Book Discussions

Managing My TBR | What shelves do I use on Goodreads?

Managing my TBR - Meme%2FDiscussion Pinterest Graphic.png

Being part of the bookish community, I hear complaints about overflowing, unmanageable, intimidating TBRs so I thought I would share what I have been doing to avoid a mountainous stack of numbers and book titles.

If you don’t know where to begin (which I totally get, starting is the hardest part) make sure you check out my recommendations of tackling your Goodreads TBR.


Not only will organizing your Goodreads help avoid the risk of falling into a puddle of tears when you look at the mounting number of books you want to read, you can use your Goodreads shelves for so much more than just organizing what you want to read into genres.

There are so many  ways you can turn your Goodreads account into something productive and what I am going to share is only a small portion of what can be done. Don’t forget to be creative and think about your wants and needs!

Exclusive and Sticky Shelves

I have already discussed the magic of both exclusive and sticky shelves on my previous post but as a quick recap these are the shelves I am using.


These are probably my most used shelves on Goodreads, ones that I refer to a lot and often.

DNF: books I didn’t finish and don’t want to list as read

Partially Abandoned: books that I am part way through, but haven’t decided to DNF but also not currently reading

Absolute Favourites: self-explanatory, yeah? This is stickied because I refer to it a lot for recs and book tags!

ARC: includes both my read and unread ARCs

Cover Love: again, stickied because I use the shelf for tags a lot!

Immediate TBR: at the beginning of every month I stick my monthly TBR here, makes it easier to track books I want to get to ASAP

My Permanent Library: books I own and not about to part with

Owned TBR: books I own and need to read

Ownvoice Review: books I’ve read and written an ownvoice review about; stickied because I am proud of these

Problematic: books with problematic content and in depth discussions, used a lot for book discussions

Reviewed: books that I have reviewed on Goodreads (or marked as RTC), stickied so I can review RTC often

Wishlist Gift Buy: books I want to get or be given at some point! A girl can dream.

Genre TBR Shelves

To preface this, despite my organization obsessions and set monthly TBRs, I tend to be a mood reader. Because of this, often there is a certain type of book I want to read. My genre TBR shelves help greatly with this, making it easy to sort through my TBR and find exactly what I want.

It’s also really helpful if you participate in readthons, reading challenges, and book bingos!

So basically, I have two shelves for each topic/genre I read: a genre shelf for my read books and one for my TBR.



Series Shelves

I read a lot of series. And in saying that I ACTUALLY mean that I start a lot of series, forget that I am reading them and take a long time to return. So now, to manage this very strange problem, I have five shelves dedicated to my book series.


As discussed in my previous post I only ever add the next book to read in a series to my TBR. I refuse to add all the books at once to avoid cluttering my TBR and also because there’s a possibility I’ll abandon the series (like the 59 sad souls on the list above).

So why five shelves? Seems excessive?

Series: every book that is part of a series that is listed in my read/TBR/currently reading books is put here too

Series Abandoned: if I decide that I am going to abandon a series, I move all the books read so far in the series to this shelf

Series Completed: if I actually manage to finish off a series the books all get moved here! (please ignore the fact that completed books<abandoned books)

Series in Progress: when I finish a book for a series that hasn’t been abandoned or finished it gets put here

Series TBR: this shelf is where all my next-book-in-the-series go! when I finish a series book and decide I want to continue to series, I’ll TBR (only) the next book in the series and add to this shelf, making it easier to track where my reading is at

Miscellaneous Shelves

Audiobook/Audiobook TBR: I started this because I was just curious what formats I was reading the most, but since then it’s become really useful for books I want to read exclusively or reread as an audio book

Feels: this is another shelf that I use a lot for blogging and book tags. Because let’s face it, nearly every tag has the questions “what was the last book that made you cry or laugh”

Important Issues: there are a lot of books that I love because of the topics they explore, even if they don’t end up being a favourite. These are often great books for book clubs, group reads, and other recs.

Not What I Thought: because there are a lot of books that I go into thinking one thing and the book is something completely different?

Overhyped: used a lot for book tags/discussions, we have ALL fallen into this trap and need a reminder

Ownvoice Authors: because these people deserve some praise and love

OzLit: because I love screaming about books outta my own country

Previously Owned: I go to a lot of thrift shops for books and often donate them straight back if I’m not going to reread. I also get a lot of books and donate them because I’m suddenly not interested and I want to remember which books these were

Tome TBR: because I really want to be a tome readathon junkie and I need a TBR for that

And that’s the lot! What do think? Would anything from my TBR work for you? Or is there something else you think I should utilize? I am always open to ideas and love hearing how everyone organizes themselves and their shelves.


Rating and Reviewing DNF Books | Does my opinion really count if I didn’t finish?
10 Book Terms Required to Understand Book Blogging Creatures
International Bookworms: A Day in the Life of a International Blogger


Disclaimer: Header photo by Tom Hermans and Pinterest photo by Kiwihug on Unsplash



8 thoughts on “Managing My TBR | What shelves do I use on Goodreads?”

  1. Omg you’re so organiiized😍 haha your goodreads is goals, I just use like 4 shelves but I’ve been repeating that when I get some time I’ll definitely organize them better haha


  2. This made the organised side of my soul very happy! I love seeing people break down their Goodreads accounts, I don’t know why but I find it really interesting. I feel like at face value some people have really messy accounts, but when you actually break them down there’s a method to the madness. Great post, Becca!


  3. The series shelf is an excellent idea and I think I’m going to use that. I have far too many series started and I can’t ever remember if I have completed them or what.
    Thanks so much for this!


  4. This is so organised! I adore Goodreads but I only have the read/TBR and currently reading shelves haha. I’ll definitely try to organise my books a bit better


  5. Immediate TBR is a really good idea! Until now I solved that with an Excel spreadsheet, but tracking them on Goodreads can be useful.

    I actually hate reading most series because there’s so many books and I can’t keep up, but hey, maybe shelves can help sort that out too…

    I… don’t think I understand what “Tome TBR” is, even with the explanation.


  6. I am working on organizing my shelves, but I am glad that at least I have my TBR shelves together because I have more than one TBR shelf. I have my TBR – e-books, TBR – boolshelf, TBR – ARCS and the big old TBR with books I want to read but do not own yet. I am trying to keep the big TBR under 50 books, but the other TBR shelves are overflowing a bit. I love my TBR-ARCS because it’s an easy way to keep track of all the ARCS I have.

    I tried the genre shelves too, but abandoned it at one point… maybe I should get back to it because I like yours! And your SERIES shelves are inspiring – I might borrow your idea.


  7. Whew, that’s so awesome (and intense) that you keep two shelves for genres! That’s a really organized and clever way to keep track of your books! Like, my TBR is stuck on one shelf, and I’d have to scroll through pages upon pages to even sort ’em out. 😂


  8. Oh I loved getting to see what Goodreads shelves you have! I generally like seeing how other bookworms organize their TBR’s 🙂 I think I really need a few shelves for Series that are finished, in progress, abandoned too!


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