I have a bad habit of taking a book off the shelf, reading it, and then laying it down on top of the bookcase, but not back IN the bookcase. So last night I put most of my books in their proper places, and I realized something: I definitely need more bookcases.
I pulled all the books out of my room except for the two I'm reading (one for before bed, one for hair-drying) and counted them: 32.
I pulled the books from downstairs, the ones I've finished while lying on the couch or even the ones I've bought but haven't read yet: 27.
I didn't bother to count the books that were in my book room, on account of I would have had to have messed up the carefully stacked Towers of Literature that made each trip to the closet into a labyrinthine adventure.
But now all the books are in roughly the same place, and I am all out of room. I've used up all the space on the shelves, and some of those have books stacked in front of books. I have six piles on top of the shelves (well ... but they're neater now) in categories I've named Non-fiction, Mystery, More Mystery, Even More Mystery, Romance, and God.
(This does not count the knitting library, which has its own shelf in the living room. Or the antique school books, which have their own shelf too. I love old school books; most of mine are grammars, but I have a couple of literature books in there too. My favorite--and the crown of my collection--is the New England Primer [twentieth century reprint]. It doesn't have the year of publication printed on it, but based on other sources, I suspect it was published anywhere from 1900 to 1924. It doesn't matter; it's still a rare book, and I bought it for eight dollars at a Nashville craft fair.)
The shelves are organized according to category too: Collectors' Classics (for my leather bound and big ol' hardbacks), Classics/School (for plays, books I read in high school, books Joon read in high school, books I read in college, and textbooks I bought but never read), Girl Books (for Anne, other Avonlea, Little House, Betsy/Tacy), Favorite Mystery Series (for ... you know), God (for the ones that teach me how to be a Christian without being a jerk), and Random (for the ones I've picked up but I don't know why, and Harry Potter).
I should note that I haven't unpacked my Elvis collection or my high school yearbooks. Also, I think there is a box of books in the pantry (I am very good at not using the kitchen for its intended purpose). And, at the moment, all the textbooks I use for teaching are scattered around the house; those would take up a whole shelf by themselves.
I guess the lesson here would be Stop Buying Books, but you could just as well tell me to Stop Drinking Milk or Try Playing Tennis; it's a waste of time, because I'm not gonna do it.
On the plus side, all the cats who live in this house are very impressed. You can tell by the look on her face and the fact that she is hiding under the bed.