I barely met my reading goal for 2018. The past few weeks I’ve been speed-flipping like crazy and googling phrases like “short free books.” Cross-searching iBooks, Amazon, Audible, etc. for short books I know are in the public domain - librarian lingo for “no copyright, so FREE” - and have even made a purchase or five just to cross the finish line.
It wasn’t pretty, and all of my Goodreads friends are baffled at the literary goulash that made up my Currently Reading and Read categories, but - I did it!
In 2019, I’m increasing my reading goal (if only there was a way to count all the academic analyses, studies, and journal articles I’m reading for dissertation research…) but as an added challenge, I’m decreasing my book budget. Want to do the same? Here are some tips:
Get a library card.
Yes, seriously. Libraries are legit treasures of pure gold. Print books, digital books if you’re into that sort of thing, books that work on your iPad and books you can read on your Kindle and iPhone, among others. ALL of the free books. Go to the local public library and sign up for a card. The paperwork is minimal, and librarians are helpful people. We want you to come and use the stuff we have. Plus it’s all free! Need help? Contact me and I’ll be glad to help you get free stuff at your local library. Without leaving my house, I’ve just spent about 30 minutes placing holds on several print and digital books that I would have dropped over $100 on Amazon or at the local book store. Pro-tip: If your library doesn’t have a title you want to read, just ask them to buy it. Librarians love that because it makes their job of finding stuff people want to check out much easier.
Use your Amazon Prime membership for more than just free “2-day” shipping. There are gobs of books you can read with a Kindle or Kindle app on your phone or tablet. Keep them as long as you need to and return them to borrow another. It’s a fabulously little-known benefit of having an Amazon Prime membership. You can access even more titles by subscribing to Kindle Unlimited, but there are plenty of free options to avoid that unless you’re a serious reader.
Give Audible a try. Right now they’re giving not just one but TWO free books with your free trial of 30 days. I have an Audible subscription because 4/5 people in this house love audiobooks and they have the best selection. In trimming the budget, I have considered cutting the cord to Audible but my children (and husband) might murder me.
Subscribe to BookBub’s free e-book newsletter. Hate missing out on a good free book but don’t have time to scour Amazon and iBooks for sales? Same here. BookBub does all that for you. You can even customize it to your favorite genres.
What’s your reading goal for 2019? Are we friends on Goodreads yet?