Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Library Thing Tuesday (57) + picture of Emmy

Today's question from Wendi: How often do you find yourself struggling through a book (if you HAD to estimate)? How far will you read before you stop and consider it a DNF (Did not finish)? Will you skim ahead and see if it gets any better? Once you put it down, do you still write a quick review? What do you do with the book when you are done?

I have a good instinct about what books I'll like, so I don't find myself struggling through a book that often. This year, I've invoked the 50 page rule twice, and I wrote a post called I'm just not that into you... These two books are still on my shelf, but they may not be for long.

You see, I have a bigger problem than DNF and that is DNS (Did not start). I have a bunch of review copies of books that I picked up at book fairs, received unsolicited or won in contests that are gathering lots of dust. I am making it a summer project to read the first chapter of any review copy that has been on my shelf more than 9 months and then decide to keep it or purge it. I'll keep you all updated on my progress of course! Anyone want to join me? The more the merrier! I'll call it the First Chapter Challenge. Unofficial of course.

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This week, you are going to have to work for your Emmy fix! I did a guest post over at Heather Zundel's blog about how I got started blogging, and Emmy is posing with the first books I ever reviewed on my blog. It's very cute, I promise.

24 comments:

Ro Wi Jo said...

I, too, have trouble with Did Not Start (yet, but want to). I shall join your quest!

Also, I use the "1 page for each year old you are up till fifty", so currently 20 pages. Usually I know before then but I give it at least that.

Some, such as one I am reading now (THE FOREST OF HANDS AND TEETH) had good reviews and seemed like they had potential. I keep reading despite my misgivings. Usually they sit on my "currently reading" stack for a few weeks before I put them down around fifty pages and call it good. =/

Lenore said...

Ro - Glad you're joining in! THE FOREST OF HANDS AND TEETH gets better, I swear! Don't give up yet :)

Cheryl said...

Oh yes, the DNS pile. I've suspended accepting reviews until I get through my pile *sigh*

Kate said...

My DNS pile is large, oops. I always feel like I have to finish a book if I start it, even if that means struggling onwards.

Dreadful Penny said...

I'm pathologically OCD about abandoning books. I almost never do (in fact, I can think of only one book that I've abandoned in the last ten years: Nick Hornby's How to Be Good. *shudder*) Since I know this about myself, I try to be fairly selective about what I start, but that still doesn't keep me from plowing through a 700-page book on labor relations every once in a while, just because it "looked interesting at the time."

Lenore said...

Cheryl - I am only accepting very few at this time.

Kate - I also feel a bit guilty abandoning a book, but I have to remember there are so many other better books waiting!

Penny - HOW TO BE GOOD made me shudder too. I finished it though. Your comment made me chuckle!

Amelia said...

Great idea for a challenge! I will join if I can gather up enough DNS books to read. I find that since I switched over to primarily YA books, I haven't had as big a problem with DNF as I used to. I dunno why, but I'm really glad of it.

cupcakewitch said...

My DNF pile is bigger than my DNS pile. I have a habit of skipping around, reading diff. books at once and then settling on one book and just focusing on that one, forgetting the rest (even if they are good!)

Elizabeth said...

I never consciously choose to abandon books (even when I think I should), but if I happen to put a book I'm not much enjoying down for a while, I'm unlikely to ever pick it back up.

This is how I got out of finishing Vanity Fair after suffering through 150 pages.

Bookgeek said...

My DNS pile is huge, my DNF much much smaller as, sadly, I always want to think the book will get better (especially if reviews have been good). But life is short and my TBR pile huge so I too think 50 pages is about the limit for a bad book. I've just given up two in a row and feel horrible about it.

And have to agree, Penny, How to be Good was a horrible, horrible book. So was Slam. And after all those amazing early titltes of his!

Lenore said...

Amelia - YA are usually not as daunting, so you think, I'm this far in, might as well finish it.

Marie - I'm not a skipper-arounder at all. One book at a time for me.

Elizabeth - I actually made it all the way through VANITY FAIR. And then I watched the movie with Reese Witherspoon.

Bookgeek - I'm hoping my summer first chapter challenge will whittle down my DNS pile! I'm so excited to get started (and so are my shelves).

bermudaonion said...

I have the same problem. All of my books are ones that I want to read though - I just can't find the time! Emmy is adorable as always.

TERI REES WANG said...

Good to know that even you have a tolerance threshold = 50 pages.

I always find it odd that the books I intend to read by my own choosing can be the last to actually be attempted, and the ones that are chosen for me by book club or gift or prodding are at times are so effortless.

Bonnie said...

I love the First Chapter Challenge. I have so many DNS review copies sitting on my shelves and I'm starting to feel guilty. I have to be very selective about accepting new ones at the moment. I am going to follow along as I love the idea. How are you going to pass the books on that you decide not to read? Hmm.. A First Chapter Challenge Giveaway? I think that I will do something like that.

Bonnie said...

I was going to post on Heather's blog but there seems to be a problem with the comment box..there wasn't one, very weird.
You've done some amazing things with your blog in a year! Love the pic with Emmy and the books!!

Dar said...

Ha-you should have seen me scrolling up and down for the pic of Emmy until I stopped long enough to read-lol. I need my Emmy fix and I got it! What an adorable pic-that one would be perfec on your blog somewhere. Emmy settling in to maybe read a book.

Nymeth said...

DNSs are definitely more of a problem for me too! I have developed pretty good reading instincts over the years. It's rare for me to pick up a total dud.

Yvonne said...

I haven't found my struggling through too many books either. I'm a pretty good judge of what I'll like and not like.

Silvia said...

When I start a book and I don't like it or I feel a bit lost I continue reading 'cause it can allways get better. I don't like to have books at mid-reading.

Lenore said...

kathy - I WANT to read all the books I have, but yeah, time is a problem!

Teri - Well, I hardly ever invoke it!

Bonnie - I'd like to do giveaways for the books I decide not to keep, but winners would have to wait until I am back in the states again...


Dar - I can just imagine :)

Lenore said...

Nymeth- I don't often pick up a dud either.

Yvonne - Me too.

Silvia - Really? You are very patient!

Linda said...

I rarely start a book and don't finish it - maybe 2 or 3 times a year. I'm with you, I know the kind of books I like, so I tend to go for favorite authors and ones recommended to me.

Glad I got my Emmy fix! Adorable as usual!

Belle said...

I'm very bad with DNFs - it's because I like to read things I'm in the mood to read, so often I'll put down a decent book simply because I'm in another mood. I always intend to get back to it, but, especially with library books, that doesn't always happen. Love love love the first chapter idea - I have lots of DNSs too.

Laina said...

With me, it depends on my mood, and how many overdue library books I have. There are books I've read less than a chapter and given up on (one in particular I threw across my room, but that's another story...) If I'm in the mood to suffer through it to write a snarky review (it's fun sometimes, lol), I might, but most of the time, if I can't get into it by the second or third chapter, I quit. I decided a long time ago that life is too short and there are too many good books to suffer through ones I don't want to read.

But I'm weird. :P