The pile of books you never get around to reading…


So I have this pile of books I never get around to reading because I’m not disciplined enough.

It could also be because they’re non-fiction.

You see, when I typically start reading a non-fiction book, I find I can’t get swept along by it as easily as I can by fiction. The act of reading feels like torture even though I’m learning and the subject matter is interesting.

This year I’ve decided to read just one of those non-fiction books every month. Just one.

These are the ones on my list for the year:

  1. Goals – Brian Tracey
  2. I thought it was just me – Brene Brown (I’ve also read The gifts of imperfection – fantastic!)
  3. The five love languages for children – Chapman and Campbell
  4. Do more great work – Michael Bungay Stanier
  5. Men are like waffles, women are like spaghetti – Bill and Pam Farrel
  6. It’s all too much – Peter Walsh
  7. Organizing magic – Sandra Felton
  8. The encore effect – Mark Sanborn (I loved the Fred book)
  9. Secrets to getting more done in less time – Donna Otto
  10. First-time mom – Kevin Leman
  11. Have a new you by Friday – Kevin Leman
  12. When your best is not good enough – Kevin Leman (might as well read 11 & 12 after each other – they came in a 3 in 1 and I read the Birth Order one years ago – yes, I thoroughly recommend it)

I just recently discovered something really cool that’s working well for me and so I thought I’d share it with you too.

Nothing earth-shattering, but a small change of habit.

I read just one chapter every day.

That’s it.

The Goals book has 21 chapters and I’m further with it this year than I was when I started reading it about 4 years ago. By the way, I started over so I could get a proper sense of the book.

Back to my old habits…

You see, before I’d think I need to only read one book at a time.

This time, I read my one non-fiction chapter in the morning or when the kids nap on the weekend days, and at night, I indulge in my fiction.

It’s working really, really well.

If I continue with this practice, I will complete those 12 much earlier than December and then I can tackle the rest of my bookshelf.

What is your reading style?

Do you prefer fiction or non-fiction?

Which books are in your pile that you’re just not getting around to reading?Any of the ones on my list?

PS yes, that bookshelf needs to be decluttered in a major way šŸ™‚

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  1. My preferred reading is fiction though I do occasionally buy non- fiction. I need to be VERY interested in the subject matter before I buy that type of book though because chances are that I won’t actually complete it.
    AT the moment I’m in that frame of mind so I’m actually getting to my non- fiction. I’m also reading through ALL the fiction that remains unread on my shelf. If I’m not completely drawn in by chapter 2 then I put the book into the “donate” box. I figure that this is supposed to be something fun and that there is really no need to torture myself.
    My friend usually reads 5 or so books concurrently. I have tried this approach and it simply doesn’t work for me. I find that I NEVER get done with any of them. Different strokes I guess? I need to be completely into ONE book, finish it and then move onto the next one.
    I don’t have any of those on your list btw but at one stage I did plan to buy number 3 & 6. Number 3 because I LOVED the first LL book and number 6 because I saw that guy on Oprah and I rather liked his approach. Not right now though. Too much to get through.May get them on Kindle in a few months.
    Julia recently posted..Sunday Stuff

  2. Do you have a goodreads account? I recently got hooked on this. In fact, on Saturday I just scanned in most of my bookshelves. (Barcode scanner on my android phone connected with goodreads android app; can scan in piles of books in a very short amount of time. Geeky bliss!)

    This is helping motivate me, as I like the reward of moving a book to “read” and also getting to rate/review it if I wish. There is also accountability of like-minded friends if you connect it up. (As opposed to spamming your whole facebook collection of non-readers…)

    I have about 10 books I’m “reading” right now… only at least 6 of them haven’t even been touched in months, and the two I got from the library last week are almost done. (Incidentally, they do fall into your fiction/non-fiction categories, so that may be the reason!) Thanks for the tip on a-chapter-a-day, I’m going to try that!

    Ps: if you do have an account already, may I add you as a friend?

  3. I’m one of those that read 5 books at a time a mixture of fiction, non-fiction and poetry.

    I love Kevin Leman’s books. I think I read most of them now. Practical and full of humor.

    Right now I am reading A Year with Rumi, Killing Lincoln, The Hundred Secret Senses by Amy Tan, a business book Small Time Operator and Ilse Crawford’s book the Sensual Home.
    Beth recently posted..Paperwork on the Go

    • Marcia Francois says

      LOL Beth, how do you keep the 5 books straight in your head? I loved the birth order book!!! And I’ve read The Hundred Secret Senses – Amy Tan – I enjoyed all of her books!

  4. Martienne says

    I actually have a tendency to read a lot more non-fiction than fiction. I also tend to read a lot more content on the web than from physical books, but that has to do more with the fact that it’s more easily accessible and I end up spending a lot of time in bed with back problems–hard to get to the library or book store when you’re hurting. The sole exception to my lack of fiction-reading is fanfiction. I like to give young burgeoning writers encouragement and tips on improving their writing when I write my reviews. Anyway, the fact that I read so much online tends to eliminate the book clutter, though I do know I need to go through my shelves.

  5. Looks like there are a bunch of great and inspiring books on this list! I’m more a fiction type of girl, but one of my goals is to read more non-fiction, self-improvement books!
    ChloƩ recently posted..Recent LOs

    • Marcia Francois says

      Great! Start with ones that interest you. What kind of self-improvement books?

      • Oh, there are many that are interesting me. Definitely a one or two finances-related, a couple more about organising, and maybe some about time management as well. I’ve already read “The Happiness Project” and I loved it. I left it to my mom (gotta share the good stuff, right?) but I can’t wait to get it back and read it again! Yes, I’m a re-reader!
        ChloƩ recently posted..Recent LOs

  6. Oh my word I have just been liberated. I have been beating myself up for not reading books that has been sitting on my bookshelf, some of which have been there for years and I just never get to read them. I love the one in the morning and one at night. Got one in the “powder room” now and i am making daily progress by just doing one chapter a time =)
    Much love,

    • Marcia Francois says

      Teresa, so glad my words helped liberate you. At least this way you’ll get through about 10 – 12 books this year if you keep the chapter a day going šŸ™‚

  7. Brilliant! Marcia, I’m going to tackle my library immediately!


  1. […] a system – I mostly read non-fiction when I only have short gaps and fiction when I have more time […]

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