Saturday, November 28, 2015

The Incredible Shrinking TBR Pile

This is not my TBR pile. It's just a picture
of books. I didn't feel like getting my camera
and taking new pictures. #lazy
When I started writing, back in the early 90s, I was targeting Harlequin series romances. But to decide which series I really wanted to write for, I subscribed to several of them. I couldn't read as fast as I received them, so the piles grew and grew.

Eventually I narrowed it down and canceled some of the subscriptions. Then I started attending conferences, where you get free books (and in the case of the RWA National conference, LOTS AND LOTS of free books) and buy books at special booksignings.

And my TBR pile has been massive ever since. Because I keep going to conferences, but also because I don't stop buying books. Authors I love, stuff that sounds interesting...if I have an addiction, it's books.

Every so often, I weed out my TBR pile. Books I got free or even bought to help someone out but aren't things I like to read. (Historicals are the first to be weeded, for example.)

I'll also go on binges where I'll try all the books that I've had lingering because I don't think I'll like them. Sometimes I'm surprised, which is awesome. Sometimes there are personal triggers that override good writing—storylines or characters that I don't care for. So these binges can end up pulling a bunch of books off my TBR.

And then there are the very rare binge-reading-sessions where I plow through book after book because that's my main relaxation activity. I had one of those recently, and it led me to a scary place: a small TBR pile.

My Kindle used to have 6 pages in the "To Read" folder. I'm down to two! That's, like, 10 books! It almost started a panic attack, except I turned to my print TBR shelf and I've been concentrating on that lately. I got a little caught up in the ease of reading on the Kindle. So I have a couple dozen print books, which makes me breathe a bit easier.

But let me tell you, I cannot WAIT for my birthday. After insisting that I don't want anything and being badgered for a while, I give in and say to just get me an Amazon gift card. That's all I need! My wish list has over 40 books on it. I'm also paying a little more attention to the books being promoted all over my social media and stuff.

Top of my "yes, please" list is romantic adventure and paranormal YA (no vamps or shifters, though). So if anyone has any suggestions, please post them in the comments!


Diana said...

I have two kindles, one with 1583 books on it and the other with 1678. I also have a household full of around 1500 paperback and hardbacks, many of which I have read. A lot are favourites so I drag them out and re-read them every couple of years. So you are not the only book tragic around! I have also started trimming down the ones I won't be reading, just skimming the first few pages and if they don't grab me, I delete them off the kindles.

Best wishes,

Diana Hockley (Aussie granny, animal welfare advocate and pet rat mum!)

Natalie Damschroder said...

I'm coming to your house for the apocalypse! LOL

My biggest post-apoc fear is not having access to print books because of course we won't have power for the e-readers. :)

Diana said...

I often wonder just how long it will take for paperbacks and hardcover to vanish completely. I really think it is not going to happen in my lifetime - but then I am 71 so I could be being optimistic! lol

I've left my print library to the local library after I "go" including the books I have written, hopefully more before I drop off the twig! Perhaps during the apocalypse :)

Natalie Damschroder said...

I don't think they'll ever disappear completely, though they might be less and less common as we deplete our resources. But there will always be reasons for them to be needed!

That's a great idea about leaving your library to the library. :)