With the end of the year approaching I took stock of my library. There are 441 unread books sitting on the shelves at the moment – effectively my To Be Read (TBR) pile.
Which means if I meet my Goodreads goal this year, I’ll be left with 400 (not counting titles on my e-reader). And if I continue on the trend of reading around 100 books a year, it will take me four years to catch up… Without buying any more books.
It ain’t gonna happen.
I have a mammoth wish list on Amazon as well, and add to it every time I come across an interesting title. Though, I have curbed my spending. Making a deal with myself that I am only allowed to purchase half the number of books that I read for a given month. And I’ve stuck to it this year. I must say I’m quite proud of myself. *pats back*
I have also organised my shelves into genre, and select one from each section to be placed on my ‘reading shelf,’ to ensure I get to touch on a variety of styles and authors, keeping away from the dreaded reading slump.
Additional to that, is my attempt to Slay Those Series which I started half way through last year – and am continuing with. So many abandoned collections that fell off my radar – Now is the time to tick off the rest of the books before I am allowed to start a new trilogy or collection. (more self-bribery)
So it has been a year of book bargaining with my inner reader.
What has all this accomplished? Well, although the number of books I’m reading has dropped back a bit, mainly because I’m not shying away from larger titles of 500+ pages, but I’m identifying issues with story, writing style, and ‘voice’ that I may have overlooked before. Subtext and arcs stand out more prominently. I’ve enjoy reading more widely. It not only helps develop my reader’s eye – but it provides me with tools to help improve my own writing.
Consequently, I’m doing some heavy re-writing on two novels I’ve already completed, with what I feel are massive positive changes.
I’m letting myself experience life a bit more – I’m no longer falling into a reading hole where I’d marathon contemporaries or GLBT titles. They are usually shorter and easy to digest. And while fun, afterwards my recall over certain titles was sketchy because I’d consumed so much.
Everything in moderation has been the catch cry. I’m no longer tired, or putting off other aspects of my life to fit in some reading. It’s also helping in balancing out other parts of the day to day. Writing, housework, socialising, fitness… when you have a win in one area of life, it spurs you on to keep going with other aspects.
Though I must admit I do feel a lot less productive. It’s the sacrifice I’ve made to regain some balance. I just have to try and limit the size of my TBR… as daunting as that sounds.
Do you have an out of control TBR? What methods do you use to help – book buying bans, read-a-thons, or take a few sickies and sit by the pool to indulge?
© Casey Carlisle 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Casey Carlisle with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.