I’m the first to admit that grad school keeps me busy, busier than I expected! Chances are, though, that one of the things that brings people like me to library school is their love of books. While homework definitely cuts into my pleasure reading time, I make a point of reading for fun too.
Why do I make reading for fun a priority? One of the main reasons is that reading helps me relax. I often have several books in progress, so I can decide at any given time what will interest and relax me the most at that time. (Now, some people prefer to read one book at a time, while others, like me, often juggle several books at once. It’s all good.)
I also enjoy being able to discuss books I’m reading at any time. Although I’m not part of a book club right now, keeping a book at the ready means I can always be ready to answer the question, “What are you reading right now?” I love the conversations that this question encourages!
In addition to enjoying book-related conversations in person, I also belong to several social networking websites for tracking books I’ve read. My favorite is Goodreads.com. While there are several book tracking + social networking sites out there, Goodreads seems to be the only one that has an iPhone app as well. The app is especially handy when looking for books to read at the library or bookstore. I also have an account on Shelfari, which is powered by Amazon. The interesting thing about Shelfari is that the data entered by users into fields like characters, setting, and description, help populate the extras for titles viewed and read on the Kindle and via Kindle apps. LibraryThing, another reading + social networking site I’m on, has even more opportunities for data entry about the books you read and own. I find it to be pretty crowded, though, and perhaps too much like my work. I really enjoy my day job, but am looking for something simpler, with more interaction with others, for my pleasure reading. Another thing I like about Goodreads is being a Goodreads Librarian. In this role, I can make edits to book information as I see errors, but it doesn’t happen often enough to feel laborious and time-consuming.
I have more friends (real and virtual) on Goodreads than any of the others, and that’s part of the attraction for me, too. Plus, since I’ve been using Goodreads the longest, I have the most data (books and reviews) on there. I’ve tried catching up and keeping up on Shelfari and LibraryThing as well, but I often find it too much to juggle on a regular basis, at least while I’m working and going to library school. I’d rather spend that time reading! 🙂