Top Ten Tuesday: “I wish I knew how to quit you…” — or, Ten Bad Book Habits

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This weekly meme is hosted by Broke and Bookish.

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We all have them. Bad book habits. Maybe you lick your finger before turning a page (ew, germs!), or fold a corner down to mark your spot. Or perhaps you have the unfortunate habit of starting books and never finishing them. Today’s Top Ten topic is all about the bookish things that you want to quit. So without further ado…

Here are the ten book habits that I wish I could quit.

1. Joining book clubs

It sounds like a great idea: You get to meet up with other book nerds once a month, you sit around and talk about books for a few hours, coffee is consumed, and horizons are broadened. But I have the consistently bad luck of joining awful book clubs. Either the books they choose are boring (let’s read Anna Karenina because Oprah said to!) or there are hour-long debates because no one can decide what to read next. And, let’s be honest, there’s always that one guy (or girl!) who likes to hear the sound of their own voice a bit too much. Yawn!

2. Starting series halfway through

I’m impatient. When I see a new book that I desperately want to read, I don’t want to go back and read the first two books in the series… I just want to dive right in! Sometimes this works out, especially in series that are set up specifically for this purpose (serial mysteries, for example). But most of the time I end up missing out on important key events from previous books, so I don’t enjoy the book as much as I could.

3. Not finishing a series

I’m a serial book dater. I pick up a book, start reading it, and then move on to the next one without looking back. Remember the part about how I’m impatient? Waiting for the next book in a series is like torture. There are so many other great books to read! Why would I wait around a year or more?

4. Following the “cool kids”

You know that one popular blogger who pops up over and over again? The one with the ~amazing posts that get a billion likes? They just posted about the newest release, and I’m immediately drawn to it. “If this very popular blogger loves it, I probably will too!” I think. NOPE. I keep falling into this trap, but I feel like I rarely love books that are wildly popular, or that are recommended by big name bloggers.

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5. Reading books before seeing the movie

I have this rule, where I try not to see book-to-movie adaptations unless I’ve read the book first. It’s why I won’t see The Martian yet. But the movie rarely lives up to the book, and actually tends to ruins the book for me. I form mental images in my head of what characters and settings look like, and those images don’t match up to Hollywood’s concepts. (I can’t re-read The Hobbit anymore without picturing movie-version-Thorin… which does not at all match the book description!)

I just need to choose. Book or movie. Not both.

6. Buying books without reading the sample chapter

Especially when I find a new author on Amazon with an interesting book summary. I actually had to return a book that I’d purchased last month, because the writing was so terrible that I couldn’t make it past Page 20… but the blurb seemed so promising! Dear self: read the stinkin’ sample chapter!

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7. Hesitating on hitting the “buy” button

Most indie ebooks cost between $2 and $6 (and most big-publisher ones cost less than $10). I spend more than that on a Starbucks drink that lasts me twenty minutes. Why, then, do I hesitate to buy a book that will give me hours or days of entertainment?

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8. Starting a new book right after finishing an amazing one

Maybe it’s ‘hair of the dog’ for book nerds, but when you have a really amazing book hangover and immediately dive into another book, it’s not fair to the next read. I’m still emotionally compromised by whatever I’ve just finished, and I know nothing will compare, so I’m pretty much doomed to not enjoy the next book I pick up. I need to give myself more time to process after finishing a really fantastic novel.

9. Judging books by their covers

I am THE WORST at this. I literally put off reading a book for over a year one, because the cover was so stupid. When I was finally bored enough to give in and try it, I ended up loving it so much that I couldn’t put it down. I’m still infinitely more likely to pick up a book with a pretty cover over one with a boring/plain/poorly-done cover.

10. Picking books over people

I’m an introvert. Socializing is exhausting, people are overwhelming, and I would rather curl up with a book in bed than go to the bar. This is something that I’m getting better at, though! Even if I’m in the middle of an amazing book, I still make myself go out and be around people, even if it’s just for an hour over dinner in the mess hall. But my favorite “socializing” is always going to be sitting on my friend’s couch, book in hand, while she reads on the other couch across from me.

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What bad book habits do you have?

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2 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: “I wish I knew how to quit you…” — or, Ten Bad Book Habits

  1. I would love to join book clubs too but like you, I’m afraid that they’d be about boring-ass books and I don’t like boring-ass books, or about classics that I’m not interested in. I am thinking of starting one soon though! Maybe… I’ll have to find minions willing to ride it out with me first 😉

    I am guilty of not finishing a series, though, if a middle book did not meet expectations. I can be so hard to please and easily discouraged when I see something I don’t like in a book and it doesn’t go away.

    As for me, I rarely believe in hypes nowadays. There were books that were hyped to the heavens by the blogosphere, and I came in with great expectations only to crash and burn… extremely. I still haven’t forgiven those books for letting me down 😡 HAHAHA

    Faye at The Social Potato

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Faye!

      If you start an online book club, let me know! I’m not against joining book clubs, but I just have such bad experiences with them. I used to be in a great one in Chicago, specifically for adults who enjoy reading YA novels, and that was actually a lot of fun… until the inevitable arguments over what to read next week (and the decision to read adult books… in a YA book club!)

      I usually assume that the second book in a series will be terrible, and hope the third will redeem it. I’ve been let down by that middle book so many times that it’s almost an expectation now.

      Book betrayal! Such a terrible feeling, to see a book that everyone seems to love and that you just can’t make yourself read. 😦

      Like

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