Everyone has one. It’s nothing to be ashamed of…no matter how big it is. And mine is pretty huge.

It’s the TBR pile.

And I’m not talking about the books you merely want to read, I’m talking about the books you’ve already bought. The ones sitting in piles and bins and on shelves in your house. The ones in the TBR collection on your e-reader. The ones that have been sitting there for months.

How big is your pile?

Photo Credit: Jorge Royan

Photo Credit: Jorge Royan

Yes, I’m a writer. And someday before I die, I’d like to be a published writer. But I’m also a reader–not because reading will help to improve my writing (though it will), or so I can brag about how many books I’ve read in my life (a lot).

I read because I love reading.

I love reading so much I browse Amazon and B&N and the library looking for new books, even though I have so many in my possession already. So apparently I need a little structure–and a little support–in tackling the monstrous collection of books I haven’t yet read.

A blog I follow hosts a TBR Pile Challenge every year, complete with prizes for reviews and posts. But I missed the sign-up window, so I can’t participate.

Instead, I thought I’d have my own informal challenge, and see if anyone wanted to join me. These are the “rules” I’m going to use:

1. Choose the number of books from your TBR pile that you intend to read this year. I’m going with 12, not because my store of books is so small, but because I’m participating in a couple of Goodreads challenges, too, and I want to have time to write. Plus, some of the books on my shelves are big.

2. Books must owned by you for at least six months. This is the point of this challenge–to actually read the books that have been hanging around your shelves, bins, and e-readers waiting for you to notice them again.

3. I’ll check in with a post once a month to share how I’m doing. Anyone is welcome to comment and share their progress as well, whether you start with me now or pick up the cause in June or November. I’ve also created a Goodreads shelf to help keep track of my progress. Then all my challenges will be in one place–work smarter, not harder, right? 🙂

So who’s with me? Who’s going to finally go through those books at the bottom of the pile? Or the research books that went straight to the shelf? Or the e-books on your reader you bought with your gift cards last holiday season and forgot about?

Leave a comment here or on the TBR Challenge page with your commitment: how many books will you read from your TBR pile this year?