How Do You Decide What To Read Next?

Today I want to talk a little bit about how we choose what to read next. The thought has stuck me each time I pick out a new book to read, but lately I’ve been giving it a little bit more thought that usual.

planning vs spontaneity

Are you a planner? Do you have a pre-determined list of books that you are going to read in a specific order? Or are you more of a spontaneous reader, choosing whatever you feel like reading when it comes time to select a new book?

my reading habits

but what about ARCs

Do you keep on top of your ARCs, or do you tend to procrastinate about them? How far in advance do you tend to read your ARCs? If you read them far in advance, do you then write your review soon after you finish and schedule it for months in advance?

my arc habits


let me know


26 thoughts on “How Do You Decide What To Read Next?

  1. I am spontaneous to the EXTREME. I can’t plan ahead. I try to… honestly, I do. :) but it never happens. Most of the time it is based on how I feel after whatever book I last read. Was it heavy? Did it suck? Was there not enough kissing? What do I need to balance it out?! Most of the time I wander over to the bookshelf and see who does a little song and dance! Then once I have 3 contenders, I usually throw it on Twitter for opinions!
    For ARCS, depending on the book– if it is something I REALLY want to read, I usually read it right away, but that is never good for someone like me that doesn’t blog ahead. I’ve read a few books recently that don’t come out until Sept or Oct…… so won’t post until then. As a result, this backs me up with current reviews… Grrrr.
    Oh… and the one book that is FORCED upon me every month because of book club? Yeah, usually reading it the night before, or I just don’t read it! Eeeeek!

    • Hahaha you and your book club books :p but yeah, I definitely feel you about ARCs and when you end up reading them way before they come out, and then you don’t have stuff to post about now and it’s just a big vicious circle haha

  2. I’m totally a spontaneous reader. I read as the mood strikes me. Sometimes it’s an old favorite, or a new author. I tend to binge read, too. I’ll go long periods without reading anything, then devour books like a starving person.

    Best of luck with your upcoming semester at University. I’m sure you’ll figure out a schedule that works for you with balancing school, reading, blogging, and of course- FUN!

  3. I’m a mixed bag when it comes to reading lol! I try to map out what I will read next, but sometimes I just wind up reading what I feel like reading and tossing that schedule to the side. This is even true of ARC’s! It’s probably why I’m so far behind on ARC’s to be honest. I have been testing a few new ways to pick what I’ll read next, I have an actual spreadsheet of ARC’s and books I own but haven’t read and I let pick 10 of those and I try to get to at least 4 of those. The genre varies so if I’m not in the mood for PNR there’s horror or whatever. I also have a poll every month where I let my followers pick what I’ll read next. I feel a little more pressure when people who frequent my blog make a decision on what I should read next and it really makes a dent in my TBR pile.

  4. I used to be spontaneous, but lately I’ve been planning a lot. I set goals every week. But I don’t always follow it, and sometimes I get distracted by another book so I veer away from my goals. So I’m a little bit of both, I think. :)

  5. As a blogger, I plan plan plan. I’ve got my reading/review schedule planned out through September right now.

    But realistically, that’s going to burn me out fast because where’s the fun and pleasure in that? So then I use things like Bout of Books to be spontaneous because I love spontaneous reading SO MUCH.

  6. I am totally a planner. I map out ARC dates on my calendar beforehand, and then fill in the days in between with whatever I want to read, and then read them in that order. I have a running list on GR to keep track of what I’m reading next. I feel like if I didn’t do this, I would just stare at my bookshelf, not sure about my next read. If I don’t force myself to choose beforehand, I definitely won’t be able to pick a new book once I’m on the spot.

    • You are so lucky that works for you! I feel like it’s a lot less stressful than never knowing, but I just don’t think I would be able to read like that though. It’s great for you though!

  7. I’m pretty spontaneous when it comes to picking out my next book, but once in a while I’ll plan ahead if I have something from the library and I know I have to read it before it’s due because it’s popular and I won’t be able to renew it again. It also really depends on what genres I’ve been reading lately – if I’ve just finished a bunch of contemporaries, I’ll probably be in the mood for fantasy or historical fiction. Reading one type of story in a row really ruins reading for me – I must have variety! Nice post & new blog follower via bloglovin’. I love the bright colors in your background. :D

  8. Look at all these comments, looks like you got more than one reader! ;D

    Personally, I am mostly spontaneous… though I do pretend to have a schedule! I have a Goodreads shelf that I populate with my “up-next” reads, which I try to keep in the correct order that I need to read them. Library books factor in (is it due next week? Better read that!), as do ARC’s (though I haven’t had that many ARC’s to deal with personally… yet…). However, despite that list, I tend to stray from it if I have an intense urge to read something else. Like if a book that I’ve been waiting for finally comes in at the library, or if a new book comes out that I wanted to read, or if I read a great review of a book and end up wanting to read it immediately… or… or…… I guess pretty much anything can get me to break my “up-next” schedule, lol. :P

  9. I’m a Planning Procrastinator. But sometimes I get bit by the spontaneity bug and then it’s all down the tube. The issue I have with reading what I want, when I want is that I often find myself staring at the stacks for several days before choosing. I go back and forth and try to rationalize each option. I’m such an indecisive person that I have to have a plan, otherwise I won’t get any reading done and find myself even more behind on good books.

    I do still plan the books I want to read each month, pull those from the stacks and choose as I go from that selected stack. It’s organized chaos. ; )

    WIth regards to ARCS I am the EXACT SAME WAY AS YOU. There are so many great books that are already out that need my attention. And since that ARC isn’t out for two months, it can wait. When really, I should be reading and writing those reviews to have later on.

  10. I’d say that I’m half and half. I’m spontaneous when I don’t feel like reading the latest book out or an ARC but then I do read ARCs because I know they’d otherwise start piling up and give off ominousness or something. However, ever since I selected some books for summer reading, it’s been going great because I know the choices and it’s summer, so more than happy to pick up the books I selected which makes me wonder if I should do it more often.

  11. I’m a planner-I put my ARCs and other books on my calendar and read roughly in the order I plan to review. So if I want to review A on Monday, B on Tuesday, and C on Wednesday, those will be my next three books but maybe I’ll read them B, A, C, depending if I want a hardcopy, e-copy, or if it needs to be returned to the library. I’m amazed by how many people aren’t planners because I’d go crazy if I didn’t schedule it all out!

  12. Planned spontaneity? Is that even possible? Well, I try to make it work. I do the library books via audio which I spend the most time doing since I spend the most time doing mindless tasks at work, so audiobooks work really well for me. I also go through bouts of “I don’t feel like reading today, tomorrow, next week” so I don’t! But I’m still listening to audiobooks :)

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