Is There Such Thing As Too Many Books?

Hi, I’m Stephanie. And I am a book hoarder.

Hi Stephanie.

A good friend of mine once said that buying books and reading books are two different hobbies. Not only do I read books, I buy them. But I’ve always had a habit of buying books faster than I can read them.

There are friends who have refused to help us ever move again unless my book collection shrinks considerably. Mark has (rightfully) asked me to purge my collection so we can make space for things like home office furniture and litterboxes for our small clowder of cats. I know they’re all right, but getting rid of my books – whether I’ve read them or not – feels wrong.

It’s hard to get rid of things you’ve spent money on. It’s hard to get rid of things that bring you joy. It’s hard to get rid of things that you have formed an emotional bond with.

I love my books. Even the ones I didn’t enjoy reading.

But lifestyle changes brought about by “the new normal” that shook up my life in 2020, my publishing goals, and my dreams of fostering as many cats as I can get my hands on, means I have to rethink all of my collections. Especially my book collection.

Now when I read those unread books that have been sitting on my shelves for years (or decades) I try to be ruthless with myself. Did I enjoy reading this enough to keep in my collection? Is this something that will add to or detract from the overall collection I’m trying to curate? Is this something I would recommend to a friend? Why did I buy this in the first place? Will I ever read this again?

My collection is shrinking.

But this leads to a new problem. My goal is to own more books in the genres I publish in. And now that I’m purging my book collection…

There’s a whole lot more empty shelf space to fill up with horror and science fiction.

Tell my wallet I’m sorry.

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