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Two books from the library at a time and one book per week from the TBR shelf (TSS)

The Sunday Salon.com I normally only write one Sunday Salon post per week. However, after working on deleting my former dedicated book blog, Just A (Reading) Fool, yesterday as part of Bloggiesta, I realized I had something else about which to write. So here goes:

As I was insuring that links and pingbacks went to this blog on posts that used to be on Just A (Reading) Blog, I came across a lot of posts with photos of books I had taken out of the library, with the intention of reading. Nine times out of 10, I never did finish any of those books. As I have mentioned previously, my eyes are bigger than my reading appetite and nowhere is this more evident than by the number of books I check out from the library but never read.

So today, my wife challenged me to take only one or two books at a time and then finish them before taking any more out of the library. To that end, I will be returning several books that I have taken out of the library recently and will only keep two. Which two? I’ll let you know later, but I’m going to aim for a fiction and nonfiction read, to keep it balanced, and also to help me toward one of my goals of reading more nonfiction this year than I did last year. Note: These include e-books too.

I also worked on the bookcase in my office this morning and have recommitted myself to tackling the books there as I promised back last August. To that end, I have weeded out about 30 to 40 books, to which I know I will never get, and left only ones that I most likely will read. There still might be more weeding, but the stacks are a little more manageable than they were, with about 75 books, which still could take a couple of years, considering that I still take books out of the library too – although probably not, since many of the books on the shelves are quick reads.

I’m making no commitments to read specific books off the case, but I do commit myself to read at least one book a week from there for the rest of the year. That way, I at least can make a dent in the stacks there. I’ll see later which book will be this week’s book. I may read more than that too per week, but one’s a start.

Do you take out too many books from the library? Or are you one of those people who reads every single book you borrow? If you are, for the record, I hate you ;). How do you manage your reading? With me, it’s mostly by the seat of my pants, as you can tell.

27 responses to “Two books from the library at a time and one book per week from the TBR shelf (TSS)

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  9. I remember riding my bike to the bookmobile in the summer and fillinf my basket with a foot-high stack of YA novels, then motoring through each and every one of them. This was doable then, since I was home all day on my own and had no discernible responsibilities. Now I want to read without the ‘pressure’ (which would come from myself, no one else) of a stack of ‘waiting’ books. So I get one or two at a time, savor them, and then see what strikes my fancy next. What I’m ‘in the mood for’ changes so I find that when I do that, I end up reading what I really want to read at that moment.

  10. Oh no… I way over borrow…. my eyes are HUGE when it comes to my book appetite. I borrow 4 -5 audio and about 5 books… then I come home and look at all the books I have at home to read…. its a balance I still struggle with.

    • Oooh, that doesn’t sound good, but I’ve heard worse stories…and seen worse from patrons at the library. I’m just looking for a way to cut back and make things a little more manageable than they have been…and not seem so overwhelming. I hope this works.

  11. I go to the library. Get out one book. Yes, only one. Then I start reading and…fall asleep. Haven’t finished an entire book in almost three years.

    I blame the damn kids.

    Soooooo tired.

  12. I have this problem with books I buy and with books I borrow from the library. And, despite the facts that we have a generous 4-week loan period, and I’m only a mile from the library, I rack up quite a bit in overdue fees (I have no excuses … but, that does help me justify my book-buying budget).

    Good luck with your self-imposed restrictions!

    • Ours is three weeks, but I have noticed since working at the library that the patrons who seem to have the most problem getting their books back are those who live within a mile or two. I don’t know why, but they seem to rack up the larger fines than other patrons.

  13. I don’t think I have that problem at the library. I seem to have that problem with buying books! I’m currently making posts on my blog about unread purchased books on my blog. I usually try to limit the number of books I check out from the library at one time. Right now, I do have two, and that usually is a lot for me! I can definitely relate to what you’re dealing with here!

  14. I think limiting the number of library books is good. I read about too many people who take far more out than they can possibly read before they have to go back and they keep renewing them as long as they can. That seems really unfair to the person that is waiting for that book or browsing at the library and missing out on a good read. It’s hoarding and a bit selfish.

    • I agree…and you didn’t hear this from me, but as a member of the staff at the library, we can take the books out for…well, let’s just say a lot longer than patrons. That’s also why I want to limit my borrowing too, although ours is a small library and I’m usually taking out books that aren’t on hold lists. If I’ve had a book for a while, though, I will check to make sure no one is waiting for it.

  15. I recently had to take two books back to the library unread, and it felt so, so wrong. I don’t do it very often – but I don’t use my library for print books as much as for audios, anyway. This will change once I start clearing off my review commitments and unread books, but right now I mainly use the library for impulse reads.

    • Well, my problem as I related to Jeremy is that I work at the library so I just get tempted (and then fall 😦 ) so easily. So those impulse reads are impulse borrows, and then later learn that I’m not really as interested in them as I thought I was.

  16. I take way too many out at a time, though certainly not fifty. I read one or two. Having so many choices at home makes it difficult to pick one to read. It really is like food.

    • That’s what I find too. I just can’t “pull the trigger” when I have that many choices at my fingertips. Maybe this new method to my madness of reading will help. I sure hope so.

  17. I’m exactly the same way. Our library allows us to have 99 books out per card, which is wonderful and horrible at the same time. I’m too afraid to count, but I am sure I currently have over 50 books checked out from the library. At one point, I had more out than I had read in the previous YEAR. So yes, I definitely have a problem.

    I feel incredibly guilty that I am depriving others of these books while I constantly renew them, but … well, I can’t help it. I like your idea of two books at a time. I might just have to try that ….

    • Our library is a small town library and has no limit on the number of books you can take out…at least for now. If the state has its way with connecting all the public libraries, then that might not work, especially if people could decimate a section, especially DVDs, but that’s another story (Pennsylvania, by the way). Anyway, I digress.

      50 books? Whoa. That’s a problem. 🙂 Two books at a time, that will be quite a decrease, are you sure you can handle it? 😉

  18. A friend once advised taking out as many books as possible at once from the library – creating a mini library at home of books to browse – some to read, others to decide not to read. Don’t think you can ever take too many books out of the library – whether you read them or not.

    • This might work for some, but over the last two years, judging by the number of posts I had with photos of books returned unread, it doesn’t work for me. I’m okay, though, with making a list of possibilities for later. I just need to remember to keep a notebook with me when I go to the library (which since I work there part-time is Tuesday through Friday).