Adventures In (Not) Book Buying

Last October, I decided not to buy any more books until 2014 was through.

I made a firm dent in my to-read pile and spent a little more time pawing through the library's new releases shelf. I also revisited a few old favorites, including one that helped to inspire a story idea I've been kicking around.

I did wind up giving myself one exemption. An out-of-print paperback I'd had my eye on suddenly popped up on several of the blogs I read, and I decided to jump on it before the used price soared. Even now, more than a month later, a fair-condition copy is running six times what I paid, so I can't really regret breaking my rule.

While I enjoyed the excuse to wade a little more deeply into my current collection, setting such a hard limit felt harsh. I skipped library book sales, including the big yearly event my county throws, and canceled ebay alerts for the author whose complete works I'm trying to collect. New bestsellers languished on my library wait list for months while I tried to push myself to be in the mood to read something else. I'm also half-convinced that I was only able to stick so close to my goal because, between our move and the holidays, I didn't have as much time to read as I usually do.

The experiment was surprisingly successful, but it's definitely not anything I'll want to repeat soon.

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