Year End Review

On Blogging

I’ve had such a great 2014 blogging-wise. Dare I say, that it’s been the best so far? Why, yes. Yes, indeed it was.

I finally migrated to WordPress, which didn’t come without a hitch. I did a couple of integration; the first one was a disaster. I couldn’t make up my mind so I pretty much wasted my money on stuff that I didn’t get to use. The second migration was relatively pain-free except for some minor hiccups.Β 

Though I’ve been blogging since 2011, this year was the year I finally realized the importance of reciprocity. It’s commenting back on other blogs that gave you the time of day to read your post. As a result, I have gained so many wonderful friends, and discovered some fantastic reviewers and readers.

If you are a fledgling blogger, trust me when I say, you need to pound the pavement. Discover new blogs! Comment when you can, and save yourselves that awful feeling when you think no one reads what you’ve worked so hard to write.

It’s not exactly The Happiest Place on Earth.

I made it to BEA, which is to say,Β theΒ ultimate bucket list destination for book nerds everywhere. It was fun, and I got to see New York City in all its rat-race splendour. I’ve met bloggers, authors, and industry people. Most of all, I got to take home oodles of books.

Would I go back? Probably not in the foreseeable future. It was exhausting, expensive, and disappointing. It really is not for me.

On reading

I reached and surpassed my Goodreads goal of 150 books! Go me. According to Goodreads’ My Year in Books, I read a total of 186 books, and 64,873 pages! Though this year was not as successful as my first three years in Goodreads, I’m still pretty stoked that for the first time ever, my reading goals were met.

This year, I’ve worked hard to diversify the genres of books that I read. I’ve been successful for the most part. But YA is still near and dear to my heart.

I’m looking forward to reading more Adult Fictions in 2015, though.

How was your 2014?

Come back tomorrow as I list which books made the ultimate best of 2014!

  • I really want to move to WordPress, but honestly, I’m totally terrified to do it. I think one day soon I’ll get over that, though.

    Oh, definitely reciprocity! You astonish me with how on top of commenting you are. I find I can’t make myself do it until the comments have stacked up for days and I have to work for hours to catch up. I need to make time daily to comment, and it will be much better.

    186 books is amazing!

    • I know it’s daunting. I felt the same way before taking the plunge. But you just need to get used to it.

      Thank you! I try to comment as much as I can, and reply back to the comments on my blog. It’s tough, but I always feel I lose relevance when I slack off. Does that make sense?

  • 186 books! When do you get the time?! I read 24 and think that was pretty good xD
    I love your blog, Joy, so keep it up! (:

    • Thanks, Felicia. It’s almost an automatic thing for me, to be honest. It’s like, when I find myself with a downtime – anytime – I automatically reach for a book.

  • Sounds like you definitely did have a fabulous year.and yes reciprocating is so important in the blogging community. I think that’s one of the lessons that when learned gives the most return πŸ™‚

    I’m actually sad I won’t get to go to BEA only because I bring home so many books I wouldn’t others grab. But you know I think I’ll be fine. That will give me a chance to catch up on books I already own.

    • I figured with a new baby, you probably will be giving this coming BEA a skip. But yes, more time to tackle that 2014 BEA Haul. πŸ™‚

  • I’m glad this was your best year yet and I hope it only gets better! It’s a shame BEA wasn’t your thing (and I never found you!) but hey you can spend the money you save on buying more books ;). Migrating to WordPress always tempts me a little but ultimately laziness and ignorance keeps me on blogger.

    • Thanks, Nicole. It sucks that we didn’t see each other. Though I’m pretty sure I’d have spotted you quite easily on SJ Maas’ epic line. Lol.

  • Yay πŸ˜€ I love this post Joy. <3 You did amazing this year. And I have loved getting to know you more πŸ™‚ You are the best. I hope 2015 will be all kinds of amazing for you. <3 And ack! Reading more than 180 books is all kinds of amazing! I have read less than 130. Hmph. But I'm happy with that πŸ™‚ Anyway. Happy almost new year. <3

    • Happy New Year, Carina! I’m so happy to have known you all these years! <3

  • I totally agree with you on commenting back and visiting other blogs, I made so many readers and new friends that way too. I believe that blogging is a two way process and I may not be able to respond as quickly as I want to but if a person takes the time to leave back a nice comment for you, you should definitely take the time to return the favor too!

    Awww, I’m sorry BEA wasn’t for you Joy. BEA is definitely on my bucket list (right after SDCC lol) but I can understand that it’s not for everyone! HAPPY NEW YEAR TO YOU AND YOUR FAMILY!

    • Thanks, Amir. I think that’s how I discovered your blog, so I’m thankful for whoever commented first. lol.

      Happy New Year to you, too, Amir! <3

  • Oh man, you read SO many books. And that is awesome ^^ I wish I could read so many! And I am glad this year was a good one for you, possibly even the best. Here’s to another amazing year in 2015 πŸ˜€

    • Thanks, Olivia. I wish you nothing but the best!

  • Damn, 180 books? I can’t even imagine. I only started reading regularly again this past summer but I still only managed to read 7 books. How does one read 180- I mean- is there enough time in a year to get that kind of reading done?! Anyways, I am thoroughly impressed. I’ve been coming by more and more lately and I’ve enjoyed some of your reviews.

    I definitely agree with you about being more active on other blogs. It’s a lesson that I am very slowly learning but that can sometimes be difficult to put into practice. As a ‘fledgling blogger’ myself, you wouldn’t happen to know any good book blogs that tend toward long-form posts would you?

    Best of luck in 2015!

    • Hi John. I don’t know how your blog managed to slip by my notice, but I’m glad you made your presence felt. I tend to visit blogs through Bloglovin’ and I noticed that you’re not yet a member. I’ll sign up on your email subscription to make sure I don’t miss any of your posts.

      As for well-written reviews, have you been to A Guy’s Moleskine Notebook? Matt’s reviews are out of this world. He’s very well read, though he’s very Literature-heavy. [His website:].

      Ellen of also is a fantastic reviewer, though she tends to read more YA. You can also check out Paper/Plates blog for diverse reading. Amina’s line of work is in journalism, so it shows a great deal with the way she writes.

      • I’ve been meaning to get back to you on this list. First off thanks for the suggestions. I really like Ellen’s stuff at Questreviews, quite a lot. And Paper/Plates is interesting but not really my style. Although I think I’ll still stop by periodically because those recipes look really good and I like to cook.

        As for Matt’s I’m thrilled to see another male reviewer but his reviews are a bit on the dry side, and I read through a fair number. Again, I’ll probably stop by occasionally to see how his posts change over time but he wasn’t quite what I was looking for.

        Thanks again for all the suggestions, it’s given me a good starting point!

  • Christy

    At least you can say you had the BEA experience. After seeing pictures of the crowds … ugh. I don’t mind them, but I don’t enjoy them either. Maybe one day I’ll buck-up and go. Hope 2015 is even better for you!

    • Thanks, Christy. The crowd is definitely overwhelming. It is not for introverted people, and if you can even believe it, I am one.

      I wish you the best of 2015!

  • You were disappointed with BEA? You’re probably the first person I know who has said that. But I have a feeling it wouldn’t be for me either. The expenses, the CROWD and the waiting would probably not be for me.

    Yay for reaching your reading goal! I hope you have great 2015 too! πŸ™‚

    • That is exactly it, Nick. I’m not a crowd person, and I figured out that while it is exciting to get ARCs, it’s not like I’m able to read them before they come out. For me, it’s just not worth it.

      Thanks, Nick! Good luck to you, too. πŸ™‚

  • I’m glad you had an amazing 2014! Though I’m sorry about the first wordpress migration, were you first on Blogger? Or is it just hosting wise? Every time I hear about moving, I dread it more because all the complications and stuff.

    Also, you were disappointed in BEA? I’m going this year, and even though I’m going with blogger buddies, I’m still scared I’ll get overwhelmed by everything. Well it’s a once in a lifetime/while thing I guess. It definitely requires a lot of time, energy, and planning.

    Anyways, CONGRATS ON THE 186 BOOKS! That is very impressive! I hope you have another amazing blogging year πŸ™‚

    • I was with Blogger first, then I migrated to WordPress but opting not to go self-hosted. The second one was self-hosted. It just didn’t work out well for me the first time. But don’t worry, it gets really easy as long as you do your homework. πŸ™‚

      Have fun, Val. BEA is, indeed, a once in a lifetime thing. But YOU HAVE TO GO.

  • I agree! Reciprocity is definitely a must-do! I didn’t realise how fun it was until I got to read other blogs and bloggers πŸ™‚ Happy New Year, Joy!

  • So glad our paths crossed, you’ve fast become one of my favorite bloggers. Happy NY Joy!

    • Me too, Braine. Me too. πŸ˜‰ Also, I’m glad to know that you’re a fellow Filipina. <3

      Happy New Year to you and your family!

  • Bea was not for you? πŸ™
    I’d still LOVE to go, but let’s be honest, I will never cross the pond to do so

    • I always feel like the new kid in school entering a classroom in front of strange faces. So yeah. Crowd and I? Not a good mix.

  • Congrats on meeting reading goal. What made BEA disappointing?

    • Just…not my kind of thing, you know? But it’s really something that we should experience at least once.

  • Congratulations on meeting your reading goals Joy! I actually originally set out my Goodreads goal far too high, life kind of got in the way, so I had to reduce my original goal, but I’m glad that I was still able to read 100 or so books. I’m glad that you were finally able to attend BEA too, I really want to be able to go there or some bookish event in the US one day! I hope 2015 is another wonderful year of books for you Joy, I have had so much fun reading your awesome posts this year Joy!

    • Thanks, Jas. I’m always thankful for you and Rachel. You ladies have always been with me through the years, and I love visiting your blog for good book recommendations. <3

  • I’m still not big on commenting since I become so busy a lot of times but I’m trying πŸ™‚
    seeing people read around 100 books amazes me… but you… you read 186!! Congrats on surpassing your goal! that’s serioysly a lot.. I can’t even get near 100.. I’m also aiming to diversify the genres of books I read. I’m actually trying to get into adult books as well particularly crime fiction, mystery and, thriller πŸ™‚

    Here’s hoping your 2015 will be great as well.

    • It’s tough, yes. Especially with life getting in the way. It’s just one of those things that I have to make time for.

      Have a great 2015, czai!

  • Congratulations Joy, on meeting your Goodreads goal!! I’m slowly bumping my number up each year, lol, and I was able to meet mine too. Yay.

    I’m so happy to have discovered you blog *book home* and enjoy discovering the new authors you introduce me too. I can’t wait to see what’s in store for 2015 πŸ™‚

    • Congrats, Kim! I know it’s tough. I just have to make sure I don’t become too over confident with my goals. Lol.

      Looking forward to reading your blog posts for the coming year, hun. πŸ™‚

  • I couldn’t agree more on commenting, not only have I found some wonderful blogs but people I would call friends as well and I love visiting their blogs each day and seeing reviews on books I wouldn’t normally try but now must own, or the other way around.

    I am so glad I met you Joy! I love coming here and reading your post. They are so much fun and I just love everything you have to day because it is always so well said and thought out. πŸ˜‰

    • I’m glad to have met you as well, Ali. You have this knack of changing my mind when it comes to books that I don’t think I’d enjoy, so thank you!

      I’m looking forward to reading your posts for the coming 2015!

  • I’m glad you had a great yeat! I hope that 2015 will be really good too!

  • Congrats on meeting your Goodreads goals!!

  • K

    Previously I also didn’t comment on blogs or that, but the last few months I’ve been commenting on blogs a lot more and made some lovely friends. I’d love to get to know you better, too! πŸ™‚ It’s also much easier keeping tracks of blogs now, because at the beginning of the year I was following nearly 800 book blogs (a lot of them weren’t even blogging anymore) and I cleared them out and now I’m following just over 100 and they’re my favorite blogs, so it’s much easier keeping track of blogs now! πŸ™‚

    And well done for reading so many books! That’s great! πŸ™‚

    • Thanks, K. I’m really glad I found Bloglovin’, because it’s the easiest way to read blog posts from the people I follow.

  • My 2014 was interesting to say the least. My reading goal was not met, but it was because of family illness so I was not bummed about it. I finally, after years of saying I was going to do it, started my blog and aam slowly learning the ropes. Finally I am finding my place in this world and loving every minute.

    • That is exactly how I felt when I started blogging. It’s such a great feeling to find kinship among people from all over the world. πŸ™‚

      I hope you’ll have a great year, Sarah.