I discovered this list of 10 Painless Ways To Stick to Your Book Buying Ban on BOOKRIOT. Some of them I already knew but others shed some light on some things.
#10 isn’t the worst idea in the world. At the request of a friend, I created an Amazon list for my birthday. It has several books on it. Going over that wouldn’t be the worst idea but I’ve done that enough.
I do, however, periodically like to go over my TBR list on GoodReads and cull books that no longer appeal to me or I don’t recall what they’re about. My TBR is how I remember to come back to a book I couldn’t get to before. I never feel guilty for taking a book off my TBR because if I can’t remember it, it’s not the right time for it. I strongly believe in book serendipity. If a book is meant to find me, it will.
I really like #3 to review your shelves for something to donate. I just saw that owned so many books I was running out of room but this gave me another way to think about it. “…provides a visceral reminder of how much privilege is implied by the idea of having to work hard not to buy something that many people consider a luxury…”
While I’ve managed to accrue some credit card debt with my book and makeup buying ways, books have never been unavailable to me. My friends have them, I always get gifts cards that can be used to buy more books for my birthday and Christmas, and the library always has them. I have never truly wanted for books. The fact that I live in excess and have the ability to do so speaks to a privilege I often forget I have.
#1 became so true when I was trying to get a copy of Confessions of a Sociopath. Our regular library was out but they were able to hold one for me at a smaller branch. Boyfriend wanted to wander around since we’d never been to this branch before. I wandered past the New Releases section and it was like Christmas. I can take this one home and I’ve been meaning to read that one! Logically I knew the library was my best resource to minimize buying but it didn’t hit home until I actually lived it.
While I have lapsed in January buying something I wasn’t sure would continue to be available to me, I’ve done well otherwise. I haven’t brought home any other books that are due back somewhere by month’s end. Hopefully I can keep this up for most of the year.