2020 Reading Plans

Happy New Year!

Each year in November I resolve not to sign up for any reading challenges the next year. By the time late December rolls around, I’m sucked back into the excitement that reading challenges bring.

My general focus for 2020 will be to read books I already own. I did several large culls of my books in 2019 to prepare for our move back in October, so the books that are left are ones I really do want to read.

Here are some of my reading plans for 2020.

Year-Long Reading Challenges:

The 2020 Australian Women Writers Challenge

Australian Women Writers

  • I’ve be doing this one for years now. As I wrote yesterday, in 2019 I read only 3 of the 4 I’d planned, but that’s still three more than I would have read without this challenge on my mind.
  • Learn more/sign up here: https://australianwomenwriters.com/sign-up/
  • Hashtag is #AWW2020
  • I’ll be attempting the Stella Level again which is to read four books and review three.
Read More German Books in 2020 #readgermanbooks2020

Read More German Books in 2020

  • This is a new challenge created and hosted by two BookTubers that I regularly watch, Mel of Mel’s Bookland Adventures and Britta Böhler of The Second Shelf. I have a number of books on my shelves that are translated from German to English and would love to get them read.
  • Learn more/sign up here: https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/1044753-reading-german-books-in-2020
  • Hashtag is #ReadGermanBooks2020
  • I plan to read 5 books. Mel created fun levels based on German elevation points. Reading 1-5 books is the Neuendorf-Sachsenbande level, which is the lowest point in Germany at 3.54 m below sea level.
The Classics Club Logo

The Classics Club

  • I stalled on reading from my Classics Club list this year and definitely want to get back to it. I recently reviewed my list and am still looking forward to reading all the books on it.
  • Learn more/sign up here: https://theclassicsclubblog.wordpress.com/how-to-join/
  • Hashtag: there are hashtags for different contexts, including #theclassicsclub for general posts and #ccbookreviews
  • I’d like to read 12 from my list this year, but will be more realistic and cut that in half . My goal will be six.

Month-Long Book Event

Wales Readathon #dewithon

Wales Readathon

  • Paula of Book Jotter created and hosted this event for the first time in 2019. I wasn’t able to jump in this year, but will in March 2020. Last March I purchased The Literature of Wales by Dafydd Johnston to be ready for this year.
  • Learn more here: https://bookjotter.com/2018/03/26/dhq-dewithon19/
  • Hashtag in 2019 was #dewithon or #dewithon19 so I’m assuming (😬) 2020’s will be similar.
  • I’ll read at least two for this. Johnston’s book above and I have Everything I Found on the Beach by Cynan Jones on my shelf. I’d also like to read a mystery written by a woman.


Book Cougars

Willa Cather Book Club January 16, 2020 Shadows on the Rock

Willa Cather

The Willa Cather Book Club

  • This group meets quarterly at the Wood Memorial Library and Museum in South Windsor, CT.
  • Our first meeting of 2020 is January 16th at 2pm. We’ll discuss Shadows on the Rock, historical fiction set in 17th-century Quebec. This is a public group, so if you’re in the area come join us!
  • Hashtag: None
  • This year we’ll also be reading O Pioneers!, Lucy Gayheart, and Alexander’s Bridge.

The Willa Cather Short Story Project

  • I launched this project in February 2019 as a way to read more of Cather’s stories. Short stories are not my go-to, not even when they’re by a favorite writer.
  • In 2019 I/we read 11 short stories and we’re definitely keeping this project going in 2020.
  • Details here: https://chriswolak.com/the-willa-cather-short-story-project-on-chriswolak-com/
  • Hashtag: I need your help with this. I didn’t create a hashtag for 2019 but I’m thinking it might be useful to have one for 2020. What do you think of #wcssp2020 or #shortwilla ? I’ve used #WillaOnWednesday in the past. Or does something else come to mind?

Whatever I end up reading this year, I do want to get back to writing more about my reading week. I also plan on getting back to a monthly library post.

What are your reading plans for 2020? Whatever they are, I wish you a year filled with great reads!

P.s. There’s a seasonal challenge that slipped my mind that I’ve participated in for the last two years. Sue of Book By Book hosts her Big Book Summer Challenge which runs from Memorial Day to Labor Day. The challenge is to read at least one book that’s 400+ pages. There are certainly a few big books on my Classics Club list that will qualify.


  1. Yay Shadows on the Rock, I don’t know why I loved it so much but I did. I even had to make a trip to Quebec City afterwards and it really is an amazing place.

    Good luck with all these challenges – at this point I’m resisting, but maybe sometime during the year I will get sucked in as well!

    • Hi Lory! My first reply to you has apparently disappeared. I’ve only read Shadows once before so am really looking forward to it. I don’t remember much about it other than that opening scene with the ships heading back to France and leaving the colonists on the shore. I can’t image. Quebec City is on my list of place to visit sooner rather than later.

  2. My plan is to continue to Cather with you this year (book club and short stories). They are the two challenges I kept last year. Also, the Big Book Challenge hosted by Sue of BookbyBook blog. Also very slowly reading a Century of Books (on the 5 year plan). Beyond that, read off my TBR. I have A LOT of unread books. Happy New Year

    • It’s been so much fun to Cather with you, Kate! I’m happy you’ll keep reading her in 2020. You’ll have to tell me about your Century of Books reading later this month (preferably over plates of steaming burritos).

      Oh, gosh, Sue’s Big Book Summer Challenge completely slipped my mind. I did that one in 2018 and 2019 and will do it again this summer.

  3. I think I will just copy/paste your first sentence since it so closely matches my own status!! At the moment I’m resisting making too many plans.
    Re the Wales project – do you want a thriller or a mystery? I can recommend the former….

    • Oooh, I’d love your recommendations! How about one of each? (I’m greedy that way.) I tend to lump mysteries and thrillers together and should probably stop doing that, although sometimes I really can’t tell the difference. Many books seem to be hybrids. I was once told that a thriller is more of a time sensitive “the world must be saved by midnight” type of story. The reader knows who did it and the thrill is in stopping them from achieving their evil goal.

      • Sorry, meant to do this ages ago…..
        Thriller – The Woman in the Dark by Vanessa Savage, published in 2019. A tense domestic drama where you’re not sure if the female central figure is a reliable narrator
        Historical crime fiction – None So Blind by Alis Hawkins, first in a series set against a political protest in 19th century Wales

  4. Wow Chris, you have some good plans. I loved your opening sentence regarding your change from no challenges in November to excitement about them in December! And I particularly love that one of them is our AWW Challenge. Thanks so much for your support. One book, ten books – the number is not the point (or the main point). It’s getting Aussie women writers known by more and more people. Ten people reading one book is, I think, better than one person reading ten!

    I wish you a great reading 2020, and look forward to checking in when I can.

    • Thank you! It’s a great point you make and I agree. Ten readers are better than one. Wishing you a great reading year as well, and thank you for all that you do to keep the challenge going!

  5. SO. MANY. CHALLENGES. 😀 I’ll be happy if I knock a few more Classic’s Club books off my list, I realized I got to 50 out of 100 and then just stopped for the last couple of years.

    Happy 2020 to you and Laura, but mostly to Buddy and Beatrice 😀

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