Did you know that the TBR is never-ending?
There was once a time when I thought my TBR pile (TBR: “to be read”) would possibly be completed, but I have since come to realize the plight of almost every reader everywhere: TBR piles never shrink. They only grow.
We live in an age where people (like me, next spring!) can publish without the help of an agent or a publishing house, leading to a large number of books being released that may not have ever been available to the public even ten years ago. Indie publishing is a huge market, and this means that there is an overabundance of books I want to read.
So now I have over 400 books on my ereader, of which I’ve read less than 50.
And then there’s the physical books, the ones I usually buy to keep up with the publishing industry, since I plan on querying also (side note: having both independently and traditionally published books makes someone a hybrid author… and that’s my end goal). It’s vitally important to a writer/author to keep up with the current market by reading new releases. Otherwise you can get left behind.
So my TBR shelf at home, a literal shelf in my library, is sagging under the weight of so many books, bought with the best of intentions and left until I get around to them.
And my digital TBR list on Goodreads is well over 700 books now.
And for a long time, this seemed really daunting. It made me sad to think of all the books I would never get to read.
But recently, I heard it put another way, which is in line with the thoughts I am starting to have about my TBR: don’t be afraid to keep adding to your list. Yes, maybe it seems overwhelming, but if you limit yourself because of what you haven’t read, you may miss out on your new favorite book. And every book you buy, even if it’s a free copy through Amazon or a giveaway, supports the author and encourages them to write more. (Check out K.M. Robinson on Facebook to see this post… she’s a great author to follow, too! And she discusses how the TBR affects authors in particular.)
And then there’s one other point I’d like to make. Having a lot of unread books isn’t a bad thing because we all go through seasons in our lives where we need something different. Personally, I cycle through genres depending on how I’m feeling or what I’m feeling like reading that week. Or month, as is usually the case with my physical books anymore. So having these books in your own personal library, whether physical or digital, gives you the opportunity to read the thing you want to read right now. You don’t have to worry about not having a fantasy when you want fantasy or a contemporary when you need fluffy. You just have to go get it off your shelf. And reading becomes a much more enjoyable experience and escape as a result.
So yes. I’m drowning in books. But you know what? I’m happy about it.
What about you? Do you feel overwhelmed or overjoyed about your TBR? Does anything I’ve said above make you think a little differently? Let’s talk in the comments!
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