The Rory Gilmore Book Club discussion

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Other Book Discussions > How do you decide what to read next?

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message 1: by Lori (new)

Lori Walker | 315 comments I've noticed that whenever I finish a book, I take a few days to figure out what to read next, despite my having said, "I want to read X (and sometimes there's an A, B, C, and D in there at some point) when I'm done with Y."

I know that some people have a list that says what's to be read next. But what I'm wondering about it all of the other methods to pick the next book. How do you keep from wasting a couple of days deciding? And for those of you who do follow a list, how do you make yourself stick to it? Do you just start and eventually you love it or does your list really not work (it's OK. I won't spoil your secret).


message 2: by Lauren (new)

Lauren I just read whatever I feel like picking up next. Sometimes I have a "plan" or an order in which I feel like i "should" read but if I don't feel like sticking to it, I won't. I don't like to force myself to read anything since that takes all the enjoyment out of reading and I do it for fun.


message 3: by Kathryn (last edited Jan 09, 2009 09:58AM) (new)

Kathryn | 361 comments Well, usually I have more than a few books going at once, so there is never really a lull even if I am taking a few days to choose a replacement for any one just-finished title. Generally, I go with whatever I feel in the mood for, though I do have a stack of "wanting to read soon" books and sometimes I will go with a seasonal read or something that is just released that I've been waiting for (though, usually, I am more than eager and in-the-mood for that by the time it comes out!) Also, since I do tend to read multiple books at once, I generally like to have a few different types going at once--for example, a YA novel (fantasy, usually) along with a heavy British classic.


message 4: by Angie (new)

Angie | 511 comments I base my reading off what is due back to the library. It never takes me more than one minute to pick up the next book!


message 5: by [deleted user] (new)

I just pick what I feel like reading next.
Sometimes I need a day or half a day to "recover" from what I read when the book really sucked me into it or was heavy-themed and I need more time to think about it. But generally, I just go to my to read-shelf and pick out what looks most appealing to me. As I have got so many books on there at the moment, I can find something for every mood swing.


message 6: by Hannah (new)

Hannah (hmatkins) As most of you probably know by now, I have my lists of books to read. Thankfully, there are so many from my "huge list" of the 1001 books, that I can pick off which ones I want to read for this year and still have many to go. Because i only read one book at a time (I am still amazed at those who can read several at a time.... kudos to you!), I sometimes I have trouble deciding what kind of mood I am in for what kind of book I want to read. I come into problems especially after I read an amazing book and have to find a book to follow it. Most of the time, I start a book and if I'm not into it after a chapter, 2 or 3 then I put it back into my to-read pile and pick up another one. I have to say thought, that after reading you guy's posts I haven't had a problem finding a book to read.... I have several in my line-up already. :) Sometimes I don't stick to my list or even finish it, but if I don't have one, I start getting overwhelmed with how much I want to read. As long as I have a list, I find it conquerable. But that's how I seem to approach everything in life.

Angie, you sound like an awesome library goer. Because of school and the inability to predict when my spare time is coming, I can't seem to read books from the library right now. Do you check out several at a time or just one at a time? Do you have like a certain day that you go to the library, or just go when you need to? Just curious. I haven't been a faithful library goer since I was a kid and had lots of time to read. I read a short story once about a kid whose mom took him to the library every Monday or something, and it was like their special where he got to pick out all the books she would read to him for the week. I've always wanted to do something similar when I have kids to help them learn to love books just as much as I do.


message 7: by Angie (new)

Angie | 511 comments Hannah, I actually check out several books at a time, and that is because I'll put my name on the waiting list and who knows when it will come in? Sometimes I will be like number 300 for a book and then when it comes in it will be the next book I read because I know I will not be able to renew it. I try to go to the library every Thursday, I have found if you start the habit of going one day a week your books will be due on that day (so you have the books for three weeks from that day). I also check out movies from the library so if I have been waiting anxiously for one I will make a special trip for that movie though I will not pick up any book so that will not be off schedule for having them due back on Thurs. Though if I have been waiting for a book for a long time I will make a special trip for that. Luckily I live in an area that has a big library district so it has mostly everything I want. Plus I can put in requests for books and movies but they don't always get them. I love the library and can't believe I never used it until last year!


message 8: by Deborah (new)

Deborah | 283 comments Angie - I too request several books at a time from the library. Most of the time, unless they are new books in hot demand, I get quite a few at a time. I use my goodreads to-read list to pick books that seem to suit my current mood, then put them on my request list at the library. Your system sounds similar to the one we have in Pittsburgh. Can you search and request books online? That saves me a lot of trips to the library, which helps me conserve energy. I've been using the library for about five years, since my tiny rowhouse reached critical book mass! Now I only buy books that I can't live without.


message 9: by Lori (new)

Lori Walker | 315 comments Hannah, I think I need to go through my to-read list and create some order to it. I do much better with a list as well.


message 10: by whichwaydidshego, the sage of sass (new)

whichwaydidshego | 1996 comments Mod
Lori wrote: "Hannah, I think I need to go through my to-read list and create some order to it. I do much better with a list as well."

As do I, but my "to-read" list here on goodreads is FAR too daunting to order. I mean GEEZ. You must understand, every book on that list I already own. So I have shelves and shelves of books I need/want to get to - and the pile keeps growing thanks to bookmooch and giftcards.

I'm just DYING to have the capacity to read a book a day. Really very long ones could take two. But that's it. Every time I look at my closet, filled to the brim with books instead of clothes, I wish that. It'd be a brilliant skill.

There is this television show called Criminal Minds with a character that I crush on (for those of you that know me, duh! of course I am! he's a genius, tall, and skinny!). But he has eidetic memory - so enviable - and within that, he can speed-read and actually have comprehension of a book. Gah! What I wouldn't do!

Sorry, didn't answer the original question... next time.


message 11: by Lori (new)

Lori Walker | 315 comments whichwaydidshego?, I own a lot of the books I want. And I have 3 book cases at my parents' house, full of books that I don't bring to college with me.

I wish I could read that quickly. How do you train to read a book a day? It would probably be pretty hard for a student to do that, wouldn't it?


message 12: by Edith (new)

Edith (opheliaflowers) Whichwaydidshego? wrote: "As do I, but my "to-read" list here on goodreads is FAR too daunting to order. I mean GEEZ. You must understand, every book on that list I already own."

My "to-read" list would be to big for me too cuz I buy books that I don't have time to read. But on goodreads I have created the shelves "to-read -someday". Keep off the pressure on my "to-read" shelf. And I keep only the books I plan to read in the next few months on my "to-read" shelf, and the rest goes on "to-read-someday".

As for the topic, I don't often have problems picking my next book. I read many (too much?) books at the same time so when one is finished I go to the next one that I have started.


message 13: by Hannah (new)

Hannah (hmatkins) Edith, I like the idea of a to-read-someday book shelf. That's clever. I might have to copy you. :)


message 14: by Hannah (new)

Hannah (hmatkins) Angie and Deborah, I love your library schedules. I think I will add it to my "to-do after college" list. :) I find that there are many things that I have to wait for because my life is consumed with school, work, and sleep and nothing else. (examples: go to the library, get a dog, learn a foreign language, buy furniture, etc) But as I plan to live in Nashville for a couple years after I graduate, I think that I am going to check out the fiction section at our amazing public library. :)


message 15: by El (new)

El I have a notebook filled with titles I want to read which I get my jollies marking off as I finish them. One thing I can not do is finish a book without having another book to pick up. For a while I had a plastic crate I filled with books and I would just grab a book off the top and read that. That was a nice system for a while, but only worked well when I worked in a bookstore and brought home more than I had space for.

Now I spend a considerable amount of time at the library also, though try to limit it to every other Saturday since you get two weeks with books. Right now I'm working on a Winter Reading Challenge for another group on GR, so I have a list of books that I search for each time I'm at the library. In this case I pull a book out of my canvas bag that I use for my library "shopping" and read it, even if I'm not in the mood for it. I've gone through quite a few books lately with this system and I've been enjoying it. I just try not to limit myself too much to the next book I read. I get a little cranky if I go too long without a book, so I always make sure I have something within reach. I always joke that it's best to know exactly what the next book will be as you reach the last 50 pages of your current book.

Sometimes while reading I come across a topic or another author that sounds interesting, in which case I try to have a book about that topic or that author as the next book I read. I am a pretty eclectic reader and have a wide array of interests, so I try to find new and different things to spend time on to avoid getting in any reading ruts.


message 16: by whichwaydidshego, the sage of sass (new)

whichwaydidshego | 1996 comments Mod
Okay, seriously? How do you guys do it?? My brain/spirit just does not work that way. I'd never make it figuring out before I finish another book what was to come next. I'd feel so boxed in and... what if I was Jonesing for a different kind of book after those last 50 pages??

Plus, I love that state of wonder and excitement as I go to the shelves and hungrily look at all the delicious spines and taste their titles. Sometimes I find the perfect title for where I'm at in that moment, and sometimes I pull a pile of different selections down then feel and sample them in turn, even staring lustily at them as a group before I finally dive in. If I don't go through this process when I need to, well that's when I end up starting several books without really settling in well or feeling that satisfaction or gratification that normally I would.

Truly I say more power to you if you can keep the joy of reading in that fashion. It's just like the differences in traveling. An old friend of mine is the consummate planner. EVERY detail is planned. But that's because she gets so much joy out of actually doing the planning and then living those plans out. Me? I love to try to get to know a place as much as I can before hand, even to the language if possible, but when I go it's all about the wandering and the seat of my pants and the getting lost and the exploring with people I met along the way and the finding out the hidden treasures by connecting with the locals. Like that. That's when I really feel the joy, the rush of traveling. It's a spiritual movement, not just a physical one. But I digress! LOL

Anyway, I admire all of you that can do that - with books or with travel!!

By the way, all that doesn't mean I'm any less of a list maker!


message 17: by Lori (new)

Lori Walker | 315 comments whichwaydidshego?, I think my style is like yours. Sometimes, rarely, I'm able to just pick up a book and start. This weekend when I ran home, I brought 4 books with me so I could decide what to read.



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