Happy New Year readers!! It’s been another great year of conversation around books. Thanks for being with me on the journey!! Since many of you are library users like I am, I wanted to share an idea I’m going to try in the new year to rid myself of what I will call library hold gluttony…a bit like this guy–notice he has one between his knees, one under his arm, and one in each hand…
The problem I have is this: when I hear of a great new title I tend to immediately put it on hold, but then awhile later a whole bunch of books arrive all at once and I go home both thrilled to have so many shiny new books winking at me, but also sad to know that I’ll never be able to read them all before they are due back!! It makes me feel ‘book hoarder shame’ and makes me resent not having enough time to get to them all. Maybe that happens to you too!
So, here’s my plan for putting books on hold at the library from now on. It involves using the suspension function which delays the arrival of holds until whatever date I choose; it’s designed to maintain holds while preventing a costly book pile up while on vacation. What I’ve done is put twelve of my ‘wish list’ books on hold but then suspended them so that they’ll be released just one per month, which should be manageable. I can always un-suspend them earlier if I have more reading time and want them sooner, and since books continue to move up the priority list while suspended, I might just get them right away when I do unlock them. Actually, having books dole out more slowly may have the side benefit of getting to all those titles on my own shelf that I haven’t read yet, in addition to the ones I have on loan from friends–these are also glaring at me, begging to be read. So we’ll see how it goes. Not a New Year’s resolution, but a simple system which I hope will solve my little book hoarder problem.
However, having said all that, the really really important thing is just to enjoy the love of reading in the new year and let the book FOMO go, especially now when all of the Best Books of 2018 lists are coming out and the TBR list seems overwhelming. It just isn’t possible to do it all. Just be grateful for whatever book holds your bookmark at the moment. Relax, breathe, and enjoy…it’s all for the love of reading! Happy 2019 everyone!
Last year I started 2014 by posting something about what I call “book pile angst“. That sense of “I may not live long enough to read all the books in my book pile” or “I may die in my sleep if that bedside book pile falls over in the night” (a line by fellow book lover Nancy W. that still makes me chuckle!), or “I must be mad, ordering more books from the library when there are so many books on my own shelf I’ve never read!” There were many of you who said ‘Amen’ to my advice to realize that you will never, ever catch up and that it is impossible to read everything. So stick to what you enjoy and let the rest go!
Here’s my pile. There’s even a book in there that belongs to someone else…yikes, now that’s full disclosure (can you spot it Ina?). Yes, book lovers, we suffer from this angst but we also embrace the enjoyment of books and reading. Don’t let the tyranny of the book pile mess with your mind and cause you shame. Consider it a treasure trove just waiting to be cracked open. Let it make you feel better, not bitter. It’s the possibility that resides in all those words and thoughts and stories.
Thanks so much for another wonderful year of journeying together on this blog and this incredible adventure called reading! Happy New Year!
Thank you!! Thank you!!
Just wanted to begin the New Year by thanking my blog followers. You are such a delight to me. I love your comments, your suggestions, and your encouragement, and just knowing that you are there enjoying books!
You are my friends, even though I have not even met you all!
Next to my love for reading is my love for quotes. When I worked in a school library I would display a new quote on a whiteboard everyday. It was such fun to find the really, really good ones and share them. Quotes provoke discussion and reflection which is also exactly what reading does.
If I were to write my own quote about reading it would be this:
The good books will always still be there.
“Book pile angst” is something all avid readers suffer from, myself included. We want to have read it all, or be ready to read it all. We order way more titles from the library than we can actually get through before they have to be returned. We have books sitting on our bookshelves that we have not read yet. We hear of new books we want to read and make lists. We check out online book lists and keep an eye on what’s coming out soon from Amazon. One friend said she feared dying in her sleep if her rather tall bedside book pile ever fell over on her in the middle of the night!
My challenge to myself and to you for this New Year is to enjoy books without angst or guilt. Ignore this common question and have the courage to not apologize when you hear it: “What? You haven’t read that yet?” Read books, revel in them, and don’t worry so much about what you have missed or what is still waiting in the wings. Live in the moment and enjoy the book you have in your hands right now. You will never be able to read everything. Be worry free and blessed by what you have read and are reading, and let the rest go. It’s simple. Just enjoy another year with books!