Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday: Goals and Aspirations (And a look back at 2014)

Today's topic is Top Ten Resolutions/Goals for 2015, bookish, blogging, or otherwise. But before we begin, I though I'd look back at 2014 and see how well I did. :-)

I read... a lot of books?

I only got a Goodreads in the middle of the year, so I have no clue how many books I read. I don't keep track of those things. But I know it was a less than usually because, you know, college.

I explored a lot more genres.

YA is now my friend. On a larger level, I am now more amicable with living authors and their books. On that topic...

I met my first Real Live Author!

I flail about this whenever I get a chance. MARISSA MEYER

I'm on social media!

You can find me/Ravens and Writing Desks on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, Bloglovin, AND PINTEREST now. This is so very exciting! I get to meet so many more lovely bookish people!

I tried some challenges... and didn't really finish them.

Let's break this down.
The Bible Project:
Goal: Read the Bible in a year.
Result: Had to modify it to "Read the Old Testament in a year" because of... college. Seriously, the point where it stopped was when college began. It's a direct correlation. But I am still plugging along.

The Arthurian Lit Challenge:
Goal: Read this list of books.
Result: I read Gawain and the Green Knight, The Mabinogion, Le Morte D'Arthur in their entirety. I read PARTS of Arthurian Romances, and am currently finishing up Once and Future King. Didn't even get to any Mary Stewart books. I'd give myself a solid B since I got through the older works.

The Classics Club:
Well, this one isn't supposed to be done this year, but I only read six books from my list. I'm going to have to step up my game if I'm really going to finish this thing in five years!

My most popular post was....

Are Abridged Books Bad?, a discussion inspired by a conversation I had with my friend. I feel like this is a topic that really has no defined right answer. Check it out and let me know what you think!

I think I should mention that coming in second was my review of The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. The reasons for this are quite obvious.

So that was my year! Now on to resolutions, goals, plans, and aspirations for 2015. These are a smattering of bookish, writerly, blogging, and general life goals.

(Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, as always!)

1. Find a classics/modern balance.
I used to read a lot of classics, and not much of anything else. This past summer, I was reading a lot of YA and not much of anything else. I'm on a mission to find a balance between living and dead authors. Don't want to be ageist.

2. Write a book that I actually want to edit.

I've never edited a book. EVER. (I have finished a few, if you want to know, but it was a struggle.) Plot bunnies are my bane - they never line up neatly like I tell them to, and instead they hop about with their shiny new ideas and I just can't keep working on my actual WIP.
This year, I will attempt the impossible - the training of plot bunnies!

3. Vlog.

Or just explore the options of YouTube. I know I promised a few people that I would make a vlog in December. WELL. That first vlog was supposed to be a bookshelf tour and it was supposed to happen upon the completion of Operation Take Over Mother's Bookshelves.
That Operation is going quite slowly.
The vlog has been postponed indefinitely, but once I have full control of the bookshelves I can promise you that it will happen.

I'd also like to do other things on YouTube. I have a plan for musical bookish magical videos, but that's still in the embryonic phase. And you will hear nothing else about it until it's completion. SECRETS.
Mwahaha. I plot.

4. Operation Take Over Mother's Bookshelves.

I mentioned this above, and the title sort of explains itself. It was supposed to happen over Christmas break, but didn't. So far I have the upper right shelf-square. There are about sixteen total. WE GAIN GROUND.

5. Reread all my favorite classic fantasy.

This summer, I am planning to embark on a grand quest: to reread all the fantasy books that defined my childhood. Narnia, LOTR, Harry Potter - it's all in. Also, I'd like to watch (or rewatch) the movies, too. More concrete planning is needed, but for now - I welcome anyone who would like to join. WHO IS WITH ME? *clangs sword to shield dramatically*

6. Go to the Renaissance Faire.

I have dreamed of going to the Ren Faire my entire life. I was OBSESSED with the middle ages since I was two, and ADORED historical reenactments. I never thought we went to enough of them. (I still don't.) So now that I am an adult and make my own decisions, some time this summer I am going to abduct my sister (and maybe some friends) and drive off towards Bristol and the Faire.

7. Read whatever the heck I want.

I've realized that I dislike reading challenges. Reading is supposed to be relaxing time for me, and when I think that one genre is going to do the trick, I do not want to feel guilty that I should be reading a different one, just to fulfill a challenge. That's not how I work.

This past year, reading sometimes became a chore for me. THIS IS NOT COOL. I've got enough deadlines without having to add another one for reading this many of this certain type of book before this date. NO. I am freeing myself.

8. Buy lots of books.

I'm extremely frugal when it comes to buying books. Why own them when I've got a library two blocks away? But I realized this year: sometimes, when you just LOVE a book, you've got to OWN it, so you can stroke it and whisper sweet nothings to it WHENEVER you feel like. Right?

Barnes and Noble, here I come.

9. Keep a notebook.

I've already sort of started one - it's mostly for character ideas - but I want to develop this notebooking habit. I think it'll help with creativity and story plot ideas.


Oh well. I always give in to them. They're just so cute.

10. Write consistently. 

I say this every single year.
I fail every single year.
Will 2015 be the year of truth? I hope so.

What are some of your 2015 plans and resolutions? How was 2014 for you? Did it treat you well? And link me your TTT in the comments!



  1. I re-read Harry Potter last year and it was great... now I need to find time to re-watch the movies.

    1. I just saw the first movie for the first time two nights ago. It was SPLENDID and now I want to watch the rest :-)

  2. Great resolutions! I think you're the first book blogger/vlogger who's said they want to buy MORE books! haha :D And nothing beats classic fantasy :') I re-read all the books and marathoned the movies with my friend this summer.
    Good luck with the rest of your resolutions too, and happy new year :D
    p.s. here's my TTT post for this week

    1. I'm a bit unique on the book-buying front - I've got a weird way of going about it. :-)

  3. My family and I watched the last Hobbit in theater last night and then started the Fellowship. We watch the movies every year, and when we were younger, my dad read the books to us. I have yet to read the books this year so I'm with you!!! Narnia and all the rest!
    I have to confess though, I've never read HP or watched the movies.

    1. YES JOIN ME! I'm so excited. :-)

      Don't worry. I just saw the first movie, so I'm a bit behind too.

  4. I never ever write consistently. I feel like I hardly wrote at ALL in 2014...but I did. I just wrote fast and spent most of the year reading and thinking about how bad my books were and they didn't need editing so much as a lobotomy. *sigh* WRITING IS HARD.
    I'm still waiting for the vlog. *watches you* I WILL HOLD YOU TO IT, YOU KNOW.
    Buying lots of books sounds terrifically fun. ;-) If I fall over a lump of gold I will be sure to join you in that goal. XD

    1. Writing IS hard. I couldn't agree more. But see, I find that when I don't write consistantly, I don't write AT ALL. I just end up planning and never actually write anything. After I write this comment I'm going to close the internet and WRITE.

      Even if it happens five years from now, THERE WILL BE A VLOG. I have given my word of honor, and so cannot retreat. (But hopefully it won't be five years. Hopefully it'll be nearer to a few months.)

      I got a lot of Amazon and Barnes & Noble giftcards for my graduation last year and they are my lump of gold. I have a feeling they'll go quickly, though.


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