Monday, January 07, 2008

Book Lists

In 2007 I kept a list of the books I read throughout the year. I started it out of curiosity to see how many books I was reading, but I find the list quite interesting in itself now.

I haven't had a chance to sit down and really analyze it, but I can see how it could become a very useful resource, not only to keep track of what I have and haven't read, but also as a snapshot of my personal reading trends.

I know many of you keep book lists. How do you use them? As a reference? To see how many books you've read? Something else? For those that don't keep lists, are you tempted?

24 comments :

Susan said...

I am very tempted. I need to keep track - because I am horrible with titles and when someone asks me what I have read - I sometimes cannot tell them.

Kat said...

I have a spreadsheet of all the books coming out that I want to read from now until, I think, April of 2009, lol. It's a great reference and I'm ridiculous about keeping it up to date.

I don't keep lists of books I've read. Never really thought about it. I do know that for fun I read almost entirely romance. I read mostly paranormal and historical.

I suppose I could keep track of all the books I'm reading for the first time this year. It might be interesting :)

Trying to keep track of what I've re-read, however.....not happening. I know in advance that'll be too much. And I'm debating if books I edit count. LOL.

Kerry said...

I use Library Thing as a reading list and just add the books I read. I also have a statistics blog that I update each month so that I can check the numbers any time I like.

I have a standalone book cataloguing programme, so I use that to catalogue my book collection and keep Library Thing for the reading list.

Soraya said...

Thanks to amazon, I can keep track of what I read... but, before that, I didn't have a list, I only knew which book I read looking at the cover :)

Aymless said...

It sounds like a great idea. I think I'll do it this year.

By the way Mine to Possess is absolutely wonderful. I couldn't put it down. I read the whole thing in one sitting then flipped it over and read it again. Clay is true yummy and so this that new guy *grin*. I also loved Talin's description of Dorien "tall, blonde and stupidly beautiful"!!!

Christine said...

You guys are impressively organized! @.@

I started keeping track of my books on Shelfari this past summer. I mostly focused on the books I've read since I started reading romance, which was September 2006. It's a great way to organize books... those I've read, those that are on my TBR shelf, and those that are on my wish list!

The last few months, I also started keeping a running list of the books I read. This year, I intend to enhance the list by including a brief synopsis of each book and maybe even start a simple rating system so my friends can see which books I recommend more highly over others. AND so I can refer back to it when I want to remember something about a book or character and my mind gets fuzzy!

Huh. I guess I'm a bit more organized than I thought! lol

May said...

I keep track. I've an excel spreadsheet.

I analyse it about once a year. The only trend is that I'm reading more SFF/urban fantasy than romance.

It's mostly because I'm OCD than anything else.

Anonymous said...

I keep a list of the books that I’ve read and enjoyed. (I don’t record the books that I don’t like, because I don’t want to remember how much I hated them).

My list has several uses:
(1) Looking at it, just looking at it, makes me happy. It reminds me of fun times I had.
(2) If someone asks me what books or authors I like, I know exactly what to say.
(3) In times of boredom or depression, it gives me the names of good books to reread.

Maibeeme said...

I keep a spreadsheet of the books I've read and the number of pages (why, I don't know). It helps me keep track of what I have so I don't re-buy the same book, something I've been known to do. I also rate the book and give a brief synopsis so I can remember what the book was about in case just the title doesn't do it for me. I think my goal when I started this was to help me later on - my dream is to open a used book store/coffee shop when I retire. A friend pointed out to me, however, that in seven years, all these books will be outdated. : P

Angelle said...

I keep a list of books I've read since 2006, and they're all linked on my blog.

I keep it to see how many books I read and in what genre(s).

Ange - The Romance Groupie said...

I keep an excel spreadsheet with lists of books with categories like: future books (& which ones to buy, check out at the library, etc); books to look for used; and books to read - someday.

I tried starting a list of books I've read last fall but I just didn't keep up with it. I think it would be very cool to have a list though so Jan 1st I started a new list and I'm going to give it another try.

Being able to see reading trends is an interesting concept, Nalini. Do you include re-reads? Because I know that I go through cycles where I want to read nothing but things I've already read - maybe there is a pattern there too.

ShellBell said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ShellBell said...

Last year was the first year I kept a list of the number of books read in one year - 274 for 2007. Some of these are rereads and some are short story ebooks. 274 sounds a lot but I blame it on my Palm, which I bought in May, as I went mad on new-to-me authors - Lora Leigh, Lauren Dane, Maya Banks, Amelia Elias, Felicity Heaton, Angela Knight, Alexis Morgan, Annmarie McKenna, Cherry Adair, Suzanne Brockmann etc.

I have a list of my wishlist - a combination of books I want to read and buy. I don't necessarily want to buy all of the books on the list - e.g I'm happy to borrow JD Robb from the library as I doubt I will reread the In Death series. I have a spreadsheet and am starting an Access database listing all of my books - definitely needs updating after my many splurges last year. I also have a spreadsheet of authors for my mother's Palm so she knows the correct order of books when reading a series. I also have my trusty TBR Pile list.

Kaitlin said...

I tried starting an Excel spreadsheet of all the books I have, but I'm a perfectionist & couldn't get it looking the way I wanted it to. One of these days. :)

I do have a list of books I want to buy. I've got a ton of books I want to read coming out at the end of this month all the way thru April. How cruel. :P My book budget is screaming at me. :D

LesleyW said...

I did this for the first time in 2007 and did find it useful. I read 63 books last year. Which is more than one a week, but it's less than I thought I'd read.

Soraya said...

@shellbell 274 books? so very impressive :)

I wish for this year that I have more time to read as much as you :)

Jaci Burton said...

I didn't keep a list of the books I read last year, and I wish I had because I know I read a lot. I need to do it this year for sure. Maybe in Excel or using some kind of library software. I know some bloggers keep a list of books read on their sidebar and it's fun to read those.

Barbara V said...

I do keep track of the best books that I read. It helps me at the end of the year to remember but also I use this data for reader's awards

Shelley Munro said...

I kept a simple excel spreadsheet for the first time last year. It was an interesting exercise. One thing I noticed is that if a book doesn't grab me after one or two chapters I'll move on. In the past I would have continued to read but there are so many great books out there to read instead of something that doesn't hold my attention. I had a few DNF reads last year. The other thing I noticed was that I love discovering new authors and there are some great urban fantasies around!

Athena said...

I could never do something like that. I'm just horrible with things like lists. LOL no longer the bills are never noticed until two weeks later!

Amanda Ashby said...

I kept a list on the side of my blog and was horrified to see how few books I read last year so that was my number one resolution for 2008. So far I've read 2 books and am quarter way through MTP - good Lord, but am I loving it!!!!!

Nalini Singh said...

Lost of list-keepers! Those of you with spreadsheets, I take my hat off to your organizational skills!

Ange, you asked about rereads. Yep, I put those in. I figure it's part of the trends. I had a few weeks last year where I just did rereads and it's interesting to look back and try to figure out why.

Barbara - that's a good point about awards. I always find it hard to figure out what books to nominate when I go to nominate my favorites.

Shell - I've realized that, too. I'm way quicker to decide whether to read on or not.

Athena - try it, maybe we'll convert you!

Amanda & Aymless - thank you! I'm so excited about MtP, so it's awesome to hear you're loving / loved it!

Also, do any of you use goodreads.com? In a weird bit of synchronicity yesterday, a freind of mine showed it to me. It seems quite an interesting way to keep track of your reading.

Nalini Singh said...

Soraya, welcome to the blog :)

Anon, if you're new, welcome!

Jenny Schwartzberg said...

I'm trying to keep a list in bibliography form of what I read in history of children's literature for my research. It's interesting to look at my notes on each book and it keeps me from duplicating my ILL orders.

Otherwise I don't keep track of my reading. I think about it but I read so much so fast and so widely that I rather quail at the idea.

Back when I was applying to college, several had an option of submitting a list of what you had read in the last year. I put together a huge list of what I had read and it was several hundred books. My memory says 800! It was extremely eclectic, consisting of children's books, romances, science fiction, fantasy, mystery, history, biography, books for school, etc. My dad says he also put together such a list when he applied to college and that if anyone wanted to track the history of reading among the college-bound population, they could see if colleges have preserved those lists....