Our Personal Reading Statistics

In I'D RATHER BE READING, there's a section in which Anne Bogel discusses one of the drawbacks of having read so many books:  forgetting titles, or even that you read a book at all.  I must say, this struggle is too real.  A lot of times, we can hear so much about a book that we forget we've never read it, or books in our To Be Read list find their way onto our normal shelves, so we start thinking of them in terms of books we have already read.  On the flipside, I have been asked on multiple occasions how many books I've actually read in my life, and it's always a sad realization when I can't come up with even an educated guess.

Just imagine . . . There are probably so many books you've read that have been forgotten.  Maybe you were too young, or your brain was only half present while you were reading it.  Maybe you loved it so much, you flew through it, leaving it easily forgotten.  It's heart-breaking, to be honest.  The books I've read, no matter if I remember them or not, have all had a role in shaping some part of who I was then, who I am today, and who I will be in the future, and I think it's discrediting to lose that, like forgetting the day you learned to braid hair or the day you went to the circus and discovered your love for cotton candy.  They're small things, but no less meaningful, considering your personhood would be altered in someway if you hadn't experienced them.

If we are shaped by the books we read, then we should have some way to catalog or record them.  For the past five years, I have written each title down on a slip of paper with the author and the date I finished the book below it.  The folded slips then go in that year's "Book Jar" (which never gets as full as I would like it to) for me to sort through come January, reminiscing on the books I read and considering which my favorites were.  Though I would like to keep up this practice, if only for the aesthetic, I have begun considering alternate ways that I might be able to keep track, something that's a bit more practical for when I want to look back in a few years. 

Goodreads seems to be very popular.

A personal Instagram is clever.

But book journals are genius.

Even if I just adapt a normal journal into a book journal, I can see this working well for my tastes.  I'll be able to keep track of just about everything that Goodreads does, but in analog, which is, in my humble opinion, inherently superior.  Good thing there are both blank and book-ready journals for sale in the store ;) 


Okay so new topic.  My time as an intern here at The Bookshelf has unfortunately come to a close.

It seems just yesterday I was looking at my calendar in awe of the number of weeks I would get to work in such a cherished environment.  I had no idea at that time how seamlessly I would fold into place working with social media and my fellow staff members, and I am ever grateful for the opportunity to spend my final semester here.


Stay nerdy!


Julia KleserComment