I said last year I’d be doing the r/fantasy bingo, which runs from April to the end of March. I’ve completed it, mostly, except for the SFF-related nonfiction square. I know you can replace one square with any from a previous year but if I’m being honest, I don’t really have the energy to go look for previous ones, and I’d rather just admit I’ve not done the one square. 24 out of 25 prompts feels pretty good if I’m being honest!
I also lost track of which ones I managed in regular or hard mode, and sometimes I have the regular+hero (review) mode. I had a tracker in my planner, with little star stickers, but I switched reading journals and planners with the beginning of 2022 so it’s weird to go back…
It ended up being mostly reading whatever I wanted and then matching it to the prompts. I think if I do it again this year, I’ll try to assign books from my TBR to the card first, then tick them off, it feels more in the spirit of the game.
The bingo has 3 difficulty levels, normal mode, hard mode (which has a secondary prompt) and hero mode, in which you’re supposed to review all the books you read. I’m giving myself little stars ⭐for each level. I bought a reward star booklet specifically for this, so I’ve three colours.
You’re not supposed to use the same book twice, and ideally not the same author either. I’ve been penciling in titles so far, in the hopes of finding a title for each prompt that fills in all 3… but I’ve decided to start writing them in properly. Which of course, being an airhead, I could not do cleanly without mistakes… (yes I KNEW I wanted Lunis Aquaria for the self-pub one, I had it in pencil. But that’s another page, right? so I did not see it before I’d written it down for short stories…)
Then there’s prompts like “Backlist” (hard mode: published before 2000) where I’ve one book that fills the normal prompt and has a review, and one mode that fills the hard prompt but no review (and I don’t intend to review it)… So I’m still not sure how to deal with those. I went with normal+hard in my little star rating on the bingo card!
I still hope to find a Hard Mode title for some of the prompts so I’ve left them in pencil, and didn’t put in any stars on my card
I also have a smaller “spare card” as a backup because I do think maybe I’ll get extra lines with second books for certain prompts, but that’s really ambitious. So right now I’ve put the extra backlist star on it, as well as a normal mode star for Tram Car 015, on the Genre Mashup tile.
Really what this made me realise is 1) these 3 modes make it a lot more confusing than I thought 2) I am not so good at planning and being organized as I sometimes think I am.
The fact that you can’t repeat is also tricky. My new-to-me author is also a 2021 publication, I’ve got novels that fit for the 2021 AND debut prompt but I want them to fill some other tile first… So I don’t have a bingo yet, but I think with a bit of effort I’ll soon get the 4th column, as I’ve got a few cat squashers lined up, and I just need to pick a debut author to read.
But yeah, I’m finding the whole exercise a bit confusing and frustrating. I think I’ll keep penciling things in as I read them, and write them in proper when they do hit both hard mode and hero (review) mode. Then come December/January I’ll have a look at what I still need to read and become more serious about ticking them off purposefully.
So I planned to do this yesterday but i ended up finishing past midnight instead of 5pm like I said, soo it was a bit late.
While I didn’t read quite as much as I’d planned, I did finish 3 books I’d already started:
-Stormsong by C.L. Polk (I’ll be posting a review of the first in the series shortly)
-Jasmine Throne, by Tasha Suri, which keeps blowing my mind that much later. Also got a review ready to go
-Best SFF of the year (2018). Like all story collections there were great hits, and there were some misses. I allowed myself to skip some, but I enjoyed most of it
I’m currently on holidays for a few days in the countryside, and typing this from mobile. I’m excited to be out of the house for a bit, even if it looks like the weather won’t be on my side. My holiday read is gonna be The Unbroken, and I’m really looking forward to that!!
I’ve been unusually silent the last couple of weeks, mainly because i’ve struggled to read pretty much anything. I’ve started half a dozen books, and only finished one audiobook (The Truth, by Terry Pratchett, which I’d feel odd reviewing considering. you know. It’s been published for years and years.
On the why side, there’s not really a reason, I was not really busier than usual, I’ve just been dropping things on account of how tiring the first 5 months of this year (and the whole of last year) have been. And we can go out again, which means I do, sometimes, plan to do stuff other than reading during the weekends. And then my health hasn’t been the best, sometimes the chronic pain is not just “can’t hold a paper book” but “can’t focus on an audio because pain” so I’m learning to deal with that and cut myself some slack
But! I’ve got the next week off work, and while I’ve got Plans, I also want to make the most of this weekend where I’ve nothing to do. So I decided to do a readathon, 5pm today (Friday) to 5pm Monday. You can also join in this storygraph challenge if you’re tempted to do the same.
I’ve a few ebooks lined up (2 ARCs, manly) but this is mostly it:
finish Stormsong audiobook (5 hours left give or take)
Jasmine Throne ARC (70% in!)
Best SFF of 2018 (I’m 1/3rd through?)
A Desolation Called Peace (barely started)
Pyramids (read or DNF, I’ll decide once I get started)
Then the “I’m not likely to get here but I’ll try” ones:
HEartbreak Inc, another ARC I’m really excited about
Either The Galaxy and the Ground Within, by Becky Chambers, or Ancestral Night, by Elizabeth Bear, as the mood strikes me
I’m not on Reddit (I only follow AITA and r/relationship on twitter and give my ruthless opinion) but I’ve spotted this bingo (also on Twitter) and I’ve decided to give it a try.
To give a bit of contest, it’s held each year on r/Fantasy and runs from 1st April to 31st March. Now, I’ve still got a lot on my plate this month so I might only start seriously from next month on, unless some of my current reads qualify. But overall, thinking about what I normally read, and what’s on my ever-expanding TBR, it should be doable (even in hard mode).
Here’s the bingo card if you want to join in too:
It’s bigger than your regular bingo card, but it’s also a whole year so I think that’s fair. One of the rules is also that you can’t use a book twice, and you can’t use an author twice (except for the short stories if you read a multi-author antho, then you can read one of those authors for another tile too) which seems fair.
I’ve spent some time over the weekend planning a spread in my notebook, which involved printing and gluing in a copy of the bingo sheet, then writing down the prompts and hard mode prompts as a list. I even bought myself little star stickers to stick in it, though I’m not quite sure yet if I want to start writing in titles as I go. Some books have got to fill in more than one prompt so it could get messy, but also my memory isn’t that great to remember what I did read.
But I’m very excited for this. It’s in the rules that any speculative fiction counts, so I’m also going to use this to read some of the hard-SF I got on my pile and can’t wait to read but don’t have the time for.
Hi, I’m Aurélie. I spend most of my time reading books and talking about it on the internet, or procrastinating. When I’m not with my head in a book, I can be found working a sales job to feed my two cats, or studying psychology. I’m based in Ireland, and I love travelling (when it’s safe to do so). I also offer proofreading services, check my Services page to learn more!