The website Book Riot has been my rock this winter. Its been keeping me sane and keeping me from watching full series of Veronica Mars and/or Gilmore Girls to keep my mind off the fact that its winter (the Fella and the mild weather have been a great help too, but mostly Book Riot). Reading the articles from the contributors has been pretty awesome and has sparked many a thoughtful essay in my own Opinionated, Literary Brain.
Most recently: “How I Learned to Stop Hoarding & Give Books Away”
This is, admittedly, a lesson I could learn. I just got years worth of piles of books up off the floor in my bedroom this past fall by putting together a makeshift bookshelf out of boards and milk crates (I’m such a 90s college student!) and while so many of them are books I love, so many of them are books I will never love. I mean, does anyone really need the entire Twilight Saga or The Grapes of Wrath or Eat, Pray, Love?
Honestly, yes, someone might; that person just might not be me.
So here I am with all these books I’ve read and didn’t enjoy, or read and am never going to read again, or started to read, got bored and gave up and they’re taking up space on my already overcrowded shelves. (
I also like to think, in the back of my mind somewhere, that these books will be the first ones on my shelves when I open my used bookstore, therefore I shouldn’t get rid of them…) I can’t honestly say I’m ever going to be able to truly get rid of them. I’m certain to lend them out to people and not necessarily care if I ever get some of these back, but I really do have trouble actually giving up my books.
It’s a little like the idea of giving up a person. There are entire worlds within those pages that I would just be discarding and that’s a tough thing to wrap my mind around. I know I’d be giving them to the library or the local Annie’s or Goodwill or some other charitable place that is sure to find them a good home, but you can’t always be sure; you can’t always know that someone is going to buy them who is going to love them (even though you didn’t).
Sometimes its as if the actual physical book has feelings. The Material’s used to make a book, however shitty the story, have value. It’s not the paper and ink’s fault that what they were used for was crappy or a waste of resources. We can’t blame the materials for being used by a shitty creator. They don’t deserve rejection just because of what they were used for. They deserve a home just as much as any other collection of paper, ink, and glue.
It is sentimental and stupid, yes, I know (believe me, my absurdities are not lost on me) but sometimes this is how I think and why I have trouble getting rid of books… or trying to turn them into art. This is part of the reason I hoard books.
Well, that, and I’m lazy.