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Necessary New Year Task: Organizing the Bookshelf

There’s something about a new year that just makes me want to organize- my closet, my shoes, my computer files, Twitter, Facebook, and of course, my bookshelf.

Contrary to popular belief, my bookshelf really isn’t all that big. It only has three rows and comes up to about my chest.  It was stuffed to the gills and was super disorganized, so yesterday, I got out my dust rag and put on my neat freak face and started going through all of my books.

Before

See how everything is all messy, disorganized, double stacked and falling over? Yuck. Not good.

During

In the middle of cleaning, I got super stressed because I really wanted to put books I haven’t read yet on the top shelf, books I love so much I want to stare at them all day on the second shelf and some series I really like on the third shelf (coughHarryPottercough) but I ran into some difficulties. Not enough space to make sure every single book was visible!

After

So pretty and more organized than before! I was able to keep the books I haven’t yet read on the top shelf, and like I said above, the second shelf is full of some of my favorite books. Unfortunately, I had to double stack on the third shelf for now.

I ended up with a bag of about 20 books that I’m going to donate to the book sale at my local library…it’s always hard to part with books, but I know they will go to a good home and someone else will get to enjoy them- and even better, I’ll have room for more books! I usually try to donate to my local library a few times a year, especially if I know it’s a book I most likely won’t read again/don’t absolutely WANT or NEED for my collection.

Hopefully, I can rearrange my room soon to make space for a second bookshelf so that all of my lovely books can be seen and admired (and I can buy more, of course!), but for now, I think I did a pretty good job! I can at least see the books I haven’t read, so I can make a point to read, review and either keep them or pass them on.

Bring on the 2011 books!

What does your bookshelf look like? How do you keep it organized?

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15 thoughts on “Necessary New Year Task: Organizing the Bookshelf”

  1. I have 2 of those 9 cube organizer shelfs as my bookcases and I need a third. All of the cubes are double stacked. One cube is fiction and the other is non-fiction (I read a lot of history books) and they are semi grouped. NF is by topic and F is organized by genre. And I make sure all my favorites are on the outside.
    And all my to-read books are on top of the bookshelf.

    1. @erin – heart in ireland, Wow, Erin! Sounds like you have a ton of books!

      I love that your fiction and NF are all organized by genre and topic. I really didn’t go that far, but I tried to group by author as much as possible.

  2. Pretty!

    I have two bookshelves, one BIG one and one small one. My small one is my special books. Complete series go there, as well as all my signed hardcovers. It’s ALL hardcovers and it’s a very pretty shelf.

    My big one is a hot mess. It looks a lot like your before pic, but it’s a taller/wider shelf. It’s scary.

    1. @Jessica, Great idea to have a special shelf! When I have enough room, I definitely want to do that!

      I love that your fiction and NF are all organized by genre and topic. I really didn’t go that far, but I tried to group by author as much as possible.

  3. I’ve been curious about “Ask Again Later”, I bought it years ago but never read it. Is it good?

    I’m trying to figure out a system for my bookshelf right now, but I am donating/selling some books soon too!

  4. We pretty much designated an entire room in our house as our “library” with almost floor to ceiling shelves on one wall. And that worked at first, except that’s pretty much full now. I’ve tried to keep it organized by genre, and alphabetical by author within genre, but I’m kind of to the point of putting books wherever they fit!

  5. You definitely need a bigger bookshelf! haha

    I have a pretty small bookshelf right now, too. I have my books organized by color because it’s in my colorful guest bedroom. I think it looks neat. 🙂

  6. My bookshelves are in limbo because I just moved, and I’m moving again in four months haha I need a place to settle just for my books! 🙂

  7. My bookshelves are a mess. Or non-existent. I just have piles and piles of books on my desk and my night table. (I always stack five or six next to my bed in case I can’t sleep, haha).

  8. Nice pics! I have to share the bookshelves in my house with my husband (an outdoorsman who always prefers a guidebook to fiction). They are sorted by height as to be efficient (so I can have a nice, flat surface to pile on more horizantally on the top). Therefore, our shelves of books go something like this: Eclipse / New Moon / Bishop Area Rock Climbs / Like Water for Chocolate / Mountain Bike Guide to Moab / Mrs. Dalloway

  9. My bookshelves/books are somewhat disorganized. I have four book cases and 2 other shelves filled with books, and they are in decent shape organization wise, but the rest of my books I have in piles or boxes around my room and other places because I have no clue of where to put them. I really should go through them sometime soon because I have a lot I could donate or giveaway… I guess that will be one of my goals of ’11. 🙂

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Meet Jessica

I live by the saying “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone” and help others do the same to reach their biggest, brightest goals. Read my story here.

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