Tuesday, 16 April 2013

I have this book shelf...


So I've recently had this manic sort out of everything in my room....my every day makeup has new storage (more on that soon!), my chest of drawers has been sorted (underwear, tops, pjs, fancy dress stuff and cds/vinyls), my nail polish has been put back in colour order (259 now....I'm going to get to 300 then stop....maybe...) and my DVDs are in order now (in certificate order in genre. Makes it easier to choose and also I love being a bit nerdy about my collection...) Anyway, the last thing I sorted out was my bookshelf. It still needs a little work but I've moved some stuff around so my favourite books are at eye level and then my crime books and graphic novels are together on one shelf...with my collection of Oliver Jeffers' picture books at the end....this is my second "favourites" shelf! The point I'm eventually getting to is the fact that I decided to put all the books I've brought/had given to me and haven't actually read onto one shelf. I honestly didn't think I'd be able to fill a whole shelf but I did, which is insane. I absolutely love reading and will occasionally just pop into my local book shop and just buy 3 or 4 books on a whim. This is both good and bad...good because books are a great choice to spend money on (I re-read a lot of mine and just think that reading is a good thing in general) but bad because new books are expensive. I often think about going into charity shops for books but all the ones in my home town seem to be a bit naff and filled with books that I'm seriously not into (Jilly Cooper anyone??) I do buy a lot of books online (mainly graphic novels as they are cheaper - graphic novels are like longer comic books not weird sex books like my friend at uni once thought fyi!) but will always prefer to physically go and browse the book stores instead. It feels more personal and I will pick up books that I normally wouldn't have seen. I have a tried and tested way to see if I'll like a book too...I think I've mentioned it on here before but basically I'm a sucker for judging books by their cover (or spine I guess....) If the spine and title interest me, I'll pick up the book, open it to around halfway in, read a paragraph and if I like it, I'll buy it. Obviously there are some books that I go in for specifically (any new release by Jasper Fforde or Oliver Jeffers) but I do buy a lot of books on my foolproof way. Basically, if I like the paragraph in the middle, I'm probably going to enjoy the writing all the way through. This has never failed me in the 10 years I've been buying books like this. I also don't think I've missed out on any great books by picking novels this way either (this is how I managed to judge the Twilight series on if I would like it or not....and I definitely wouldn't as I found the writing to be very.....annoying.... I know some people love it and that's fair enough I guess but I couldn't be dealing with her writing style personally. Or the plot...or the characters for that matter. This is the other thing I love about books and that's how people can have really good discussions about them. If I love a book I will defend it to the ends of the earth and try to get the other person to understand why I love it so much! It's the same with pretty much any art form and I love that) ANYWAY (man do I waffle or what?!) I've put all the books I've yet to read on a shelf and intend to work my way through them in the next few months. I'm quite a fast reader but do sometimes find it difficult to find the time to read as I always think I should be doing something more productive with my time. however, I've decided to make time to spend at least 1 hour per day just reading as I find this really relaxes me and it may well help with my stress and depression as I find losing myself in a book stops me from thinking about anything that may well be stressing me out in my life at that time.

So here is my shelf of unread books (or in some cases, partially read books! Will have to start some of those again I think!)
There are 28 books on that shelf. Some of them I brought when Borders closed down (I worked there so got the pick of the bunch when we knew we were going to shut....and then got 90% off them! In hindsight I should've brought more....) Some are gifts for birthdays or Christmases and some are ones I brought myself but just haven't gotten round to reading. There are some classic books in there (Catcher in the Rye, The Wasp Factory etc) and some books that my sister can't believe I haven't finished reading yet (The Islanders and Raw Shark Texts - both are ones that I lent her after getting a few pages into and she raved about afterwards but I still haven't read even though she gave them back over a year ago!) I'm not going to read them in any particular order, I'm just going to go with whatever takes my fancy when I've finished the previous book. One rule I have to set myself is that I can't have two books on the go at once. The Parks and Recreation book is one that you can delve in and out of quite easily, but when I do this I feel like I don't really read the book and take it in, which feels a bit pointless so i have to not do that and read them individually. As a few of them are books that were brought for me for my birthday etc I don't know if I'll enjoy them. my ex-boyfriend brought me The Islanders after I left a sci-fi magazine round his and he read the 5 star review and thought I'd like it. This means I probably will like it so that's a bonus. One of my friends brought me the book "Then We Came To The End" back in 2008 apparently (according to the Richard and Judy bookclub sticker on the front!!) and even though I've read the blurb on the back, I'm not really sure what it's about and therefore have no idea if I'll like it or not! I think this will be both interesting and fun for me and I'm going to blog posts on each book when I've finished it to let you know about my progress (more for me to keep track of things and have something to work to really!) I'm going to give myself a goal of 3 months to finish this shelf of books and keep a little tally on a post it note to spur myself on! I did a month long crisp ban last month, which I should have blogged about really, and it really helped to have a goal and also have it written down so I could mark off each day (crisps were my main bad snacking habit really...and after 32 days of not eating them, I sat down to enjoy a bag only to find that actually....I don't really like crisps anymore! So not only did I lose weight during that month, but I also lost a bad habit too! I did develop a bit of a habit for salted popcorn in stead though....but that's a lot less fat and far healthier than crisps so I can't complain too much!)
So the first book I've chosen is Rob Lowe's Autobiography called Stories I Only Tell My Friends. I brought this back in 2011 when it was first published as I'd seen him do some PR about it and it sounded like a really interesting book. However, I also got Tina Fey's autobiography at the same time and it was easier and funnier to read to start off with so I read that (twice now) and never got round to getting past the first chapter of this one. I'm about a third of the way through already and it is fascinating to read so far. I'll do a little review once I finish it and let you know which book I choose next.
What are you guys reading at the moment? Do you ever set yourself random goals like this? how do you keep yourself motivated?
Until next time,


  1. Are you on Goodreads.com? It's really addictive marking off the books you have read...also you can set yourself a challenge (number of books to read in a year) and that's what keeps me motivated because it makes me want to beat last year! However it's easy for me because I work in a library so I leave my shifts with about 5 books everytime, despite the fact I have about 30 of my own unread ones...

  2. I have signed up to Goodreads but haven't fully explored the site really. Certainly didn't know you could set yourself a challenge on their! That sounds like a good idea, thanks! Working in a bookshop was like heaven to me, but I think a library might be better (and muuuuch cheaper too!!) It's nice to see I'm not the only one with unread books either! xxx


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