To Challenge or Not to Challenge: POPSUGAR Reading Challenge 2018

As 2018 comes a bit closer, it’s time to start thinking about reading goals or challenges for the new year! This will be my fourth year participating in the Goodreads Reading Challenge, where users can challenge themselves to a read a self-designated number of books over the year. While I participate in the Goodreads Reading Challenge, I never stress over it because I tend to set my reading goal to what I know I can easily read over a year—the point is to not stress myself out over reading. However, there is one challenge that is increasingly coming into my mind for 2018: the POPSUGAR Reading Challenge.

The POPSUGAR Reading Challenge is an annual reading challenge hosted by POPSUGAR, a media and entertainment website. The goal of their reading challenge is to read 50 books based off 50 different book prompts, such as “a book with your favorite color in the title” or “a book mentioned in another book”. This year is a tad different in that the list is separated into two sections: the first section has 40 prompts that necessarily aren’t too difficult to complete, and the second section has 10 advanced prompts that are harder to complete, like “a bestseller from the year you graduated high school” or “a book with a fruit or vegetable in the title”.

Like me, you may be debating if you’ll participate in the POPSUGAR Reading Challenge. I am not sure if I’m going to do the challenge myself, as I don’t want to stress myself out trying to find books based on the prompts or read books that I really have no interest in picking up. For me, I know I would probably have trouble finding a book that fits “true crime” or “a microhistory”. I am also a really big mood reader—I’m not going to read a fantasy when all I want is a cute, contemporary love story—so I might have difficulty with some of the prompts based on what I really want to read. However, one of the purposes of the challenge is to push yourself to read books that you normally wouldn’t read, in hopes that you’ll find a new favorite. Ultimately, by doing the challenge, you’ll diversify your reading.

The main reason why I might participate in the challenge is because there a ton of creative prompts, including “ a book that was borrowed or given to you as a gift” and “a book that involves a bookstore or library”, as well as prompts that are quite easy to do: “a past Goodreads Choice Awards Winner” or “a book that you meant to read in 2017 but didn’t get to”. I am also not intimidated by the fact that the challenge encourages you to read 50 books (even though you could definitely double count books if you wanted to!), as I’ve read well over 50 books each year for the past couple of years.

In the end, I think I am going to participate in the POPSUGAR Reading Challenge, but not stress myself out over hitting all 50 prompts. The prompts overall will really help change up my reading, and I already have books on my TBR that I know will fulfill some of them!

Are you participating in the 2018 POPSUGAR Reading Challenge or any other reading challenges? Share in the comments!

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