Monday, 1 June 2015

But I have nothing to read! Or, Reading Quirks, Part 6

All right, I'll admit: having nothing to read is not one of the problems I have to deal with. I always have something: books waiting for their turn on the bookshelves or in my Kindle, books I've hoarded from the library (I get a little crazy every time I see all those books I can read for free!), and of course there's always the option of rereading old favourites. My problem tends to be the good old “so many books, too little time” (but, as far as problems go, that's one of the most pleasant ones).

Still, there's always that moment when you finish a book and wonder, what next? Where do I go from here?

I'm afraid this won't be one of those How to posts, because I don't have a foolproof method for solving this “problem”. I don't really have a method. My approach, as in so many other situations, is: go with your feelings.

I look at my options and choose whichever book/story/genre I happen to be in the mood for. No listing pros and cons, no scientific methods, no logic, no reason. It's entirely instinctive. The weird thing – a bit of a reading quirk, one might say – is that I often choose something very different from what I just finished: different genres, different authors, and never (well, almost never) two books in a series one after the other. Unless, of course, I feel like breaking that pattern.

Yes, there are exceptions. If I have brought home that bagful of books from the library, I try to read them first because they have to be returned eventually. If I'm going on a holiday, it might be a good idea to choose an ebook because a Kindle is easier to carry than a heavy hardback.

How do you decide what to read next? Do you read your books in the order you purchased them? Have you ever tried those “What should I read next” quizzes and did they work for you?


  1. Hi there, Ulla!
    I know we've probably talked about this before, but I'll still add my two cents here - how could I resist talking about books?
    I definitely have enough unread books around me, like any good booklover. But choosing what to read next can be a (fun) challenge sometimes. Sometimes I have a sort of plan what I want to read next, and I always like thinking about what to read next while I'm still on a book. Sometimes I'll read a new purchase straightaway, or if a new book from a favourite author is coming out, that'll be quite high on the next-to-read list. Sometimes it's something similar to what I've just read, maybe even the sequel. Sometimes it's something completely different. Sometimes it includes my wandering around my bookshelves (real and virtual) and muttering to myself, maybe picking up a book, looking at it, then putting it back again and go to the next one. Occasionally I ask my partner for suggestions, and sometimes go with those.
    I've never taken a quiz, so I have no idea if they'd work for me.
    Also, eBooks have definitely made it so much easier to literally carry your library around with you, and ensure that you never run out of books to read, but sometimes it can also feel a bit overwhelming... all those books, so little time indeed :D
    The short version of my answer would be that like you, I tend to go with what I feel like reading, which can appear rather random :)
    Have a good weekend,
    best wishes

    1. Hi Kathy, nice to see you here! Thank you for your comment, I really enjoyed reading about your thoughts. :)

      Yes, it seems that our selection processes are very similar. It appears rather random, yes... or rather it _is_, for me anyway. Although, I must confess that I have a bad habit of "saving" books by my favourite authors and trying not to read them right away. But, of course, sometimes I just can't help myself! :)

      And you're right, eBooks have increased the number of books you have at hand pretty much all the time. Which is great, of course (if you can't decide between two (or three or...) books when going on a holiday, you can take them all with you!) but as you said, can also be a bit overwhelming at times!

      The quizzes I have tried went something like "Find your perfect summer read" or just "What should I read next?" and I took them for fun... naturally, they weren't very specific and I didn't take their advice. I can't even remember what books were recommended for me. :/

    2. Good morning,

      ha, I have been known to be guilty of "saving" and hoarding books from favourite authors like a dragon, too, so I understand you perfectly there. And it's not really a bad habit, I think, it is just the security of knowing that you have a few potentially awesome books at your fingertips for that special occasion, or when you need some cheering up :).

      Thanks for explaining the quizzes you tried - seeing my rather eclectic taste in books, I don't think that'd be at all helpful ;).

      Best wishes,

    3. Yes! That's why I keep saving some books: for special occasions and because it's just so comforting to know that you have something good to look forward to. :) Then again, I sometimes get these "What if I get hit by a bus or something?" moods when I want it all and I want it now! So I decide to read/watch/eat/have everything I've been "saving" while I still can. :D That doesn't usually last long, though. ;)

    4. Uh oh... now you really got me with the "hit by a bus" thing... True. So true.
      So perhaps, as with most things in life, moderation is everything? A bit of saving and hoarding, and a bit of binging.
      Best wishes,

    5. Kathy, I like the way you think! Everything in moderation, including a bit of binging. Yes! :)