for the love of books.


One notorious rumor about librarians is that we love books.  Common people think that we all eat, drink, and breathe the written word, reveling in the feel of ink on paper and the comforting, musty earthy aroma that lingers in between the pages.

Did I say notorious rumor?  Because what I meant was ubiquitous fact.  Sure, librarians come in all shapes, sizes, and skill sets, but it’s generally safe to say that we dig books.  Even if, like me, we don’t have as much time as we’d like to read titles of our own choosing.

Regardless of our passion for paperbacks (not to discriminate against hardcovers, but I was really going for the alliteration), librarians also understand the value and necessity of routinely weeding our collections.  I just discovered that I’m going to be moving out of this apartment in a couple of months, so I decided to dive right into applying tried-and-true deselection criteria to my personal library.

I was trucking right along, determining what books I could live without, that my back might be spared the agony of hauling my currently massive freight.  I’d gotten almost entirely through my leisure reading shelves when I stopped to admire my progress.  Checking out my weeded pile, I was pretty impressed with my ability to let go:

And then I turned around to examine my pile of keepers, and my sense of accomplishment immediately dropped to the floor and slipped through the cracks in the hardwood:

How am I supposed to let go of any of these?  I love pulling them off the shelves for a second read (or third, or fourth, or twelfth read), sticking post-it flags on pages with particularly fascinating passages, or checking out the notes I scrawled in the margins.

With a few more shelves of novels to go, as well as all of my professional resource books, a load of art/visual publications, and some instructional volumes, I’m approaching full-on heartbreak with a side of anxiety.

Since there’s no doubt that something will have to go, I think I’ve come to a healthy, intelligent decision:

I will just get rid of all my furniture instead.


2 Responses to “for the love of books.”

  1. Congratulations. Your blog has been nominated for our Library Blog Awards. In fact, your blog was suggested more than once. We’re in the process of assembling information about all those nominated and will be sending a short questionnaire, including the categories of awards and the judges involved. Would you please send me your email address so that I can send you the questionnaire? If your email is on your blog, I couldn’t locate it.

    Thanks in advance,
    Peter W Tobey

  2. Thanks for being so wonderful. I just nominated you for a sunshine award! Come on over and pick it up.

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