Thursday, April 19, 2012

Another crazy reading system

You know ... I really shouldn't read other people's blogs. They stimulate me and the next thing you know, I'm posting something on my own blog. This particular post is a direct response to My Crazy Reading System. Reading this post, there were two things that jumped out at me. The first is the physical location of her books and the second is how she selects the next book that she will read.

Like the original author, I have books in several places through my house and those places are related to how soon I will be reading a given book. But I'm not as organized as she is. The "deep storage" is in two rooms where TBR books are stacked on the floor, leaning against the wall, and in multiple stacks—not organized in any way other than size so that the stacks don't fall over. I estimate 350 books in my parlor and 200 books in the guest room. Then there are two bookcases in my den. One contains lots of TBR books, 2 deep on the shelves. My estimate is about 150 books in that bookcase. The other bookcase has a mix of TBRs and owed books. I do quite a bit of book swapping through BookObsessed, Paperback Swap, and BookMooch—mostly BookObsessed, though. For PBS and BookMooch, I only offer already-read books, while at BookObsessed, I often swap TBRs. So this bookshelf holds the owed TBRs and owed books ready to mail out, and the rest of the space is occupied by general TBR books. I've got about 25 owed books and probably 40-50 other TBRs in this bookcase.

Now, when it comes time to choose a book to read, I freely admit that I read by the mood that I'm in. Sometimes I'm in the mood for a paranormal romance and at other times I'm craving a cozy mystery and then there are times when nothing but hard science fiction will satisfy. Since I have a number of owed TBRs which need to be read so I can mail them off, I keep a list of these books organized by due date. And when it's time to start a new book, I try to pick one from near the top of the list. Since I read by mood, it very well may be that the book due the soonest doesn't appeal to me—and sometimes I have to make a decision whether I'm going to buckle down and read the book or give in to my mood and mail the book unread. Invariably, when I do settle down to read one of these books that isn't particularly attractive, I thoroughly enjoy the book and wonder why it was that it took me so long to start reading it.

Back to the TBR books on hand ... my Kindle is even more out of control. Today, there are 1336 books on the Kindle and and 752 “Archived Items” sitting on the Amazon server. This large number of books is primarily due to the fact that I've eagerly downloaded as many free books as I could—particularly books that have been self-published or released by independent publishing houses. I love the opportunity to discover a new author (or at least a “new-to-me” author) with very little investment. I guess there are a lot of people who are introduced to new authors by receiving Advanced Reader Copies of books, but I've not gotten into that community.

So, thanks to shelovestoread for stimulating this long post about “Reading Systems”. It's been fun to think about and to blog about.

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