Sunday, June 29, 2008

The further saga of the bookshelves

I got the new bookshelf put in almost a month ago. But I hadn't rearranged or reorganized the books, which was badly needed. Books were piling on top of other books and the organization system that I had come up with two years ago wasn't really working anymore. (For example, the shelf that sits right next to my desk doesn't really need to have the dissertation books on it anymore. Those really should be blended into the other early modern books. Plus Anna Karenina didn't belong in the medieval books.)

I thought this sort of project would be a great way to procrastinate -- and I've almost run out of procrastination techniques. The house is pretty clean. I can only do so much laundry at a time. I've got three bags of clothes to donate. I've plotted out a great deal of the fall semester's readings. And I've actually been working on my articles and my teaching for the summer session.

But yesterday seemed like the right day to take on this task. I'm feeling a little overwrought lately and I wanted to do something that would make me feel like I had control over some aspect of my life. (I am becoming an angry person lately. Though I think that it was okay to come home angry with the woman who purposely and repeatedly ran into my shopping cart while I was unloading my groceries. South Florida is not agreeing with me.)

So, I thought I would take the afternoon to reorganize. I am pleased with the result, though of course, there's no room for new books.

But I need to be on a book-buying hiatus at the moment. Books cost money. Money needs to go to the gas tank and for food at the moment.

Plus, I get desk copies for books I teach. I really ought to get back to writing book reviews.

Blerg. I'm finding ways to acquire more books.

Bradley made fun of me for wanting to alphabetize things, but I did it anyway (how can anyone not do that? It's weird to me that people don't). And now everything looks so lovely and organized. This will not last all that long, but for now it's nice.


Amy said...

Nice! You're a braver woman than me. My "organization" is limited to putting my foreign language books together (so I don't get confused) and trying (more or less) to keep all the comic books on the same shelf (totally doesn't work). :-) We do have a designated "poetry" bookshelf in the house, but you can about predict how that goes ("oh THAT'S where my copy of BONE went!")

Mark Scroggins said...

Bradley should go sit on a tack! Alphabetical organization is totally the only way to go, once you have more than a hundred books. And hey, once you start edging into senility like me, it's the only way you're gonna find anything!

Emily said...

I think he likes when things are organized. It's just that he doesn't want to be the one to do it (he made fun of me for wanting to alphabetize the DVDs, for example. I did it, and now he's very happy with it).

Bradley said...


(That's a reference to having the joy, joy, joy, joy, right?)

I've got my books at school organized by genre, for the most art. There's a fiction shelf, a special case for anthologies, four shelves of creative nonfiction, a shelf for literary magazines, and then a big shelf divided among poetry, drama, graphic novels, and scholarship. Except for the scholarship on nonfiction-- that's on the nonfiction shelf. Also, graphic memoirs are on the nonfiction shelf, not with the graphic novels. Oh, and I have a shelf for literature and medicine, which is where all of the memoirs and anthologies devoted to illness and healing are. And...

Okay. Maybe alphabetizing would work better. But then are graphic novels arranged by writer, or by artist? And shouldn't J. Kerry Grant's annotations to The Crying of Lot 49 go next to Pynchon?

Oh, I'm a sad and confused professor...

Bradley said...

... genre, for the most PART. Damn "p" isn't working, unless I press down hard.