2008-01-31

A Wall of Books Part 06: Organization

2008-01-31 Bookcase
I am moving to a new apartment in my building about 6 weeks from now. This affords me the rare opportunity to fix my library.

I have more than 530 books scattered across 8 or so book cases around my apartment. They are almost organized. By that I mean I have about 10 different organizational systems that I've applied to my books over the years, and elements of all those systems are still in place.

I tried arranging them by genre, author, work/non-work, fiction/non-fiction, size, to read/already read, literature/guilty pleasure, personal era in which acquired, and more.

Since I now have to take everything off the shelves and move the shelves, I can try to enforce some organizational schema.

So, I'm asking my fellow book junkies for help. How do you organize your personal library? And does it work?

And should I even bother trying?

12 comments:

Alison said...

I'm afraid my books probably fall under the heading of 'organised chaos' however much I try! I think they are mostly in order of genre/favourites and outsized books they don't fit anywhere else...

Jon Clarke said...

You got the apartment! Congrats!

536 books? Ha! When I add up my dvds, action figures and cds they crush your silly books.

But I try to arrange them by genre. I just got Renee a six foot bookcase for xmas and it seemed like agreat time to reorganize the books. Then I realized they were never organized at all.

Charity said...

Unfortunately, everything I've ever tried to organize my books has failed. I have books everywhere in my apartment and frankly, I've given up on trying to organize them.

kate said...

I've wanted, for a long time now, to organize them by color/size. Just purely for aesthetics. We have about 5 bookcases worth of books, but even by this organizational method I feel I could easily find them. I know them all well enough. I fear bringing this up to my anal boyfriend who has always taken it upon himself to organize the books (albeit halfassedly), because he becomes wide-eyed and altogether alarmed in demeanor when I mention that I'd like to take a stab at reorganizing them myself. Ah well. I've seen it done and liked how it looks. It's probably not as personal as organizing them auto-biographically or something but I still like the idea of it...

Beth is wfg said...

I tend to group by genre/subject. And then most often looked at get easily reached positions while those we don't look at often get buried. Good luck with your move!

Lis said...

I arrange them by genre then in alphabetical order according to author's name. Within the same author, it goes in some sort of chronological order.

I do the same for my CDs.

Yes, I'm a tad OCD. Heh.

Amy said...

Over the years and through several moves, I've developed a loose organizational system.

Non-fiction is grouped by category. All non-fiction on a certain subject goes on one shelf. Books on this subject by the same author get grouped together. So there are separate shelves of science, music, art, poetry, philosophy, etc. (Actually, science and philosophy have their own bookcase.)

Fiction is grouped by author. Most of my paperbacks go in big plastic tubs in the basement. I just run downstairs and grab one at random from a tub when I need something to fall asleep to at night.

It might sound chaotic, but it's easy, and I don't get all hung up over putting a book back exactly where I found it. (Which I did, when I had a more rigorous classification system.)

Heart of Rachel said...

You have an impressive collection of books.

Thanks for dropping your Entrecard.

shae-shae said...

I must admit, I go with the old faithful... alphabetically by author. Works for me.

Chicagochris said...

530 books? Amateur! I believe that technically I am drowning in books by now; I have an almost embarrasingly large numuber of books that began overflowing available shelfspace 20 years ago. I organize fiction by author and don't even try to worry about genre; nonfiction by subject/author. And be sure to leave extra shelf space for inevitable expansion.

Anna said...

I was going to ask you that. I need to get the books in this house organized, but I'm not sure exactly how to go about it. I'm thinking alphabetically by author, but haven't decided whether to subdivide by categories.

A. said...

We're moving in a couple of months so I'm going to have to weed out quite a few of ours, before trying to organise them. It breaks my heart!