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Thread: 16 Goals for 2018

  1. #1

    Default 16 Goals for 2018

    It is hard to believe, but here we are, on the second day of a new year, already deep into our goal setting and our goal breaking. I personally love New Years, but I like setting goals for myself and making a sense of what I hope to accomplish in the coming 12 months. I’m starting this thread a good deal later than normal, but I don’t spend much time on my computer these days and I have been quite busy otherwise, so I hope you will forgive my tardiness and play along in this game with me. That said, if this goal-setting structure doesn’t work for you and the goals you are trying to set for your reading life, then please use whatever format or structure you like. This is all a game, right?

    A couple "rules". No authors can repeat from one category to the next, so a writer you want to read for the first time can't also appear in the list of books you want to read. This thread is all about spreading out our imaginations about what we are going to achieve in 2018, not being small and precise. This is a thread of magical thinking! Dream big! Aim for the literary stars!


    5 Writers to Read for the First Time

    Derek Walcott

    Laura Restrepo
    Can Xue
    Han Kang
    Naguib Mahfouz

    5 Writers to Read More

    Gabriel Garcia Marquez

    Italo Calvino
    Clarice Lispector
    Toni Morisson
    Amos Tutuola

    5 Books to Read

    Marie NDiaye - Three Strong Women
    Doris Lessing - Shikasta
    Nawal El-Saadawi - Woman at Point Zero
    Robert Bolano - The Savage Detectives
    Virgil - The Aeneid

    1 Other Goal

    I’m going to make 2018 the Year of Reading Indigenous Literature. I’m still working out what this looks like specifically, but each month I want to read a book by a self-identifying “Indigenous Writer”. I’ve already got a list of 12 books to read through, and I know that it will only grow as I continue through the year and discover more authors, but I’m open to suggestions and ideas if any of you have them. Some of the names I’m going to be exploring include Leslie Marmon Silko, Thomas King, Lee Maracle, Rigoberta Menchu, Eden Robinson, James Welch, and Alexis Wright.

    I’m also open to working out what “Indigenous” means in terms of regions of the world and authorship, but I think it is quite plainly not the same as anti-colonial literature (though that is a theme I hope to explore more as well).

  2. #2
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    Default Re: 16 Goals for 2018

    Genuinely wondering, why is it 16 goals? Is it just to make 5 for each category plus one extra?

    If so, I feel dumb for asking...

  3. #3
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    Default Re: 16 Goals for 2018

    5 Writers to Read for the First Time

    Eichendorff
    Hoffmann
    Heine
    Kleist

    Novalis

    5 Writers to Read More

    Wyndham Lewis
    Goethe
    Charles Lutwidge Dodgson
    Joyce
    Ovid


    5 Books to Read

    Ford Madox Ford - The Good Soldier
    D. H. Lawrence - Women in Love
    William C. Wees - Vorticism and the English Avant-Garde
    Andrzej Gasiorek - Wyndham Lewis and Modernism
    Richard Cork - Vorticism and Abstract Art in the first Machine Age

    1 Other Goal

    Read more literary criticism.
    Last edited by phantasy; 05-Jan-2018 at 19:23.

  4. #4

    Default Re: 16 Goals for 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by Isahoinp View Post
    Genuinely wondering, why is it 16 goals? Is it just to make 5 for each category plus one extra?

    If so, I feel dumb for asking...
    Yeah. There is really no good reason behind the format. It's just a game - no need to follow the shape if you don't find it useful, but years ago I came up with this format and it has become a bit of a tradition around here to play with it.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: 16 Goals for 2018

    I haven't been here long enough to know that this was coming but I gotta say I think it's brilliant. It's a wonderful way to plan a bit without designing a full-fledged blueprint. So thanks for the idea! Here's my own contribution:

    5 Writers to Read for the First Time
    Orhan Pamuk
    Antonio Lobo Antunes
    Can Xue
    Sjon
    S.Y. Agnon


    5 Writers to Read More
    Ngugi wa Thiong'o

    Halldor Laxness
    Dino Buzzati
    Philippe Claudel
    Juan Rulfo

    5 Books to Read
    Virgin Soil, Ivan Turgenev

    A Thousand Morons, Quim Monzo
    Essence of Camphor, Naiyer Masud
    Life in the Tomb, Stratis Myrvilis
    The Blind Owl, Sadegh Hedayat

    1 Other Goal

    More Central and South American literature. I’ve been collecting books from this part of the world for a long time and from occasionally I even read some of it, but over the past few years I’ve focused more on Africa and Asia. I’ve consciously started to change that lately, reading both Manlio Argueta (El Salvador) and Jorge Icaza (Ecuador) in the past month. It’s been an enlightening change and one I think I need to pursue.
    Last edited by tiganeasca; 03-Jan-2018 at 13:57.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: 16 Goals for 2018

    I like this exercise, it can be very entertaining, so here is my list. I'm making it a bit more challenging this year regarding the "authors I want to read more"; this time I have to read at least two books by each author during the year to check this box.

    5 Writers to Read for the First Time

    Robert Musil
    Sergio Chejfec
    Antonio di Benedetto
    Ingeborg Bachmann
    Louise Erdrich


    5 Writers to Read More

    William Ospina
    Ana Blandiana
    Adam Zagajewski
    Kazuo Ishiguro
    Mircea Cărtărescu


    5 Books to Read

    Augusto Roa Bastos, I the Supreme
    Peter Esterhazy, Celestial Harmonies
    Javier Marías, Berta Isla
    Clarice Lispector, The Passion According to G.H.
    Fernanda Melchor, Temporada de Huracanes


    1 other goal

    I've enjoyed reading poetry lately, so I want to take advantage of this momentum and dip myself way more into it. I hope at least one third of my readings to be poetry.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: 16 Goals for 2018

    5 writers to read for the first time:

    Robert Musil
    Ngugi wa Thiong'o
    Kazuo Ishiguro
    Stella Gibbons
    David Mitchell

    5 writers to read more of

    Javier Marias
    William Vollmann
    Sybille Bedford
    W.G. Sebald
    Geraldine Brooks

    5 books to read

    Dostoevsky, Brothers Karamazov
    Doblin, Berlin Alexanderplatz
    Krasznahorkai, The World Goes On
    Atwood, Oryx & Crake
    Wharton, The Logogryph

    1 other goal

    Don't be afraid of non-fiction occasionally

  8. #8
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    Default Re: 16 Goals for 2018

    That's fun!

    5 authors to read for the first time
    Toni Morrison
    Agnon
    Laszlo Krasznahorkai
    Le Clezio
    Thomas Mann

    5 authors to read more
    Antonio Lobo Antunes
    Peter Handke
    Virginia Woolf
    Modiano
    Kawabata

    5 Books to read
    Absalom absalom - Faulkner
    Parallel stories - Nadas
    The scarlet letter - Hawthorne
    Blood meridian - Mccarthy
    Faust - Goethe

    1 other goal
    Try to read only that which appeals to me, aesthetically. Don't read books just out of guilt of not having yet read it or of a desire to be up to date with the new stuff.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: 16 Goals for 2018

    Here I go:

    5 Writers to Read for the First Time

    Mahasweta Devi
    Charles Dickens
    Samuel Beckett
    John Banville
    Gunter Grass

    5 Writers to Read More

    Kazuo Ishiguro
    Manik Bandopadhyay
    Mario Vargas Lliosa
    Italo Calvino
    Enrique Villa-Matas


    5 Books to Read

    Herta Muller : The Hunger Angel
    Juan Rulfo: Pedro Paramo(Never read him before)
    Edward Said: Orientalism(Never read him before)
    Akhteruzzaman Elias: Khoabnama (The Tale of Dreams)
    Halldor Laxness: Independent People(Never read him before)

    1 Other Goal

    Finish all the books I have started last year. Quite a long list though:

    Gustave Flaubert: Madame Bovary
    Kazuo Ishiguro: An artist of the floating World
    Clarice Lispector: The Hour of the Star
    Javier Marias: All Souls
    Gabriel Garcia Marquez: In Evil Hour
    Lazlo Krasznahorkai: The Melancholy of Resistance (which, no doubt I will start from the very beginning!)
    Antal Szerb: Journey by Moonlight

  10. #10
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    Default Re: 16 Goals for 2018

    A quick review of what I've accomplished in 2017 (highlighted in Italic)

    5 Writers to Read for the First Time

    Dubravka Ugresic
    Ernesto Sabato
    David Foster Wallace
    Ricardo Piglia
    Anna Kim

    5 Writers to Read More

    Clarice Lispector
    Natsume Soseki
    Karel Capek
    Carlos Fuentes
    Arthur Clarke


    5 Books to Read

    The sea of fertility, by Yukio Mishima
    Zone, by Mathias Enard
    The slynx, by Tatyana Tolstaya
    The war at the end of the world, by Mario Vargas Llosa
    The tale of Genji, by Murasaki Shikibu

    1 Other Goal

    Read more in Spanish and maybe in French rather than predominantly in English.

    Not good, but also not too bad, maybe

    Below is my 2018 list:

    5 writers to read for the first time:

    Anna Kim
    John Fosse
    Juan Ramon Ribeyro
    Ernesto Sabato
    David Foster Wallace

    5 writers to read more:

    Eka Kurniawan
    Andre Aciman
    Clarice Lispector
    Han Kang
    Magda Szabo

    5 books to read:

    Fever Dream, by Samanta Schweblin
    From the North by Hill, from the South by Lake, from the West by Roads, from the East by River, (or The Homecoming of Baron Wenckheim if an English translation becomes available) by Laszlo Krasznahorkai
    Parallel Stories, by Peter Nadas
    The Seven Madmen, by Roberto Arlt
    Vidas Perpendiculares, by Alvaro Enrigue

    1 Other Goal:

    Read more, and even more, deeply.
    Last edited by Caodang; 09-Jan-2018 at 05:18.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: 16 Goals for 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by Caodang View Post


    5 writers to read for the first time:

    Anna Kim
    John Fosse
    Juan Ramon Ribeyro
    Ernesto Sabato
    David Foster Wallace

    I'm a bit confused in here. Is it Juan Ramón Jiménez or Julio Ramón Ribeyro the one you plan to read?

  12. #12
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    Default Re: 16 Goals for 2018

    I mean Julio Ramón Ribeyro. Sorry, I confused a bit

  13. #13
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    Default Re: 16 Goals for 2018

    5 Writers to Read for the First Time

    1. Can Xue
    2. George Eliot
    3. D.H. Lawrence
    4. Henry James
    5. Jane Austen



    5 Writers to Read More

    1. William Faulkner
    2. Doris Lessing
    3. Nadine Gordimer
    4. J.M. Coetzee
    5. Ngugi wa Thiongo



    5 Books to Read

    1. Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy, translated by Louis and Aylmer Maude
    2. The Magic Mountain - Thomas Mann, translated by John E. Woods
    3. The Tin Drum - Gunter Grass, translated by Breon Mitchell
    4. A House for Mr. Biswas - V.S. Naipaul
    5. Robinson Cruesoe - Daniel Defoe


    1 Other Goal:


    ​Over the last two years I've purchased a massive number of books. I'm guessing somewhere between 150-400. I really don't know. Both new and used. It's gotten out of control and at this point my goal isa basically to finish everything I've purchased. I don't want to purchase anything else until then unless something new that I desperately need comes out. This includes for the most part, a large number of Western Canon works, a large number of works by Nobel winners, and a lot of books by contemporary authors who have been gaining attention recently. Currently I'm reading through all of my East Asian purchases with the exception of much larger, involved works like The Tale of the Heike​. After that I'll try get through all of the Canon works before moving onto bNobel winners and contemporary works (I figure its best to start with what came first to see how it influenced more recent works).

    As evidenced by the many English language authors listed above, secondary school in the US really didn't do much in terms off covering some very standard Canon authors (the absurdity of high schools teaching frivolous one hit wonder books by authors who haven't or will never amount to anything but not a single novel by Jane Austen for instance).

    The stuff listed above all comes from my purchases.

    I'd also like to try to read at least 100 stand alone works this
    year.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: 16 Goals for 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by Isahoinp View Post
    It's gotten out of control and at this point my goal is basically to finish everything I've purchased. I don't want to purchase anything else until then
    Good luck! I told myself the same thing a thousand times, but I never sticked to it.

  15. #15
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    Default Re: 16 Goals for 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by peter_d View Post
    Good luck! I told myself the same thing a thousand times, but I never sticked to it.
    At this point the books are just in bags and boxes in closets. There’s no room for them anywhere else.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: 16 Goals for 2018

    This sounds like a lot of fun. I'll try to keep it within reach, so I'm not going to mention In Search of Lost Time or something like that.

    5 Writers to Read for the First Time

    Olga Tokarczuk
    Antonio Lobo Antunes
    Amin Maalouf
    Daniel Sada
    Francisco Ayala

    5 Writers to Read More

    César Aira
    Marcos Aguinis
    Antonio Tabucchi
    William Faulkner
    José Saramago

    5 Books to Read

    In the Beginning Was The Sea - Tomás González
    Grey Souls - Philippe Claudel
    The Luminous Novel - Mario Levrero
    Gilead - Marilynne Robinson
    Purge - Sofi Oksanen


    1 Other Goal:

    To read in English (originals of course). Even though I read academic papers and books in English, for literature I almost always read in Spanish, even if the originals are in English, so this year I will try to get out of my comfort zone.

    Question: How much is "read more from an author"? Does 1 more book count?

  17. #17
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    Default Re: 16 Goals for 2018

    I also want to read la novela luminosa de Levrero. In fact I've never read him before.
    For the "read more" section that depends on you. I decided this year to be at least two books but it can be one.

  18. #18
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    Default Re: 16 Goals for 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel del Real View Post

    5 Books to Read

    Augusto Roa Bastos, I the Supreme
    Peter Esterhazy, Celestial Harmonies
    Javier Marías, Berta Isla
    Clarice Lispector, The Passion According to G.H.
    Fernanda Melchor, Temporada de Huracanes

    I tried to read I, The Supreme twice. I only got to a third of the book. The prose was beautiful and I don't think it was a difficult book but there was no story. Just the same monologue page after page. I think that's one book I will never finish.

    Temporada de Huracanes has got rave reviews. Aurelio Asiain even claims that the book is as beautiful as Palinuro de México. I also look forward to Melchor's book.
    Last edited by garzuit; 10-Jan-2018 at 01:27.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: 16 Goals for 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by garzuit View Post
    The prose was beautiful and I don't think it was a difficult book but there was no story. Just the same monologue page after page.
    I agree, this approach works best with shorter, novella-sized pieces. And holy moly, I just checked the page-count for the upcoming commemorative hardcover edition, and it's 800 pages!

  20. #20
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    Default Re: 16 Goals for 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by garzuit View Post
    I tried to read I, The Supreme twice. I only got to a third of the book. The prose was beautiful and I don't think it was a difficult book but there was no story. Just the same monologue page after page. I think that's one book I will never finish.

    Temporada de Huracanes has got rave reviews. Aurelio Asiain even claims that the book is as beautiful as Palinuro de México. I also look forward to Melchor's book.
    Yes, it was selected in many lists for best of the year. I don't always follow those lists so closely, but I take a couple of recommendations of books that appear in several lists. Also looking to read La Uruguaya by Pedro Mairal. Will also read the new Marías, Berta Isla, but only because I won a copy via a bookstore's Facebook.

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