We’re all friends here, so I can confess something really nerdy to you, right?
Okay. Here goes.
I keep track of every book I buy and every book I read in a spreadsheet.
A color-coded spreadsheet.
I have gotten a LOT of grief about this from my friends, but the spreadsheet serves many purposes. It makes it really easy to remember what I’ve read recently when people ask for recommendations. It allows me to see if my reading is really unbalanced—I don’t want to be that person who reads ONLY YA because that’s what I write. It ensures I don’t forget any candidates when I do my Favorite Books of the Year blog post at the end of December. And most of all, it gives me hard evidence with which to shame myself about my book-spending habits so I can be more frugal in the future. (Just kidding, that never works.)
Keeping track also allows me to write this ridiculously nerdy statistics post at the end of each year, which I’m sure nobody actually reads. But who cares! For those (three) of you who want to know about such things, here are my book-buying and reading statistics for 2013:
THE BUYING STATS:
In total, I bought 132 books this year, just two more than last year! (My total has gone up every year, so this plateau is pretty impressive.) Here’s the breakdown:
17.5% middle grade;
17.5% adult fiction;
4% graphic novels.
14% of those were ebooks, and I expect that percentage to go up next year, since I got a new Nook HD at the end of November.
I bought 50% of those books at indie bookstores and the other 50% at Barnes and Noble. As always, I did not buy a single book from Amazon.
8% were books I’d already read as ARCs but felt the need to own.
86% of the books were written by women.
Shockingly enough, I finished reading 75% of the books I bought, which is better than I’ve EVER done. Last year, I only finished 64%. *high-fives self*
First book I bought this year: MONICA NEVER SHUTS UP, A. S. King
Last book I bought this year: CONTROL, Lydia Kang
Month I bought the most books: August, with 21 (I bought the new Harry Potter box set that month)
Month I bought the fewest books: December, with 5 (such restraint!)
I’m not going to tell you how much money I spent on books because it is PREPOSTEROUS, but it was 116% of what I paid last year for almost the exact same number of books. This makes sense, because almost none of the books I bought this year were used, and last year quite a few of them were.
THE READING STATS:
I read 142 books this year, up from 120 last year! The breakdown was as follows:
20% middle grade;
13% adult fiction;
3% graphic novels;
Less than 1% nonfiction. (I read ONE nonfiction book this year. Oops.)
10% of those books were rereads.
22% of those books were ARCs.
83% of those books were written by women.
Month I read the most books: July, with 17
Month I read the fewest books: August, with 9 (I guess I was burned out from July?)
First book I read this year: WONDER SHOW, Hannah Barnaby
Last book I read this year: reread of LOLA THE BOY NEXT DOOR, Stephanie Perkins
Stay tuned; tomorrow I’ll post my FAVORITE books I read this year!
Tara Dairman says
Love these stats, Alison! I'm curious, were any of them audio books? I've really been able to increase my reading this year by listening while I walk places, do the dishes, etc…though I'm still nowhere near your levels!
Alison Cherry says
No, actually, none of them were audiobooks! The only audiobooks I listened to this year were my own and SOMEDAY, SOMEDAY, MAYBE by Lauren Graham. Mostly I listen to NPR podcasts when I'm walking places.