Thoughts on Thursdays: How You Use Goodreads

Many of you might have been wondering when, if ever, I would post a discussion topic. Well, that time is here and now! Thanks to Parajunkee’s fabulous book blogger organizer, it made me rethink and reduce how I run Girl of 1000 Wonders.

It sounds silly, but by looking at my posts on a singe sheet, ordered from top to bottom, I saw holes in my posts each week for August. That’s when inspiration hit, where I could fit in these discussion topics. I’ve seen some fantastic discussions at other blogs, so I figured it was time I kicked it up a notch, and my reevaluation helped me see just where I could do that.

I don’t know what to call this feature. I listed it in the Sunday Post as Thoughts on Thursday, but it sounds bleh. Perhaps I’ll just keep it clean and simple: Discussion. What do you think of that?



Goodreads is an amazing book resource, and a great way to get involved in book discussions and other readers. If you haven’t heard of it, you must live under a rock. I’ve had an account since I was in college, when I first heard of it. I didn’t know anything about it, or how to use it, but I started using it to track my books and my reading. Mainly, what I’d already read and what I wanted to read. Then I discovered the quotations, and picked out some from a select few books to favorite. Of course, I entered some giveaways back in the day when I truly had free time, and the trivia buff in me couldn’t resist the never-ending trivia quiz.

Now, my Goodreads usage is pretty much limited to my reading history and wants. I don’t have the time (or the inclination) to update my reading percentage and thoughts on a book. That’s just too much for me.

I’ve seen others who created all kinds of shelves. After Brittany’s call for wishlists, I created one. I also created a MUST BUY shelf. I don’t know why I never thought of it before, but you can put a book on more than one shelf. Don’t ask me why it took me this long to figure that out. Then I thought about specific blog features and how I could create shelves to help me keep track of that info all in one space.

I’ll admit, I have a difficult time keeping it up to date. That’s the drawback that I know will fall on my shoulders. It’s one more thing, but if I’m going to do it, I need to be serious about it.  Remember when I talked about weeding out my Kindle? Well, I’m doing that this fall and next spring. I got serious about it, so Goodreads, we’re going to get serious! … slowly…

Now there are all these extra things on Goodreads, that quite frankly, overwhelm me beyond belief. I don’t even know where to start, or how. Like the lists. They’re infinite massiveness makes me panic.

Amazon-GROne new thing I have discovered is that Goodreads syncs with your Amazon ebook downloads. Awesome! What wasn’t so awesome was that at first, I went in to Goodreads and added them ALL from over the past year and a half to my TBR shelf. Talk about a dogpile of books. It’s a good feature, but for me I should have kept them separate so I could know which books to start clearing out of my Kindle. It would make me life a whole lot easier.

My Goodreads usage is, well, lame. No doubt about it. And my TBR shelf? It’s insane…like nearly 3,000 books.

Just call me out on it know: I need to get with the program. But I want to know:

  • How do you use Goodreads to work for you?
  • Which features do you use?
  • Which features do you ignore?
  • How do you work it into your blogging time?
  • How do you decide which books to put on your TBR shelf without getting an insane amount like I have?

Leave a comment telling me how you use Goodreads!

5 thoughts on “Thoughts on Thursdays: How You Use Goodreads

  1. I’ve had my Goodreads account for over a year now, and use it mostly to keep track of the books I’ve read, want to read and to look up information about books. I’ve recently started uploading some of my reviews on the site as well as a few quotes… And I’ve started organizing my books in more shelves recently (you are not the only one who didn’t know how to use shelves properly ;).)

    I’m still not that active on Goodreads, as I prefer not taking away too much time off reading and blogging… But I’m slowing exploring the site and finding new features.

  2. I kind of like “Thoughts on Thursday.” 🙂

    So, as far as Goodreads go. I’m kind of obsessed with keeping Goodreads updated. Practically the minute I finish a book, I rush to mark it Read. I also post all of my reviews on GR as soon as they go up on my blog.

    Now, having said that, there are some things that I’m NOT so good at on GR – My TBR, like yours is overwhelmingly large. In order to make it more reasonable, I also have a “Random Reads” shelf that I put books on that I actually own and am looking forward to reading – plus I sometimes add books that I don’t own yet, but I REALLY want to read them soon. Then, as you may know from visiting my blog, I do two monthly random reads (chosen by – one from the actual TBR list and one from that RR list that I just mentioned. That way at least those books have a chance of getting read! I really need to go through my TBR list and cull it, though. It’s outrageous!

    For a little while I did fun things on GR like participate in groups and play games, but I found that I just didn’t have the time to keep up with that. I should probably just leave most of those groups, but I haven’t gotten around to it.

    Oh, a few other lists that I have –
    Feed Your Fiction Addiction currently reading – this list shows up on my blog as reviews that are coming soon, so it’s not necessarily books that I’m actually currently reading, but also books that I’ve read but haven’t posted reviews for yet,

    FYFA read list – so I can easily look and see all of the books I’ve posted reviews for on my blog.

    I also have these same two lists for my Best Kids’ Reads blog, but I’m not nearly as active on that blog.

    To-Review – this helps me keep track of the books I’ve gotten from authors for review so I don’t forget about them!

    Won It – I just think it’s fun to keep track of how many books I’ve won (it has 60 books in it so far!)

    Plus some other random smaller lists that I don’t use as often, but are somewhat helpful.

    Whoo! That’s a lot. Like I said, I’m kind of obsessive about Goodreads!

    And of course I also use Goodreads to check out books I might be interested in!!

    So, was that the longest comment you’ve ever received? 🙂

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

  3. I was on shelfari long before goodreads and wasn’t sure I liked it much but as a blogger it’s much more convenient. Since I’ve been on it for over 6 years I’ve gotten use to it but I don’t use it for extras much. I mark what I’m reading and when I’m done so I keep track but that’s about it. I think it would be a horrible pain if it didn’t exist anymore!

  4. I don’t use goodreads nearly as well as I should. I kind of forget about it. I have a LibraryThing account as well since I like how it does a better job displaying covers but I haven’t been real grat about that one either. I definitely need to revamp my organizational setting. I’m hoping to do some reviewing of my own stuff in the next few weeks. Great topic! It’s given me a lot to think about. Look forward to see what other discussion posts you have coming up!

  5. I pretty much ONLY use goodreads to track my reading and reviews. I don’t use lists, or the quizzes ( I tried them out but it didn’t stick), but I do like the yearly reading challenge. It’s a super easy way to stay on track – or at least to try to. Besides that, I also use goodreads to get book info, like author, publisher, page count, etc.

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