OK, so my final challenge for 2015 is kind of a big deal. I have SO many neglected books on my shelves that I think this challenge is necessary. Before you start thinking I've completely lost it, you should know they are not requiring us to go cold turkey on the book-buying (phew!) So I think I can use this challenge to make a nice dent in my TBR pile while also limiting the new books I acquire without making myself completely crazy. Major kudos to any fellow participants who are attempting to go cold turkey -- I admire your commitment and discipline!
I am aiming for the Purple Belt Level which is reading 31-40 books from my own shelves. This may not seem like a lot, but even reading almost 100 books this year so far, I only counted 28 that were my own copies -- the rest were borrowed from the library, including a large number of audiobooks. With a baby on the way, I anticipate reading less overall in 2015, but I'd like to shift my focus back toward what I already own when I do have the chance to read -- I bought all those books for a reason after all! And you may have noticed that when I signed up for my other four 2015 challenges, I made a point of listing book selections I already own -- so now you know why!
The ultimate goal of this challenge is to read more books from my shelves, so if I do make a few exceptions and allow myself a monthly budget, I think I can still work toward that goal while keeping the new acquisitions in check. Despite my best intentions and my Golden Rule of Book Buying, I totally fell off the wagon last year! Hopefully they won't kick me out of the challenge after this, but here are my exceptions/budget for the year:
Exception #1: Books that don't add to the TBR pile
Books for Baby -- I know I will borrow from the library a lot and my best friend is already dreaming up a book-themed baby shower, but I don't see any reason to abstain from buying baby books because 1. They would get read right away, so no worries about them sitting neglected on a shelf. 2. Books for baby don't really have anything to do with the piles and piles of my own unread books. No need to deprive the little one just because Mommy bought too many books for herself in the past.
Cookbooks -- I really do need to rein myself in when it comes to cookbooks, but the spirit of this challenge is all about reducing the number of new books added to my TBR in favor of reading the neglected books I already own. Whether or not I buy new cookbooks in 2015 will not affect my TBR, so I'm not going to force myself to commit to no new cookbooks.Exception #2: Library Book Sale
Money collected benefits the library and books are usually $1 or $2 -- I don't see any reason to pass up books I find here throughout the year, though obviously I should not go overboard.Exception #3: Used Bookstore Credit
I have a HUGE bag of books to trade in at the used bookstore by my Grandma's house when we visit for Christmas. When I have sufficient credit there, I can literally "buy" books for a 25 cent handling charge each. I can't see myself sitting on all that credit for a whole year without using it, BUT I do think I will probably use a lot of it to get baby books anyway (see above) which would be OK. If in the process, I see a few for me too, I think I can let it slide as long as I have enough credit to cover the order. Besides, if I splurge at Christmastime, it won't be 2015 yet! (hehehe)Exception #4: Book Club Books
I should be able to borrow most of these from the library, but if I can't or it's a book I know I will want to keep, I will allow myself to purchase it. Since these are time sensitive, there are no worries about them sitting neglected on my shelves adding to the long-term TBR pile after I bring them home.BUDGET
Despite all the exceptions I've already made, I would still be very limited compared to my usual habits when it comes to the shiny new books. Since there will always be a new release by a favorite author or the next book in a series that I want to buy and read right away, I will allow myself a "budget" of one book per month which can roll over if I do not use it. There is a good chance I will be so distracted and busy with a new baby that I won't even have a chance to think about buying new books, but you never know!So there you have it, my final challenge for 2015. No matter how many interesting challenges pop up in the next few weeks, I am officially cutting myself off. Wish me luck! I think I'm going to need it :)