My husband and I enjoyed a very rare date night last weekend. (Thank you, in-laws – my son loves spending the night with Nonna and Pop Pop!) After dinner out and spending too much money on “healthy junk” at Whole Foods, we sat on the back deck, enjoying the nice evening and talking. Somehow the conversation went to books and reading, as it often does with me. Hubby proposed an interesting idea: Wouldn’t it be great if authors and publishers took a year off from publishing any new books?
“That way you can catch up on all the books you’ve been wanting to read,” he said. Little does he know my Goodreads TBR is at about 425 (!) titles. But I appreciated the sentiment. Let’s set aside considerations of how these authors, editors, publishers, agents, etc. would make a living for that year. Let’s assume that they’ve been given stipends from generous benefactors. Booksellers and professional reviewers could go to their backlist for items to sell and promote.
Would you want such a thing to happen? At first I was all for it. I could make a good dent in the TBR and not have to face the “pressure” of the new books coming out every month that look AMAZING. (And the fear of missing out if I don’t read them in a timely fashion.)
But then I thought, I actually really enjoy looking at all the new books coming out every month – the discussions on Book Riot, the monthly columns in O Magazine and Redbook and Entertainment Weekly. My co-worker said she wouldn’t like the moratorium because she has new books from her favorite authors coming out and she simply “must read them!” So there’s that consideration.
I guess it falls on me to stop putting so much pressure on myself to get the next book read so that I can read the next book and so on. Lately I’ve been feeling like I need to read ALL THE BOOKS NOW, which I logically know is impossible, especially given that I have a job and a kid and a house that won’t clean itself. Maybe it comes along with having a fairly new blog about books? I feel like I should be posting more, therefore, I should be reading more? I don’t know. I haven’t put any more books on my library holds lists in a couple of weeks. That helps. Those library books always seem to out-prioritize the unread books I already own.
Have you ever felt self-imposed reading pressure? Have you guys got any tricks for letting go of it? Would you want a book moratorium, or would it hamper your excitement for reading?