2016 Literary Resolutions

I’m an avid follower of the New Year’s Resolutions routine. Every December I put together lists of my hopes and plans for the upcoming year, lists that vary in category, purpose and level of achievement—personal growth, new hobbies, travel plans … I really go all out! This year I’ll be adding a new list to the roundup: Literary Aspirations. Here’s my top 10 book resolutions for 2016:

 

  1. Finish books that I started in 2015.

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I am loath to leave a book unfinished, and there are a number of novels I started on various long weekends and trips that I never had the time to go back to. These were some hefty reads that require real commitment and perseverance—Station Eleven, All the Light We Cannot See, A Little Life—so my work is cut out for me!

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  1. Visit more indie bookstores.

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I became a Jersey City resident a couple of months ago and I need to become a better patron of WORD on Grove Street. They have a terrific selection of frontlist and backlist titles and a full schedule of amazing events that I plan to check out in 2016.

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  1. Branch out to read in other categories.

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I’m as guilty as the next person of failing to read outside of my comfort zone. Give me a well-reviewed, well-recommended bestselling novel and I can guarantee I’ll be the next in line to buy it. But this year I’m going to make an effort to read across genres—maybe a science book, a noir crime novel, a YA fantasy novel—who knows how wild I might get!

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  1. Read the book before the movie.

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2016 will be a year of highly anticipated movie adaptions to some of our beloved books of recent years: The Girl on the Train, Me before You, The Lost City of Z, Inferno… I really need to get reading so I can go see the movie without a guilty conscience!

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  1. Join a reading group.

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Having spent my entire career in publishing, it’s a wonder I’ve never been part of a book club. For many reasons, I think I would be a great book club candidate and I have every intention of making it happen in 2016. Book clubs are a fantastic way to engage with other readers and share thoughts and reactions to your favorite—and not-so-favorite—books. I can’t wait!

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  1. Read more nonfiction.

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As I admitted earlier, I’m a fiction-reader poster child. But this coming year, I want to read more nonfiction. A few books I’m planning to attempt: Between the World and Me, M Train, My Life on the Road, I Am Malala, The Power of Habit

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  1. Go to the library.

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I’ll be honest: I lost my library card years ago and replacing it has not been on the top of my To Do list. But now that I’ve moved to a new town, I’m going to make my way to my local library in downtown Jersey City and make it official—who knows what goodies I’ll find there!

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  1. Follow authors on Twitter.

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Well, this one is more or less a part of an overarching master plan to just be more active on social media. So, mark my words, come 2016 you’ll see me tweeting and retweeting away @ all my favorite writers!

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  1. Write an author a fan letter.

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I’ve had this on my list for many years now and, procrastination be damned, 2016 is my year to spread the love to those authors (and there are many) I admire. Fan mail is an amazing way to show support and appreciation to the writers out there who make a difference in our lives through the wonderful books they write, and I’m going to be more proactive about sharing my admiration.

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  1. Read more than just on vacation

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I’ve struggled with this for years: Finding time to read outside of work when I’m not on a beach or a plane. I always seem to pile up all of my fun reading for vacation time. The beginning of every year, I make a goal to read one book per month and in 2015 I only made it until April. This year, I’m going to try for all 12 months—wish me luck!

 

 

What are your Literary New Year’s Resolutions?

    Liz Stein

    Liz Stein is an editor for Park Row Book where she edits commercial and literary fiction, psychological suspense and literary thrillers, and women’s fiction. She is always looking for beautifully written books with characters that are unforgettable. When not reading or editing, Liz prefers to spend her time outdoors hiking, cycling, and running, or indoors on the yoga mat or in the kitchen.

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