There’s been a lot of conversation in my circles recently about how to effectively save links and deal with articles you want to read later.
The trouble these folks run into is that their queue quickly grows to impractical proportions, forcing them to give up, empty it, and start again.
I don’t pretend to have the one true solution, but since this isn’t a problem I run into, I thought it might be worth outlining my approach in case it helps.
I don’t have the same workflow as Marius, but I’m glad he started the conversation. And I think his thoughts on the matter or certainly valid and could likely be adopted as is by many others or altered to fit your mindset.
Personally, I save just about everything to Instapaper. When I read my queue (in Reeder), I don’t go there to read necessarily, I go there to process the links that I’ve saved. As I go through my queue, I’ll move links to my to do list, watch videos, subscribe to new RSS feeds, read articles, link to interesting things here on Initial Charge, share links on Twitter, save thoughts in Bear or Day One, and so on.
The key to keeping my Instapaper queue under control is to actually make the time to go through it regularly. Marius has some great thoughts on this:
Those articles aren’t going to read themselves! It’s all well and good to have a system for saving things, but if you don’t have a method for doing something about those things then of course you’re going to find yourself frustrated.
I have two main article reading times: morning and evening. I always hit at least one of the two, and on normal days I do some reading during both time windows.
I don’t make time for processing my queue as much as I used to, although I haven’t found myself saving as much to Instapaper recently either — so it’s likely a wash. But my prime time for going through my queue is right before bed. My wife and son go to bed before I do, which gives me a little bit of time where I can focus on the task at hand.
If it’s worth anything, Marius’ article is actually the last item in my queue, so once I hit publish, I’ll be at Instapaper Zero.