Monday, December 29, 2014

Bout of Books 12... No Goal Linky?

Hello darling #boutofbooks-ers!

We're trying something different for this Bout of Books, so if you absolutely hate it, it may not stick around.

That said.

We, your estimable hosts, are pretty jazzed about this. "This" being Bout of Books 12 will not have a goals linky.

Why? That's a very good question, and I'm so glad you asked!

Every Bout of Books, we watch our readers become discouraged as they "fail" (because, as you know, we flail, not fail) goals they set for themselves. Because we man the @boutofbooks handle and spend more time than we care to track keeping an eye on the #boutofbooks hashtag, we're flooded with the negativity.

Removing the goal linky is our way of attempting to combat the negativity and "failing" updates. Bout of Books has always been about reading, meeting people, and having fun. As long as you achieve one of these, even if it's for a minute, we think you should consider your Bout of Books a success.

While we're not providing you a space to link your goals, we're not telling you to stop setting goals. We're also not telling you what goals to set. If you want to set goals, set them! You just can't link them here.

Additionally, questions regarding goals remain one of the top FAQ we have. By eliminating a goal linky, we're hoping to lessen the burden on us as hosts -- and get rid of the confusion between sign up and goals. There will only be the sign up. (And daily links, naturally.)

Because the truth is, we just want you to read. We don't care if you want to read 15 pages or 47 books. We don't care if you want to continue a book you started before the read-a-thon or if you can count audiobooks toward the read-a-thon. We don't care if you read from a read-a-thon book list you created or you go off your list.

We want you to read, in whatever format makes the most sense for you. We want you to read books you want to read. We want you to have fun and meet people and be happy that you get to be part of such an amazing community.

You don't need a goal linky for that, #boutofbooks-ers. You just need yourself and a love for reading.

ETA: No goal linky does not mean you can't set goals. If you'd like to set goals, do so, then share on Twitter using the hashtag #boutofbooks. Ask others to share their goals, too -- you might find you make stronger connections.


  1. Love this - great move on your part, for both hosts and participants.

  2. Aww, I'm not sure if I like this very much. I think the negativity is so much deeper than this and you just can't win by not adding a goal link. I don't think it will decrease the amount of stress. I myself love the goal links, it's interesting to see what people want to read and I love deciding my own goals (it's one of the highlights of the readathon to me!!). It's just how you think about the goals, I don't think I "fail" if I don't complete them, I don't stress about it, it's just a fun way to prepare to the readathon. Be laid back people :) I think you should promote this idea instead, not the no goal links idea :) Besides it's not like the goals were mandatory or anything so if people don't want to do them it's okay :) I think the goals activate me to read and if I don't have them I'd probably read less because of that and I'm not saying that it gives me stress, it gives me MOTIVATION :) So pretty please, bring the goals link to the next readathon :) I'd love to see what people plan to read!

    1. Our decision involves more than battling negativity; it's also designed to reduce the amount of work for me and Kelly, as we spend a lot of time answering goal-related questions. With both of us working full-time, we need to make sure we don't get overwhelmed or decide we can't continue to host the readathon due to time commitments.

      If you can come up with a solution that both combats the negativity (promoting the readathon as low pressure doesn't work; we've promoted it as such for 11 straight readathons) and reduces the amount of work for me and Kelly, we'd be happy to listen.

  3. Replies
    1. You can set goals and share them on Twitter with the #boutofbooks hashtag.

  4. I love this idea, for so many reasons! People who want to set goals for themselves can still do so on their own, those who don't want to set goals feel less pressure to do so, and it helps keep the workload a bit lighter for you and Kelly. Wins all around, I'd say!! Thanks for all you do to make this event great!

  5. In the same spirit, perhaps the official blurb could use an update. Not that I've ever paid much attention to "...the only reading competition is between you and your usual number of books read in a week" (not always easy to do when also focusing on the community side of the event). But it's still a goal, and one that sounds pretty official.

    1. Good call, Charleen. The official blurb hasn't been updated in a while, other than to change dates, anyway.

  6. I think it's a good change. I could be wrong as I'm fairly new to Bout of Books -- but it seems like one less step for me as a reader too. I always get confused if I've entered a link on the correct page.

    Thanks for hosting and all the work you put in. Hopefully this reduces your workload.

  7. I totally approve. I gave up having any 'official' goals a couple of Bout-of-Books ago. It makes it a lot more fun ;)

  8. I like the idea and would love to participate in this.