Because I have many writers and/or readers on my main Facebook page, I see memes like this all the time:
But this is nowhere near what I have in my house.
I also see :
Well, we aren’t QUITE that bad.
Even The Husband has come to the realization that yeah, maybe some books had to go, and they went.
But not enough.
I had old school textbooks. I kept some because you can’t get that kind of information or context anymore, but most were hopelessly outdated, as were many non-fiction books. (For instance, we don’t all stop at a space station on our ‘frequent’ trips to the Moon, and soil is not made up completely of ground rock.)
I know the charity thrift where I took those sent most of them to be recycled.
I gave some to friends, mostly many of the cookbooks.
I finally thinned out some of the thesauruses…I still have several. I made sure that each branch of the family has one and has one good dictionary and (had) a child’s dictionary. The Husband has made sure that they have atlases. I gave writer’s guides to the older one, who writes and will be going to college in a couple of years. (Yes, some of those were duplicates which I had. His cousins will be following to college soon afterward.)
We have been known to pick up copies of books which we already have because we wish to share them, (I have three copies of “Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus” on hand; I have given three copies away already), or we have simply forgotten we already had them, (I recently stopped The Husband from buying yet another copy of Gilgamesh, since we have two).
I started gathering poetry books because it seems that most libraries dumped them. I usually grabbed classic literature when it has crossed my path, either used or in bookstores. I pick/picked up the complete works of Shakespeare, Hemingway, Wilde, Longfellow and others newly published, when I see them; I can’t resist.
I have given away many of the mysteries I had, like Agatha Christies, and many of the newer ones, (cozies), I gave to the VA hospital library.
The Husband was a seminarian many moons ago and he also graduated from a Catholic college. We have all of his books, plus many more, since he also taught in Catholic schools; some of those came with us as well.
And we have his history books. We have his historical novels.
We have the children and young adult books that I loved reading with my grandkids, or the ones I loved when I was young; I keep gathering more either when I find them in used stores, online, or as new ones, (in stores or ordered).
We have books of languages studied and abandoned: Spanish, Italian, Latin, German and Russian.
I have books of my aunt’s which I have to go through every so often so that I don’t duplicate them. I inherited books on writing from a writer friend, (God rest her soul), and my father-in-law left a complete series of Great Books to the son of his that belongs to me.
I know that I am repeating much of a past post about thinning books out. I did not mean to but it seems that our Tuesday Fox and I had book-buying addiction on our minds this week.
It’s not just me; I could probably resist on my own anymore, but I have a ‘pusher’: The Husband, who has a worse addiction that I. Any trip into the local town and I will probably hear: “What time does St.Vinny’s (the local St Vincent de Paul charity thrift store) close?”
“Do you feel up to a trip to Goodwill?” “I need to go to the library”…that need is turned into a long look at their book sales. He usually comes home with several, or more, and often one or more for me. He usually calls and asks, but frankly, I think he feels guilty about getting all of those for himself and picks some up for me to assuage that.(If he calls, I will tell him “no”.)
Any time he goes out by himself, he will run late, and that’s where he is, looking at book sales. If we go out of town, we will hit any bookstore in proximity. Oh, the hours we have spent in Barns and Noble! (Never mind the money; we needed to just stop going for a while.) His new out of town must-stop? Half-Price Books; he took me to TWO locations the last time we went to Louisville, not just the one which we have to pass).
When I was recuperating from surgery last year, he was in the positon to have to travel to other counties. He’d be gone forever. Fortunately, we had our cellphones. Why was he gone so long? The traveling took some of the time, business took very little time, but he’d stop at every nearby library. When I was up to traveling at all, I went with him. My healing was probably delayed from bending over, looking at book titles.
Nearly all of the thinning out that I had done was wiped out and the stacks keep growing.
Yes, stacks, and double-shelving.
OK, maybe I can’t control myself all of the time. Online sales get to me and the ebooks keep mounting onto the computer and into Kindle.
The latter are not a problem; the physical books are. No one will want our collection when we are gone. The Husband has a nephew who he thinks might want the religious books, but I doubt that the fellow knows just how many there are.
One son is a minimalist who travels for work and the other doesn’t have the interest in more than a small portion. I think if he had a home with a library he would want more, but certainly not more than a fraction of what we have. The grandkids might want some, but they still teens at home.
Let’s face it, few people are willing to give up the room to live in a library like we do.And I am considering downsizing. It’s a real quandary.I’d love to think that we could put in a library like George Lucas’:
But I am almost willing to bet that in a smaller place, we might end up more like this:
My name is Tonette, and I am a Book Addict.
Oh wow, sounds like you have plenty books. If I had the space, I’d certainly have more. When I separated from my husband, I sadly left so many books behind when I moved back to my home town, including all the beautiful children’s books I used to read to my kids when they were small, and which I would’ve loved to keep for my future grandchildren. But I couldn’t take them with. And I’m glad I didn’t, as my three older kids and I are now living in such a small space. We only have one bookshelf which is stuffed so full, that it actually collapsed the one time and I had to get it repaired. I managed to part with a few things to save the poor shelf, but that was hard! Nowadays, I buy most of my books on Kindle. But my dream is to own a beautiful library – a room set aside just for books. My ex was a book hoarder. He used to buy way too many and loved a bargain. We both loved the second-hand stores, flea markets, and garage sales.
I had put aside a room as a library when we moved here, Kathleen; it doubled as a classroom because I was homeschooling. I moved some of the bookshelves out when I needed to add a bed to the room for guests, but they went to other rooms. Frankly, there IS such thing as too many books.
LikeLiked by 1 person
I’ve been cutting back. I read mostly ebooks now, but I still enjoy browsing through a bookstore. I still have a lot of the books I bought for my girls, but the daughter who has children doesn’t want them – she’s a minimalist, and her husband is a librarian so they make regular trips there. I’ve been working on reading the stuff on my shelves and donating them after they’ve been read. Good luck thinning out your stash!
I just wish we were in a bigger town where I knew that people would appreciate my books, Patty. I really need to find homes for them.
sounds like you’ve had a very eclectic collection.
I have a difficult time getting rid of books, unless it happens to be an duplicate of another I possess. In my case, I think it’s partly because I’ve seen so many sci fi films set in the future and often they have NO books at all.
LikeLiked by 2 people
Actually, I have the same thoughts, Jeff! Especially the things that are out-of-print,(like the poetry). One reason why I would like to be rich is to set most of these up in a library to be protected.
LikeLiked by 1 person
yeah, and then we get the horrible news that most of the paper used in books (both paperback AND hardcover) over the past century has such a high acid content that it will disintegrate within a hundred years. Hence the push to print on acid-free paper.
LikeLiked by 2 people
I think I could get lost for days browsing through your collections of books and I would be perfectly content. I spent the other day repairing a bookcase that had gone crooked, I removed all of the books, repaired the bookcase, then decided to look through and see what was there. The cookbooks were placed in a box, as they were from before my youngest had to go gluten free and many of them used boxed ingredients that we now have to avoid. Then the seasonal books were put into a tote to be returned to the shelves near Thanksgiving time when we begin to read our Christmas books. I discovered we had a few copies of some children’s books so I set some aside and took them to work to give to a coworker for her granddaughter.
I always felt if a house is going to be cluttered than it is best to clutter it with books. We have a large dining room that we never use, except at Thanksgiving, so I have been thinking of turning it into a library. I had gone through a period in my life when I gave away books as soon as I was done reading them. In the past seven years I have found myself buying several of them back.
I think we have similar problems. 😉
LikeLiked by 1 person
By all means, if you can, make a library for yourself; I think that you’ll find it makes you very happy and you can find the books you are looking for. I have tried so hard to keep books of like subjects together, but it is just not as easy.
I also put seasonal/ apart, as I do the movies.
Wish you were here to go through mine with me!