Love It or DNF It: Living With Chronic TBR Overflow (Pt 3) | My Musings

**Today's Topics: How do I find/make time to Read? How do I Read?**



Chronic TBR Overflow: A condition in which the person habitually adds more books to their shelves/lists each week than they are able to read. Although the condition can be managed with great willpower, there is no known cure. The number of reported cases has greatly increased in recent years due to the invention of electronic reading devices, the popularity of self-publishing, and a rise in exposure to free books and ARCs.

This is the final post in a 3 part series that I am writing, in part, to force myself to clarify and streamline my processes. A lot of reading things have changed for me in the last few years, getting a Kindle and now starting to blog being the biggest ones. And I am still using a mishmash of old & new systems. These posts represent my ideal, and I will be working to make them a reality.


In Part 1, I answered the questions: Where do I find books that I might want to read? and How do I decide whether or not to add them to My Library or Research List? In Part 2, I talked about how I organize my books & TBR lists. This week I will be discussing how books actually manage to make it off my TBR and onto my Reading Update.


How Do I Find/Make Time to Read?


I don't have any friends or family that I spend time with regularly.

Being single and childless automatically frees up a lot of my time for reading. Add to that the fact that none of my close friend or family live near me (and I hate talking/texting on the phone) and I'm ahead already. Obviously, this either applies to you or it doesn't.


I don't own a TV or have any streaming subscriptions.

The rise of TV on DVDs, and then streaming, killed any desire I had to watch an actual TV. I have become 100% intolerant of commercials. Then during a busy time in my life, I put my Netflix account on hold and discovered that I didn't really miss it that much. As one by one my old favorite shows were canceled (or jumped the shark), and I never started watching any new ones, TV became a thing from my past. I still have a large DVD collection, but don't even watch those very much anymore.


I listen to a lot of audiobooks.

I have already written a post about all the reasons audiobooks are such an important part of my life. The ones that most apply here all have to do with multi-tasking (both boring tasks and also crafts etc, which need my hands and eyes but not my full concentration). If you want to like audiobooks but haven't had much success, check out this post about how I overcame my difficulties with them.


I DNF any book that is "wasting" my precious reading time.

See the section below for more about this.


How Do I Read (i.e. what are my reading habits)?


I do 3 different kinds of reading: rereading (check out the link for more about that), first time reading of books I'm fairly sure I'm going to like, and "testing."


"Hi, I'm Jeanene, and I'm a bookaholic." As I confessed in the rereading post, I have a really really hard time stopping once I start a new book I am enjoying. This means that if I am going to start a new book I'm probably going to enjoy, I have to make sure that I have enough time set aside to finish it. Thankfully I am a very fast reader, so I usually set aside 1 or 2 nights a week to read a new book after work.


Something I've started doing in the last year or so is "testing." If I have a book I'm not sure about, I put it on a list. Several times a week, I set an alarm and start one of these books exactly 1 hour before I have to leave for work (I work evenings). Since work is one of the few things I have to do, there is no way I am going to miss it (although I have been late a few times).


The book gets about 45 minutes to grab my attention. If it does then it moves to the "new reads."  And now it's time for another confession - if the book is decent but not great, I skip to the last couple of chapters and read those (*hangs head in shame*). When I was younger, I had a friend who did this and I thought it was terrible. However, it is a way of giving the book a second chance. If the end seems worth it, I go ahead and add the book to the new reads. If the ending doesn't inspire me to go back, or if I don't even care enough to read it, then the book becomes a DNF.


I find that I DNF about 6 books out of every 7 from the "testing" list, but it's because I am willing to give almost anything that sounds interesting a try. I have found a few new favorite authors through this method, none of whom I would have likely read before I started doing this. (Check out this post by Anya @ on Starships & Dragonwings for another perspective from someone else who uses a similar system.)


That's it for this book series. I hope that I'm not the only one who got any good out of it. I know I have begun to implement & integrate things, which was my personal goal.


Living with Chronic TBR Overflow

Read them all:

Talk to Me (pretty please)

  • How do you find/make time for reading?
  • What are your reading habits?
  • Do you DNF a book if you aren't enjoying it?


  • If you are a first time visitor, how did you discover my blog?
  • Having difficulties with some aspect of my blog design? Let me know.

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