I was just going to write up a little thing about setting myself a goal to read so many books in the year (52), and how I managed that and then some(74), but then I saw several people posting about reading goals where they tried to read just as many female authors as male authors.
When this discussion starts, I’ve always said that I don’t pay attention to the gender of the author, and I decided to go through the books I read to determine if that was true, or if I were deluding myself.
What the numbers tell me is that, on a book by book basis, I read twice as many books written by women as written by men. Then I looked closer at the numbers and realized that, because the majority of the books were in series, I needed to see if the numbers when I looked at just the authors. It did, to an extent. I still read more books by women than by men, though not by as large a margin.
Other interesting bits of data—The majority of the books I read were urban fantasy, with the next largest number being sci-fi. I read only a small number of epic/traditional fantasy. All the short stories, novellas, and novelettes that I read were for the Hugo awards, and almost all the graphic novels were as well. The longest audiobook was the Bible at about 91 hours. I think it took me around 4 months to get through. I don’t know what the shortest piece was. Seanan McGuire/Mira Grant was the author I read the most.
Here’s a breakdown of all the different numbers:
8 Graphic novels
2 Religious texts
3 Short stories
35 Electronic books
3 Paper books
21 male authors
Gender, counting multiple books by a single author
17 male authors
Genre and sub-genre
24 urban fantasy
11 paranormal romance/urban fantasy
4 traditional/epic fantasy
3 historical fantasy
2 military urban fantasy
1 paranormal romance
1 Neil Gaiman (He really is kinda his own genre.)
The breakdowns won’t come out to 74—I didn’t count the Bible or the Book of Enoch for any of them aside from total and types, and I didn’t include the graphic novels in genre/subgenre.
With these numbers in mind, I’ve decided to set a goal of reading 65 novels this coming year. I expect that number to be higher once I factor all the various shorts I’ll be reading for the Hugo awards, and if I manage to get through some of the anthologies I’ve yet to read. Perhaps with those included, I might manage to read 100 stories this year.