Let's face it...as readers we have these habits of buying books and things like booktube and blogging just happen to make it worse. Even Goodreads! You see these gigantic book hauls, these fantastic reviews or wrap-ups and you find more books then you could ever have even imagined. And then you buy them. Or someone gifts them to you. Or they somehow magically appear in front of you. [I swear sometimes it really feels like they come out of nowhere!] It starts off as just a couple...then a couple more...then a few more here and there...and then the next thing you know you've got a full fledged TBR Mountain all your very own.
We're all bibliophiles here so we understand. Some of only have little piles and kudos to you people, some have little hills, and others (like me) have full on mountain ranges of TBR. And no matter how fast you read you seem to accumulate books faster then you could ever possibly devour them.
So how do you stop the cycle? [No, seriously, how have you stopped the cycle? What are your tricks of the TBR-depleting variety?]
A lot of people go on full fledge book buying bans...I know I've tried these a time or two myself...and they just don't work. I can't resist. I love literary retail therapy. Just a little bit here and there. [Or a lot if I've got the fundage! Thankfully that is rare.] And there's nothing wrong with that. Other than ending up with more and more unread books. So in theory book buying bans are the perfect answer to the problem. You have books on your shelves so why would you need to buy them? BAH! Can't do it.
And yet there's still something to the idea. So my solution? A limited ban!
What is this limited ban you ask? Well, let me tell you! My idea of a limited ban, and I'm sure I'm not the first nor will I be the last to implement such an idea to get through my books, is to read a certain number of books before I'm allowed to buy any new ones. I settled on twenty books which means I have to read twenty PHYSICAL books off of my TBR shelves before I'm allowed to buy a single book. [Because let's face it, if I buy more than one book at a time then all that progress is going to be instantly eliminated.]
So far I've managed to do pretty well. I've caved a couple times [but only on e-books I swear!] and ordering all my textbooks did ease the need to buy books for a bit so I'm managing. I've also found that "window-shopping" on Amazon or other bookish sites help; I just start flipping through my wishlists and the bestseller lists trying to decide what book I might buy when it comes time. [Does anyone else do this or am I truly insane?]
And though most people looking at my shelves wouldn't see a difference [I mean, I have one of the most insane TBR piles that I've ever seen...I blame library book sales...how can someone possibly pass up a bag of books for two dollars? I DON'T HAVE THAT KIND OF WILL POWER PEOPLE.] But I see it. A little tiny bit. And so I keep going.
As of right now as I'm typing up this post I've read eighteen of my twenty books, which means I'm only two books away from getting a shiny new one [or used if I hit up my favorite store...though she always has such a nice science fiction and fantasy section that could prove to be dangerous...].