Hello. My name’s Jan and I’m a compulsive book buyer!

The inability to walk past a bookstore without going in and buying books when we know we really shouldn’t, is something that all of us bookaholics suffer from. It’s just part and parcel of being a bookaholic really and to be honest,  I’ve never really felt that bad about it. I mean, I don’t drink that much, I don’t smoke or do drugs, I can still make rent and buy food, so what harm am I really doing if I buy an extra book here and there?

Well, that’s normally my attitude anyway because normally I’ll buy my payday bookstash and it’s really just a case of one or possibly 2 extra books a month on top of that. Nothing too excessive. These last few months though it seems to be the case that if I haven’t bought a book in a couple of days there’s a voice in my head saying ‘Must buy more books! Must buy more books!’ I might think something along the lines of ‘I really shouldn’t – I just bought books/it’s my birthday soon and I’ll be getting more books/I have a ton of books I could re-read etc’ but those thoughts are always gone in a flash. I can always justify the purchase – ‘I only have a few books left and I’ve got about a week till my birthday. What if they’re terrible or I finish them quickly? I’ll be bookless!!!’

I really have no idea what’s fuelling this compulsive need to attack my bank balance so viciously through book buying either! It could be the weirdly up and down weather – sunny one minute (perfect weather for reading at the beach so I need a book for that) and peeing it down with rain the next (perfect weather to curl up on the couch with a book so better make sure I have enough). Or it could be that with various personal stresses going on I’m using my love of reading as an escape more and more. Of course, it could also be that I am my mother’s child and can’t resist a special offer! Who knows!

They say that the first step is to admit there’s a problem so that is what I’m doing here today in front of all you lovely people. My name is Jan and I’m a compulsive book buyer! I’ve been book buying free for one week and I am trying really, really hard not to buy anything else until after my birthday. I’m sure that I can make it. Honest. I can be good.

But then I’ve only really got the book I’m reading now, some of the Throne of Glass novellas and a few extras that I’m just not feeling right now at all. Will that really last me until Monday? And there is still that special offer on at Waterstones bookshop…


How about all of you? Ever gone through a spell where you just can’t stop buying books? Or any tips on how to stay strong?


12 thoughts on “Hello. My name’s Jan and I’m a compulsive book buyer!

  1. I have hundreds of books that I haven’t read yet stacked in piles throughout my house and I’m still buying more. I can’t even use your reasoning that I might run out of books to read because that’s never gonna happen.

  2. When I feel a huge urge to go into a bookstore (where I will inevitably come out with a book or two), I try to go to the library instead. It’s still great fun, you can still browse around, and you can even take home whatever catches your eye without spending a cent!

  3. Given that my whole blog is about the fact that I’ve bought more books than I can ever read, I can safely say that the fact that I haven’t bought a book in almost 6 months is the longest I’ve gone in, oh, 25 years?!

  4. Based on your description, if you think you have a problem, I DEFINITELY have a problem! (Don’t worry, I already knew this!) I don’t think I ever have to worry about being bookless…like at least for several years, possibly even longer, and I still can’t stop! I have such a backlog it’s truly ridiculous. And the list I want to read, but don’t own is another few miles long. I’ve been a bit better lately, but there is much room for improvement. I was just at the bookstore today buying a couple of book club books and the sequel/prequel to Graceling (don’t feel too bad about those though!)

    On the one hand, I feel like I’ve learned about and been exposed to so many great books I might never have heard of without blogging, but at the same time I actually miss the days when I only had a few extras lined up and my “to-read” stack was just that — a small pile of books that could be read in a reasonable amount of time. Or even the days when I literally had nothing else to read unless I made a trip to the library (yea, that was a really long time ago…) But book blogging is so good and so bad for this hobby of mine all at the same time. It’s tempting sometimes to tune out all the reviews, but then I feel like I might be missing out… *sigh* Bookworm Problems!

    • My bought to read pile is usually much bigger but I’ve been having a very up and down lately with books – one book is good, the next two are bad so I’m getting through them a lot quicker than normal! My Amazon tbr list though is MASSIVE! And like you, that’s due to the blogging. Some of the best books I’ve read this year have been through the blogs so I’m grateful for that but it is feeding the addiction! But yeah, you definitely don’t have to feel bad about buying book club books – that’s just being a responsible book clubber and sociable. And the Graceling series is just fab so I can understand that!

  5. Haha. From all those answers, it seems my problem isn’t that bad. But that might also have to do with me being a student and not having the financial means to live my dreams.
    I just bought four books. Two for me and two for a friend. It felt so good. Actually, I wanted to buy three for my. But that would have gone too far. I have a solid TBR pile but nothing seems to speak to me at the moment. I just finished a great book and I need something new to read. I’ll probably read some non-fiction until the new books are here 😀
    Or maybe I’ll just study like I’m supposed to.

    • Hmm.. study or read for pleasure? Yeah, I say read for pleasure! Who needs qualifications anyway 😉 There’s nothing like getting new books is there? I know what you mean though about nothing really speaking to you. It’s so difficult to know what you’re in the mood for at times like that! Enjoy your new books when they come!

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