Before I started blogging I never got rid of books. Well, almost never. *laughs* I was and always will be, a book hoarder. I have books from when I was a small child (not a lot of them, but the ones I was able to save from my parents purging!) And any book that I’ve read over the years that I haven’t hated.
Books that I’ve read over and over again, I will sometimes have more than one copy of. Especially if it’s a cover that was changed, and I prefer one of the older covers.
I’ve noticed that if I hold onto a book long enough, even if it was one I was planning on getting rid of… it will eventually be a book I can’t part with. It’s grown on me and gotten into the toddler grabby mindset of “mine!”
So I pretty much can’t purge a book I’ve had for longer than a few months. If I’ve had it a year or more? Forget it, it’s going to be stuck on a bookshelf somewhere until it either falls apart and I have to get rid of it, or some other unlikely calamity befalls it.
But! Since I started blogging, I’ve tried to crack down on how many physical books I actually keep. If it wasn’t at minimum, a 4 star book for me, it goes on my ‘get rid of’ shelf. And because I have it firmly in my mind that those books are leaving my house, I haven’t gotten attached to them! Yay me!
With the cozy mysteries I’ve been getting from Berkley-NAL, I’m even pickier. If I haven’t loved/adored a book in the series, and can’t see myself re-reading any of the books in that series, it goes on the ‘get rid of’ shelf. Which means that even if I like the book, I’ve managed to weed out a lot of them! Out of 42 books that I’ve either read or passed over because I couldn’t get into them, I’ve only kept 6!
I also haven’t let myself hang onto many physical ARCs for the same reason. I have 10 bookcases of books now. 8 bookcases are filled. 1 is half filled, and the newest one is empty waiting for me to overflow again. These bookcases are just over 7 feet tall, and 30.5 inches wide, with 6-7 shelves per bookcase. I’ll let you imagine just how many books that equals out to!
(The ‘get rid of’ shelf doesn’t count in there as it’s a pile in front of a row of ‘keeping’ books that are stacked differently so I can tell them apart. I don’t usually double-stack my shelves…)
I have lots of people I can hand off the fantasy and sci-fi books I don’t keep to. But the mysteries have been a problem for me. My blog friends that I exchange books and things with don’t read cozies, and my relatives don’t either. It doesn’t help that most of the books are not the first in their series. So I’ve been thinking about seeing if my library will take them. But I keep getting distracted and not poking said library!
This means my ‘get rid of’ shelf now has 45 books on it and I’m now starting to worry about if the shelf can hold any more…
How do you decide which books are purged from your shelves? Are you able to get rid of books? Do they have to be with you for x-number of days or less before you get too attached to them? How do you get rid of those books? Friends? Library? Garage sale? Leave stacks of them in random places with “please adopt me” notes on them?