Reading Spreadsheet

Somewhere in all my rambling about 2020 goals, I mentioned wanting to do a better job of tracking my reading. Today I spent some time researching spreadsheets, and found one I like! It's actually two spreadsheets I Frankenstein'd together, so it isn't perfect because the TBR page doesn't magically make cool charts and graphs, but I'll survive.

This is the 2018 one I took the TBR sheet from. This is the 2019 one I'll be using for the rest of the data collection.

(I might have Dan look at them and see if he can finagle a solution to make the TBR stuff magic into charts.)

I've already noticed a trend that might help me read more efficiently or effectively. My paper shelves have 52 books I haven't read yet. 24 of those 52, I've started and then abandoned! Not because I didn't like it or want to read it, but because something else came along that I wanted to read more. Most likely, a library hold. Interesting, right?

So, I think the solution to this is to make sure I come back immediately to whatever I was reading after I finish a library book. Instead of hopping off to a new book because it's somehow tangential to the library one or in the same mood or flavor. That's a big challenge.

I have three books I was re-reading in 2019 that I didn't finish. And that stinks because there are at least four books I was planning to re-read in 2020, so I'd better sort that out. I could just not finish the re-read? Or I could hurry-up-quick try to finish them in the next four days?

I've already started the new system of note-taking while I read. I have one notebook for fiction and one for non-fiction. I'm writing down the page number and the quote. If it's a whole concept I want to consider, I'm flagging it in the physical book. I figure when I finish, then I can go back and condense the thought into the notebook. We'll see. I'll keep you posted as to how this is working out or what adaptations I find I need.

I haven't figured out how to track short story reading yet. (Beyond what I put here, which isn't properly searchable.)

I also found a new program to try for my online reading. It's called Zotero, and it took me like two whole days to even figure out how to make it go. Once I'm more comfortable with using it, I'll review it here. As it stands, it feels challenging. But! I really need a system for keeping everything I read organized because I'm constantly connecting themes and thoughts without a way to gather them coherently for writing.

If you have a system for this that you like, I'm listening!

Thanks for reading!


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