How To Organize Your Book Collection
Today is World Book Day, in the spirit of reading and book collecting, it’s a good time to think about how you process your own books. If you love to read, you understand that a favorite book is something that’s hard to part with. The memory of the story is in you and that’s the physical object that connects you to that book. Keeping a book collection organized for passionate readers can be a challenge. Here are some suggestions to consider. Remember, not every suggestion will work for you. These are not rules, they are ideas to keep in mind so that you can continue reading and loving your books, yet have a system for keeping an organized collection.
Sort It Out: Sort your books into categories that work for you. Whatever your interests, hobbies are, sort accordingly. If you want things more organized visually, sort by size or color.
Go Digital: Dare I say…many passionate book worms love the tactile feeling of flipping through the pages, but if you can make the switch, it will certainly reduce clutter around you! Consider starting small, maybe with newspaper or magazines you can make the switch and ease into the change, after all, it is the future.
One In One Out Rule: Every time you add a book to the shelf, eliminate another. That may be easy for some and impossible for others. If your bookshelves are over-stuffed, try using the “one in two out rule” so you can slowly pare down what you have.
Use The Library: Making use of your local library can prove to be a most valuable resource for any book lover. Libraries are networked, so if you’re looking for a specific title, they will hunt it down. If you want to pare down on your own collection, donate your books to your library and think of IT as your collection–that will certainly lighten your load!
Regularly Weed Out: Planning time to regularly (depending on your level of use) weed through and purge your books. You will be amazed what a difference it will make if you glance over each and every book and make a decision about it. It’s also just a good idea in general so you know what you have, it’s like doing a personal inventory.
Pass Along: If you have someone who loves your hand-me-down books, always keep a place for items that can go to them. Maybe you know of an organization that can make use of your books or magazines. Just don’t forget to get them into their hands so they don’t continue to pile up in your space.
Sell Books: You can make some money by selling books back. Amazon.com is a great resource to sell books, especially textbooks.
Unsubscribe: If you’re in a book club or subscribe to regular magazines, take some time to review what you’re really reading and enjoying versus what you don’t quite make the time to get to. Knowing what you regularly receive and staying on top of whether it’s physical or digital, is always a good idea.
Archive: If you just can’t bear to part with certain books, consider archiving what you are holding on to simply for posterity. If you’re not planning to re-read and time soon, and you must save the book, they may be better suited for the attic or storage space. It’s a last resort of course, because the chance of you cracking back into those boxes is slim, but at least you’ll know you have it and that should suffice! It’s well worth the effort to label the outside of the box with good detail, as well as keeping a digital copy of the list handy.