I've hit the saturation point again, and have no shelf space (or closet space, or floor space) left. In the past, when this has occurred, I've diminished my book to collection to make space, only to regret decisions and buy the books back (often at a higher price and lower quality). This time, I'm trying something different. And, honestly, I should have done it years ago.
I've rented storage space.
Thankfully, it's within walking distance of my apartment. To prepare for the transition, I've bought paperback storage boxes. I'm alphabetizing each box, and inventorying them in a spreadsheet so I know what I have. I moved 500 books last weekend, and I have another 500 ready to go. And I'm just dealing with the vintage paperbacks for now. Trade pbs and hardcovers will come next.
The reason I'm writing about this here on the blog is that I've come to realize my book collection, which at first inspired this blog, has lately been hindering the blog. As I was sorting through books, I recognized titles that I bought 5, 10, and some close to15 years ago. Many I intended to write about. And I pass over them, I realize that one of the reasons I haven't written about them is that I acquired so many books I couldn't keep track of what I had. Finding a book, let alone choosing one, because such a chore that often I just got on the subway without a book and listened to my iPod, or fiddled with my phone. In the past, I was never without a book. Having so many goddamned books didn't speed up my reading, or make it more pleasurable; instead, it made reading stressful, slow, and laborious. And, as a result, the blog slowed to a crawl. Some years hardly a post at all.
And so, I must say, farewell, my lovelies, to many of my books. Not a long goodbye, mind you, because I'll see them soon. In a weird way, I'm looking forward to having a dedicated space for just my books. I just wish it were in my living space. For now, though, it's nice to know they'll have a home, and as a result more of them will actually get read.
In the next installment, I'll discuss making the decisions about what stays and what goes.
To be continued...