2023 Goals: a little list of reading goals for the new year!

December 9, 2022

It’s time for the second of my “2023 goals” posts: reading goals!

If you missed it, my first 2023 goals post was here: series I want to finish in 2023!

As I mentioned in the last 2023 goals post, I LOVE setting goals for the new year. It’s such a fun, optimistic occasion for me, and I’ve actually been narrowing down these goals for the past couple of months because I knew I wanted to do a few things differently in 2023. Let’s jump right in~

(I’ve included some of my 2022 bookstagram pictures for fun, so if you like them, feel free to go follow me there! @howlinglibraries )

1. make smaller, fewer, and more thoughtful TBR lists

I had to put this goal first because it’s easily the most important one, though it’s a 3-in-1 goal.

1. I want to make smaller TBR lists next year! While this does include my monthly lists, it’s actually more about my annual and seasonal TBR lists. I limited my 2023 TBR to 12 titles (for reference, I chose 22 for my 2022 TBR) and am changing my seasonal TBR lists from 10 books down to 6 books per season.

2. I want to make fewer TBR lists—even if it means experiencing a little FOMO (fear of missing out). For example, despite how much fun I had with the “12 in 12” TBR friends put together for me in 2022, I’m not going to attempt it again in 2023. I’m also planning to join fewer readathons, group reads, etc.

3. I want to make more “thoughtful” TBR lists: I’m going to be pickier with my seasonal TBRs by devoting half of each seasonal TBR list to review copies releasing during that season. I want to make sure I’m making reading plans that help me achieve my overall goals instead of trying to juggle review copies AND mood reads AND my annual TBR AND… you get the point.

an open reading journal laying on an off-white fuzzy blanket surrounded by pens and markers

2. focus on series more

This one’s probably obvious since I’ve already posted a list of ten series I want to finish in 2023, but that’s one of my primary goals for the new year! I’m so bad about not finishing series and constantly wanting to, so I’m hoping to devote a lot more time in 2023 to series catch-ups and completions.

I usually never let myself read series books back-to-back because I flit around my TBR shelves so much, but I used to love binge reading series and I’m hoping to get back to that in the new year and see if it’s still as much fun for me as it was when I was a kid.

a photo of two books from the same series side-by-side on a fuzzy white blanket

3. continue using my TBR jar

My 2022 goal was to pick 3 books per month from my TBR jar, and I have loved this challenge! It’s been a ton of fun, has put a bit more variety into my reading, and has helped me finally read some books I’ve owned for ages. I definitely plan on continuing this goal into 2023, though I’m changing it up just a little. I added some top priority Kindle Unlimited titles into the jar (the paper slips are color-coded for efficiency), and in 2023, each month’s goal will be 2 owned books and 2 KU books. I have my membership pre-paid through the end of the year, so I want to make sure I’m using it every month!

a glass jar full of slips of colorful paper sitting on a shelf. the jar is a Halloween candy jar with an orange lid showing a cute ghost with glasses.

4. fewer current reads (AGAIN…)

This goal was in my 2022 reading goals list, too, and I stuck to it for the first few months of the year. While I did end up falling off the wagon sometime around the middle of the year, I plan to try it again in 2023! My goal isn’t as strict this time, though: I’d like to stick to 6 or fewer current reads at once in 2023.

a tbr cart shelf full of books

5. 2023 “long list”/picker wheel

This list is a bit more low-key, but I still wanted to add it. Caro recently introduced me to the Picker Wheel app/website, and it has been life-changing! I’ve made a “wheel” full of books I hauled in 2022 that I haven’t read yet, and whenever I’m not sure what I’m in the mood for throughout 2023, I’m going to try prioritizing that wheel a little bit so I can work on recently hauled books!

white bookshelves full of horror books, horror character funko pops, and decorated with garland that says "happy Halloween"

6. take more reading notes

This is the most generalized of my goals, but I really miss taking lots of reading notes and would like to do that more in the new year. I always loved going to review a book and looking back on my reading notes, especially when it was a book I felt passionately about and had a lot to comment on, plus it helps me remember the plot better (especially for those reviews that I put off writing for way too long)!

a grey tabby kitten laying on top of an open bullet journal

(Ceylon was so tiny!)

And that’s it! Those are my 6 big reading goals for 2023. I tried not to overwhelm myself with any of them because I really want this new year to be a time of getting back to my roots: more mood reading, less obligation, and making sure that I never let this beautiful life-long hobby feel like a “chore” for a single moment. ♥

Do you have any reading goals for 2023? I’d love to hear all about them!


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More about Destiny @ Howling Libraries

Just a horror aficionado/geek girl trying to juggle motherhood, reading, blogging, gaming, and everyday life.

    1. I’ve never heard of picker wheel before, now I’m intrigued😁 I love your goals, and I may try to use some of them myself!

      1. I hadn’t heard of it before Caro told me about it and now I’m using it for everything! It’s awesome. 😂 I’m using the free version and you can save a ton of different wheels so that you can switch back and forth between them without losing the lists. And thank you! Good luck with your 2023 goals! 😀

      1. Hehe thank you! She’s the best!! I can’t believe how itty-bitty she was in that picture. It was just a few months ago but her fur was so short, and now she’s like this little puff ball 😂

    1. I really like your TBR jar idea. I have a cool OwlCrate Apothecary jar that I’m going to start using this year. Also, I have never heard of the Picker Wheel. I’m checking it now. Thanks for the ideas. Have a great 2023 read experience.

    1. Good luck with your 2023 goals Destiny I might have to steal a couple of them. I’ve always loved the idea of a TBR Jar but I am so freaking lazy. I don’t want to write out all of the books lol because there’s a lot. I’m for sure going to be trying to finish up some series next year but beyond that I haven’t really thought about my goals.

    1. The TBR jar idea is great!! I may consider doing this in 2023…I do know that I want to make a dent in my physical book TBR list if only so I can donate books that I liked but probably won’t reread. I need to make some space!

    1. Oh you and me both with the series. I… should actually go and write down all the series I’m in the middle of (oh that should actually be a post so I can name and shame 😂
      Oh I created a tbr jar in July and… haven’t touched it since lol. Whoops! Next year!

      I’ve missed a lot of the YA popular books because I never had access to all of that in my teens so there’s so much of a backlog and it’s like “ok but will I actually like this” and stuff so it’s just me trying to figure out what exactly I wanna read 😂
      It’s hard being a mood reader when you have so much you need to read and you’re trying to balance the two!

      1. Haha I would love to see your series list! And I totally get what you mean about the backlog and trying to decide if it’s too late to read it/enjoy it, basically. I also missed out on a lot of hyped YA stuff from my teens – I was exclusively a library reader and our catalog was very old for the most part! – and I have the same struggle sometimes. There are so many older series that I’d love to check out just to finally see what they’re about, but it’s like, is it too outdated at this point for me to enjoy it? 😭😂

    1. Loved seeing your goals for the new year! Goal-setting is my favorite as well 🥰 Making smaller TBR’s is also on my list, because I tend to overwhelm myself, but really need some idea of what I’ll be reading at the same time 😅 I’m also hoping to pay closer attention to finishing series and picking up sequels! Love that I could introduce you to the Picker Wheel, it can be so helpful in deciding what to read next!

      1. Thank you, friend! 😀 I feel you so much on the TBR size – I really hope that we can both focus on more manageable lists in the coming year. And I am forever grateful for you introducing me to the Picker Wheel, it’s awesome!

    1. I’m not making any official 2023 goals but unofficially I’ve got some of the same as you! I definitely want to focus more on series, and be pickier about what I read. This past year I had some fun with book club/group reads but they were often books I wouldn’t have picked myself, which I think led to lower ratings. Definitely want to focus more on low pressure mood reads. 🙂

      1. I totally get what you mean about the book club/group reads not being things you would have picked for yourself! I try not to join any reads that aren’t already on my TBR, but even then, sometimes I’m just NOT in the mood for those books and I know I would have enjoyed them more if I had just waited until I was in the mood. 😅 Good luck with your unofficial 2023 goals! ♥

    1. I completely understand you on the fomo and wanting more thoughtfull tbr’s. I’m also not doing 12 in 12 this year because I barely read any this year and I wasn’t highly motivated. I still like doing a lot of reading challenges but they all overlap (which is super helpful). But I don’t do as many readathons as prior years. I think I only really did two this year with prompts and all and it felt kind of good.

      1. I’m glad you get me!! Yeah, I think I only ended up picking up about half of my 12 in 12 recs, and there is at least one on that list that, while I appreciated the rec and love the person who recommended it, it was pretty far outside of my wheelhouse and I absolutely never would have picked it up otherwise, and I ended up hating and DNFing it. 😅 So it feels a little too nerve-wracking to leave my TBR in other people’s hands two years in a row! I love when reading challenges overlap, though, or when they’re really low-key on the prompts – those are the easiest for me!

    1. These all sounds like solid practical goals! I am still sorting out my goals but I think one of them will be something similar to you #6 goal. I have a general ambition of reviewing at least half of the books I read in 2023, and taking more notes could help me do that. Happy New Year 🙂

    1. I love your goals! For me, I want to do more thoughtful reading as well. Al, my husband, got me three excellent books for Christmas, so I’m reading through those now.

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