January 8, 2019

Make Tidying Your Bookshelf as Painless as Possible

Tidying your bookshelf? As in, getting rid of books? What could be a more terrifying thought to the passionate reader? We all love a good collection, and we especially love holding onto those books that played an important role in shaping who we are today. However, if your bookshelf is too full of books, it becomes more of a millstone than a medicine. It’s time to make room for new reads and really examine what is worth keeping.


Get the ebook instead
To those who love having and reading physical copies, this may be sacrilege. However, it doesn’t cost anything to replace certain books with e-books. We are talking, of course, about public domain literature. Unless it’s a particularly gorgeous book, there’s little point in holding onto classics like Dickens, Defoe, or Dumas if you already have an e-reader. Naturally, if you do have a particularly beautiful copy of an old classic, then you don’t have to get rid of it, but there’s no point in buying generic paperback copies of what could just as easily be downloaded legally for free.
Sell what doesn’t belong
Your bookshelf might not only be full of fiction and nonfiction that have shaped your leisurely reading habits. Many readers tend to also keep books that once had a practical function that is simply no longer necessary. College textbooks are a textbook example of that, pun very much intended. Sell back textbooks you no longer need to free up some easy room in the bookshelf, as well as getting a little cash back. Textbooks are always expensive for college students, so not only do you stand to make a little more back than the average book re-selling experience, but you could be helping some poor, studious soul out there.
Swap them
If you want to make sure the books go to a good home, then who better to trust them to than another reader? Book swapping groups and areas are popping up more and more frequently, including outdoor library boxes that allow you to take one book if you leave one. Joining a reading group online and mailing books you love to one another to keep can be a great way to discover some fantastic reads and renew your love for reading, too.
Share the love of reading
If you don’t want anything in return, then there are always plenty of worthwhile places looking for book donations. From kids with imaginations just waiting to be sparked but without the access to books of their own to libraries that are always looking for new stock, when you donate a book, you practically guarantee that it will matter to someone, somewhere, someday. If you’ve ever used a library, you practically owe it to them, too.

You don’t have to get rid of your collection, but you can get a lot more value out of your bookshelf by curating it. It’s not important how many books you have owned or read, what’s important is keeping and displaying the books you love.

Disclaimer: Partnered post that may contain affiliate links.

14 comments:

Abominable Bookgirl said...

This is a fantastic time for me to see this post! I have a lot of reorganizing and cleaning to do and my books are the hardest part.

Whispering Stories Blog said...

Lovely post. I have two book shelves but thinking about getting a big one this year when I redecorate my living room - not sure the hubby will agree.

jenn G said...

I should get a bigger area for books myself.

Jennilyn said...

Lovely post. This reminds me that I have to cull old books that I'm not gonna need anymore. :)

DJ Sakata said...

I share mine with my bookworm friends, otherwise, my house would be a fire hazard.

Gemma Jackson said...

Some great tips here. My books are all in boxes from our recent move and I'm dreading unpacking them. I know I'm not going to have room for them all and I'll need to do a major purge.
Gemma @ www.gemmasbooknook.blogspot.com

Lady In Read said...

i have books in my closet as well so maybe i need to look at my books once again and see what i need to clean up :(

Christina Loeffler said...

Wonderful post!

Bewitched Reader Book Blog said...

I have this struggle all the time.

Floryie said...

I have been reorganising my shelves. I have packed up 4 bags of books right now to give away.. I have noted them down and the ones I like are being replaced with ebooks..

Kat said...

Great post!! I love the ideas that your shared. I have read only ebooks until these last few months. Now I have a few paperbacks and look forward to adding to my collection so I'll definitely have to keep these in mind!

Amanda McGill said...

Great post! Thankfully I have a great library close by, so I don't buy too many books.

Megan | Ginger Mom and Company said...

These are all great solutions to shelves that seem to be bursting at the seams! I graduated from culinary school so, thankfully, the textbooks I kept are still relevant to me. But it's great that some students can sell theirs back :) Great list!

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