September Cleaning: Reorganize Shelf and Self Reflecting Time

Truth be told, I’ve planned to re-organize my bookshelf, but I just don’t have enough motivation to do so. Lucky for me, Shealea hosted #goodreadance2020, a month long dedicated to sort our Goodreads shelves. Shealea basically gave me the motivation I needed and so I decided to do some sorting and cleaning on my shelves. (Also, you need to check her blog out! She gives helpful tips and amazing contents!)

The purpose is to have more organized and cleanser Goodreads shelves, although in reality, it was a lot harder than I thought it would be. I realized that I’m a big procrastinator who did everything at the last minute, but it was fun and therapeutic activity. I probably will do some cleaning again at the end of the year, who knows? 

#GOODREADANCE2020 GOALS

As #goodreadance2020 focuses on sorting shelves on Goodreads, so my goals and endgame revolved around it. By the end of September, I want to achieve:

  • Having clearer Goodreads feed with people who share similar taste as me. I want to remove at least 100 people on my account so to achieve this goal, I’d need to remove people with less than 50% similar books as me.
  • Getting rid of books I’m no longer interested in reading. I want to have at least 150 books on my TBR shelf, and to achieve this goal, I’m following Shealea’s method where I read the first two chapters of each book and decide whether or not I’m still interested.
  • Having more organized shelves, this includes deleting multiple books with different versions and re-sorting my books based on the genres, age range, and rep they have. I set a small goal to myself that I only need to sort three shelves per day (five if I have the time) so I won’t feel overwhelmed.
  • Evaluate my rating system as well as listing the books I haven’t reviewed.

FEW CHANGES ON MY GOODREADS SHELVES

Although I had a hard time not procrastinating, I ended up having a good time and at the end of September and I was able to do some self evaluation and point out elements that I’m lacking. My Goodreads look more organized and there are few changes here and there. Here’s the changes that I made in my Goodreads shelves;

  • Have only 210 books in Want to Read shelf. I managed to cut 50% of my TBR.
  • Sorting the book based on the rep. I used to have only one shelf (diverse shelf) for every diverse book I read and want to read, but I figured it looked all messy especially if I need to search for a book with a specific rep.
  • Adding Muslim Shelf shelf on my Goodreads. I have the same reason with sorting the books based on the rep they have, but Muslim Shelf is not only limited to books with Muslim characters, but also written by Muslim authors.
  • Adding Indonesian Authors shelf. Still with the same reason, I wanted to have a shelf dedicated to books by Indonesian authors.
  • Merging new adult and adult shelves into one. Even though new adult and adult have different target audiences, I think the two share a lot of similarities that I don’t really see any difference. 
  • Deleting Beautiful Covers shelf. As I want to maximize my Pinterest, I think it’s way more convenient if I have a board of books with beautiful covers rather than a Goodreads shelf. 
  • Fixing my ratings. I realized I read a lot of 2-stars books and that’s a journey I need to embrace.
  • Removing inactive people & people who have less similarities with me. 
  • Adding new people I know from Twitter, and,
  • fixing my ‘top friend’ category.

but while doing all of those, I also manage to…

do some organizing outside Goodreads too. I got carried away and decided to pay attention to my bookshelf. I have done some cleaning and unhaul back in August so I only need to reorganize and list down the books I haven’t bought yet. I also moved my reading tracker from Google Spreadsheet to Notion (while also setting up a new reading journal digitally) and it was really fun to do it (tiring but fun). 

SELF REFLECTION

Even when September was not my best month, I have managed to evaluate my reading habit and acknowledged things that I want to fix. Until the end of the year, my goal is to be able to sort these things out and become a better, more responsible reader. As a result, there are new tasks and goals that I (once again) need to do, but this time, I’m going to do it slowly and dedicate the next three months just to take care of myself and get my sh*t together.

1. Less spending

I know book buying is a “myth” but I own more than 120 books at the moment (minus the pre-order that probably will arrive sometime this month and November) and I’ve only read 50% of it. Due to the stress and pressure regarding my personal life, buying books become something that don’t bring me joy anymore. Sure I feel happy when the books arrive but it was temporary and that joy is followed by a guilty feeling for buying more books. 

Not to mention, I’m running out of space to store my books as I’m currently sharing the bookshelf with my grandfather. Until I manage to read at least 80% of the books I own, I will hold myself accountable by doing a book buying ban, with my few conditions;

  • If I want to buy a new book, I need to unhaul some of my books first.
  • Only buying books from the local indie store.
  • If possible, opt for secondhand books.
  • Limit myself to only buy one book per week. 

2. Read more local books and support local authors

This is something that I’m ashamed and guilty for. I haven’t read a lot of Indonesian books save for the classics, few Metropop (adult fiction), and Kecil-Kecil Punya Karya. This year, I promise to fix this and I realized I haven’t made any real change here so I decided to finally push myself to read more local books. 

Inspired by a dear friend of mine, Naga (follow her if you’re Indonesian, she’s done a great job promoting local authors), I made my own readathon where I read at least 7 local books for 15 days. If you’re curious of my TBR and progress, you check my thread here!

And of course, I have a lot to catch up with Baca Lokalku. Again, if you’re Indonesian, you should check their Twitter out! They host a six months long reading challenge dedicated to local and translated books.

The reason why I also opt to only buy books from local indie bookstores is because I want to support them more. Besides, they usually have a lot of diverse books written by marginalized authors in Indonesia, something big bookstores and publishers here fail to do so.

3. Maximize my audiobook experience

I only started listening to audiobooks this year and Nandini is the one who gave me helpful tips and recommendations! So far, I can only finish two to three books per month and since I’m currently on book buying ban, obviously audiobook is my go-to to upcoming releases. Of course, even though I listen to audiobooks almost regularly, I feel like I need to maximize my audiobook experience. Here’s my to do list on how I achieve this goal:

  • Listen to audiobooks every morning. I realized that in the morning, I only have approximately 30 minutes to read a book–and sometimes I use this time to browse through my social media app. Usually, I’d listen to audiobook while getting ready for work, so I think I can listen to audiobook while scrolling through my social media.
  • Listen to the first chapter of audiobook first before going in for the whole book. If I don’t connect with the narrator, I should move onto the next audiobook. Sometimes the narrator can worsen my experience so this way, I can focus on the audiobooks with a good narrator only. 

As for social media, I think I’d need to lessen my presence of social media, partially Twitter. I haven’t made any plans to take a full hiatus, but I need to take better care for my mental health and personal life first. Hopefully I won’t be overwhelmed anymore by the amount of work I have to do and the pressure I feel lately.

  • How was your September?
  • Did you read any good books in September?
  • Did you also participate Shealea’s #goodreadance2020?

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