Downsizing

On Thursday, I read an article at Becoming Minimalist about letting go of books and reducing one’s book collection. The author writes:

Until just a few years ago, books were stacked everywhere in my home. My two huge book cases were double-stacked with volumes ranging from children’s fiction to college text books, and piles had formed next to couches and the bed, not to mention on any available surface. I could not imagine my life without these friends surrounding me – the very thought of letting go of just one was enough to send me hurling at my shelves, attempting to wrap my arms around every book I owned in protection.

She could have been describing me exactly. She goes on to write that she was able to reduce her own collection to just 20 books, just 20! Some serious processing went into achieving her awesome organization goal.

To move from one extreme to the other took some serious work, and was not an overnight process. It started with the realization that I was not so much attached to the stories and words themselves, but the physical books sitting on the shelves. Once I had that realization, I began to let go of some of my books, and moved slowly towards a more minimalist reading collection.

Those few sentences were so inspiring that I actually planned to put them into practice on the weekend.

You know what? This past Saturday morning, I started on a pretty focused mission, sorting through our unwieldy book collection and got rid of about 230 books, a feat that surprised mon mari. We took most of the books to a local used book vendor and got cash for some of them, gave a box to a local non-profit society library, and donated the rest. I’m aiming to clear out one more book shelf over the next week, but dang, if I don’t feel terrific about it already.

In the meantime, I can still drool over other people’s gorgeous book collections over at Bookshelf Porn:

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