Monday, January 14, 2019

My Movies and Books of 2018

Back in September, I decided to begin recording all the books I read and movies I watched, month by month.  I saw several people doing that on Instagram and realized it's the sort of thing I would both enjoy doing and value having.  A friend gave me this absolutely gorgeous leather journal for my birthday last year, and I decided I wanted it to be dedicated to this use.  It's a very fat journal, so it ought to last me for many years.  I'm pretty sure it's hand-made, and I love it a lot.


So here's my title page!  I later decided to mark the movies I saw in the theater with a star, and went back and added those.


Because I like completeness in my projects, I decided to start this book with my records for January even though I was beginning the project in September.  I already write down when I watch movies in my regular journals, as well as when I start and finish books, so I went back through my journals from earlier in the year to fill out the first few months.



It's really interesting to me to watch patterns emerge, like how I'll watch a movie and then watch a different movie in reaction or response.  And certain movies show up over and over because I'm such a devoted rewatcher.



Once my kids finished school, my reading really took off.



You can tell where I took breaks from writing and editing Dancing and Doughnuts too, because suddenly my movie-watching spiked.





Then NaNoWriMo hit and my movie-watching took a nose-dive again.



I've loved having these records so much that, over my kids' Christmas Break when I wasn't teaching them for ten whole days, I started going through my very oldest journals and recording what I read and watched years and years ago!  I have accurate info from as far back as the summer of 1995 for movies, so that's where I started recording things in this journal:


Want to know what I was reading and watching twenty years ago this month, when I was a freshman in college?  Here you go!


Now, this only records what I was reading for fun, not for school, so at some point, I may go back through what papers and notes I've kept from college and see if I can add in all the things I read for classes.  I took a lit class almost every semester for four years, so I KNOW I read gobs of things, I just don't have them recorded in my journals.

I've finished off that particular spiral-bound book and am starting another -- I'm up to 2003 now and still loving the process.

Do you keep a monthly record of what you read or watch?  Or do you keep a regular journal?  What sorts of things do you like to keep records of?  I'm curious!

20 comments:

  1. I love your handwriting :D

    What do the stars next to certain movies indicate? I'm guessing it's "watched in theaters" but I could be wrong.

    I keep a record of what I read each year, and then I keep a second record of all the movies I've watched in my whole life (not by year). I do them both as computer spreadsheets because that means I can color-code them according to rating: yellow = 5 stars, blue = 4 stars, pink = 3, green = 2, and rust-red = 1. It's very satisfying to have a sort of visual code that shows me at a glance what I love and what I don't.

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    1. I'm so amused that you love my handwriting, cuz to me it's just... ordinary. I've had some friends with gorgeous handwriting that I envy, hee.

      Yup, stars mean I watched them on the big screen.

      I like your color-coding idea! That does sound handy.

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    2. I second Rachel liking your color-coding system! That's neat.

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    3. Thanks, guys! :D Yeah, it's fun to be able to look at the spreadsheet and see all the bright colors!

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  2. I've started trying to keep a faithful record of each new-to-me movie I watch each month (I've learned that it helps with blogging ;)). And then, of course, I have Goodreads to keep track of reading. I'm glad GR eventually started tracking rereads--that's been helpful.

    Fun project! (Also, that notebook at the beginning. 😮😍)

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    1. Olivia, that's great! I find these things sooooo cool to look back on. I've been discovering movies that I'd forgotten I'd watched!

      (And yeah, that leather book is amaaaazing.)

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  3. This is such a good idea, I think I will start doing this.

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    1. Skye, I hope it's as rewarding for you as it's been so far for me!

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  4. I've been tracking what I've been reading since October 2014, but I don't write down rereads. And I've been tracking what I watch since March 2017, once again, no rewatches. That is so awesome that you have now written down what you have read and watched since 1995!!! And, your notebooks are so pretty! I definitely enjoyed reading this post. :-)

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    1. MC, that's cool! Good for you. You will value this in years to come.

      I've written up everything from summer 1995 to the beginning of 2003. Still lots and lots to go! Definitely not a fast project, but I've been loving going through my old journals.

      Glad you liked this post :-)

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  5. I'm having trouble keeping my new daily movie watching journal up-to-date, but I realized I've been keeping my theatrical movie journal neat and tidy since 2012. This is because I tape my ticket stubs into my journal after each movie, so it's easy to remember to do (and it's not a daily thing). I also have a section for all the movies from the 90s, as I've kept my ticket stubs since forever. The only problem is ticket stubs from my youth did not list any movie info, so I ended up finally throwing those out, even though they dated back to 1977, as I couldn't tell what they were for. So, I am successfully, faithfully, and happily keeping that info tracked! I also put opera tickets and concert tickets in it as well.

    That is a beautiful journal!

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    1. DKoren, oh, how cool is that! I tape my ticket stubs into my regular journal too. When I have one. If I order them online, like for the Alamo D or a TCM Fathom event, then I don't have a stub and that bugs me.

      Yeah, I love this journal. And it's VERY FAT, so should last me quite a while.

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    2. I've ordered a few tickets online but when I did, I've had to have a printout of it for the theater, so I just put that printout in my book.

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    3. Yes! Ticket stubs are the best for journaling!

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    4. For a while I could count on two hands how many times I've been to the movie theatre (I still don't think I've gone above 20 or much), and I've kept many of my tickets (I think I still have them scattered about in various journals and other places). I've tried to keep memorabilia for other art events, but I need a better way/system of documenting everything

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  6. As an old 66-year-old grammy and mother of the author, I'm amazed at the meticulous record keeping of you girls. I've read hundreds, possibly thousands of books, but never kept track of any of them. I guess I engendered the start of it by having my children keep a journal of every book they read during their homeschooling years, but I have no idea why I have never done it myself. Now I'm very sorry I never have. At least I now have my Kindle full of all the books that I've read on it and can look fondly back on all of them.

    Congrats to all of you for your diligence and fond memories resulting from it.

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    1. Mom, yes, it's entirely thanks to you starting a record when I was in grade school that I've kept this up. I started doing that for Sam, but gave up after like a year because he was reading so many books so quickly I just couldn't keep up. The kids do have little reading journals that they do reviews in for school once a week or so, though, so they will have a record of some things they read, at least.

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  7. I've kept my Goodreads updated since 2009, but I didn't start recording movies until I found Letterboxd (not thrilled with it, you can have duplicate entries easily, so I also put them in a spreadsheet, so I don't know what I'm going to do, Letterboxd has movie year and such recorded), but I can remember most movies I've ever watched or easily find them since I didn't really watch much until well into adulthood. I can remember books or find out from childhood easily, but I don't always put those in Goodreads.

    What was bugging me recently is those books I was assigned in college that I read parts of and want to go back to now that I read nonfiction on my own. One is seared into my brain, but I'm not brave enough for that one right now, but the others, with less memorable titles/authors.

    It would be cool to have the actually times and dates marked for the books before 2009 though or any since then that I didn't mark in Goodreads.

    And I haven't keep track of rewatched movies, we are avid re-watchers and I think I'd get bored of recording it, but maybe not.

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    1. Livia, I don't keep my Goodreads as updated as I could. And I haven't tried Letterboxd because... it sounds like a hassle?

      I'm an avid rewatcher too, but I like having a record of all those watches as well because it sort of is visual confirmation that yup, I love that movie so much I watched it three times in one month, or whatever.

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    2. I adore Goodreads, but Letterboxd definitely isn't near that level, unfortunately, otherwise all my movie traking would be so much easier, including rewatches which I'd like to track (if only to see how many total movies I watched in a month like I do with books), but I'm not sure I could keep up, maybe I should aim to try this year.

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