my challenge last year. I actually read 36 books last year, so I’d love to better that this year, ideally I’d love to get to 40 books, but 37, one upping last year, would also be fine!

2. Complete my #RockMyTBR Challenge

I started doing this challenge in 2016 and have been doing it every year since, even though I don’t think it’s officially being done this year! Anyway, I had 12 books on my list at the beginning of the year, and I’ve read 6 of them so far, so I’m on track to finish them all by the end of the year.

3. Expand my Writing Corner feature

I have definitely started to get this up and running! It’s still quite small, I’ve only done a few posts and I haven’t done any collaboration posts yet, which I would have liked to, but I’m happy that it’s starting to become an established feature on my blog. I’m hoping to get a post a month done on there for the rest of the year, if I can, so by the end of the year, my posts will be in the double figures.

4. Look into querying agents/the first steps of the publishing progress

So since January, every time I’ve seen an agent on Twitter, I’ve bookmarked their agency’s page on my browser, so now I have a built in list of agents for when I’m ready to start querying. I haven’t written a query yet, but I have been doing revisions on my novel since the beginning of the year and it’s with my critique partner at the moment, so between that and having my list of agents, I’m feeling a lot more prepared for when I finally do send out my novel for querying.

5. Finish Underground Magicians

Yeah…..so…….umm this one hasn’t been going so well! I’ve only written one more chapter of it than I’d had last year and I’m feeling kind of blocked for this story. I don’t want to give up on it, but I’m feeling a lot more inspired for TINALS at the moment, as I just finished my revisions and have started writing the sequel, so I’m going to leave this one on the back burner for a while and focus on my TINALS projects, in the hope that when I come back to Underground Magicians, I’ll be feeling more inspired!

6. Start giving a Bechdel Test rating for the books I read

This is going really well, I’ve rated every book I’ve read this year against the Bechdel Test, and I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the results: out of the 21 books I’ve read this year, only 6 haven’t passed the test!

7. Read more of my YALC books from 2015/16/17

I mean I’m not gonna lie, I could be doing better on this one, but I have read a few of my YALC books this year, I read The Exact Opposite of Okay in February (which I got at YALC last year), I read The Fandom in January & Rose Under Fire and Daughter of The Burning City in May so that’s five YALC books knocked off my list already. I did actually get rid of a few that I didn’t think I was going to read, so if there are still some from 2015 that I haven’t read by next year, I will probably unhaul them too. I’m super excited to pick up some more books at YALC though, even though I still haven’t read all the ones on my shelf yet!

8. Read more of my #otspsecretsister books

Okay so I’ve only actually read two of these this year, but out of 18, I now have 5 books that I’ve read, so I’m almost a third of the way through the books I’ve received through doing the Secret Sister project and I’m actually reading a third one at the moment, so I’m hoping by the end of this year, I’ll have read most of the books I’ve been given by my previous sisters and maybe have taken part in another round!

9. Reread some of my old favourites

Hahahahahahahahaha…….no. I haven’t reread a single book this year. I don’t know why I thought I would have time to do this. Much as I used to love rereading, I am just too busy now and have too many new books to read to do it. Maybe I’ll squeeze some in before the end of the year, but I doubt it!

10. Make time to read a little every day

I’ve actually done really well with this one! I’m proud to say that since January, I have read at least a few pages of a book every single day, this goal has kept me accountable for making sure that I squeeze in my reading even when I’m super busy, so it’s been really great!

11. Carry on collaborating with other bloggers

So I had a collab post as one of my first discussion posts of the year, which was really great, and I did my first guest post on This Northern Gal (which you can read here: http://thisnortherngal.co.uk/guest-posts/guest-post-maximising-your-reading-time-at-university/) which was so much fun to do. I also did an interview with Rachel from Bookmark Chronicles for her blogger Summer Spotlight Series (which starts next week!) which was super fun to do. I would love to get some more contributions for my blog and I’m definitely going to try and think of some more collaborative posts that I can do, but thus far, I’m feeling good about how this goal has been going this year.

12. Catch up with 2017 releases

I had 12 books on a TTT list where I talked about the 2017 releases I missed out on that I wanted to read by the end of the year, and so far I’ve read 4, which you know, could be better, but it’s 4 more than I read last year and I will definitely have read more of them by the end of the year as quite a few are on my #RockMyTBR challenge list as well.

So that’s how my year is going so far! I’m really happy with how I’ve managed my goals this year, at least 10 of them, I have been doing well with and am on track to have completed by the end of the year, there’s only two where I can definitively say that I’ve not done so well with, but there’s still six months of the year to go, so I’m hoping I will be able to complete all of these by the end of the year (though it may just be 11, I’m not sure whether I’ll actually do any rereading!). How about you guys? Did you make any goals for your reading/blog/writing/life this year? If so, how are they going so far? Let me know in the comments!

I will have my June #RockMyTBR update for you guys tomorrow, so stay tuned for that!

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16 thoughts on “Mid Year Check In (2018)

  1. Hannah @ Books, Life & Other Oddities July 1, 2018 / 10:47 pm

    Honestly most of those 2015 YALC books I’m just ignoring, half of them I’ve never heard of the author since 😂 wow you’ve read so much this year! 21 books and uni and blog (because I now understand the struggle) 😲😲😲

    • iloveheartlandx July 2, 2018 / 10:41 am

      Ha ha to be honest I’ll probably end up unhauling half of them next year, at least the ones that aren’t signed. I try! Honestly like half of those have been since I’ve come back from Uni for the summer though!

      • Hannah @ Books, Life & Other Oddities July 2, 2018 / 11:23 am

        Yeah I might bring a few to book swap or something, I’m not going to read them I don’t think :/
        Still impressive though!

      • iloveheartlandx July 2, 2018 / 10:29 pm

        I would, but they’re up in Scotland! Thanks 🙂

      • iloveheartlandx July 3, 2018 / 9:21 am

        Ha ha, they’re all in the house now, not taking the chance of the garage ruin the books I actually want to read!

  2. Lindsi July 2, 2018 / 12:43 am

    There are so many books I want to re-read and I hate that I haven’t made more time for them. I keep telling myself I’ll do better, and then I don’t. *cries*

    L @ Do You Dog-ear?

  3. Shoto July 2, 2018 / 2:22 am

    Wow you’re doing great on your goals! I hope you can one-up your reading goal from last year. 😀
    It’s so interesting that you check if books pass the Bechdel Test, that should be something I start doing because i feel like a lot of the books I read don’t… Good luck with finishing all of your goals by the end of the year!

    • iloveheartlandx July 2, 2018 / 10:39 am

      Thank you! I hope so too, it’s gonna be difficult to squeeze reading in once I go back to Uni, but I’m gonna try my best. Yeah that’s why I started doing it actually, I felt like a lot of the books I read maybe didn’t but I’ve actually been really pleased that the majority of books I’ve read this year have. Thank you 🙂

      • Shoto July 2, 2018 / 2:00 pm

        I understand haha. Uni totally destroyed my reading schedule haha. I’m happy that only a few of the books you read didn’t pass the test but thinking back to books I’ve read recently, I think just one would pass it! Quite sad. 😦

      • iloveheartlandx July 2, 2018 / 10:28 pm

        Oh tell me about it! I try and I do better than a lot of people I know at Uni, but summer always hammers home for me how much I could be reading if I just had the time to sit and read all the time-I’m lucky if I get three books a month read when I’m at Uni, but I’ve done 5 books each in the past two months easily since I’ve been done! It really is quite sad, though the Bechdel test itself is inherently flawed because you can have a book that has a lot of really great female characters, but it fails because the narrator is a guy and so you don’t see individual conversations between the girls, or a book that has an amazing female character who has a really strong arc but fails because she is the only one there, over a book that could pass by just having a quick conversation with another girl, but the treatment of women isn’t great. So yeah, it’s not an exact science!

  4. MariaJohnWrites July 2, 2018 / 10:12 am

    It’s so awesome that you’ve been able to surpass your Goodreads challenge! I’ve set my Goal to be 52 this year and I’m a couple of books behind 😦

    Best of luck with Querying!! I’m planning to start in September and I’m so nervous – so I definitely get how you’re feeling.

    • iloveheartlandx July 2, 2018 / 10:37 am

      Well I haven’t actually surpassed it yet! I just put it up, as I was getting close to my goal and I like to stretch it out so it lasts the whole year!
      Thank you! Oh good luck to you too, I probably won’t be starting doing it until next year, I’m just trying to get a feel for the agents that are out there at the moment!

  5. Jackie B @ Death by Tsundoku July 5, 2018 / 6:27 pm

    I love seeing reflections on your goals for the year. I recently did that with my reading goals. Blog goals will be reviewed later this month; it was too much to take on at once! XD You’re making great progress. Keep up the awesome work, Jo.

    • iloveheartlandx July 5, 2018 / 6:43 pm

      Aww thank you! I tend to do them all at once, because I tend to mix my goals up, so I have several reading, several blogging and several writing. Thanks, hopefully I will be able to finish the year with most of these completed.

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