My Reading Plan for 2021

As has been the case for the past few years, I develop a reading plan for the year. Having a plan helps provide some gentle guidance in my reading choices and helps ensure I don’t get stuck in reading ruts. For example, in the past these have included such things as reading more recognized classics that I’ve never read or more mass market paperbacks that are easy to take with me and occupy my attention instead of a screen.

This coming year will be no different. Here’s the plan…

Read big books that scare me.

That’s it. That’s the plan. What does it mean and why? Well, there are a number of big books (500+ pages) that I have always wanted to read but I avoid them when it actually comes time to choose from my to-read pile. Here’s why…

  • I’ve always been a slow reader. So I see them and think to myself that I could read two or three books in the time it would take me to read those.

  • I tell myself that I don’t know if I could spend what for me would be a whole month or two in a single book.

  • I tell myself I can’t finish it.

  • I tell myself I’ll get bored.

  • I tell myself I should be the sort of person who reads at least 20 books in a year (my wife averages 75+) and choosing the big ones will make that impossible.

Bottom line, I need to stop this. After all, looking back over my reading list there are several big books on it. There were years when I read The Mueller Report, Hamilton, or the Steve Jobs biography and still managed to feel like I read “enough” books for the year. If I only read big books and only read 10 for the year, does it really matter? No; not in the grand scheme of things.

So, I’m going to use this year to tackle some of those big ones I’ve been putting off for far too long. I’m going to let go of any numbers-based reading goals I have. I’m going to acclimate myself to getting lost in a single book for a month or more. I’m going to show those pages who’s boss.