The OF Blog: 200

Sunday, September 21, 2014


Tomorrow marks the 265th day of 2014.  As of today, I have posted 111 reviews (86 of them being of 2014 releases) this year.  I have nearly 75 books already marked for review by year's end.  While this is daunting enough, I think I'm going to aim to outdo the grueling 40 in 40 review schedule I set for the days immediately preceding my 40th birthday in July and I'm going to try to review at least 89 more novels, poems, non-fiction, and story collections/anthologies by December 31st.  While doubtless some reviews might be shorter than others (particularly when I write short summaries of the 2014 Prix Medicis longlisted titles that I've read (four to date), I think it'd make for a nice challenging.  I know I'm planning on writing 1-2 reviews a day for November alone (might as well do a parallel challenge to the annual write a novel during that month challenge and review 30+ books or write roughly 30K review/quote words that month), so I think I can extend it through the remaining 100 days of 2014 and get close at least to 200 reviews if not equal or surpass it.

Granted that I have a backlog of reviews (roughly 20) to write, so reading time shouldn't be too much of an issue until at least mid-October.  But some works will be easier than others.  Writing about Thoreau's Walden, for example, should make for an easier essay-composing session than would reviewing something read in my second, third, fourth, or fifth languages.  But if I write roughly 6 reviews a week, roughly an hour a day/night for those corresponding days, I should be able to meet this challenge.  And for those curious about some of the books I want to write about, well, in a few hours, I'll post my commentary/review of the Latin translation of The Hobbit, called HOBBITVS ILLE, and later I'll write reviews of the translations (and well, thoughts in general on the English originals) of Tolkien's The Silmarillion and The Children of Húrin.

I also plan on finishing reviewing the seven remaining Premio Alfaguara winners I haven't yet reviewed (another 2014 reviewing challenge was to finish reviewing all 25 of the previous/current winners of that Spanish-language award), at least four of the Prix Medicis longlisted-titles, most of the 2014 National Book Award shortlists, if not their entire longlists for poetry, Young People's Literature, and Fiction, and maybe a few classics that I own in Easton Press or Franklin Library leatherbound editions.  Also, if time permits, I'm going to look into resuming reading some of William Faulkner's work, most likely the not-yet-reviewed novels collected in four Library of America editions.  Add to this the books I haven't yet reviewed from my 2014 releases post and the total should be close to the requisite 89.

But if/when I accomplish this, don't expect a repeat in 2015.  I have a feeling I won't be reviewing quite as many books next year.

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