As 2022 is coming to a close, this is the time of year when I like to look back and see what my reading habits for the year were. I don’t keep strict track of what I read throughout the year, but as I mainly use my Kindle or Libby (I’m a big E-reader) they tend to keep a good track of the books I read. In 2022 I read just over 100 books, but I feel like none of them challenged me. They all seemed to be in the same couple of genres with little diversity. Now, if you have a genre/author that you absolutely love, that’s great! But if you like to challenge yourself and want to broaden your reading then you’re in the same place I am. One of my 2023 goals is to broaden my reading material to include books I typically wouldn’t even pick up to try.
The question then becomes, how? There are too many books and it is easy to get overwhelmed with trying to figure out what to read. Enter Reading Challenges. Reading Challenges can be a great resource to help you diversify your reading and just read more in general.
Here are just a couple Reading Challenges that can help you broaden your reading in the coming year.
Book Riot is an amazing website with many articles and fun quizzes that if you have time for I highly recommend. For the past nine years they have put out a “Read Harder” challenge that consists of 24 tasks to complete within the calendar year. They release the task list in December so people have time to think about the prompts. Book Riot also always has a discussion board on their Goodreads for anyone to help each other out with specific recommendations for each challenge.
The 52 Book Club also has an annual reading challenge that is a little more intense. Their challenge consists of 52 prompts and is called “52 Books in 52 Weeks.” If that isn’t enough of a challenge for you, they also have an article that gives ideas on how to “intensify” the reading challenge. Their Facebook Group is their most active social media to share your progress and connect with others also completing this challenge.
The Pop Sugar Challenge consists of 40 different reading prompts and 10 advanced challenges. Pop Sugar suggests joining their Facebook Book Club as a way to stay connected with others completing the challenge. They also have a nice PDF you can download as an easy way of keeping track of your progress throughout the year.
The Uncorked Librarian Bingo Challenge is a different kind of challenge than the others on this list. For this challenge, there is a small bingo card (3×3) for each season of the year and each card seems to include a broad theme. The goal of this challenge is to get Bingo each season. Of course if you are an over achiever then by all means try to completely fill the card each season. The bingo cards for this consist of less specific prompts and are more just elements that can be in the book. The Uncorked Librarian also counts shows/movies as a way to complete this challenge. For example, in the winter Bingo card we see it says “mermaids” so that means you only need to read a book or watch something that has mermaids included in it.
For those of us who need a little incentive to read something different, there is the “Ultimate Reading Challenge” which cost about $27 on Amazon. It comes in a large fold out book with 25 little flaps that have surprise bookish themed surprises inside. Each little flap/envelope has a prompt written on it and once you complete that task you get the reward inside. Now you could open all the flaps if you’re weak and get the reward, but you’re better than that.
This is just a small sample of the Reading Challenges that are out there, so if none of these works for your reading habits there are plenty more out there. There is even a Master List of Reading Challenges that will keep updating through January 2023, so you can be sure to find the challenge that works for you! The most important thing to remember is to have fun! Happy Reading!