Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Announcing My Summer #ReadWomen Goals

Lady Writer
Flickr Credit: Federica D'Amico
I feel like this post should not be intense, but it is. Declaring things always feels intense, for some reason. It is saying “I believe in this thing so I’m going to do it.” Here I go—but first, an intersection of two things.

You may recall that I feel sort of bummed by the lack of female authorship in my college courses thus far. I like reading books by ladies, and of books by ladies there are less. In light of this fact, my brain reminded me of a challenge I saw towards the end of last year, a challenge to read only books by women during December. I liked the idea, but due to homework, I was not willing to pull it off.

I’d like to do it now, instead, over summer break. Instead of December, a May through July summer of #ReadWomen.

It feels scary. And ambitious. And weird. But I also really want to do it. With that in mind, I have decided to set myself some goals.

1. Read 30 books by women.
2. Read ONLY books by women.
3. Read 2 plays.
4. Read 3 autobiographies.
5. Read 1 graphic novel.
6. Read 1 book of poetry.
7. Read 1 book in another language.
8. Listen to 2 books on audiobook (preferably #ownvoices).
9. Read 15 diverse books.
10. Read at least 10 new books (that is, books I haven’t read before).
11. Read 10 eBooks.
12. Read 10 books from the TBR list.
13. Review at least 5 of these books on Goodreads.
14. BONUS GOAL: Watch at least 3 movies directed by women.

There are a lot of motivations running behind these goals. For one thing, I haven’t done a reading challenge before and I’d love to try. I also have a lot of books on my TBR that aren’t getting read, and this seems like a fun way to pare down the list. I’d kind of like to prove to myself that I can do this. And, of course, I really want to spend some time with some awesome female voices over the summer that I can bring into my next semester of classes.

I don’t know why I feel like I need to justify it. I just do, I guess.

But those are my goals—and I am going to ask YOU to help me accomplish them. No, you don’t have to do the project, too (although I didn’t think to ask if anyone might want to…). What I need is some help with accountability. It is so easy for me to say things like, “I am definitely for sure going to abduct an ice cream truck this week.” and then instead go on Pinterest and abduct nothing.

That is why I am thinking it would be a good idea to keep my reading challenge progress updated here, where I can be encouraged and swatted (if necessary) towards my goals. Last year, we talked mostly about fandom things on the weekends. Maybe this year it will be #ReadWomen updates and the like instead.

Of course, I would not make a big decision like that without a little feedback. What do you think?

Let's chat! What should Saturday posts look like this summer? free polls

**Hey, sorry if you voted on the last poll. Blogger's doing something weird to the way I usually use polls, so I've switched to a different one. If that was you, please vote again! And if not, then proceed as normal.**

Do you have any reading goals this summer? 


  1. This is so cool! You must be planning to do plenty of reading this summer *thinks about how close the end of the school year is and feels very happy* This is a really good idea, and I'm happy to help with gentle smacking :) I might also try some of your ideas (like watching female directed movies or something). Do you think you're going to try to read non-ya literature? (I think female voices are easier to find in YA, at least in the books I read) And is the another language Spainsh, something else, or would it be translated? Anyway, this is such an awesome idea, and you should post about it too.

    1. I'm trying to do about the same amount of reading as I did last year over the summer, anyway! I would love to chat if you watch some female-directed movies, though. It seems like a lot of fun! And yes, I am definitely going to be picking up some non-YA literature; I have some awesome picks at the ready already! :D Also, yes, I will be reading a book that is in Spanish and not translated. I will see what happens.

  2. These are awesome goals Heather!! I'd love to read posts about how it goes, and who you're reading and so on :)

    1. Great! I'll keep you posted this summer. :)

  3. If you're looking for recommendations, I'm reading Dark Places by Gillian Flynn and it's wonderful. Jane Yolen also has a wonderful chapbook of poetry called The Last Selkie Child.

    1. Ooh, I will have to check those out! I've been unsure about where to look for poetry, so this helps. :)

  4. YAAAAS. THIS IS THE COOLEST. I was on a #readwomen streak but then I had to read Chronicle of a Death Foretold for school ... but ah well, Marquez is really really good. Your list is great, and I hope to see more posts about it!!

    1. Yay, I'm glad you like the idea! And yes, sometimes school gets in the way of our dreams, but that's okay sometimes. Besides, there's nothing really WRONG with boys... they are just boys. I'll keep you posted over the summer!

  5. Yes, that is such a cool idea, you definitely need to keep updating us! I feel like this challenge is do-able, but at the same time might be a bit more difficult than you were expecting aha. Also, I like the idea of watching three movies directing by women - I think I did that today alone!

    Little Moon Elephant

    1. I will, for sure! And yes, I've been tempted by some of my favorite male authors already, but I am being strong. That's really cool, though. What movies did you watch?

  6. Interesting goals! I think it'd be really cool if you kept us updated on the books you read and your observations about them. Although... I do adore fandoms, so I wouldn't mind a post about those now and again. Maybe you could do some of them simultaneously, like a fandom from a book written by a woman?

    And you shouldn't feel like you have to justify it. I mean, it's your reading. If this is a goal you wanna set, it's a goal you wanna set. For reading, I don't think you need anymore justification than that. :)


    1. Yeah, I don't really know how I'm going to work it out just yet. We're definitely going to have to figure it out in the next couple weeks, though!

      That is true. I can do what I want. :)

  7. Awesome! Will love to hear about your progress. I especially like your bonus goal. This is me watching the credits of a film:

    Male director, naturally.
    Male producer, right.
    Four executive producers, and ... ~reads names~ ... one is a woman! Good job, film!

    THIS SHOULD NOT BE A THING, and yet seeing even a few women's name up there not under "costume designer" make me feel like the film has done well. Which it kind of hasn't! But the film industry is SO male dominated. Please tell me us about the films! (One I recently liked with a female director was Selma, have you seen it?)

    1. Yeah, for me it is less the producers and often more in the design and programming and actual filming departments that makes me think about how few women spend time behind the camera. :P It's kind of sad.

      I haven't seen Selma yet. I'll have to check it out!


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