I try to read a lot across genres and categories, especially within children's and YA lit, and I'm glad I do. I've discovered lots of books to recommend to customers and a few personal favorites that way; I'd even say that I've discovered some things about my tastes, i.e. a penchant for dystopia. I have every intention of continuing to mix up the reading pile, and of continuing to read about one adult book per month; I read these so selectively that the ones I choose often end up blowing me away.
So many of the books that get attention and therefore end up in my to-read pile are, say, YA fantasy. Trend-wise, that is changing a bit. But trends or no trends, I've realized that I've developed a sense that reading in genres I "already know" is in some way shirking - that it's a guilty pleasure, even. So in 2013, I'm resolving to "play to my strengths" a bit more. For me, that means more middle grade and chapter books and poetry. It means more realism, more humor, more kickass heroines. It means more books featuring members of underrepresented groups, whether or not the books are about their belonging to those groups.
In my writing, it means that though I'll certainly continue to focus on plot, which is my weaker point, I also get to spend more time playing with character. I get to make humor more of a priority instead of assuming it will fall into place. On the side, there will probably be more silly poems and song parodies (most of which will be too ridiculous to see the light of day).
Happy New Year. It's going to be a fun year.