As we turn our journals to new pages for the new year, one of the most commonly discussed things at BiblioLifestyle HQ is the different ways we track our reading. To get an accurate picture of your reading life, you need to start tracking your reading.
We’re all in different stages of our relationship with reading, and the same can be said for tracking our reading. If you’ve been tracking your reading for some time now, you may be looking for ways to improve. On the other hand, if you’re new to it all, you may be trying to decide what will work best for you. So we also discuss the 7 Things We Are Tracking In Our Reading Journal in a separate post to inspire readers if they’re unsure what to track.
We will be sharing five ways you can track your reading, and we hope these methods will provide some inspiration and practical approaches to get you started. Our recommendation is to try the technique that speaks to your first.
There are no fast and hard rules to tracking you reading. Feel free to mix it up, tweak methods and make it your own. In time you’ll learn what works best for you, what doesn’t and you’ll narrow down the information you want to keep tracking!
1. READING TRACKING WEBSITES
The most popular website is Goodreads, and they have both an app and a website. We recommend using their barcode scanner to scan your book’s barcode and quickly upload the books you own to your TBR list if you use the app. Then, as you read them, you can mark them as read, and they’ll then move to your read list. You can create lists with different names and keep track of your books that way.
The StoryGraph provides a more reader-friendly experience with a fantastic added feature of getting other book recommendations based on the books you love with added consideration for mood, pace, and page. Front and center are their reading stats feature, and you’re able to get in-depth statistics on your reading and see everything broken down and analyzed.
Both Goodreads and the StoryGraph have a reading challenge function where you can set a numerical goal for the year. Then, once you’ve read a book and you’ve marked it as read, you’ll see your status towards achieving your goal. The StoryGraph, however, reigns supreme because of its clean design, that’s super easy to navigate, while the Goodreads interface is clunky. However, if the added feature you’re looking for is connecting and interacting with an extensive reading community, opt for Goodreads.
LibraryThing is pretty similar to Goodreads, with the added perk of connecting with and searching your local library and bookstore. You also have the option of making your account completely private and not having any social interaction. It’s another excellent way to keep track of your personal book collection and discover new titles.
2. WISH LISTS
Some readers keep track of the books they want to read via wish lists on websites where they shop online. Most popular amongst them are Amazon, Book Depository, and Bookshop.
Creating a spreadsheet (Excel or Numbers) with common categories such as title, author, number of pages, and star rating is a great way to track your reading. Then, create a new sheet or open a new tab in the same file and continue logging your reads at the start of a new year.
Spreadsheets can also work well for logging the books you want to read. To learn more about tracking books you want to read, check out our 3 Things You Can Do To Improve Your Reading Life.
4. PHYSICAL JOURNALS
Tracking via old-fashioned pen and paper is top of the list for most readers. You can track by day, week, or by month. Track the books you want to read as well as the books you’ve read. You can also break down your reads by genre, author (male, female, non-binary), and rating system. You can even get creative and draw bookshelves, book stacks, charts, and graphs.
5. A COMBINATION OF METHODS
At BiblioLifestyle HQ, this is our favorite way to track our reading. Here are some combinations you can try:
– Use Goodreads, The StoryGraph, or LibraryThing to take inventory of the books you own, and use your physical journal to track and make notes about the books you’ve read.
– Use your online wish lists to track the books you want to read and a spreadsheet to track the ones you’ve read.
– Use a physical journal to track the books you want to read at some point in your life and keep a log of those you’ve read via an online app or a spreadsheet.
There are no fast and hard rules to track your reading. So feel free to mix it up, tweak methods and make it your own. In time you’ll learn what works best for you, what doesn’t, and you’ll narrow down the information you want to keep tracking!
How do you track your reading?
Have a method that’s already working for you? Trying something new? Please share with us in the comments.