5 Methods for Tackling That “To Be Read” Pile


Let’s face it, we all have that ever growing, always evolving, yet seemingly insurmountable to be read (TBR) pile that can be a joy or a nag depending on our moods. They are piled up lovingly next to our favorite chair, haphazardly on our nightstands or tucked neatly in a special section of our bookshelves…..or let’s be real; on any flat surface that will hold them, including the floor.

I for one, have never been able to pass up a book store, a used book fair, a bargain book rack or anywhere books are sold for that matter. Did you know Dollar Tree sells books? They do!

What do we read next though, is the question?

Everyone has their own methods. Some people pick based on friend’s suggestions, a best seller’s list or even one at random. My daughter, the book polygamist, is reading five different books right now, all in various stages of completion and in different rooms of the house. I have no idea how she keeps them straight, but she does!

Personally, I like to pick mine just after I finish the last one while that mood is still fresh. Usually this involves me and a cup of tea, sitting on the floor with my TBR pile spread around me. Ah, my kind of heaven. OK…so, let’s start dwindling that TBR pile:

  1. Library books and book club selections. This one’s a no-brainer, but any time sensitive ones should be read first.
  2. Mood. This one’s tricky; sometimes I am in the mood for a book with a similar tone as the last one I read and sometimes I’m in the mood for the opposite and I will try to pick accordingly. Basing a book’s tone off of its synopsis and cover is sometimes an art all its own.
  3. Series. If I am reading a series and I have the next one, I will likely continue. Sometimes I will want a break from them though, especially if it’s a saga, those can sometimes be too consuming to read back-to-back.
  4. Author. Often, I will be craving a certain author and will pick based on that rather than what the book is actually about. We all have our go-to authors, don’t we?
  5. Life. What’s going on in my life at the moment, is sometimes a factor. If I’m stressed I’ll go with a cozy or humor. If I’m bored (or at any time, really); a mystery. Lovelorn; a romance, even if that might seem counter-productive. Feeling inquisitive; historical fiction or an adventure story.

There are no wrong ways to pick; each book is its own adventure. Carry on!

“Reading makes immigrants of us all. It takes us away from home, but more important, it finds homes for us everywhere. ”  ~Hazel Rochman

What are your favorite methods?


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