Library books

Visual representation of a tenth of my list.

Do you ever worry about the length of your TBR list? Or is it just me?

For the first time in quite a few years, my digital TBR list is just under 150 books. (This doesn’t include books on ILL, books checked out from the library, books pre-ordered, or books sitting on my shelf.) It’s divided up into several sections, because I get nerdy about my book organization.

1) Books on hold. Some are still in acquisitions at the library, so I have to wait.

2) To put on hold. Divided into series I’ve already started, and ones I haven’t yet.

3) Goodreads. Mostly books I haven’t found at the library, or ones so far from being published they aren’t even in acquisitions.

In the past, I added titles until the number climbed above 400. And then I realized I couldn’t read all these books. There just isn’t time. So I trimmed the so-so books out. If I can read faster than I add titles (hah!), then I can even, perhaps, someday drop the list into double-digits.

How do you organize your TBR list? Do you cut it down to manageable size, or just let it grow?



About Caitlin Stern

I have a MA in English, and have so many fantasy/urban fantasy WIPs it's not even funny. I'm an avid reader of science fiction, fantasy, mystery, romance, biography, fiction, and anything else that catches my interest. I collect books, and bookmarks I find that are visually appealing and useful.

8 responses »

  1. Letizia says:

    I have a file where I keep clippings and post-its of books I want to read but often just end up reading whatever comes on my radar and entices me next. A couple of times a year, I’ll look at that list and choose a couple to get at the library (sometimes I’ll see that I’ve already some in that list!).

  2. I haven’t organized my TBR list, but I need to — soon. I think my Kindle actually weighs more now than it did when new…

    Almost all of my print books have been in storage for the last couple of years, so I have gone rather overboard with acquiring e-books to make up for that. If I had any sense, I’d stop collecting ebooks for a while and take more advantage of the amazing SFF collection at the local university’s library.

    • caitlinstern says:

      I started my TBR list after realizing some very interesting series I had started had subsequent books falling through the cracks. So far, it’s helping.
      I love libraries. They save me from myself. Mostly…

  3. Well we all know about my TBR! I actually think I need to get it organised in some way rather than my scattered approach which basically amounts to just trying to get them all read!

  4. dreamingthroughliterature says:

    Wow, I applaud you! I’m horrible with my TBR. I mainly just use Goodreads, which has reached almost 900 books. I follow so many blogs and see so many books that look good I can’t help but add them. You can see how high my self control level is when it comes to books. I also have a ton at home I haven’t read (bought at thrift stores or used bookstores, online, and occasionally full price. Books own my soul and even though I know I’ll never get to them all, I can’t help but keep adding them!

    • I could easily have that many books on my TBR, but I’m a compulsive list pruner. For some reason, when my list gets too long, it makes me deeply anxious. So I cut away.

      I am always adding to it, too–book blogs, book lists, emails, bookstore, recommendations… so many books, so little time!

      • dreamingthroughliterature says:

        Agreed! There are way too many books and not nearly enough time to get to everything I want to read.

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