Author Topic: How Do You Shelf?  (Read 2750 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Jazzman99

  • Blue Beer Drinker
  • **
  • Posts: 43
  • Liked: 0
How Do You Shelf?
« on: March 03, 2009, 02:36:59 PM »
I'm running up against a problem I hit every couple of years, and while I don't think there's a real solution, I'm curious about how other people handle this--assuming I'm not the only nut in the world.  Here are the elements of the problem.

1. I collect comic book collected editions, both HC and TPB.  I also have a number of prose authors I like, and I pick up their books whenever I get a chance.  Some I'm obsessive about, trying to get everything (Harlan Ellison); some I pick up anything I see new, and good stuff from used bookstores and the like that I don't already have (Lawrence Block, Bill Bryson, Faye Kellerman, Don DeLillo, heck, probably twenty or thirty others); some are older authors where I pick up nice hardbacks whenever I get a chance, with the long-term goal of having nice editions of everything they wrote (P. G. Wodehouse, Rex Stout).  In addition, of course, there are a lot of other books I've picked up just because they look neat or I'm interested in the topic--so, for example, I probably have a couple of dozen books on Jack the Ripper, and I try to keep them together.  I don't buy a lot of new books, but between library sales, bargain tables, and the like, it's a rare week when I don't add a few new books to the stack.

2. I've gotten a *little* better about this over the years, but I *hate* getting rid of books.  Unless I've read something and absolutely hated it, I want to keep it.  I love having thousands of books around that I haven't yet read, and I also love looking at the spine of a book I have read and getting that little twist of memory and pleasure.

3. I have limited shelf space--more than most people, I imagine, but still limited.  Also scattered; in the house I currently live in the shelves are, by necessity, scattered through four different rooms.  To complicate things further, the shelves are of various sizes, and some books won't fit on some shelves.

So the question: how the bloody hell do I actually organize the things?  Take one small example--say, Wodehouse.  When I moved in I put the fifteen or so hardcover Wodehouses I had together on a shelf, and in the years since I've acquired several more--but I've never been able to put them all together, because of course the Wodehouses are right next to another author whose books are all together (Toni Morrison, randombly enough), and lord knows I don't have the energy or time to deal with this every time I bring a single book home (bring home new Wodehouse; move all the Morrisons; shelve the Wodehouse; find some group of books to put into the vacated Morrison space; find somewhere new for the Morrisons; repeat tomorrow, when you bring home the new Ed McBain).  So books end up getting filed randomly until I can't take it any more, at which point I start making stacks on the pool table and rearranging everything, which is a pain, an enormous time suck, and a temporary measure, since I'll have to do it again in a year or two.

As I say, I don't think there's really any solution to this; the books are going to keep coming in, and I'm too set in my ways for them to start going out at the same rate.  I guess I'm partly just blowing off steam, and partly wondering how everyone else deals with similar issues.

Thanks for listening!
Read my crime novel FIVE MILLION DOLLARS AND THE GREEN-EYED GIRL on Kindle: http://tinyurl.com/4y5jmem


Offline RoninFox

  • Gryffindork
  • ******
  • Posts: 14019
  • Liked: 2380
    • Ronin Fox Trax
Re: How Do You Shelf?
« Reply #1 on: March 03, 2009, 04:07:43 PM »
Makes me want to ask my sister in law how she organizes her books.  She collects a lot, mainly sci-fi fantasy paperback ot seems, and there's maybe one room in the house other than bathrooms that doesn't have at least one full shelf of books, usually deep shelves with two rows of books on each.  No earthly idea how she knows what goes where.

Really I should ask her what her system is in case I one day need it for dvds etc.
RoninFoxTrax Presents The Thing

gum.co/RFTthing


Offline Thrifty

  • Grendel's Mom
  • ***
  • Posts: 9275
  • Liked: 1272
  • Now available in non-prescription strength.
Re: How Do You Shelf?
« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2009, 12:27:02 PM »
I shelf my vast DVD collection through a system based on genre that is so complex I cannot understand it or replicate it.


Offline Wesley Stamper

  • Schnappi Supporter
  • ***
  • Posts: 141
  • Liked: 0
Re: How Do You Shelf?
« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2009, 01:56:26 PM »
   I'm sure there are many who share your connundrum who will have more creative solutions than mine:

Use the Dewey Decimal System without deviation.

Oversized books, also organized by DD get their own location.

New arrivals get their own location. Once a year (or as frequently as one wishes to undertake the task) they get integrated into the other books.
Stay Alert. Concentrate. Stay Clean.


Offline SJP

  • The FBI Pays Me to Surf
  • *
  • Posts: 2810
  • Liked: 199
  • Worst...avatar...ever!
Re: How Do You Shelf?
« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2009, 02:17:23 PM »
Your creative solutions sound like what happens in my workplace...oh wait, I work in a library.  Never mind.   ;D
One Man Band Riffs.  18 riffs, over 600 served, since 2009.


Offline Darth Geek

  • The Efron
  • ****
  • Posts: 27815
  • Liked: 5649
  • I am boring and destined to die alone!
Re: How Do You Shelf?
« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2009, 07:30:26 PM »
YOU DON"T KNOW THE DEWEY DECIMAL SYSTEM?!




Offline bratpop

  • Climbed El Capitan
  • *******
  • Posts: 5097
  • Liked: 2
  • Riff everything.
Re: How Do You Shelf?
« Reply #6 on: March 05, 2009, 08:07:07 AM »
Er, in a related note, I decided that if I get more Conan books, I'm just going to stack them vertically. The shelf is already full sideways. (Okay, it's not a shelf. It's on top of a shelf.)


Offline FLOCK of RABID SHEEP?!?!

  • Mayor of Nilbog
  • *****
  • Posts: 3055
  • Liked: 1
Re: How Do You Shelf?
« Reply #7 on: March 08, 2009, 11:34:22 PM »
well i just moved most of my crap out of storage and finally realized how many frigging books i have, so i will be having fun going through them in the hopes of either: a) getting rid of them or b) integrating them into my collection...at least i got down from the original 24 or so boxes down to 12 with at least half of them filled with books or magazines....


Offline FLOCK of RABID SHEEP?!?!

  • Mayor of Nilbog
  • *****
  • Posts: 3055
  • Liked: 1
Re: How Do You Shelf?
« Reply #8 on: March 09, 2009, 11:13:20 AM »
hey im, want to come over here and organize my apartment for me? i got beer....

and i mostly just have mine separated by fiction/nonfiction/hardcover fiction/hardcover nonfiction/graphic novel, lol


Offline FLOCK of RABID SHEEP?!?!

  • Mayor of Nilbog
  • *****
  • Posts: 3055
  • Liked: 1
Re: How Do You Shelf?
« Reply #9 on: March 09, 2009, 11:19:55 AM »
oh, i know, im not worried about it, im just in the more reduction phase at the moment, lol


Offline FLOCK of RABID SHEEP?!?!

  • Mayor of Nilbog
  • *****
  • Posts: 3055
  • Liked: 1
Re: How Do You Shelf?
« Reply #10 on: March 09, 2009, 11:32:44 AM »
well, i do plan on moving in the next year or so, so that is why i am reducing shit...i have too much as it is and i hate moving and am trying to get rid of as much as possible, lol


Offline FLOCK of RABID SHEEP?!?!

  • Mayor of Nilbog
  • *****
  • Posts: 3055
  • Liked: 1
Re: How Do You Shelf?
« Reply #11 on: March 09, 2009, 12:53:46 PM »
yeah im donating them all...i was going to do paperbackswap.com but its a little more trouble at the moment then i want...


Offline RVR II

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 54163
  • Liked: 3789
  • There can be Only 1...
    • RVR II's YouTube Channel
Re: How Do You Shelf?
« Reply #12 on: March 09, 2009, 01:07:39 PM »

You can get a tax deduction, I'm sure (ask RVR), but I know that's not why you're doing it.

You can, but not over $500 cause then an appraisal will be needed to back up the value (over $500) claimed..


Offline FLOCK of RABID SHEEP?!?!

  • Mayor of Nilbog
  • *****
  • Posts: 3055
  • Liked: 1
Re: How Do You Shelf?
« Reply #13 on: March 09, 2009, 02:30:13 PM »
well by donation i didnt necessarily mean to libaries or whatever, good will i think is where they are going, or to my mom's or friends shelves, but some might end up there...


Offline Darth Geek

  • The Efron
  • ****
  • Posts: 27815
  • Liked: 5649
  • I am boring and destined to die alone!
Re: How Do You Shelf?
« Reply #14 on: March 09, 2009, 06:26:32 PM »

WHAT"S ON YOUR SHELF?