I’ve bought and lost seven book journals in the past four years, and I’m finally ready to admit that I will never be the person who writes (actually writes, as in handwrites) about books as soon as I finish them. I won’t even be the person who types about books, not even a simple list of titles, authors and date read. I once aspired to be full of such bookish (and organized) goodness, but that’s just not me.
I decided to try LibraryThing a few years ago, getting my feet wet with social cataloging, where I connected with book-reading friends, kept lists of what I read and occasionally posted short reviews. But most of my library friends seemed to be moving to Goodreads, a different social cataloging service, and I went along. My writer friends migrated to a third competitor, Shelfari (owned now by Amazon), where it was rumored to be a better place to market one’s books, and I opened an account there, too. I then had three places to update, which meant, of course, that I gave up and bought a new book journal (since lost).
I’ve settled on Goodreads and I’m feeling pretty good about the decision. It’s not perfect, but that’s where my library, book club and writer friends hang out — and that’s a lot of fabulous book-loving company. I have it as a Facebook application, although I try to post books to Facebook only when I’m wildly ecstatic about recommending them to others.
Still, I’m curious: Is there a better way? How do you keep track of the books you read?