#TamingTheTBR – My road to reading freedom

I love blogging about books. The other day I was talking with some friends about work and the differences between working for yourself and working for a big company. If you work for a big company, you’ve got your steady income and your health insurance. Your job may be a pain in the ass every once in a while, but it works out because you’re living comfortably. There’s nothing wrong with that.

If you work for yourself (specifically in blogging), you’re making little-to-no money. You might have to hustle 200x harder than you were at that company job and you don’t have normal hours like a company person may have.

But after weighing all the pros and cons, I realized that despite not having a steady income and having to always keep on top of myself I love being a blogger. I love reading books and writing about them. I love sharing good reads (and hoping for bad reads to disappear into the night). Despite making less than $50 every three months, I don’t want to do anything else with my life. I want to do this until my very last breath on this earth.

However, I somehow found myself in a rut. I know I shouldn’t complain because I’ve built up a small career out of my hobby, but I’ve been just fatigued by reading lately. It might be because of the blog tours and book promotions I signed up for, but I find myself pretty drained with all the books I have to read while I stare lovingly at all the books I want to read.

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Being a book blogger means making a couple of sacrifices to your reading habits. You may not be able to read everything that you want at the time you want to read it. You may even have to sacrifice one book over another and as a person who loves to read, this isn’t the ideal.

So I’ve decided to go back to my roots this summer. I want to spend my time reading books I’ve chosen to read and have been wanting to read for many years. I have books on my TBR that have followed me from different apartment moves. I have books on my shelves I’ve kept since I was single. I’m married now.

Thinking about all these books, I want to make room for them in my life. I want to make some room on my shelves. So, I’ve decided to do is dedicate my summer to reading what I want.

This is going to be a bit tricky because despite wanting to read whatever I want this summer, I still have work I have to do. I also have a huge TBR and I don’t plan on reading everything.

So I devised this plan. Here’s how it’s going down:

I. Read whatever I have to read for my book blogging work. I have a steady list of about 12 books I need to read for various projects. These projects include book reviews for Netgalley (gotta keep my score up), blog tours coming up throughout the summer, and IG posts that I need to put together.

I’m giving myself until June 20th to finish reading and putting together the work needed for these projects. I’ll have the blog posts up and scheduled to be posted.

My current reading list includes:

  • Calypso by David Sedaris
  • The Shortest Way Home by Miriam Parker
  • Toil and Trouble ed by Tess Sharpe
  • Number 1 Chinese Restaurant by Lillian Li
  • Fruit of the Drunken Tree by Ingrid Rojas Contreras
  • The Forest Queen by Betsy ornwall
  • A Place for Us by Fatima Farheen Mirza
  • Somebody’s Daughter by David Bell
  • The Traitor’s Ruin by Erin Beaty
  • What Should be Wild by Julia Fine
  • The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang

The books with a strike through them are the ones that I’ve read so far in this project. This averages to about 2-3 books a week, which is doable when some of these reads are quicker romance novels. I’m going to spread them out throughout the next four weeks so that I don’t get overwhelmed by the number of books. Remember, this is a hard deadline for me. I think I will pretty much cry if I don’t finish it.

II. Enjoy the rest of my summer. I love that I’m planning this out like I’m in school. I’ve only got a few weeks left of school and I need to finish up these last few papers and projects before tossing all my books out the school bus window.

Once I’ve met my deadline, I’m going to organize my TBR pile. I don’t plan on reading everything that’s on my TBR. That’s not the goal here. The goal is to enjoy my reads, take my time, write about my thoughts in a prose-y kind of way, and genuinely enjoy my books.

While I love to read and while I enjoy every book I read, it sometimes feels like a full time job. Some books take priority over others and not because of its theme or its reviews. It’s because they do for a book blogger’s work. But I plan on savoring each read I come across and even picking up books along the way that aren’t in the piles lining my bedroom walls.

I’ll update everyone again with my plans, but if you want to follow along you can by using the hashtag #TamingTheTBR on social media. It’s not a requirement and I’m not trying to make this a big community thing. It’s just there if you want to participate with me to get that TBR down to a manageable size. Who’s with me!

5 thoughts on “#TamingTheTBR – My road to reading freedom

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