I wonder what it’s like to not have a TBR pile, or at least to not have one that is so out of control you have to devise a selection system and institute a book acquisition ban just to rein it in. I have been thinking about this a lot lately, and the truth is I can’t really imagine not having one, but I’m beginning to wish I could.
Imagine the freedom of being able to read whatever you want, whenever you want. Imagine walking into a bookshop, seeing that Lena Dunham’s book is finally out, buying it, and then just bloody well reading it. Crazy, I know.
Instead of living in this weird world where people buy books and then read them straight away, I will ignore the fact that Bone Clocks is calling to me, because if I don’t there are only two possible outcomes, neither of them good:
- I’ll let chaos rule. I’ll abandon the lucky dip system, devour the book in one sitting, then feel guilty about all the other books legitimately waiting their turn, or
- I’ll play by the rules. I’ll put an entry in the lucky dip jar, and then wait for what could be months (even years knowing my TBR) before it’s pulled out. By which time, the internet will be full of spoilers and Tom Hanks will have signed on to play at least three of the starring roles in the movie adaptation.
Do you see my dilemma?
I am genuinely trying to whittle down my TBR so I can be a ‘normal’ person (at least when it comes to reading habits…), but something always seems to get in the way of my good intentions. Clearly, the problem is that there are not enough hours in the day to read all the books – actually, that’s not strictly true, as Liv Tyler said in Empire Records, “There are twenty-four usable hours in every day”. It’s just that a lot of those hours are rudely monopolised by a silly little thing called work. So I guess until Eleanor Catton opens up her ‘reading’ grant to Australians (and decides I’m worth it), I’ll just have to quit my job – that way I’ll have more time and less money: the perfect combination for reducing my TBR pile.
Categories: Book life