I take a look at my reading stats at the end of every year (and sometimes also in the middle of the year), but I don’t often pull them all together and compare year-over-year. I’ll probably do a very deep dive into this when I hit the five year mark (of tracking my info in the book spreadsheet), but I wanted to copy Cristina’s post first. 😉 She asked how her reading habits fluctuated by year, so I thought it would be fun to do the same. Do I read more in the summer because I’m laying on the beach, or more in the winter because I’m cozy inside? Does my busy birthday month impact my reading? Does a new reading year motivate me in January?
I put them all on one chart to make it easier to compare, but it’s hard because my reading numbers in general have (purposefully) gone down each year. Here are some of the obvious things I see and some explanations for them…
The three months I’ve read the most over the three year period above are July 2015, April 2016, and March 2017. I can’t honestly think about what my life was like in those months off the top of my head, but I was able to look back on those three Bookmark Lit Bulletins to find an explanation.
- It looks like July 2015 was a good month with high ratings too – I read a lot of shorter contemps, from what I can see. I literally have no idea how I read so many books because my “real life” section AND television sections are out of control. Seriously, what was up with that month?! I read the most books, went to multiple parties/events, and got back into watching TV. I binge-read most of The Lying Game series and those were quick and addicting; that’s the only idea I have.
- April 2016 was one of the months I binge-listened to the Series of Unfortunate Events. I can totally understand why I read so many books this month for that reason alone. They’re super short audiobooks and I listened to them all in a row SO quickly. I listened to 9 audiobooks in April, including most of that series. I also read a couple of really short books, including a novella. Personally, the month had a few things happening (especially at the end with all of the birthdays we celebrate), but it was a quieter time overall.
- I got addicted to the Black Dog Bay series in March 2017, which was four audiobooks in a row. There were a couple of other quick reads (one book I specifically remember reading all in one day). I think it was a quieter month on the personal front because my Lauren Lately in mid-March didn’t really have a lot going on. According to other notes, I was just really in the mood to read!
The month with the lowest amount of reading was October 2016. It’s hard to tell from the chart which other months were low, because I think a lot of them range from 8-10 books as a low. I note that “TV and podcasts took over my life” during that month, lol. Included in the 7 books I read were TWO graphic novels as well, so they’re even shorter than a novel. I wrote: “The reason this reading month has been super slow is because I have been totally addicted to podcasts and fall TV shows. I usually wake up an hour or two early so I have time to read before work. Lately I’ve been staying up later (mostly for football games) and sleeping later, giving myself usually 30 minutes or less before I have to get ready for work. I’ve become so addicted to some new shows that I watch them every morning after they air the night before. Sometimes I even set my iPad up in the shower to watch when I don’t leave myself enough time to watch in bed. I also was addicted to Criminal through the month of October, a podcast that relates to alllll interesting areas of criminal activity. Luckily I binged all 50+ episodes in the month so I’m caught up now and can get back to audiobooks.”
September is consistently the month where I read the least. I’m totally not surprised by this. I always read beachy, fluffy contemporary books in the summer through August and then almost hit a wall in September. It’s my FAVORITE month, which means it’s full of activities. My birthday, my anniversary, and plenty of other gatherings with friends and family to celebrate. Football season starts so my lazy Sunday reading days are definitely over for a while. It’s a very busy month and I love it, so my reading takes a big hit. Totally logical!
January is usually a really great reading month. Again, this one is not surprising! I like to kick off my reading year by getting ahead on my Goodreads challenge… and hibernating from the cold! The only thing we go out and do in January is ski/snowboard. I sometimes listen to audiobooks (or more recently, podcasts) on the mountain when Chris goes to the more advanced slopes. It’s a good way of getting a few hours of reading done. However, the biggest thing is definitely the day or two following skiing. We don’t like to do anything and just relax for a few days. That means a lot of cozy reading time. The weather plus my challenge kickstart always motivate me to read more during January. February is similar too, which is not surprising!
Seasonal reading moods are somewhat of a thing for me? It’s hard to look at this by season, but I think it kind of looks consistent. Winter months at the beginning of the year clearly involve more reading because I’m inside, hibernating after skiing, as I already mentioned. February is always cold and fairly boring, so more reading happens then as well. December – the other winter month, of course – has good holiday reads but not a major uptick in reading numbers. Spring months over the years have been a mixed bag. Some of my all-time best months and average months have happened during that season. Autumn has consistent (average, if not a little low) numbers. I love this season but it’s mostly football time for me. I watch a lot of fall TV shows, get busy for my birthday, etc. I have really nice reading months in the Summer because my favorite place to read is outside: in the pool, by the pool, on the beach, on a blanket, on the porch… You name it, I read there. It seems like overall I read the most in the winter, with summer being the second. Spring/fall are right in the middle.
Other notes on a few months:
- March and April are fairly consistent year-over-year. I did a lot of reading in March and April 2016 but the other months/years are basically the same for each. It’s usually nice spring weather that leads to hiking and some outdoor activities that involve reading on blankets or porches.
- May and June are even more consistent looking, with just a gradual reading decrease each year (again based on my reading less books overall). These are even better months for reading outside, not being too busy with plans, and just enjoying the spring into early summer. If it’s warm enough in June, I lay in or around the pool with a book basically every weekend.
- November and December are also consistent. I try to read heavier, larger, and/or fantasy books in November because it’s just when I’m in the mood for them for some reason. Not sure why. I don’t read AS much unless I’m making a good push for my Goodreads goal. December is full of shorter, fluffy Christmas books… as well as anything else to make progress on challenges. I can see why they’re solid months but maybe an average amount, book quantity-wise.