Reading Habits



I want to thank Sarah Higbee for nominating me to discuss my reading habits.  I love reading, and I am always willing to discuss my habits and thoughts about it.


You have 20,000 books on your TBR. How in the world do you decide what to read next?

Well, this just about sounds like an accurate situation for me.  I never have any loss of books to be read, whether for teaching, writing, or for pleasure.  So, given that I usually am reading 5-6 books at one time, I would probably choose 1-2 to fit each category and attack them.  And then, look at my piles of books on my bookshelves and wonder if I will ever get through them all.  No matter, I won’t run out of reading material.


You’re halfway through a book and you’re just not loving it. Do you quit or commit?

This would depend on why I am reading the book.  If I am reading a book for pleasure, and I simply do not love it or, at least, enjoy it, after halfway, then I would probably put it aside.  But if there is anything good in it, I would finish it.

Now, if it were for teaching, then I would simply finish it.  In that case, there is a duty to understanding the text fully and not being concerned primarily with my emotional reaction to the book.  I hope, however, that most of the books I teach or read for teaching or writing I would enjoy.


The end of the year is coming and you’re so close yet so far away on your GoodReads challenge. Do you quit or commit?

This is an interesting question because I do not yet belong to GoodReads.  It can, however, be applied to my reading goals in general.  I do not set a specific number of books to be read in a given year, and since I love reading, I am never tempted to just go a week or two without reading.  I can estimate that I do read somewhere between 150-200 books every year, so even if I were on the lower end of that scale or past it, I would simply keep going.  There are always other books that are calling out to be read.

Shoes 2

The covers of a series you love DO. NOT. MATCH. How do you cope?

Ok, I will be brutally honest here.  I don’t care at all about the covers of the books.


Everyone and their mother loves a book you really don’t like. Who do you bond with over shared feelings?

I don’t worry about what other people feel about a book.   I feel no need to please anyone by liking a book that I don’t because of the opinions of others.  I think it is important for everyone have their own views and not be concerned if  they fit in with any crowd.


You’re reading a book and you’re about to start crying in public. How do you deal?

Well, as a man of my age, I do not cry easily–yes, I am of  that generation.  I admit it.  But if it were to happen while reading a book, I would just cry.  I do not embarrass easily, and it just might provoke interesting conversation or responses.  Hmmm….who is that man on the bus sobbing while he is reading?  Maybe we should just move a few seats away from him.


A sequel of a book you loved just came out, but you’ve forgotten a lot from the prior novel. Will you re-read the book? Skip the sequel? Try to find a summary on GoodReads? Cry in frustration?

If this sequel is a book I really want to read, then I would probably reread the first book and then immediately read the sequel.


You don’t want ANYONE borrowing your books. How do you politely tell people “nope” when they ask?

This is not an issue for me, because I am a lover and owner of books, but I am not a collector.  With the exceptions of books I need for teaching or work or a very few prized texts, I would allow most people to borrow from me.


You’ve picked up and put down five different books in the past month. How do you get over the reading slump?

I don’t have reading slumps.  I may not like a book enough to finish it, but I am always reading several books at the same time.

buying books

There are so many new books coming out that you are dying to read! How many do you actually buy?

This depends on our financial situation.  I never buy all of the books I want, because the rent and car payments need to be made.  Food is good also!  I wonder what would happen if I had an unlimited source of income–how many books would I buy?

Old Books on shelf

Old Books on shelf

After you’ve bought a new book you want to get to, how long do they sit on your shelf until you actually read them?

Typically if I have just purchased a new book, then I will read it quickly.  If, however, I am inundated with teaching and reading for work, then a new book might simply have to wait to be read.  “Have patience,” I say to it.  “I will get to you.  I haven’t forgotten about you.”


Nomination time

I hope that you will enjoy answering these questions about your reading habits, if you have the time:

Sheila Renee Parker

A Small Press Life

Susanna J. Sturgis

Karen B. Pearce


Paula Donnolo

Zach Chopchinski

Rebecca McLaughlin

Kat Kent

Esther Newton

Beverley Young

Herminia Chow

Russell J. Fellows


Victoria Iskak

Becky Due


Mitch Teemley

Kritika Vashist

Kayla Johnson


Cindy Knoke

GP Cox

Kate Colby

D. Wolfgang Miller

Wow, this is quite a long list, and if I have missed anyone, I apologize.  Please feel free to weigh in on this topic.

Happy reading to all!

31 thoughts on “Reading Habits

  1. Thanks for the tag, Charles. If you don’t mind I will do a brief summary here. Sadly it is becoming more and more difficult for me to find books that really capture my interest. I enjoy reading biographies, historical fiction, and books with a spiritual slant such as one that was recently recommended to me ‘Racing In the Rain’ – told from a dog’s POV about his relationships with his owner/race car driver. When I do come across a good book that I cannot put down, I will sometimes spend an entire weekend reading outdoors. I used to have a large library however during my last move I donated several boxes of books to a local second hand store. Like you Charles, it is common for me to have two or three books on the go.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you for the nomination, French. I would be willing to give you answers here in the comments, but I’m afraid I don’t put personal info on my site. Being that it is non-fiction, my activities really don’t enter into my website’s content. Is this acceptable to you?

    Liked by 1 person

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