Reading Challenge Fail?

Happy March!  This is the final month of the TBR Triple Dog Dare hosted by James at James Reads Books.  With my stated exceptions (a book on hold  at the library since October, and my book group books) I’ve only read books that I physically owned as of December 31.  But I feel like I may not make it through the month of March.  Okay, I know that I won’t – because I’ve signed up to participate in Reading Ireland Month over at 746 Books!

I don’t know what I was thinking – except, oooh, Ireland, I love Ireland!  (I’ve been there, once, almost ten years ago when my then-boyfriend/now-husband went with me to visit my aunt and uncle, who live there in County Kerry.  They moved back to the US – long story – for a period of years, and now they’re living in Ireland once again.)  Anyway, I don’t know when I’m going to read the book I’ve chosen – Edna O’Brien’s House of Splendid Isolation.  I’m reading the hefty Middlemarch right now and I’ve got to read Super Sad True Love Story for my book group by March 20.  I suspect that Middlemarch will get put on the back burner and I’ll split my energy between the O’Brien and the Shteyngart.  Oh, a reader’s life!  Juggling all the books!

So I’m wondering what you all think about reading challenges and failure.  I have enjoyed reading some things that have been sitting neglected on my shelves at home.  I’ve finished six of my own books and am currently reading two more.  It’s made me think about how and why I purchase books, and made me re-think purchasing any more until I read more of the ones I already own.  So this Dare has been a win for me already, regardless of whether I stick it out until the end of the month.

Have you “failed” a reading challenge before?  Do you think that there is such a thing as reading challenge failure?  Or is any attempt at broadening our reading horizons automatically a win?  Yoda would say, “Do, or do not.  There is no try,” but I’m cutting myself some slack here.  No one is giving me a medal or a cookie for completing any reading challenges.  Eight books have gotten some well-deserved attention that they probably wouldn’t have otherwise gotten if I hadn’t accepted the Dare.  And I’ve learned some things about my reading preferences.  I just might buy myself that cookie after all.

11 thoughts on “Reading Challenge Fail?

  1. I tend to think of any sort of reading challenge as something I’d like to do if life or other priorities don’t get in the way. Because reading is something I do to give myself joy, if something else comes along that I think would give myself more joy than completing the challenge, I go for it.

    This year, I’ve been a terrible participant in the TBR Dare because I’ve gotten consumed by the Tournament of Books, and reading most of the books in that is giving me too much joy to give myself a hard time for not reading the books on my TBR.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I don’t think you can fail a reading challenge. Maybe not complete it, but that isn’t failing. I say give yourself a big pat on the back for going two months and doing so well and getting a few things out of it that you didn’t expect. That seems like success to me 🙂

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  3. I completely see you. 🙂 I fail at Readalongs too. If the host mentions that we must take four weeks to finish the book, and write about it in four parts, there I will go with one post after reading the book with one setting. 😉 Since I am a temperamental reader, it’s pretty hard to follow any challenges. I was supposed to be good, and follow Andi’s ‘Read My Own Damn Books’. But, I got four books last month, because I could’t cope with the withdrawal symptoms. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Have a cookie! This is supposed to be FUN, remember? Instead of the Yoda slogan, use the “Nothing ventured, nothing gained” one – the fun is in the journey. I don’t think there really are any reading ‘failures’ except in the attitude of Kanye’s “I don’t read books.”


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