I checked my public library account today. Can you guess what my balance is?

Holy crap, yes….$15!!! I am as appalled as you are. Clearly, libraries are NOT a good idea when you’re a bad patron like me. I vowed long ago that I would never accumulate late fees again, and yet here I am…again. [sigh]

Let’s revisit my tips, and hopefully this time some will stick with me:

1) Don’t bite off more than you can chew! Because of the wonders of online renewal, I have been abusing this one. We get 28 days to read a book. That’s a pretty long time. For one book, that is. 8 books? Not so much….I don’t know about you, but there’s no way I’ll read 8 books in 4 weeks. Reminder to self: 1 or two books at a time!!!! (I know exactly what the problem is. I get greedy, put in requests for several “popular” books, and then they all come in around the same time. I don’t return them since they were so hard to get in the first place!)

2) Immediately write down the due dates in your planner!! Excellent idea! If you remember to do so! And then don’t forget to look at your planner, lol.

3) When I check out a high-demand book, I won’t act so surprised that I can’t renew it because someone else is waiting for it. Be prepared to have to return it on time…and plan accordingly.

 4) Read more. That way I’ll be more likely to finish it (and want another book) before its due back at the library. (Another reason why 1 book at a time is a better idea for me.)

5) Never forget that $0.10 at a time will add up quickly!!

6) Keep the books in a designated and visible place. Hopefully I won’t forget about the books if they are in plain sight.

So yes, I know I’m cheating by practically reposting a year-old post (I made some changes), but I really need to get this into my head. Now the next time I go to the library I’ll either have to pay up, bow my head in embarrassment when I have to tell the cashier I can’t pay right away (they’re actually accomodating like that), or rush through and do a self-checkout and spare myself the embarrassment. Meh, I deserve the embarrassement….serves me right!

The worst part is those $15 are on books I haven’t even read. Its terrible! I might as well be buying books! This weekend I’ll be checking what books I have and returning all but one or two.

Do you have any tips on how to maximize your library use without racking up a fortune in dues?

Anyone else have a bigger library dues balance that’ll make me feel better about my own?

(No? Oh…I figured it wouldn’t hurt to ask…)