Reading Journal
Book Discussion Books

Reading Journal for book lovers

Kaili

So many people out there are huge readers. If you’re here then you’re obviously one of them (or at least close). For a while now I have wanted my own personal reading journal to keep track of what I’m reading. Why? Because there have been many times I have accidentally bought the same book twice. Yes, I know, how exactly does that happen? Trust me it happens A LOT (and not just with me). So, I know a lot of readers use reading journals to keep track of their books. Instead, I’m keeping the books that I have read. I know there are apps out there for this sort of thing, but there are times I don’t really like depending on them. A lot of readers use a platform like Goodreads because it’s popular and convenient. But here is why I don’t like them.

Goodreads is a huge platform that a lot of readers and publishers use. It’s typical because it has been around for a long time. For the longest time, we really haven’t had anything else to use unless we created our own reading journal. The main reason I’m not a fan of using them is that there are always glitches. I’ve seen multiple tweets saying that Goodreads isn’t counting all of the books they read. To me, that’s a big problem. I like being able to go back through the year and see what I have read and what I rated it. Leaving a review also helps me remember why I did or didn’t like reading the book as well. If it’s not counting then you may end up missing a book or two when looking back.

I’m excited to be able to use my reading journal and be creative with it. And a plus is being able to see what genre I read most of that particular year.

Reading Journal

What is a Reading Journal?

So, what exactly is a reading journal? Basically, a reading journal is a way to keep track of the books that you read throughout the year. I know that there are apps that are more than capable of helping with this sort of thing. But with apps, you can’t exactly be creative with how you keep track of everything. Granted there are probably ways to do this through the app but sometimes it’s just easier to write it down over trying to jump through hoops to figure out how to do it on the app.

Maybe it’s just me but I also love notebooks. I love writing in them and I love completing them. It also helps me remember the books a little better if I’m writing down what I thought over typing it up. Since this is my first year actually creating a reading journal I hope I can get that same euphoria as I do with other notebooks.

What You’ll need

Journal – So, I went the route of having my own bullet journal so I could design my reading journal myself. But there are options out there where you can buy one that’s already created for you.

Pens: You can use whatever color pens that you want. I’m only suggesting colored ones is because having black or blue can be a little dull at times. If you want to add a little color then these would work just fine.

Optional: Stickers are optional, I just know a lot of people add them to their journals. You could also add some of your drawings or just print something off that you like and want to add. Another option would be markers for the heading of a certain page, but you can also use pens for that!

Reading Log bullet Journal

Reading logs for bullet journals can include a multitude of things. It can also look a multitude of ways. I’ll show how mine looks below, but you can include the basics like the title, author, and name of the book. If want to get more detailed I would include the book’s publishing date, genre, setting of the book, is the author male or female, when you started, and when you finished. This kind of gives you an idea if you’re reading a lot of new books or older books. Are you reading more male authors or more female authors?

The main reason I will be recording gender when it comes to authors is that I’ve noticed I have been reading a lot of female authors over the past couple of years. There’s nothing wrong with that but I do kind of want to change that. Not that I want to stop reading female authors but I want to make things a little bit fair.

So, here are some ideas of what you can keep track of in the reading log portion of the journal:

  • Name of the book
  • Author
  • When was the book published
  • number of pages
  • length time for audio books
  • Setting
  • A brief review or synopsis

I highly suggest writing a review over a synopsis because it will give you an idea of what you liked and didn’t like.

Reading Journal Ideas

Reading Stats

Reading Journal

So, I kind of talked about this earlier on. Your reading stats can include a multitude of things that you want to stay on top of. Just to name a few things I will be keeping stats on are my physical books, audiobooks, and ebooks. I want to keep track of how many of each I read. I’m hoping this will help me get my TBR (to be read) down. I have so many books I need to read but haven’t gotten the chance. I want that to change and keeping track of it will help push that.

What are some other stats you can keep track of?

  • Male Authors
  • Female Authors
  • Pages read
  • Genres read
  • Target audience
  • Countries the book takes place in (or you can narrow it down)

There are probably so many more things to keep track of but a few of these are the most common.

Bookshelf

Reading Journal

A lot of reading journals include a little drawing of a bookshelf with drawings of books on the shelf. The number of books you include on the shelf is the number of books that you are wanting to read that year. This spread isn’t really necessary but they are really cute and I love how creative people get with them.

Some color code the books to a book that’s on their TBR, physical books, ebooks, and audiobooks. Some just put the title of the book and leave it at that. Or you can do both!

22 (or whatever amount) books to get to this year

The only reason I say 22 books is because of the year 2022. I found this doing google searches of what to add to the reading journal. To me, this would be a good way to find 22 books that have been on your TBR for a while or are soon to be published that you want to read asap. I will be using this spread for books that have been on my TBR for a long time. It will be my push to actually get my TBR down at least by 22 books.

Monthly TBR

I suggest doing a monthly TBR only if you aren’t a mood reader. Mood readers are NEVER able to stick with their TBR’s until they are highly strict with it and are able to push themselves. I am not one of those people but I’m going to strive to be that person this year. Why? Because I have so many backlogged books that I want to get through and I want to get a good chunk finished this year.

Book Hauls

This is another that isn’t absolutely necessary to include in your reading journal but I thought I would include it. It’s kind of nice looking through your bullet journal and seeing what you bought throughout the year. In a way, it kind of helps you look through and see what you want to get into next.

That concludes the post about reading journals. I hope this helps with letting you know how to create one and what exactly they are. If you’re wanting to see a more updated version then make sure you sign up for my newsletter because around June or July I will be sending out a newsletter about what it looks like when you are consistently working on it.

If you’re wanting to join the OBW Reading challenge then make sure to check that out here. You can join in at any time!

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