One of the great challenges of my job as a book selector/buyer is trying to keep up with the sheer volume of titles being released each season, and the book juggling that seems to occur at various points in the year. You would think, being responsible for choosing the kids books would leave my choices of reading material completely open, but more often than not, I find myself reading for purpose and not purely for pleasure.
Right now is one of those times where I'm juggling several different books, all for different purposes. I've got three book reviews due next week, and one of the books is a title I'll be reviewing. Next is a book I'm reading from a publisher belonging to friends of mine who have asked me to review their books on my blog. I'm also sitting on a jury for a Historical Fiction prize (Canadian Children's Books) and I have a box of about 25 books to get through between now and April when we hold our discussion and choose a winner. Lastly, I have a book that I'm absolutely dying to read, and that while work related, is kind of my guilty pleasure. This can be anything from the next book in a series I enjoy, the latest release by favourite author, or that hot new release that absolutely everyone is talking about. How do I manage to juggle all of these books? Firstly I commute to work, which allows me just over 2 hours a day on public transit to read. I'm fortunate that I don't have difficulty reading on a bus/subway, and it's quiet, uninterrupted time. Secondly, I have a Kindle, and I take it with me to the gym to pass the time while I ride the stationary bike. My plan was to use my Kindle exclusively for non-work related reading, but I have already broken that rule a few times. Finally, I have a book beside my bed, and whenever I find myself alone or with some quiet time where my boyfriend is otherwise occupied, I read. Ironically, work is the one place where I seldom have the opportunity to read, so I have to be particularly diligent about making the time to read. Sadly I've realized that no matter how many books I read, I'll never get to read every book that I'd like to, and sometimes it feels like I've scarcely made a dent in one season before I'm bombarded with catalogues and boxes of ARCS for the next season and so forth. So here's my question to all of you: How many of you find yourselves "juggling" books, and more importantly, how do you keep them all in the air?
Rachel got her first official job in a bookstore twelve years ago in the children’s section of Indigo (a Canadian bookstore chain) and has never looked back. For the last six and a half years she has been the children’s and young adult book selector at a Canadian National Book wholesaler, and loves having the excuse to keep reading children’s books! You can find Rachel reviewing books on her blog, Reading Timbits, or hanging around Twitter @rachelnseigel.