I’ve been pondering on whether to write a blog post on the subject of the size of my TBR, and my attempts to reduce it, but I’ve always been too ashamed to admit to how many books I own that I haven’t read yet. The new year seems a good time to put it out there once and for all so that I can then add a small update about the state of my TBR to my weekly or monthly wrap-ups, which I hope will keep spurring me on to focus on reading the books I already own.
So, before I go into that fully I should make clear that last summer when I was in the midst of my horrible reading slump, I took some time to go through all of my print and ebooks to really think about whether I still even wanted to read them. This led to me donating a lot of books to charity, and to me permanently deleting some ebooks. I wanted to be really ruthless and just be honest with myself about my books. The above photo was taken before I started deleting the books I’d got rid of from my Goodreads account. I then got rid of around 3000 (yes, that does say three thousand) books from my TBR.
That left me with my current TBR which at this moment in time consists entirely of books that I still really want to read, including the review books I’ve received. So my TBR as of 1st January stood at 1879 books (print, ebooks and audiobooks combined). I’ve since been sent one book for review, and I bought five Kindle books in the recent sale (which you can read about in my Stacking the Shelves post).
I did read 211 books last year so if I keep reading at that rate it will take me around nine years to read my TBR as it stands right now. So I’m aware that I will need to curb my book buying as much as I can, and that I’ll also need to regularly look through my books to get rid of anything that I no longer want to read.
I realised quite a few things about how my reading tastes have changed whilst struggling through my reading slump last year. I re-discovered my love of non-fiction and so this year I want to really make an effort to read some of the non-fiction books that have been languishing on my shelves for years now.
Through doing my Reading Bingo post last week I was able to really reflect and take note of how my reading went in 2016 and was shocked to realise that I didn’t read a single classic book and I only read one book that was first published more than twenty years ago. I do have quite a lot of classics on my TBR so I want to read at least some of them this year.
So, everything has come together to make me realise that I need to spend more time reading the books I already own, and that I need to be more aware of my reading. I want to make time to read some books that really challenge me, that make me think, that maybe require a bit more research to get the most out of them. One challenge I’ve decided to do this year is the Book Riot Read Harder challenge, which is a list of 24 challenges to try to get people reading more widely and reading more difficult books (if you want to join in with that you can read about it on Book Riot’s website). My TBR does consist of a real mix of genres so just by reading the books I already own will push me out of the comfort zone that I got into last year.
I will, of course, still be reading some new releases and will still be accepting some review books as I very much enjoy reading new books. I just want to read a wider variety of books this year and to push myself a little in what I’m reading.
So in summary:
My current TBR is (as of 8 Jan 2017): 1885
This is made up of :-
Print books: 181
(The numbers won’t quite add up as some books I own copies in more than one format. e.g. I sometimes buy the audible book when I get the ebook and then I list it in both categories etc but they only show in the ‘to read’ section once so the overall number is definitely correct.)
Have you made any reading resolutions or goals for this year? Have you dared work out the size of your TBR? Please share your goals and challenges for 2017 in the comments. Also, if you have any advice for keeping me on track to read my own books, please share them with me.