Welcome to the Arena

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Welcome to the Arena

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Mayo 3, 2007, 5:27am

Welcome to everybody who's joined to play our little game. I thought it was time we had a thread to share stuff about ourselves, our collections and any thing else that takes our fancy.

I'm aged (52 last Monday), occasionally grumpy, horribly anal about stuff that doesn't matter, and horribly casual about stuff that does. If that doesn't send you all running for the hills, you clearly have the stamina for the game.

Editado: Mayo 3, 2007, 5:39am

Happy (belated) birthday!

I'm less old, but no longer in the first flush of youth. Living just outside Manchester in the UK, which is a much under-appreciated part of england. My current job is dull and undemanding, which means I'm normally only on LT at "work".

When I'm not reading, I like the outdoors walking, climbing, caving, and cycling I also cook, and am interested in ethical living and the factors effecting the quality of the food that we eat. I try not to preach too much.

Mayo 3, 2007, 6:21am

Thank you!

I've always thought the area around Manchester was lovely. Do you work in the city? I used to go to Manchester from time to time and got to know the car park behind Kendalls particularly well.

I live near Northampton, in a village called Collingtree. It's nice. My interests match my lifestyle -- sedentary and unhealthy.

Mayo 3, 2007, 6:38am

Well in the University, so on the edge of the city centre. An easy bike ride in, much much faster than driving, more fun too - most days.

Mayo 3, 2007, 10:44am

Happy belated birthday from me too, Inigo.

I live in Massachusetts and am a 36 year old mother of two boys age 15 and 7, who are great! I'm a reader (obviously), writer, legal assistant and way too distracted most of the time to do anything unrelated to those activities. I do try to fit exercise in when I can, but it's pretty sporadic.

I like romance novels (gasp!), fantasy (particularly young adult urban fantasy) and am always open to at least trying different genres of books, even if I'm not all that sure I'll like them.

Mayo 5, 2007, 10:39am

Many Happy Returns, Inigo :)

I'm 44, live in Mississippi and have a 27 year old son, 7 year old daughter, 16 year old step-son and two granddaughters, ages 2 and 7. I also herd 1 husband, 7 cats and 1 dog.

I was laid off from my paralegal job in January and have been homeschooling our daughter since then.

My main interests are reading, writing, genealogy, cooking, music, stained glass and needlework.

I read just about any genre except straight romance and hard-core sci-fi. I especially love anything related to history.

I'll be returning to the job market some time this fall so I am trying to use my "time off" (LOL) to catch up on my mountainous tbr pile.

Editado: Ago 14, 2007, 8:51pm

I'm 45 and live in the suburbs of Boise, Idaho (US). Married 16 years and the "mother" to 9 feline "kids". Reading is my #1 interest - just look at my TBR, Wishlist and Maybe/maybe not tags in my LT library. I belong to 4 book groups - 3 through Yahoo! and one monthly dinner night with girls.

I try to read a mix fiction/non-fiction. I find that true literary works are not my thing but I'll try just about anything in the book world.

My web and blog is http://360.yahoo.com/woodbear97

Ago 14, 2007, 10:30pm

It's pretty neat to read everyone's introductions and relate people to their libraries. As for me, I'm a 27 year old scientist (aka nerd) chick from the Chicago suburbs. I've always loved fantasy novels but I've been reading more lately and have branched out my tastes A LOT. (As witness to my diverse tastes, I just returned from the library with 4 books: a supernatural thriller, a crime novel, a romance and a Holocaust memoir.) Also, my husband works for a YA publishing company so I tend to read a lot of freebie youth books which are lots of fun too.

I'm pretty indecisive and tend to procrastinate on my TBR list so this group has been a fun motivator to get me to read and review books I might otherwise save til later. Nice to "meet" you all and thanks for starting a fun reading game!

Editado: Ago 15, 2007, 9:45pm

I'm a proud husband of 10 years and father of 8. Aside from reading, my interests are guitar and karate. I'm poor to mediocre at both but working toward "competent" status. I have a wry sense of humor.

I read roughly a 50/50 mix of fiction and non-fiction. I have a few core authors (Jose Saramago, Jonathan Carroll, DBC Pierre, Bill Bryson, and most importantly Hermann Hesse) that I enjoy thoroughly. I know, odd mix. I like a nice fiction mix of classic literature and modern action, comedy, drama and sci-fi. I read non-fiction for one of two reasons, to learn something or to experience something through another person (e.g. biographies or memoirs). I like new authors and tend to hop around a lot. I have a tendency to read two or three books simultaneously and then get frustrated because they take too long to finish.

I speak in short choppy sentences. I like to start most sentences with "I". I suffer from voice immodulation.

Most importantly, as many of my GRTB! colleagues would attest to, I used to rock the mullet. Hell, if I didn't have less hair than I used to, I might frighten my wife by letting that party in the back start to ease on down the neck. I guess there's always the skullet...

Just kidding.

Nota Bene: I didn't edit this message. I just wanted to see "Message edited by its author" underneath.

Oct 7, 2007, 6:09pm


I'm 24. Just moved to Albany, NY, where I'm taking English classes for enjoyment at SUNY Albany and working at an independent bookstore. I love library sales and used bookstores, so many of my books are older. In addition, about half of my books (mostly ones I've already read) are currently living in Ohio in my parents' basement so that I don't have to haul them around the country with me (I've been moving pretty much yearly since college). The result is that most of my books are also TBR!

Other than books, I love music and photography, both of which I'm trying to get better at. I love to travel, though I can't afford it (yet...?). And I love to be outside, as long as it's not blisteringly hot or fantastically freezing.

I'm thrilled that this group exists and very much hope that it's active! Nothing more disappointing than finding a cool LT group, only to find that no one really does much of anything with it. I have zillions of TBR books, but I'm terrible at picking which one I should read next. I tend to start several, only to put them down because they don't seem "right" at the time. So this is good!

Oct 8, 2007, 4:12pm

Welcome erelsi! Although we're not hugely active by LT's standards, you'll find that the game thread is pretty functional. Things seem to go in spurts with a lot of people finishing books at the same time but even when there are longer pauses, I've never had to wait more than 3 days for an assignment (which is usually how long it takes to read a book of my own choosing that I've picked up in the meantime).

And of course, the more people that join, the faster the game thread will go! Glad to "meet" you and glad you joined the game!

Editado: Nov 14, 2007, 6:23am

Jumped right into the game and then discovered this thread.

I am 50 years old, working for the PBS affiliate WQED in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. I spent 5 years in retail at one of the big chain bookstores. Loved recommending books and getting books real cheap, but hating retail. Much happier dealing with the folk who support public broadcasting. They scream at me but I still love 'em. Got to love people who pay for quality.

My reading taste goes mostly to fiction these days. No big name authors... authors whose names are bigger than the title of their books... but I do read a fair amount of contemporary well-know authors. My all time favorite book is All the Names (Saramago) followed close by Stardust (Gaiman) (neither title touchstone... not sure why).

I tend to read slow because I read many books at once. For the game, I plan to focus on that one required read. Might be a good change.

Looking forward to playing!

Nov 29, 2007, 1:05am

Just found you! I am Esta1923 and, because I do not lend books easily, became a "book hustler," talking about books that could be found in libraries (as opposed to reviewing new-need-to-buy-'em books). If there's a book in my catalog that catches your interest I'd be delighted to review it here. (Please see the reviews I've done already.)

Nov 29, 2007, 2:25pm

Wow, I'm feeling really young compared to all of you! I'm 19, and a sophomore in college. I'm currently studying mathematics, history, and computer science, but haven't for sure chosen which one is going to be my major (the other will be minors). College is keeping me insanely busy, and I've done less free reading in the last year and a half than ever before. But I still make time to read (and I'm incredibly excited about my month-long Christmas break coming up)!

My favorite genre is fantasy (particularly young adult or children's), but I'll read pretty much anything.

I'm new to LT, and I don't have any reviews posted. I thought this would be a great way to get started on that, as well as to find new books to read!

Nov 30, 2007, 5:07am

Welcome - post on the Game thread (2) selecting a book for the person above you. I think it's me. Then in due course someone will select a book for you. Sometimes you have to wait a few days.

Nov 30, 2007, 9:32pm

In response to review the person 2 places before. . . .We share "The Bee Man of Orn." I hope yours is the edition with wonderful pictures by Maurice Sendak, since many of the book's 46 pages in mine have more picture than text! For those who do not know the book we can say it is a superb resolution of an identity crisis. We can tell them how a minor bureaucrat can disturb a peaceful existence, but, luckily, all's well at the end. . . and tell them to read it too. esta1923
(OOPS!!! discrepancy. . . I checked the person 2 places above me. . . and now it's time to quit for the evening. . . please let it stand. e)

Dic 4, 2007, 1:21pm

Hi...I live in Massachusetts - the southern part - and I recently got a job working in Boston so have begun to take the train into work again (I used to work in Cambridge years ago). The hour or so commute sucks on many levels except one....plenty of time to read! =) I started off my working life as a bench chemist but have since moved into Quality Assurance. I like to read fiction (contemporary & historical), fantasy, non-fiction, young adult....and well pretty much anything with words.

My TBR list is an ever growing thing so I am hoping that between my train ride and this group I'll be able to work through it a little faster then I have been. Though somehow I think that the longer I am part of this group the more my pile will grow. Thankfully though there is a branch of the Boston Public Library right next door to where I am hoping that I can resist the urge to buy new books based off of reviews that I read here.

Dic 25, 2007, 10:11pm

Hey y'all -- i've read and reviewed a couple of books on here but haven't really looked around the group "home" much. Found this thread and thought I'd add my two cents.

I'm a 46...or 47...year old mother of three, grandmother of one (and another pending); a nurse who once worked the floors but now works behind the scenes in an office environment. Like a few who've posted before me, I also live in Massachusetts. I wish I could take public transportation to work so I could read but instead I listen to audiobooks while I drive.

I've never had a mullet.

Before I was a nurse I was an English major (graduated and went right back to being a nursing assistant, like I was before I went to college). My interests vary -- I'm an avid bookmoocher so I tend to wishlist anything that piques my interest -- and hence my TBR pile is growing.

That's probably enough about me.

Ene 10, 2008, 5:00pm

Hi - I just joined this group and already I am bossing people around to "go review that book!" I can't wait to see what someone tasks me with reading. :)

I am almost 30, living in the Washington, DC area. Compulsive reader (shock, right) - read while walking down the halls of my office at night and on weekends.... In a long-term relationship, two adorable kitties. Recently finished grad school in Middle Eastern history and literature....terrible speaker of Arabic, hoping to improve.

Ene 31, 2008, 3:33pm

Oops - I've been playing the game and just found this thread. I'm 50, a singer and a music teacher, and mother of two boys ages 9 and 6, who are helping me revisit my love of books for younger readers.

I'm also a pack rat who has problems "de-accessioning," so my library is full of things I may not have read in years, but thought enough of at the time to keep. I read more fiction than non, but I'm open to a wide variety of things. Since my kids took over my life, I find I'm reading less literature and more genre fiction, simply because I don't get to sit still long enough to read books that I have to concentrate on. Still, my tastes are pretty wide ranging.

Feb 1, 2008, 3:25pm

Hmmm, I never seem to have posted on here!

I'm mid-twenties, trying desperately to finish a PhD in physics! When I'm not reading I can usually be found rowing, doing Sunday school for 3 & 4 year olds, geeking or hanging out with my hubby. Who is very patient with me and the books I keep filling the house with.

Anyway, I'm really enjoying GRTB - it's making me read books I wouldn't have picked out otherwise so I'm definitely appreciating it!

Feb 17, 2008, 1:22pm

Saw this plugged in another group and it sounded like fun, so I'm jumping in.

I'm a 27-year old reference and instruction librarian at a small university in Texas. I have a 4 year old son (Gryphon)-he's the reason for all those books in my library about autism :D.
Obviously, I'm a bookworm. I generally prefer nonfiction (social history, microbiology, etymology-that kind of stuff), but I'm not completely averse to a good story. When my nose isn't buried in a book, I'm gardening (and listening to an audiobook), quilting (and listening to an audiobook), or geocaching. I'm also thinking of taking up rock climbing-maybe it'll help with that fear of heights I have.

Feb 27, 2008, 9:45pm

I joined a couple days ago because the group looked interesting!

I'm turning 20 later this year. I'm a student a UC Berkeley, and I like reading for fun. Sometimes my social life suffers a bit for that...

I like reviewing but most of the time, I'm too lazy to do it. This group will probably fix that!

I heard about LibraryThing last year, so the books I have cataloged are just the ones I read in the last year or so. I have GLBT books in there because that's mostly what I read these days. I don't read that theme exclusively, but I don't include other books because there's not that many anyway.

Mar 11, 2008, 10:55pm

I've just joined, though I'm waiting to join in the game til the end of the week when I'm done grading essays (hopefully!) I'm 27 and teach contemporary lit., though I'm waiting to hear from some PhD programs. I spend most of my time with a boyfriend, cat, hamster, student essays, and books.

I'm ALWAYS reading multiple books at a time, but I tend to agonize over which book to choose next, and this seems like a great way to stop thinking about it so much, and just going through the TBR pile. I've spent my whole life collecting books in a book-loving family, so I've got a huge collection, an embarrassing number of which are unread since I keep adding. I review as I go, so anything in my library that's not reviewed...well, I haven't read it...

Editado: Abr 20, 2008, 12:03pm

Hello! I read about this group on the "How do you organize your TBR pile?" thread. I'm on the home stretch of Duma Key, which has been a long book, and I just don't want to pick another book... I don't even want to think about reading anymore... but I don't want to stop reading, either. I've posted my TBR pile on my profile page; I've not tagged any of my library as read, TBR, or no longer have. (Edit: I have done this now.)

I don't know how to start in this group, though. Helpa fi! (That's Welsh for "Help me" ... another project on my long list of projects... learning Welsh.)

EDIT: I think I figured it out... I went to the game page and picked from the library of the last poster, and then the next poster will do the same for me. Am I correct?

Abr 20, 2008, 10:18am

Yep, you are indeed correct! Welcome to the game, hope you enjoy it :-)

Mayo 16, 2008, 12:46pm

Greetings! I am another who joined the group and reviewed, but not posted here yet.
I'm 27, I live in the Brainerd Lakes Area of Minnesota (where all the people from the Twin Cities go for vacation) with my husband, four cats and a dog. I am a chemical dependency social worker and my husband is a corrections officer in the jail. Needless to say we live to serve the public!
I read in a wide range of categories, began with juvenile fiction, and kept most of them, then read nothing but romance as a teenager. In college I took a class on Science Fiction and fell in love with another genre. When I met my husband, his mystery and thriller novels came to live with me and I am getting more interested in them. I have also been beginning to read a lot of memoirs and biographies lately. Most of my non-fiction books are either psychology (which my degree is in) or philosophy/religion. I went through a "Wiccan Period" in college, too, so I have a lot of New Age and Pagan materials.
I am excited to be in this group because when I joined LibraryThing I realized I owned around 800 books that I'd never read and decided to read them all in alphabetical order. Reading a GRTB! book every third one gives me a break from all the book titles starting with 'A!'
Thanks for welcoming me to this group!

Mayo 16, 2008, 1:50pm

I owned around 800 books that I'd never read and decided to read them all in alphabetical order.

Oh my god. You are me.

Ditch the hubby, halve the number of cats and turn chemical dependency social work into chemical dependency (nicotine) and move across the pond, and I'd be looking for my doppelganger on every street.

Welcome, and thanks for consent to post your reviews.

Editado: Mayo 16, 2008, 5:58pm

I am also chemically dependent on nicotine. When I first started this job two of my co-workers hassled me on a daily basis to quit. One actually flat out told me I should get treatment (!?) I managed to quit for the winter, but then decided a) It's nice out, b) I like to smoke and c) they are not the boss of me.

Jun 30, 2008, 5:36pm

I just discovered this group, and was very intrigued! I've been trying to post more reviews of my books - I'm concentrating on the ones that have 0 reviews at the moment. I actually sort by the shared number and then go down until I find one with no review bubble.

I'm 34, live outside New York, and work for the NYPL. One of the teeny, tiny neighborhood branches, though, not the busy place you're probably envisioning. I seem to be in a very fantasy-heavy phase at the moment, not that you can tell from my catalog, since they're mostly re-reads, and I don't enter those. I read mostly fiction, and have a hard time finishing non-fiction even when it's a topic that interests me. (You ever think to yourself, "I want to have read that book, but I don't want to read it"? That's me).

I can't decide whether to join the game or not. I'm very, very bad about reading things other people have chosen for me - I can't do book clubs for this reason, and had a horrible time doing the assigned reading in school, despite the fact I was reading other stuff voraciously. I just find myself doing an internal pout and saying to myself, "but I'm not in the mood to read that!"

Jun 30, 2008, 9:55pm

Hi! I've joined the game already but haven't posted here. I'm a 20-something librarian in the US (just got my MLIS). I absolutely love to read, and my tastes are pretty eclectic. I read a lot of teen fiction, particularly fantasy for the middle grades, but I also love classics, some cozy mysteries, historical fiction, and a smattering of science fiction.

My library is all books I own. I don't have a lot of spending money for books so I tend to either buy books I know I'll like (either I've read them before or I trust the author) or buy books used and cheap. Even so, when I found after I cataloged my library I had over 30 books I'd never read, I figured it would be a good way to get me to read the books I own and put off because they don't have a due date.

Jul 1, 2008, 6:25am

#30 there's no rush. Whenever you feel you are in the mood to read your assigned book is good. I spent 6 months getting around to reading one of them.

Jul 1, 2008, 3:20pm

>32 reading_fox: Agreed. All an assignment in GRTB does is move it from my TBR pile into my on-deck pile. If I'm in the right mood, it goes to the top, if not, it just goes somewhere in the middle, to wait for reading inspiration to strike.

Jul 2, 2008, 9:47am

30, 32
Another in agreement here. I'm assigned a funny Pratchett book and with my mother in and out of the hospital, it just isn't the right time. So, I'm reading other things and biding my time knowing that eventually it will be the right time. By the same token, other selections were like, "Oh hooray, I've been looking for a reason to read that one," and completed quickly. Either way, it seems to be all good on the GRTB! group.

Nov 13, 2008, 9:40pm

I realized I've posted a couple of reviews with out really stopping in here to introduce myself. Hi! Umm. I actually don't have any better introduction than I've already made in my profile.

But I do have a question. I notice a lot of folks are using a TBR tag or similar to indicate likely candidates. But there is also that "To Read" status check box for a book. Except that I can't figure out any way to actually use it in a search. Has anybody else figured out a way to make use of it?

Nov 19, 2008, 10:09am

I'm not sure what the "Currently Reading" and "To Read" boxes are for and have often wondered about it myself.

Nov 19, 2008, 10:12am

I know Currently Reading used to insert dates into the date started and finished fields when checked and unchecked (respectively), but there was some sort of outcry, so that was nixed.

Theoretically there was going to be some sort of display widget for your profile page, but I think it's on indefinite hold right now. So as far as I know, the checkboxes don't do anything. And you can't search for them either.

Nov 22, 2008, 10:18am

I've only recently found this group through the thread on requesting reviews, but I love the idea of having someone else persuade me to get round to reading and reviewing some of the many unread books on my shelves, so I've added myself to the end of the list and am currently waiting for someone to pick a book for me. I'm female, 55, and live in Winchester in the UK and work as a freelance editor. Although I try to make notes on books I've read I tend to put this under comments rather than reviews. I think it is something to do with being an editor and not wanting to expose my quick thoughts and maybe poorly expressed review to public scrutiny. However, as I find the reviews others have contributed very useful in deciding what books to buy, swap or borrow from the library I really ought to add more myself, so joining this group is one way to feel guilty if I don't.

Nov 23, 2008, 8:50am

Hi fancett, glad you're here. I see you have an assignment already and are off and running. 8-)

I usually read several books at once, but really look forward to my "go review that book" selection. I have an awesome tbr pile, thanks to Bookmooch, and when left to my own devices I'm always indecisive. It's very exciting to have someone else make a choice I may not have.

I'm not a great review writer - I think it's especially challenging when I like the book. This group has helped me to work harder at improving my reviews. I'm with you in that other people's reviews have always been very helpful to me, and I try to keep that in mind when writing my own.