I make no attempt to hide my love for books, it’s been a part of me since I finished reading all the books in my school’s small library and had my brother borrow books from his library for me to read. I will never know what his librarian thought of his love for Nancy Drew and Famous Five.
However, for most of my life I have leaned heavily towards the world of fiction, my tastes are varied from Sophie Kinsella to Ursula Le Guin. However, in the past 5 years I have set the following goals to diversify the books I read:
My reading goals for the past 5 years:
- Read 37 books a year. That boils down to reading 10% of a book a day.
- 50% of the books I read should be non fiction. Biographies and narrative non fiction are my way of cheating here
- 50% of the books I read should be written by female authors.
- If I am reading a book that has been translated into English, I will make an attempt to read a translation written by a female author. Reading Homer’s Odyssey as translated by both male and female authors, crystallized the need to have female insights into writing otherwise inaccessible to me. In fact, Madeline Miller does a better job of explaining the important of female translators here.
- Be part of a consistent book club. This is another way for me to diversify the genres of books I read. I haven’t had much success in meeting this goal since I moved to San Francisco, so if anyone is willing to adopt me into their book club I would be honoured.
Quarantine has been a good time for me to reflect on my reading habits some more. Which is why I am adding new goals to my reading journey:
- Read more poetry – Since graduating from high school, I have picked up less than 10 poetry anthologies in 11 years! This needs to change, and I don’t even know where to start. I have read Rupi Kaur, Mary Oliver, Homer and Rebecca Solnit. But that’s about it. Please send any recommendations you have my way!
- Read more Urdu – Again, I haven’t ready any books written in my own national language. This will seem a bit more difficult to pull off given my lack of fluency in Urdu, but it’s definitely worth a shot.
Please send any and all recommendations you have my way!