Since I didn’t blog nearly as much I would’ve liked to this year, I thought I’d use my yearly wrap-up to talk a bit about the last decade. This’ll be a bit long, but bear with me. I started blogging in 2013, meaning the first three years of the decade aren’t accounted for here. I hope to continue blogging for the next few years, at the very least.
BOOKS. I read 28 books for school and enjoyed 13 books outside of class, for a total of 41. Of those, my favorites were re-reads: Here is New York by E.B. White and The Secret History by Donna Tartt. I also liked The Lonely City by Olivia Laing (another great New York City book), Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz, and Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng. Of books read for school, I fell in love with John Stuart Mill’s Utilitarianism and Other Essays. I was disappointed to find that two childhood favorites, Artemis Fowl: The Time Paradox and Every Last Word were less of favorites upon a re-read.
Most of my books were, again, by women, featuring women characters. Only one book featured a non-white main character, and that same book also featured a second, white main character. Not many of the books were #diverse in terms of mental illness representation or #ownvoices. Most of the books I read were 4-star reads for an average of 3.64 stars, so not terrific, but not awful either.
TV & MOVIES. I watched quite a bit of TV this year. Some favorite shows and movies include Breaking Bad and El Camino, Frasier, Ford v. Ferrari, John Mulaney: Kid Gorgeous at Radio City, John Mulaney: The Comeback Kid, Trevor Noah: Afraid of the Dark, Trevor Noah: Son of Patricia, lots of Marvel (including the Avengers, Captain America, Iron Man, and Spider-Man movies), and SNL. 2019 was also the year that I realized that The Dark Knight is perhaps the most perfect movie ever made.
LIFE UPDATES. This year wasn’t full of big changes. Mostly, I worked, slept, studied, and socialized, and consumed some fiction on the side. I was able to visit the American Intermountain West (Utah, Colorado, Idaho) for the first time, fulfilling a childhood dream of mine. I split my time, as I have for the past few years, between college in New York City and home in the San Francisco Bay Area. I started writing fiction for fun again–I don’t have any complete drafts or polished things to share, but it’s nice to be writing again. Although I didn’t participate in NaNoWriMo this year, I fulfilled another childhood dream by attending a write-in in Tribeca and meeting other WriMos face-to-face for the first time.
ON THE BLOG. Normally, I do a list of posts I really liked. But since this is only my third post of 2019 (despite it being the last day of 2019), I really don’t think that’s necessary. But if you’d like to read through the two non-recap posts published on the blog this year:
BOOKS. I only started tracking my reading habits using Goodreads and spreadsheets in 2015, so that’s all the data I’m using for the 2010s. In actuality, I probably read much more YA/MG, especially from 2010 to 2014. Using the data I do have, I found that I read mostly YA, classics, and mystery books (in that order) for a total of 190 books between 2015 and 2019 (so probably around 380-400 books total over the course of the 2010s). Between 2015 and 2019, my average rating for books was 3.86.
Favorites from throughout the decade include:
- The Secret History by Donna Tartt
- The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater
- The Trespasser by Tana French
- In The Woods by Tana French
- Broken Harbor by Tana French
- Here Is New York by E.B. White
- All The President’s Men by Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward
- The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton
- Born a Crime by Trevor Noah
- Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
- Macbeth by William Shakespeare
- The Iliad by Homer
- The Medea by Euripides
- The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien
- The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart
- A Few Good Men by Aaron Sorkin
- and many more I’m forgetting
Interestingly, despite the fact that I read mostly women authors and female characters in the 2010s, my favorites list is male-heavy (63% male authors and 86% male characters). Interestingly, the female authors I read produce more series while the male authors produce more stand-alone novels. I have no clue why that is, but clearly, the key is not reading more female authors. Perhaps in the 2020s I’ll have to make a point of it to seek out more female authors (like Tartt, Stiefvater, and French) whose writing I consistently enjoy. Also, I tended to consume less YA as the 2010s progressed and I grew older, and most of my favorites today are classed as adult-level reading.
TV & MOVIES. I didn’t track my TV and movie-watching this decade; there’s an idea for 2020, because I can never remember what I liked! I started 2010 watching Disney Channel’s The Wizards of Waverly Place and The Suite Life on Deck, and ended it binge-watching Breaking Bad and Marvel movies. In between, I watched Parks & Rec, Friends, Frasier, Barry, NCIS, The West Wing, Broadchurch, New Girl, White Collar, and Doctor Who, among others.
LIFE UPDATES. In 2010, I was 10. Today, I’m 20. Clearly, a lot happened in between. The 2010s were the decade in which I graduated elementary, middle, and high school, and started college (which I’ll finish in 2020/2021). I went through several friend groups, wrote a lot of words, and did many things in between. I moved from California to New York, lived in several places, and changed from a future vet to a political science major. Mostly, I morphed from a fifth grader who knew everything to a college junior who knows nothing.
ON THE BLOG. 2014 was the golden era for this blog with over 100 posts published between January and December. Despite this, I think many of my favorite posts were written between 2015 and 2018. Here are some of the ones I’ve really enjoyed writing and re-reading:
- Why Sherlock Holmes and I Need Platonic Relationships // A List
- The Propaganda of District 13
- Reasons to Visit “The Anti-Museum”
- I Love Anti-Feminist Fiction
- The Funny Thing About Feminism
- Knowing New York
- Represented and Proud.
- I Picture a Black President
- Molly’s Game // I Want More Molly Blooms
- The “6 Books to Read in _____” series (see 2017, 2018, and 2019, 2020(!!) coming soon)