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TSS: Jumping on the Bandwagon

tssbadge1First, this week I finished my dissertation!  It’s bound and all set to go tomorrow.  Tomorrow I am also moving and taking a trip to Birmingham to get all the legal stuff surrounding our wedding wrapped up, so it’s going to be a busy day.  Keith and I have been in a long distance relationship for so long – for our entire relationship barring a few fantastic summer months – that it’s hard to believe it’s over.  Admittedly, it’s not totally guaranteed over until I have a visa saying I’m allowed to stay, but we have everything we need and we meet all the requirements (either comfortably so or barely depending on how the law is interpreted, but they are met), so I’m feeling optimistic about it.  I won’t be completely relaxed until then, but we are getting there.

This week was also Book Blogger Appreciation Week.  I had a fantastic time and I think it was an amazing week.  I feel like everyone really came together and celebrated reading, books, and blogging, which is exactly the goal.  It felt like the controversy over the awards just disappeared and we instead strengthened our community, celebrating both the shortlisted blogs, the winning blogs, and everyone else.  I have discovered SO many new blogs, I can’t even tell you.  I haven’t commented on all of them yet, but I’m really going to try.  Amy deserves immense amounts of credit for all the time and love and creativity she’s put into this week.  Thank you, Amy!  And thanks to everyone else who dedicated even a little part of themselves to making this week awesome.  You all did an amazing job.

Now, the bandwagon.  Lately it seems that everyone has been announcing a TBR ban.  Well, now it’s my turn.  As of this posting, I have 369 unread books and six more on the way, my little gift to myself for having completed my MA.  As I am now entering that nebulous state of unemployment which could last longer than I’d like in this economy, and I have a boatload of student debt to start paying back in April so I can’t really spend the money that I have, I am officially banning myself from buying more books until I have a job.  Besides that, I don’t really need to have more than a year and a half of reading stowed away.  So I want to work on getting the pile down some.

What am I not banning?  I’m not banning review copies, library books, or gifts.  My birthday is just after Christmas and so December and January are my main book acquisition time, I’m not passing up on that!  I’m not going to stop myself from entering contests either.  And the truth is that I don’t mind having so many unread books.  Maybe that’s crazy because really, everywhere I go they’ve taken over, but I like having such a huge selection and knowing that I am totally spoiled for choice.  If I had the money, I’d keep on buying.  But I don’t, so I might as well try to make my fiance and my floor happier by reading the books I do have.  At least then I can give away the stinkers, which I’ve started doing with some frequency.  Anyway, my general rule is now that if the book is free, I can have it.  If the book costs money, I can’t.  I figure that if I still receive a few books, it will prevent me from pining over books I can’t have.

Do you mind having a huge TBR pile?  Is there such thing as too many books?

For those who have started a ban, any advice for me?

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35 comments to TSS: Jumping on the Bandwagon

  • Congratulations on finishing your dissertation! I remember the great relief and sense of accomplishment I felt when I submitted mine so i have an idea how grat it feels to be done and over with it. Also congratulations on being close to putting a stop to that long-term relationship with your fiance, it’ll be great when you can be together I’m sure.
    Last but not least, I myself don’t mind having piles and piles of unread books. I at least don’t have to fear that one day I’ll wake up and have nothing to read, lol! Although, sometimes when I receive ARC and review copies I do stare at all of them worrying when I’ll read them all.
    .-= lilly´s last blog ..God Is an Englishman by R. F. Delderfield =-.

  • Good luck with your ban, Meghan! Kelly at YAnnabe recently posted a list of tips and suggestions…hopefully you’ll find it helpful!

    Congratulations on finishing your dissertation! And yes, a BIG hooray for Amy – BBAW was wonderful.

    That’s fantastic that you and Keith won’t have to be apart anymore. I hope you get that visa soon so that you won’t have to worry about it ever again!
    .-= Nymeth´s last blog ..The Sunday Salon – It’s a Mystery =-.

  • Congratulations on finishing your dissertation – that is wonderful news!
    Obviously, I don’t mind a big TBR pile, because I keep buying books!
    .-= Kathy´s last blog ..SIBA Trade Show =-.

  • stu

    Congratulations on finishing. Having just submitted my PhD, I know roughly how it feels. I’m not buying many books at the moment, but that has more to do with a lack of funds than any conscious decision.
    .-= stu´s last blog ..Stuff =-.

    • Meghan

      I’m sure you are vastly more relieved than I am, mine was only an MA. =) My ban is directly due to my finances; I have savings, but don’t want to spend anything until I have an income again. I have enough books to last until that happens, I suspect. =)

  • I am so glad that someone else does not mind having such a tall TBR mountain! I am not sure how many books I own that I have yet to read – but I can tell you that a very large percentage of those books were purchased this year due to Book Bloggers’ recommendations! I tend to purchase my books at library sales or used book stores, so I rationalize that this spending spree is ok since I am purchasing bargains. Also, I know that I will always enjoy reading; so if they are not read this year, or this decade, it really doesn’t matter because I will, at some point in my life, read them. I am one of those who is actually looking forward to retirement; I NEVER plan to be bored.

    On another note, CONGRATULATIONS on the thesis completion. What an incredible achievement and milestone in your life.

    I will be thinking of you tomorrow – and hope that you hear good news regarding your VISA soon.
    .-= molly´s last blog ..TSS 9.20.09 – Busy Week =-.

  • Congrats on your dissertation, and good luck with the move. I don’t mind having a huge TBR pile. I sort of expect it since I have an addiction to books. But I’ve pretty much stopped accepting review copies unless they sound like must reads, and I’m limiting myself to library sales for book purchases. I reserve the right to cheat at any time. LOL
    .-= Anna´s last blog ..Interview With Susan Higginbotham, Author of HUGH AND BESS =-.

  • Congratulations on your dissertation – that must feel so good!!!

    Well, I don’t know how I could do a ban, except on always has the library – you can still follow whims and reading fashion and don’t have to pay!

    Good luck with the visa process!!!
    .-= rhapsodyinbooks´s last blog ..Sunday Salon – Review of King Leopold’s Ghost, by Adam Hochschild =-.

  • Congrats! and good luck with everything!!! I bet you will feel so much relief when you get that visa!

    I like your take on the TBR ban…I might have to do something similar. I doubt I could go into a complete ban on books, but if it was just ones I was buying…MAYBE. :)

    And thanks for the kind words on BBAW. I feel like you that we were able to put the drama behind us and just enjoy a fun week. And that’s the strength of the book blogging community!
    .-= Amy @ My Friend Amy´s last blog ..The Sunday Salon — Pretty Much Everything =-.

  • I’m a monumental book hoarder! I don’t mind in the least having a huge TBR pile. One reason I don’t mind so much is for a reason you allude to in this post. Unemployment. If I were ever to be unemployed I’ll be glad to have a large stash of books to not only pass the time with but I’ll also know I won’t have to worry about the fact that I don’t have the money to buy any.

    Continued success in the coming year :)
    .-= Michelle´s last blog ..Exciting News! =-.

  • Congratulations on completing the dissertation! That actually went really fast–it took my school over a year to mail me my bound thesis. Seriously.

    I don’t consider it a TBR ban so much as TBR rehab. I don’t mind having a TBR pile, but when I start feeling pressured by the amount of books I have waiting, then it does get to be a problem for me. I start getting an itch to toss them all out and start from scratch. =/ No advice, but on those days when you really, really want to buy a new book, step away from the computer.
    .-= heidenkind´s last blog ..Storm of Visions =-.

  • See, now I’m going with a totally ineffectual review copy ban so that I can actually read some of my TBR books once in awhile.
    .-= Jen – Devourer of Books´s last blog ..The Clear Off Your Shelves Challenge! =-.

  • No, you can’t have enough books. But wow what a TBR pile. I wish mine were that big. So how many books do you own?
    .-= Bluestocking´s last blog ..The Murder of King Tut =-.

  • Congratulations on completing your dissertation and on your upcoming wedding! I hope that everything goes well. My suggestion for the TBR ban is not very good long term, but you could stall on unpacking books and then have to get new ones to keep you reading :)

  • I really should institute a ban, but I already know there’s no point because I won’t stick to it. Congratulations on finishing your dissertation!
    .-= S. Krishna´s last blog ..CHALLENGE: Clear Off Your Shelves 2009 =-.

  • Eva

    Congrats on your dissertation!!!

    I’ve been on a book buying for almost two years now-eventually it pretty much becomes a habit. As long as you have a great library, it gets pretty easy after the first few months (when you’re retraining yourself). I’ve recently loosened the ban a bit, allowing myself to enter giveaways again, which is exciting! :)

    • Meghan

      I have two libraries now and unfortunately they are not the best. They even charge for interlibrary loan, so I’m restricted to what’s actually there. I will probably end up going through mostly what I own! I’m glad it will get easier though. It would be amazing if I no longer felt I needed to buy books even after I got a job, then I could save more.

  • perpetualmist

    Hi Meghan,

    Just wanted to let you know that I have replied to your email.
    I am not sure if you have received it.Please do let me know if you have.
    Thanks :)

  • Hi Meghan! Congrats on finishing your dissertation and the impending wedding. Keeping fingers crossed for the legal issues.

    As for you tbr question, I actually just had to impose a ban on myself. I usually don’t buy many books; I borrow a lot from the library, but I had far too many out and my holds list was out of control. Plus I have a stash of tbr books that I actually do own. So I froze my holds list and mandated that I acquire no new books until I finish the library ones and the ones I own. The only exception to this rule is free books, whether they’re won or are presents. I think tbr piles can get so overwhelming that the joy goes out of reading, and it starts to feel like a chore again. Maybe that’s just me though.
    .-= Amanda´s last blog ..Invisible Illness Awareness Week =-.

  • Congratulations on finishing your dissertation!

    Sometimes I feel guilty about how big my TBR pile is too, but, like you, I enjoy having an immense amount of choices. I haven’t been buying books recently either because of financial issues. Yesterday was the first time in awhile and after my B&N discount, goftcard, and the two books my boyfriend bought me, I only shelled out $17 so it wasn’t bad.
    .-= Stephanie´s last blog ..Clear Off Your Shelves Challenge =-.

  • You have such exciting changes ahead! I could go a very long time without bringing another book into my house, but I must! When I was poor grad student, I vowed that when I had money, books would be the very last thing to be cut from my budget. I’ve held myself to that vow for a lot of years now.
    .-= Beth F´s last blog ..Making Some Changes =-.

  • Congrats on the dissertation WOOHOO party on!!
    As far as the TBR ban goes, nope, I would like to fill up my whole house with books, that would make me immensely happy. BUT I have already instituted a ban on accepting review copies. Just a precious few are coming through these days and that’s how I like it, since I feel like I lost a lot of reading time with summer and kids and chaos. So from here (July/August) on out I will not be a prolific reviewer per se, as I want to focus on the reads that I have been swapping, buying, winning.. because THOSE are the ones that made me want to jump and go get them in the first place, so why not give them the due they deserve??? OH & plus I share my books with my mom who reads like she should be a book blogger.. which means she reads so much faster than I do. Living alone affords her that possibility lucky gal!
    Take care, Best wishes for all the upcoming wedding plans! Let me know when you are a Burton!
    .-= Marie Burton´s last blog ..Mailbox Monday~ I won ALL these!! =-.

  • YAY for completing your dissertation.

    I institute a book ban roughly every 6 months – it lasts about 2 weeks, and then I cave. So, I REALLY hope you do better than me! =)
    .-= Elizabeth´s last blog ..Top 5 things you need to know before you ask me to review your book =-.

  • Kim

    Congrats on finishing your dissertation! Are you sure you don’t want to celebrate by getting a couple of books and then starting the ban? I remember the years of no book buying for financial reasons and while those days are gone (I pat myself on the back and think “at least I’m not addicted to jewelry”), knowing I can buy a book I want, when I want, is still a luxury, every time. I’m looking forward to hearing about your progress through your TBR!
    .-= Kim´s last blog ..Time to Vote for the Best National Book Award Fiction =-.

  • Congratulations on finishing your dissertation, Meghan! I bet you let out a big sigh of relief! I hope the move went well. The settling in is the easiest part of moving. I hate the packing and actual moving. :-S

    My TBR collection is huge and since I refuse to tell anyone just how big, I guess that means it bothers me a bit. Still, I do find some comfort in being surrounded by so many books. I am not going on a TBR ban. I do have to cut back on my book purchases because of my financial situation (my work hours had to be cut because of the budget situation) though, so I am sure there will be a slow down in that respect. I wish you luck with your TBR ban!
    .-= Literary Feline´s last blog ..Review: A Disobedient Girl by Ru Freeman & a Giveaway =-.

  • Congrats on finishing your dissertation, and good luck with all your wedding prep! I hope everything goes nice and smooth.

    I never used to mind having a big TBR. I loved having scads of books to choose from, and I got a big kick out of adding to it. Eventually, though, it just got to be too much, so I started cutting back on all acqusitions at the start of this year. Ideally, I’d like to go back to living from book to book, like I did when I was younger. It’d be great to hear about a book and read it straight off without having to shunt anything else to the side.
    .-= Memory´s last blog ..129. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte =-.

  • Kay

    First, congrats on completing your thesis! You must be both relieved and proud about this!

    Second, good luck with your ban! I’m thinking of doing the same, too; I don’t have as many as you, but I still have a lot. Like you, I don’t mind having that many (I even love it!), but I have to slow down on buying since my budget is slimming down a little.
    .-= Kay´s last blog ..The Review Challenge : My List =-.

  • Congratulations on your thesis! I also wanted to say that I have an embarrassingly large TBR pile, and I am doing all I can to pare it down and not add to it. I think my main problem is space. I just don’t have enough for all the books I want to buy, and I also don’t read a a super fast rate, so I am a little overwhelmed with all the books. I hope you have some success in your attempts to ban any new additions to the pile, and here’s to hoping I can do the same!
    .-= zibilee´s last blog ..The Private Papers of Eastern Jewel: A Novel by Maureen Lindley – 304 pgs =-.

  • Congratulations times two to you first of all.

    Re your TBR ban.
    1. It doesn’t count if you buy a book from a charity shop. (Because it’s for charity. Totally self-serving I know, especially as Oxfam is killing other bookshops anyway.)
    2. It doesn’t count if the book is a gift from friends or family. (It would be rude to refuse.)
    3. It doesn’t count if you know the author. (You’re just being supportive buying it.)
    4. It surely doesn’t count if it’s a sequel, or the only one in a series you haven’t read. (C’mon, that’s just finishing what you’ve started.)
    5. And it certainly doesn’t count if it’s for research purposes for your own book. (Naturally you may not know for sure till after you’ve read your new purchase.)

    I hope that clears it up. Unfortunately I have not won over everyone in my own house, and I’m under a one-in-one-out restriction.
    .-= Blackwatertown´s last blog ..Did he win? =-.

  • Congratulations on completing your dissertation! I don’t think I could ever be disciplined enough to contemplate a TBR ban, but I do like that you’re still including review copies and gifts and giveaways – if I were more disciplined, I’d do the same!
    .-= Belle´s last blog ..The Me-and-My-Books Relationship =-.

  • I’m on the fence about this one. I don’t want to add to my tbr, but seeing those piles of books makes me edgy. I feel bad they haven’t been read. But then I go to the library and see all those books just waiting to be held.
    So, I have banned the library until January, won’t be accepting too many new review copies, and will try to read from what I have. Unless I get a good Borders coupon, then I’ll buy a book. Did I mention I have a secret book stash at work, under my desk?
    Yes, books are my crack.
    Congrats on completing your dissertation :)
    .-= jennygirl´s last blog ..Teaser Tuesday (Sept 22) =-.

  • I’m behind the times (working on my own dissertation, clearly), but WOOOOHOOOOO! That’s HUGE — congratulations! I hope the move and all of the paperwork went/is going/goes smoothly!
    .-= Fyrefly´s last blog ..Deborah Madison and Patrick McFarlin – What We Eat When We Eat Alone =-.

  • Congratulations on finishing your dissertation! I don’t buy books for myself very often. Hubby’s laid off, so money’s tight. Of course, I agree, free books are a totally different story.