2017 turned out to be a good year for reading. I didn’t have any formal reading goals, yet I ended up reading approximately 20 full-length books and ~10 more in article form.
Here’s what I read:
- A Fighter’s Heart – Sam Sheridan
- The Fighter’s Mind – Sam Sheridan
- The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck – Mark Manson
- The Last Lion: Winston Spencer Churchill: Visions of Glory (1874-1932) – William Manchester
- The Last Lion 2: Winston Spencer Churchill: Alone (1932-1940) – William Manchester
- The Last Lion 3: Winston Spencer Churchill: Defender of the Realm (1940-1965) – William Manchester, Paul Reid
- Shoe Dog – Phil Knight
- When Breath Becomes Air – Paul Kalanithi
- The Daily Stoic: 366 Meditations for Clarity, Effectiveness & Serenity – Ryan Holiday, Stephen Hanselman
- The Obstacle is the Way: The Timeless Art of Turning Trials into Triumph – Ryan Holiday
- Turn the Ship Around!: A True Story of Turning Followers into Leaders – David Marquet
- Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality – Eliezer Yudkowsky
- Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind – Yuval Noah Harari
- Endurance: Shackleton’s Incredible Voyage – Alfred Lancing
I also read articles quite frequently in Pocket. Pocket tells me that I read 792,396 words in 2017 which approximates to 17 (~200 pg) books. Probably more like 11 longer books.
The number of books I read in 2017 would have been higher, but The Last Lion was an unusually long series, at 800-1200 pages each. So my total number of books read would have been closer to 20, rounding up to 30 if I include the reading I did on Pocket.
Reading is important, and I always feel like I should be doing more. I like to remind myself, however, that reading more isn’t even that that hard – just 25 pages a day (as the team at Farnam Street team likes to say) will get you through dozens of books each year.
In the end, it’s not just the number of books you read that matters. It’s what you learn. It’s the lessons you record in your commonplace book. It’s the wisdom that prompts you to take action and make better decisions in your life.
I don’t have a book goal for 2018. Instead, I’ve set a recurring task to set aside time each day for reading. Though it’s sometimes tough to start reading, I always find that I feel better afterwards than I do if I instead chose to watch television or browse the internet.
Reading matters. Here’s to a great 2018!