Thursday, August 13, 2009

Book Clutter

One of my bffs put me on to Unclutterer, a blog about getting and staying organized. I try to check it a couple times of week, and one post from last week fits right along with this blog: Clear Bad Book Clutter From Your Life and Your Bookshelves. Not only does the author say it's perfectly OK to put down a bad book, but she also encourages us to abandon bad books from our homes entirely.

I've talked about my thoughts on "bad" books before. I said that as I get older, I find it an awful waste of time to keep reading a book that can't seem to hold my interest. This has happened more and more lately, and I'm happy to hear someone else (Unclutterer, as well as the Washington Times article she references) say it's OK.

Also, I tend to go through my bookshelves once or twice a year and pack up a bag for the half-priced bookstore. I have one paper bag full now, but I think it's time to do another go round. I only want to keep the classics in my mind (Harry Potter, David Sedaris), my absolute favorites (see sidebar), and those I think others might want to borrow someday (Twilight, most recently). It can be hard to part with books, but I find if I go in with little emotion about it, it can be a quick and easy task.

How often do you purge your bookshelves? What books must stay on your shelves, whether considered "clutter" or not?


CMS said...

If I purchased books as often as you do, I would purge the book shelf at least once a year. I can't believe the books some people hold onto. My friend Tonya was storing boxes of books in our basement (when she moved to Idaho we became her storage center) and just recently went through them. I was like, "Really? You saved EVERY SINGLE college workbook you've ever owned?" (Four colleges, three majors, and $60,000 in student loans later.) I guess you don't realize how much JUNK you accumulate until you do a thorough purge!!

Em said...

Everytime I move I get rid of books. They are heavy! I am probably due for another purge, though. Right now I don't have room on my bookshelves for all of the books I've accumulated. The large stacks of books on the floor of my bedroom are probably a good sign it is time to get ride of a few.

manda said...

My large bookshelf (in my living room) is organized mostly aesthetically. Thanks to Unclutterer I'm doing everything I can to unclutter and bring some serenity to my crazy life. Although I love the image of Carolyn Kennedy in her apartment with books stacked on every shelf, on the floor like side tables, etc. (I think it's cozy) I've realized that having a ton of stuff around can make me more stressed out. Also, it's easier to manage dust (allergies) with less laying around.

At the top of my bookshelf (those seen most) are my series (The book of Knowledge and Harry Potter). Then I have all my thick books to keep with the less clutter look. The other two shelves have classics (like you, traditional classics and Sedaris!) and some books I've yet to read. Once I finish those, they will go away. I've stopped buying books mostly because I borrow from friends who recommend books to me (your Twilight series!!), or I go to the library. I have to stay out of the bookstore to save money and because I will buy dozens of books and never get around to reading them and then they clutter up. I just purged a bunch I got for free when working at B&N SEVERAL years ago. I knew I'd never get around to reading them.

Charley said...

I use swaptree to purge my bookshelves. Although, I suppose swapping doesn't really work, because I end up adding another book to my shelf, but it works for me, because my shelves stay stocked with books I currently want to read.

willikat said...

I hate purging. I'm a book pack rat. Sometimes I lend books to people and don't get them back--I guess that'd be my method. :)