My March Reading Plan

Posted March 5, 2015 by Stormy in Books / 15 Comments

Have you read the articles about people who read only books by women for a year? Or any number of the push back articles(which I’m not going to link to because they’re not worth it)? I’ve been thinking about this a lot, as well as how I decide which books to read.

I’m not ready to commit to reading only “X or Y” writers for a year, because I read a LOT of books and upon realization, I actually do already read mostly women authors. However, while I’ve been thinking about these readers who have done challenges such as the ones mentioned above, I realize that even so, most of the history of literature has been very white and very male. I began thinking back to the literature classes I had to take for my major, and I realized that in my two British literature classes I took, I don’t think I read any female authors. In fact, out of the five literature classes I took, only TWO read any work by a female author. Now, one of those was a class on Chaucer, so that makes sense. But the others? No reason there.

And so I decided to take on a less long-term project: in March, for women’s history month, I’m reading only books written by women AND I’m going to try, if I can(depending on some ARCs I want to read to keep ahead of publication dates) to read only books with female protagonists as well.  And perusing the books on my to-read list I realized–reading only books written by women for a month? Pretty easy for what on my TBR. Reading only female protagonist? Much more difficult, but it also made me realize that I really do want to read this way for a month and see what happens, particularly since I read mostly YA and there’s SO MUCH cultural noise & static about the lives of teenage girls.

I’ve never really made a reading plan for myself before, so this will be a month of new things all together, but I’m excited to see how it goes.

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15 responses to “My March Reading Plan

  1. I struggle so much with reading plans because I’m SUCH a mood reader – I’m doing a couple of challenges this year though because I can probably achieve more diverse reading over a year than a shorter time frame as it will hopefully suit my mood!

    • Stormy

      I’m a mood reader too, but I figure this month’s plan is broad enough that I should still be able to find books to suit my mood within the parameters I’ve set. That’s an interesting idea about doing challenges throughout the year, because I’ve stopped doing challenges because I feel that I’m so bad at keeping up with them *because* of my mood reading.

  2. This is an awesome idea! I do read a lot of books by women – so much so that I have to actively choose books by male authors. But I’ve never looked at how many of those books had female protagonists. I’ll be paying closer attention to that now.

    • Stormy

      Yeah, reading books written by women writers? That’s already most of my reading. It’s interesting to realize, though, that I still read a lot of books with male main characters. I definitely like having a good balance, but I’m interested to see where my reading takes me this month.

  3. Maraia

    This is really interesting! I just went through my Goodreads shelf to look back at what I’ve read so far this year. I read 5 books by male authors. Two were in the same series, and they have a female protagonist. Two were adult fantasies, and they have both male and female protagonists. One was an adult murder mystery with two (pretty gross) male protagonists. The rest were female authors. Harry Potter only has a male protagonist, obviously, and there were four with both male and female protagonists. That’s out of 40-ish books.

    YA seems to have a much higher ratio of female authors. I think this challenge would be so much harder if you limited yourself to adult novels written by female authors. OR adult novels written by female authors with female protagonists. Still, I think your March challenge will be really interesting, and I’m looking forward to hearing your update(s) on it!

    • Stormy

      I think reading a lot of YA makes it easier to sure. Other than genre romance, I’m not sure if there’s a category as dominated by women writers(except NA, I would presume, but to me most NA could as easily just be sold as romance).

      • Maraia

        I wonder how many men there are who write romance novels under a female pen name. I heard a snippet of an NPR story earlier this week about the son of a huge porn novelist. I honestly didn’t know that was a thing, and I’m not entirely sure how a porn novel differs from a traditional romance novel. I don’t think I’ll be investigating, haha.

    • Stormy

      It’s so early in the month but it already feels strange to approach my bookshelf sorta-differently.It’s really cool to see, though.

    • Stormy

      Yeah, I think I do read a lot of women authors for the most part(though I realize it’s mostly YA–the few literary fiction or fantasy I read is often written by male writers), but I also read quite a few male protagonists. I’m really curious to see where this month takes me, at any rate.

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