Books on the Nightstand discussion

Happy 2009! Do you have any reading resolutions?

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message 1: by Ann (new)

Ann (akingman) | 2097 comments Mod
I resolve to read more books in 2009 than I did in 2008.
And to keep track of my 2009 here at Goodreads.

Of course, I didn't keep track of the # read in 2008, so I'm going to have to guess.

Do you have any reading resolutions?

message 2: by [deleted user] (new)

For every 5 books I read from my TBR pile/nightstand/shelf, I can buy myself a new book. There are just too many good books out there and my piles have gotten a little out of control.

Though since I work in publishing, I feel that my TBR pile will always be huge.

message 3: by Dottie (new)

Dottie  (oxymoronid) | 130 comments I may adopt your resolution, too, Jennifer.

I've begun to feel guilty after a recent quick visual survey of unread books on my shelves. Many were on book club lists and I intended reading them but then real life took over -- and there sits another unread book! The total kept creeping up book by book but once the blinders were off it's become difficult to ignore 'the little voice' when I want to buy another book for a book club discussion.

message 4: by Graceann (new)

Graceann (silentsgirl) | 26 comments My resolution is to have no more than eight books on my bedroom floor (I don't have a nightstand - may I still be in the group? :-), noted on my facebook "books" app or here at goodreads.

At one time, I had more than 50 books stacked on the floor of my bedroom, and I became so overwhelmed that I got to be almost paralyzed. Reading became something I MUST do to get through "all those books," rather than the pleasure and refuge it should be.

My husband and I are constantly buying books, and that's not going to change (especially now that I'm listening to the BOTNS podcasts!), but my resolution is to store them in a less overwhelming way so that I can truly enjoy them again.

message 5: by Stephen (new)

Stephen (sawinkler) | 45 comments My resolution is to simply keep reading. My wife and I are expecting a daughter in May, so I'm guessing the act of sitting down and reading a book (without pictures) will become a luxury that will be in danger of being cut unless I make an effort to do it.

Or is that just unrealistic?

message 6: by tomlinton (new)

tomlinton (thomasee) I'm not doing tv this year
Boohoo the football playoffs start today
I got through the bowl games
without even looking at the scores
I can chalk up half a book or so
in any day the TV doesn't roar
It's a Kaizen change
a little one I could do
and I read about that too

message 7: by Ann (new)

Ann (akingman) | 2097 comments Mod
Stephen wrote: "My resolution is to simply keep reading. My wife and I are expecting a daughter in May, so I'm guessing the act of sitting down and reading a book (without pictures) will become a luxury that will ..."

Stephen, that's a great and practical resolution to make. Truth be told, you will likely not get to pre-child reading levels until the kid goes to college, sad but true. The good news is that there will be periods where you can read almost as much. Some of my best moments in life were holding one of my infant daughters while they nursed or slept, and reading a book. It didn't happen often, but when it did, it was amazing. And while people will tell you to sleep when the baby sleeps, that's also an opportunity to grab some reading time.

When they start to be mobile is when adult reading comes to a screeching halt. That's why the universe made early bedtimes for kids. But you have a ways to go. Just enjoy every moment.

message 8: by Ann (new)

Ann (akingman) | 2097 comments Mod
Tomlinton wrote: "I'm not doing tv this year
Boohoo the football playoffs start today
I got through the bowl games
without even looking at the scores
I can chalk up half a book or so
in any day the TV doesn't roar

Tomlinton --

Very wise. I've cut down on my tv considerably over the last few years, but I'm not sure the family would put up with no tv -- and as long as it's in the house ...

message 9: by Graceann (new)

Graceann (silentsgirl) | 26 comments Television programmers have made it much easier by scheduling such dreck that escaping into literature is a joy. Other than Mad Men and a few other gems, it's a wasteland out there.

message 10: by Ann (last edited Feb 25, 2009 03:49AM) (new)

Ann (akingman) | 2097 comments Mod
Graceann, how did you know that I spent the last 2 weeks indulging myself in a Mad Men marathon??

In my defense, I needed to watch it in order to see if my comparison to Richard Yates' REVOLUTIONARY ROAD was accurate :)

message 11: by Graceann (new)

Graceann (silentsgirl) | 26 comments Mad Men needs no defense - that is stellar television and (somewhat) redeems AMC for giving up on their classic film, commercial-free line-up.

I hope you will appreciate that due to your thoroughly addictive podcasts, I now have Revolutionary Road on my wish list (along with the Bats kids books - and I don't have kids!). I've only discovered BOTNS recently, so I've been gobbling up the podcasts like candy, and now I'm almost current. I'm in anticipatory withdrawal. I can never believe that 20 minutes has already zipped by by the time you two are saying your goodbyes.

message 12: by Laura (new)

Laura | 90 comments I'll second Jennifer's intention to read more of the books already in my house, although I'm off to a poor start, as I just brought home three library books and ordered four more online. But I have a lot of wonderful stuff waiting for me right on the shelves. Here's to a year full of books!

message 13: by Michael (new)

Michael (mkindness) | 537 comments Mod
Wow Graceann, thanks for the nice comments about BOTNS!

Stephen - Ann beat me to it, but one of my favorite photos from when my son was little is me reading the 6th Harry Potter, with Miles nestled in my arm.

Tomlinton - I've cut way down on TV, but you're stronger than me. I don't think I could give it up completely!

My reading resolution is probably the same as Ann's; to read more in 09 than in 08. I did keep track of 08, but also had my monthlong graphic novel fest (nearly a book a day), so I've got my work cut out for me!

message 14: by Julie (new)

Julie M (woolyjooly) | 259 comments Dreck is the word, Graceann. I've moved for a new job during the workweek, and only return to TV during the w/ends. And although I'm not necessarily reading more, I DO NOT miss the boob tube. Well, Law & Order, a little . . And what is this thing called an IPOD?? One can download books to listen to while either exercising or knitting ??? I just can't wrap my brain around this yet. Anyone else been listening to books this way? Is it free? (I've resolved to exercise more in '09, but want to keep up my same levels of knitting and reading!!)

message 15: by Jackie (new)

Jackie | 2 comments I've made a vow to NOT feel guilty about how many books I've got at home awaiting my attention, especially since at this point they are free entertainment in what promises to be a year of very strict budgeting (bye bye cable, dinners out, etc). Of course it helps that I work at a bookstore and have amazing access to ARCs.

Books have always been a comfort for me in times of trouble (and good times too, but their escape value has always weighed heaviest in my life). However, I am also trying to be firm with myself, spending time lately taking a look at those shelves, reacquainting myself with the books, and pulling those that I have to admit to myself I am no longer interested or likely to read. I live in a high rise and take these downstairs to our "gimme pile" where they disappear within hours, so I don't feel so guilty. Someone has adopted them.

message 16: by Karen (new)

Karen | 31 comments Stephen wrote: "My resolution is to simply keep reading. My wife and I are expecting a daughter in May, so I'm guessing the act of sitting down and reading a book (without pictures) will become a luxury that will ..."

message 17: by Karen (new)

Karen | 31 comments It's important for the baby to see you reading then he/she will be interested in reading. Parents need time for themselves even if it's only sitting somewhere away with a book and coffee. When my kids were little I used to get an hour or two away once a week. Congratulations. Karen

message 18: by Wendy (new)

Wendy | 8 comments fun to see what everyone has added- my goal
is to spend more time reading-and to read intentionally, and to keep my goodreads list updated and check out as many books as I can from the library. Also, I want to continue to expand the list of authors.

message 19: by Dottie (new)

Dottie (dottiem) | 71 comments A suggestion for those expecting or with new babies who are worried about reading time. As soon as my son was old enough to be put in one of the little baby carriers (this is a long time ago and they weren't quite as new born friendly then), I would put him in it and read aloud to him from whatever I was reading. He was happy with all the face time and I still got to read my books. (this only works until they are old enough to understand the words unless you are reading very calm books)

Dottie M

message 20: by Debbie (last edited Jan 05, 2009 08:58AM) (new)

Debbie (kaelesa) | 39 comments And what is this thing called an IPOD??

Julie, an Ipod is incredible. We have an Ipod Classic that holds 80 GB. We have over 100 books loaded on it, and there is room for almost that many more. Ipods aren't exactly cheap to buy, unfortunately, but once you get one you'll wonder what you ever did without it. I get audio books from, where they have several levels of membership at several different prices, and think they have outstanding value. Their selection of books is amazing - bestsellers, classics, fiction, non-fiction - you name it.

I listen to my ipod when doing my counted cross stitch, traveling in the car and to help me wind down at night to sleep. You can also get armbands to hold your Ipod while you exercise or go walking.

There are other brands of MP3 players that are less expensive, and has a list of the brands that are compatible with their format.

I hope this helps answer some of your questions. Happy Reading!

message 21: by Dottie (last edited Jan 05, 2009 11:12AM) (new)

Dottie  (oxymoronid) | 130 comments Just realized I have a resolution which needs to be put down in black and white -- so I know, I'm serious, you see.

I resolve to overcome my seemingly genetic antipathy to reading books which have in their description sci-fi/fantasy/magical realism or any other such label. I really need to pay attention to recommendations of people I trust and ignore the red flag I see when those labels are involved.

I'm going to begin with the placement of this book Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? higher on the to-read list.

Of course, I'll check it out of the library so as to stick with my earlier resolution to reead those books I have hanging about before adding others. ;0

message 22: by Laura (new)

Laura | 90 comments Julie,

Also, many public libraries have audio books available for download at no cost to you. Our library system does not yet have books compatible with iPods, so a non-Apple MP3 player is needed; I sometimes download to the laptop anyway and can listen to it on there.


message 23: by Michael (last edited Jan 05, 2009 01:12PM) (new)

Michael Scott (michaelscott) | 3 comments Dottie,

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep is a wonderful choice: as many of the scifis of its era, sci is only a reason for the fi, so you do get to enjoy regardless if you are tech-savvy or not. Also, while Philip K. Dick usually writes books that make you wonder if the chronology of events is right, in this book he succeeds to keep this habit of his in check.

You may also want to try the following three books that focus on what it means to be human on a sci background: Strugatsky's Roadside Picnic(humanity and hardship), Arthur C. Clarke's The City and the Stars Paperback (humanity and exploration), and Stanisław Lem's Solaris (humanity and the oneiric).

All the best,


message 24: by Dottie (new)

Dottie  (oxymoronid) | 130 comments Earlier I said: I resolve to overcome my seemingly genetic antipathy to reading books which have in their description sci-fi/fantasy/magical realism or any other such label. I really need to pay attention to recommendations of people I trust and ignore the red flag I see when those labels are involved.

I also had decided to read my backlog of unread, already owned books. The second resolution.

Thus far, I have dived into C.S. Lewis's young readers series, The Narnia Chronicles and am racing along. This addresses both of the above.

Third and newest resolution: inspired by Michael's graphics post is to read the single graphic which I already do own. After that I'll aim to explore some graphics which my daughters have both urged me to read.

And another resolve? Try keeping up with at least some of my own groups' official reading and discussions.

I think these four will work somewhat together and are enough to attempt at one time. We shall see how it goes.

message 25: by Conny (new)

Conny My reading resolutions for 2009 are not so different from those of most of you.
I started by saying that I only want to read the books I already own and that I will not bring anything home from the library. For that reason I rearranged my bookshelf so that I have a designated space for the books I would like to read this year. At the time that sounded like a great idea to me. However, whenever I look at my bookshelves now, I always find that there are other books that should be added to the shelf, and then of course, there are all these other books, including those at the library, that keep screaming at me: "Read me, I am a good one, I promise."
Let's see how long I can convince myself that the designated shelf has to go first.

message 26: by Summer (new)

Summer | 49 comments I resolve to finish at least five of the ten books that I started and lost interest in or returned to the library unfinished.

I am beginning with The Flea Palace.

message 27: by Erin (new)

Erin (ersiku) | 18 comments My reading resolution for the year is to not feel like I have to finish every book I start. If a book isn't grabbing me, I'm allowed to put it aside; however, I have to get it out of my apartment! That way my shelves will be full of books I know I really want to keep. I'm hoping that by sticking to this resolution, I'll be able to reduce the number of potentially uninteresting but unread volumes all over my shelves before I have to move again. As I'm sure you all know, moving a ton of books isn't fun!

message 28: by Ann (new)

Ann (akingman) | 2097 comments Mod
On our last move, my husband refused to ever consider moving again. This was after moving all of my books 3 times; he reached his breaking point.

It took me a long time to allow myself to put down a book I start. I will even put it down if I like the book, if I feel that I've "gotten" the idea and it's time to move on.

message 29: by [deleted user] (new)

I moved in 1999 from Winnipeg to the Chicago suburbs and I allowed myself "only" three boxes of books -- it took probably a month to decide which ones were move-worthy! I ended up with 7 or 8 boxes leftover, which I donated (The Children's Hospital in Winnipeg does a huge huge used book sale in one of the shopping malls each year).
Needless to say I've replenished my inventory, and then some .....

message 30: by Graceann (new)

Graceann (silentsgirl) | 26 comments I use the rule of 50, though I'm not strict. One I gave up on after the first chapter, I hated it so much, and one I dumped after 200 pages (I kept hoping it would get better, but it didn't). Up until this last year, I would have continued reading no matter how terrible the book, but I've given myself permission to stop now, and refuse to feel guilty. It's the author's job to keep me interested, not mine to force myself through something that isn't working for me.

message 31: by Dennis (new)

Dennis | 23 comments I read so slowly and my job takes up so much time that I'm shooting for 26 non work-related books (one every two weeks).

I just finished my 15th of 2009, so I'm doing pretty well.

I wish I could make the time for a book a week.

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