The 'Against Reading' Survey
Q2) How do you decide what book to read next ? Are you flexible, schematic, list making ? Do you pause in between books or go directly from one book to the next ? Do you read mostly in one or two genres, or do you jump from one style to another, do you have genre binges or phases ?
With novels, of which I usually only read one or two at a time, I always like to be into a novel, so even if I have just finished something like a huge Stephen Erikson tome I'll pick another novel from my shelves right away, it may even have been selected in anticipation of completing the previous book. I read more books at the same time in winter when work is quieter, in summer I tend to only read one book at a time.
I have four bookcases in my office, vaguely arranged into cookbooks and wine books, D&D stuff, magazines, maps and walking books, reference books, books I have read and really enjoyed and may read again at some point (this includes Terry Pratchett, Stephen Erikson, China Meiville, Tolkein) and last, but taking up a lot of shelf space, books I have not read yet.
The 'to be read' shelves include a whole shelf of Wordsworth Classics, various used books from charity shops, Bookcrossing and Amazon Marketplace and new books bought both full price and from discount bookstores. I do acquire more books than I read and this necessitates the occasional shelf clearing.
To choose a book, there are dozens of unread books on my shelves so it's like having my own personalised bookshop. After a serious tome I may go for a change of pace with a space opera, after something light and frothy I'd probably go for something of a classic 'serious' novel. If a series is a trilogy I'd usually read that back to back, but in a longer series (like Harry Potter) I read other books in between.
I am always seduced by new books in shops, new books grab my attention and I always feel tempted to get started on them right away.