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Monday, January 3, 2011

Monday Discussion: Reading Resolutions 2011

RA for All is back today after a 10 day holiday break.  I feel very refreshed. I will return to every day posts, including one about the last 2 books I read in 2010, but first, it is Monday, so it is time for the Monday Discussion.

Today I want to talk about your reading plans for 2011.  For those of you who are Readers' Advisors it is very important that you think about you reading plans for the year.  If you haven't done it before, this is the time to start.  It is important for all staff who work with leisure readers to read widely and be aware of trends and issues in all books, especially those we do not enjoy personally.

Creating your personal reading plan or goals for the year is the key to keeping you on top of the trends and issues in each genre.  Obviously this past year I had a very strict focus on horror, since I was writing the new book (which I am in the editing stage of now).  But I also made an effort to focus on science fiction and fantasy in 2010.  To that end I read more books (specifically in SF) than I normally would and followed a few websites via an RSS feed.  In 2009, I focused on Romance, Westerns, and Crime Fiction in a similar fashion.

This year I resolve to focus on Historical Fiction during the first half of the year (due to a program on the genre I am presenting in April and the ARRT genre study) and continue with SF only focusing on harder, more scientific SF, the second half.

Professionally, I will concentrate on getting the book out, promoted, and really making the companion website. RA for All: Horror, the best place on the web for information about horror for librarians and more casual horror readers.  Also, later in the year, I will be working on promoting the work of the Horror Writer's Association's Library Committee.  We will be revamping our work in conjunction with my new book.  So look for info on that front too.

I will also be working on the committee within ARRT which will be revamping the Popular Fiction Checklist.  This list is available to members and on NoveList, and serves as an introductory training tool to help library staff to survey their adult fiction reading experience.  The list is broken down by genre, and provides a list of the key authors within in agenre and its subgenres.  Click here for more. This is an important tool for all Readers' Advisors as it allows you to both survey a genre and identify your own strengths and weaknesses.  Even with all of my experience, I refer to it frequently.  This job will take 2 years, but I have committed myself because I feel it is an invaluable resource to the entire library community, and by extension to our patrons.

So, enough about my plans.  For today's Monday Discussion, let me know what your reading resolutions are for 2011.  I can't wait to see what everyone is planning.

To follow past Monday Discussions, especially our discussions of the best books of 2010, click here.


John BPL RA said...

I resolve to read more underground and self-published works. I used to read tons of it in high school and college and I don't really know why I got away from it. I think it's because it takes more effort to locate. In college I was on the staff of the school literary magazine and unpublished writers would just dump their writing onto my desk automatically. I got spoiled by this arrangement. I took it for granted. Well, I miss all those wonderful stories and novellas and poetry. The poetry! Most of all, the poetry. Sometimes there would be photography or art that would be included as illustration. I don't think I've seen a fully illustrated story since. You know what else I miss? Manuscripts that reek of tobacco. Manuscripts that reek of pot. Anonymous love poems. Black and white photographs of industrial areas with titles like "Paradise" and "Dream". Stories with no endings. Stories with alternate endings. Troubled dedications. Bad spelling. Bad attitude. Bad goodness.

I often tell people that college was the worst time of my life. And it was. But sometimes I really miss it. I miss it all so much.

Laurie said...

I resolve to read more YA fiction that isn't fantasy or SF. Also, I resolve to start writing annotations for whatever I read on the computer, instead of writing index cards the way I used to when I started out in RA. The only thing I've kept up since I stopped the index cards is the handwritten list of books and audiobooks read and listened to.

CrystalV said...

I have decided to dip into my darker side and read more horror and crime books. I used to read these types of books often, but I have somehow detoured away from them. I would like to get to know what's changed and who is new.