I’ve blogged before about the trials of moving…and while we’re going through a certain amount of those things again, I won’t retread old ground and rehash those trials again. Instead I’ll talk about moving books.
Every time I move, which seems to be far too often, I swear that I’m going to get rid of most of my comics and books. If you’ve ever moved boxes and boxes of books, you know what I’m talking about. At one point in time, I had close to 10,000 comics. Over the last decade, I’ve gotten rid of a bunch of them, replaced some of them with compilations, etc., so that I’m less than that now, though I don’t know exactly how many. It’s still a whole bunch.
As for books, I also can’t give an accurate number except to say that I fill up about five bookshelves, all packed pretty tightly. Comics and books are different in that which comics I had were always pretty important: I mean, it was a big deal that I had a near entire run of the original run of Avengers—yes, I was an Avengers fan before most of the world knew who they were. Books, on the other hand, I just kinda got what I liked or what was recommended to me.
How do I organize them?
That’s a question I only get from other writers. I can’t recall anyone not a writer asking me that—well, maybe some bookstore employees (side note: one job I had during college was working at BOOKLAND, a job I mostly really enjoyed. It was the job I had at graduation and continued to work at until I was getting enough freelance work to quit). As you know, bookstores have meticulous shelving systems…some of my madness may stem from my time there.
So, in no particular order, here are my “sections:”
*Superhero fiction (alpha by author)
*Sci-fi (alpha by author, anthologies at the end. I include Fantasy here because I really don’t read that much fantasy)
*Li-fi (as far as I know, this is my own term, created because—at the time—I felt that the term “sci-fi” was a slam on the genre. It’s now cool to say “sci-fi.” I use Li-fi in reference to Literary Fiction. Alpha by author)
*Southern/Civil War fiction (alpha by author)
*Christian fiction (alpha by author)
*Reference (no particular order)
*Teaching (these are books that I either have because I thought they’d help me as a teacher, or because I got them as a student—books like Norton’s Anthology or any of the number of “readers” out there. Technically they could go in Li-fi…but I keep them separate.)
*Southern culture (no particular order)
*History (chronologically. Generally, I have three main sections: Civil War, WW2, Early American (which emphasizes heavily on Native Americans). Anything that falls outside of these three get shelved chronologically in the group)
*Religious stuff (no particular order. Wide range of stuff in this section, ranging from books on creationism to CS Lewis to angels (Billy Graham has an EXCELLENT book on angels!) to eternity, etc.
*Non-fiction (okay, I know that “history” is non-fiction, but this is stuff that doesn’t exactly fall into MY history section. It includes bios and autobios as well as some odds and ends like a really good book on New Orleans and a good one on the Yakuza.)
*Stuff I don’t know what to do with (yeah, I do have that section. Often it’s books I get as part of an “author-swap” [you know, when a fellow-writer—or myself, for that matter—says “hey, let’s swap books. Here’s mine, let me have yours.”], or when I pick up something a friend as done as a way of support and it falls outside all my other categories. Yeah, this is where it goes.
No, I do NOT have a poetry section. I’m sorry if that offends you.
So there you go…a tiny peek into the madness that is me.