Tag Archives: I actually do end up doing it

A Reading Commitment, and Keeping Tracking of What I’ve Read

In my last post (MORE), I wrote about how I wanted to do more reading this year.

I’ve been thinking about this a lot in the past few days. Because, just when I thought I’d be less busy, I picked up a few more deadlines and suddenly, once again, there’s a lot less time in my day to do the things I want.

And from experience, the first of my priorities to go down the drain when I get busy with deadlines is my reading.

A Reading Commitment

Last year, I got my writing vibe back by making one simple change: I committed to making my writing a priority. I wrote before I did anything else. After the first couple of weeks, it just became something that I did. I didn’t have to explain or justify or rationalize (to myself, I mean – I discovered I had a whole stash of negative self-talk about taking the time to write when I had deadlines). That’s the great thing about making something a priority.

And it worked! After years of never finishing anything, I started and finished the first draft of one of my novels in two months.

So, given my success with my writing when I made it a priority, I’ve decided I’m going to do the same with my reading.

After all, my intention in starting this blog in the first place was to help myself to read more. As Stephen King says, “If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot.” I’m back on track with the writing-a-lot – now all I have to is get my reading vibe back.

Keeping Track

Now all I have to do is try and figure out a really, really good way to keep track of everything I read this year. I’ve tried all sorts of methods – last year, it was a combination of Pinterest and Goodreads, and for a very brief space of time, an actual, physical reading notebook in which I jotted down my thoughts about what I was reading – but still, no success.

After reading this post by science fiction writer Jamie Todd Rubin that describes in part how he has a Reading notebook set up on his Evernote account, I’m toying with the idea of using Evernote to track my reading. I think it might work for me because:

  1. I usually have my phone with me, and while I do have the Evernote app on my phone, it’s even quicker to jot down the title of the book in an email and email it to my Evernote account.
  2. If I don’t have my phone with me, chances are good I’ll have something else nearby with which I can send an email to Evernote.
  3. I DON’T HAVE TO DATE ANYTHING! (Yes, I do like this point in particular. I really hate putting the date on things. I don’t know why.) Each note in Evernote automatically carries the date it was added.

I’m already keeping my to-read list on Evernote and my “things to request from the library when I have more time to read” list there as well. So why not make Evernote my ultimate reading productivity app?

It makes sense to me. I’ll let you all know how it goes.

What about you? Do you have any tips on how to make time for reading?