Are you a one-book-at-a-time reader or a multiple-books-at-a-time reader?

I definitely fall into the multiple books camp and I’m often reading 3-4 books at a time, but I do find this easier to do when I have different formats for my books.

On a pretty regular basis, I might have one physical book, one ebook, and one audiobook happening at the same time. Mixing in a non-fiction book among my fiction, and keeping my fiction choices in difference genres, can help me tell all the books apart in my head.

I’ve also found that the amount I’m reading is actually a good sign of how stressed I am. When I’m extra stressed, I have a hard time focusing on a book to finish it and I’m more likely to start a new book than to finish one I’m in the middle of.

This past week, for example, which was a busy one at work with a lot of evening events, had me reading 7 books at the same time.

For those of you who are interested, the books I was in the middle of include:

  1. Pride and Premeditation by Tirzah Price (physical book)
  2. Commencement by Kate Colbert, et al. (ebook)
  3. Forget Me Not by Julie Soto (audiobook)
  4. Oathbringer by Brian Sanderson (audiobook & ebook)
  5. The Electricity of Every Living Thing by Katherine May (audiobook & ebook)
  6. A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire by Jennifer Armentrout (audiobook & ebook)
  7. A Vow So Bold and Deadly by Brigid Kemmerer (audiobook & ebook)

While I love the variety of this reading, even this amount of books was starting to stress me out.

This past week and weekend, I decided to commit to reading what I was already in the middle of before starting anything new. With that goal in mind, I finished Forget Me Not in the mornings during my workouts, The Electricity of Every Living Thing over the course of a Friday evening and early Saturday morning, A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire in a few listening sessions during the day on Saturday, and I wrapped up the final 70 pages or so of Pride and Premeditation on Sunday.

Whew! Getting back down to three books on my pile felt great!

This kind of close-out commitment also applies to a bunch of items I also have on my list at work. I’ll be looking at my project list this week and seeing what I can wrap up and get off the list. What’s close enough to the finish line that I can complete it?

I’d love to have less items to put my attention toward as we head into the new academic year.

What would you put on your close-out or completion list?