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I have a text file listing books I want to read.

I have a directory with my reviews.

I have a text file for each quarter of the year and my review and notes go in there.

I publish some on FB, depending on how interesting it is. Interestingly, recently I’ve been reading books where my reaction is too personal to post – that’s definitely new.

When I need to know if I’ve read a book, I use Windows Explorer to search the directory.

If an author has more books, in my text file of books to read, I include a link or note to “search for more if you like it”. And then when I’m looking for something reserve, I sometimes search for more.

I now have 13 years of book information stored this way. Very manageable. In case you wanted to simplify your life! 🙂

There was a book on race where I felt that the “white man critiques black female writer” trope was too strong so I reviewed other aspects.

There was a book on relationships that spoke to some of the more frustrating (to me) aspects of being in a relationship that didn’t seem like I should be sharing.

There was a book on parenting kids with certain types of challenges that for to talk honestly about would have exposed more about one of the girls than I was comfortable doing.

When I’m mobile? I don’t do anything when I’m mobile (exactly where would I be going these past two years?) I do everything at my desktop.

My text file has a section “On Hold” at the top, which is where I put a book when I put it on hold, and where I take it from when I write the review.

Below it is “Kids books that I returned” in case I want to get them out again.

Then a few hundreds lines of “To Read” with the title and the reason I want to read it. Maybe a friend mentioned it, or I read others by the author, or it won a prize, or the review looked interesting, etc.

At one point I got ambitious and started sorting by genre, so the list is partially sorted, but I’ve given up on that. Part of the fun is the random order – when I feel like I need a new book, I peruse the list like going through a bookstore, except that I know every book is of interest!

At the bottom are books that aren’t in the library. Not sure how I’ll ever read those.

Then a list of books I enjoyed, because I kept getting asked for recommendations (and I love giving them).

There are a few other random things. “Erikson-like Authors” because Steven Erikson is my favourite fantasy writer. Anything book related is in the file.

You like checklists though, so I can see why you put the effort into creating them.

Writing reviews is definitely a pain. It often takes me an hour or so. And I’m torn – I also want to record what I find interesting about a book, which I can do point form, but once I started publishing on FB I had to give it narrative flow and leave out a bunch of details. So I tend to have the list of factoids/thoughts/revelations, and then the actual review.

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x