Where do you keep your TBR list?

tbr journalMany of us speak about the proverbial TBR list. The list that keeps growing and growing. Books toppling over from the weight of too many titles. I am curious to know  how exactly do you all compile your lists?

I used to write titles in the back of whatever journal I was writing in at the moment. That wasn’t very organized though. After I started blogging in 2007, I discovered the wide rich world of book bloggers and decided I needed to keep better track of my lists. I tried doing it on the computer. But after my laptop was stolen and my list gone, I decided a hardcopy was the best way to go.

A couple of years ago I found a little mini-journal at the bookstore. The cover looks like an old school library insert filled with date stamps. This really appealed to me as it brought back fond memories of my days in the school library. It is separated into three sections: one for books borrowed, one for books lent, and one for favorite passages. Well, I scratched those out and created my own sections. The first one is one for books I’d like to read. The second section is for books I’ve read that I would like to own as most of the books I read are from the library. The third section is blank for now.

I keep this little journal on the shelf below the coffee table. When I read book blogs, I not only favorite the reviews of books I’m interested in, but I also write the titles down in the journal. When I go to the library, I take the journal with me for easy reference when looking up specific books. When I am browsing bookstores, I put new titles in my phone in a draft text message. Then I write them in the journal when I get home.

So far this method has worked well for me. It is convenient and handy, and I so enjoy looking at the cover. I also get immense pleasure when I am able to scratch out titles.

 What about you? Is your list more mythical than physical? How do you organize all the titles you would like to read?

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18 Responses to Where do you keep your TBR list?

  1. I keep my list(s) in a couple of places. First, I have a bookshelf of books that I already own that I still need to read – I keep them separate from my other books. Second, I’ve created a list in my public library’s online catalog. When I hear about a book I’d like to read, the first thing I do is check whether my public library has it. If they do, I add it to my personal list (only available when I’m logged in with my library card number). If my public library doesn’t have it, I list it on my “wishlist” in LibraryThing.
    Since you like to get books from the library, I would recommend (if you haven’t already) logging in to your library’s catalog remotely with your library card number to see if the software provides a way for you to select certain items and add them to a personalized list. My library also lets me request books online (whether they’re at my branch or another) and then all I have to do when I go to the library is pick them up. Very convenient!

    • jehara says:

      I like the library idea. I will certainly check that out. I am realizing many people separate unread books onto a separate shelf. I so do not do that. I just buy books and shove them in random places and never think about them as being part of my TBR. Hmm. I may have to rethink this. . .

  2. ibeeeg says:

    I like your method – a lot. I think I may try it.
    Right now, I am keeping a spreadsheet on google docs. What I like about the spreadsheet is that I can keep a link to the review that put the book onto my list. I like your idea of placing the review in your favorites.

    I do have a small bookcase of books that I want to read but have not yet, and I go to those shelves from time to time to pull a book.

    I really need to clean up my goodreads, amazon wish list and stuff – get rid of my tbr titles and consolidate in one location. sigh… lots of time needed there to make that happen.

  3. Kimberly says:

    One word . . . Goodreads. I can pull it up whenever and add to it whenever I come across something. SUPER easy and convenient. (So what if the list keeps getting longer . . . ?!)

    • jehara says:

      (So what if the list keeps getting longer . . . ?!)

      haha!! love it! so true.

      I have been meaning to check out GoodReads as my bookclub has a group on there. Don’t know if I could successfully keep track of books on it though. I am still trying to get all of my books recorded and tagged appropriately in LibraryThing. That has been three years in the making. . .

  4. Heather says:

    Mine is definitely on the not hard copy side. I use Goodreads as my piler. Also I pick up a lot of books on the fly from second hand bookstores or from Costco, etc so I pile those up on the same shelf and think about what I want to read next. Library…I put on hold some that I really want from other book bloggers! But I love your idea! Neat and tidy and organized! Love it!

    • jehara says:

      Hmm. I didn’t realize an actual TBR bookshelf was so popular. That has never occurred to me. I may have to start doing that in addition to my book journal.

  5. kaye says:

    I have a folder of “samples” and books I have downloaded for “free” or “reduced” on my kindle. I usually browse them before looking for a “new” download.

    • jehara says:

      I do have books favorited on my Kindle so when I am looking for something new to read on it, I remember which books I was previously looking at. This is very helpful.

  6. Margot says:

    This is great question for me. Normally I’m fairly organized but when it comes to my books, I’m horrible at it. I write titles on pieces of paper and stick them in my purse to be found months later when cleaning out my purse. I have a Wish List document on my computer but it is just numbered with no order. I obviously need help and I like the suggestions offered here.

    • jehara says:

      This used to be me! But I got really frustrated with losing titles and not being able to remember them so I finally got myself organized.

    • Kimberly says:

      This used to be me too! And then I graduated and started keeping a list on my crackberry. Now I just use Goodreads (although if my crackberry is handy, I will make a note on there until I log on to Goodreads).

  7. Trisha says:

    This is the one area of books that I am a major fail. My wishlists are all over the place, and as such I have almost no ability to keep track.

    • jehara says:

      Mine used to be that way but I eventually got fed up with my disorganization. Mainly because I would lose my titles and be at a loss as what to read next. I love adding books to my list. 🙂

  8. I use Good Reads too. LOL. I did come across the mini book journals you spoke of at my local bookstore. I picked up two. One of them I will be giving away soon in a giveaway. The other is mine. The only problem I have is I don’t know which to keep and which to give LOL.


  9. jennygirl says:

    Well I originally started out with all these little pieces of paper. Then I created a spreadsheet that I carried with me. Now I kind of Goodreads, but I have a small pile of post its on my desk at work. So obviously nothing has worked for me.
    When i would go to the library list in hand, the book wouldn’t be there and I would be distracted by the pretty covers of other books there. So poof goes the list. I don’t know. I’m on the fence with the whole list thing lately.
    I love the journal idea you have going though. Plus that journal cover is adorable! I covet 🙂

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