Packing Books

I’m a bibliophile.  I don’t merely enjoy reading, I love books.  Typically, if I read a book, love it or hate it, I’m going to want to keep it.

Over the last decade and a half of my life, I’ve amassed quite the library… and every time we move, I have to move it as well.  This time, I’ll be relocating just over 1000 books.  The upside is, for the first time, I get to have a built-in, wall-to-wall, floor-to-ceiling bookcase.  The downside is that it is such a beating to move them all.

There’s very little point to this post.  I just wanted to whine.

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6 responses to “Packing Books

  1. The librarian in me wants to ask… how do you sort/classify all of those volumes?

    • You just made my nerd-tastic day. Right now, I have about 12-15 “sections” that make sense to me and the ways I segment information in my mind. It’s organic, though, and as the library grows, new sections tend to sprout up. For instance, my American History and Politics section has split in the last year or so. I now have American History and Politics – General, Presidents, Campaigns, and Economics. For the most part, books within each section are alphabetized by author’s last name with the exception of Presidents where books are alphabetized by subject’s last name. When I move, I’m considering re-doing American History to connect historical events with the presidential administrations they surrounded – i.e. Civil War books would go with Lincoln books. I’m not sure.

      • Yeah, I have fought using the Library of Congress classification scheme for my personal library, but it sure is useful, and can be extremely descriptive of the book (or bibliographic object) it helps to classify.

        As for me, mine is chronological in non-fiction, and arranged alphabetically by author for fiction. I thin, though, it’s very personal (and sometimes highly unusual) how people classify their books. A passage from the book “The Library At Night” illuminates this for me:

        Sir Robert Cotton, an eccentric seventeenth-century English bibliophile, arranged his books (which included many rare manuscripts, such as the only known manuscript of Beowulf, and the Lindisfarne Gospels, from about A.D. 698) in twelve bookcases, each adorned with the bust of the first twelve Caesars. When the British Library acquired some of his collection, it kept Cotton’s strange cataloguing system, so that the Lindisfarne Gospels can today be requested as “Cotton MS. Nero D. IV” because it was once the fourth book on the fourth shelf down in the bookcase topped by the nbust of Nero. (44-45)

  2. lol. Nice new header you got on here – someone’s been using InDesign! :)

  3. I think that previous comment actually made your year. I’ve rarely seen you that excited.

  4. A little unsolicited advice:

    Stop. As young as you are, this problem will either get a helluva lot worse, or you will need to change.

    Start by getting rid of the books you didn’t like, follow that up with the books you didn’t hate, but know you will still never read again. Give some of the books you liked away to people you think will read them.

    You MIGHT end up getting rid of a book you want back, and paying ten bucks for another copy, but it will probably only be once and it will be well worth the expense of not keeping so much crap on your bookshelves. (People make snap judgments when they see your bookshelf. You want them factoring in the bad books?)

    FWIW, half price books will buy anything, and will recycle what they can’t resell. (My mom’s old encyclopedia set goes there this weekend.) Ask for more in store credit instead of cash and buy more books. :)

    (And needless to say, I can relate to your addiction.)

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