How Do You Deal with Your TBR Pile?

Happy belated World Book and Copyright Day, everyone! I’m using this as an opportunity to talk about books. Again. Because books.

This time, it’s about the impossible TBR piles.

Seriously, how do you deal with yours?

I’m trying not to buy too many books, and to read the majority of the books I’ve already bought before getting new ones. It works to a point. Sort of.

At the last Belgrade Book Fair (October 2016), I bought 49 books. Yes, it’s unreasonable. Between the Book Fair and April 24th (that would be today), I got 15 new books. Out of the 49 bought at the Book Fair, I’ve got 7 left to read. Not bad. As for the 15 new ones, 12 read, 3 to go. Again, not bad. Not bad at all.

But.

One of the books I have bought at the Book Fair was Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo. Awesome YA read! And it has a sequel, Crooked Kingdom, so I’ll have to get and read that one, too. Fortunately, there are only two books in the series.

Then, there’s one of the books I recently got, My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante. A beautiful novel about the friendship of two women (and a lot more). The book ends with a cliffhanger, there are 4 in the series, the second one was recently published in Serbia, so…

And there are some books by new Serbian authors that I want to read.

And some books by non-Serbian authors, too.

And…

You get the picture.

No matter how fast I go through my TBR pile (and sometimes it’s really fast, 12 books read in April, and counting), there are always more books to read, and buy, and add to the pile. And that’s just paperbacks and hardcovers; I’m trying to get through them first, because they’re taking up physical space (hey, it’s as good excuse as any).

It’s not that I’m getting nowhere, but sometimes it feels that way. So many books, never enough time…

How do you deal with it? Do you have a system for your TBR pile that actually works for you?

A Cute Experiment

I’ve been wondering… Can I place an Instagram video here?

Let’s see!

Several edits later, after a few experiments…

Dogs just wanna have fun, part 2 #dog #dogs #dogstagram #dogsofinstagram #dogseverywhere #cutedog #dogplaying

A post shared by Ivana Milakovic (@ivana.angel011) on

This is my father’s (and my brother’s) dog, playing with his favorite toy: my brother’s old slipper. A real beast, isn’t he?

Silly Instagram Bots Are Silly

Actually, it’s the people using the bots who are silly.

I’ve been spending some time on Instagram, exploring it, enjoying it (if you wish to follow me, here I am, and you can mostly see the stuff I’m doing, and the books I’m reading, lots of books!), and noticing silly stuff.

For example, follow-for-follow accounts. Err, why? If you don’t like what I post, why would you follow me? And if I’m not interested in the stuff someone posts, like countless motivational pictures, why would I follow them? Just for the numbers game? Numbers mean nothing if there’s no genuine desire to support them.

Or, the accounts that are not openly follow-for-follow, but treat that dreadful growth hack marketing advice as if it was the Word of the God Almighty. You know the advice: follow people on social media, and if they don’t follow you back, unfollow them, because why would you follow people who don’t follow you? How about: because you like what they’re posting?

And then, there are bots. I follow Gary Vaynerchuk because I like what he says about marketing and storytelling, and because I feel that I can learn a lot from him and then adapt it to my needs (hey, we all need to know how to market our stuff!). Whenever I like his pictures/videos, I gain a few new followers, all entrepreneurs with a ton of motivational quotes on their profiles, many of them leaving vague comments on my pictures.

Comments that make it obvious that they haven’t even looked at the picture, so it’s clear that they’re using bots for it.

“Great shot”, “Awesome”, “Cute!” and such are supposed to be vague enough to fit most posts, but if I post a picture of the book I’m reading at the time, and make it clear in the hashtags that it’s The Exorcist, and some people comment “Sweet”, “Aw nice”, “Spreading good vibes”, or “Very cute”, it’s painfully obvious that they’re bots, and that the account owners couldn’t care less.

Or, if I post a picture with a Snapchat filter, state that I’m not feeling well, but at least my hair color is awesome, and get comments like “Super nice!”, is that really a human who saw the picture, or is it a bot?

The thing is, Gary Vaynerchuk is as successful as he is because (among other things) he takes the time to answer in person. His comments are his own, and so are his replies. Well, either that, or he is using bots that are so good that they can pass for actual caring human beings, the world as we know it has ended, and we can all go home now, thank you for the attention. And he talks about it, and his followers admire him… And then they use bots.

Don’t get me wrong: this isn’t a rant, and the bots don’t bother me. None of them are rude in any way, and they’re easy to ignore. The accounts will stop following me on their own as soon as they see that I’m not following them back, and it’s not like I’m going to miss the people who have zero interest in me or in what I’m doing.

I just see it as silly, and I don’t see the point. It’s like spam comments on blogs, except that people do manage to get followers that way (mostly those who are in the numbers game too, I guess).

How about you? If you use Instagram, how do you feel about that kind of comments?