When I went through the process a couple of months ago to find books that Powell's wanted, I had a large stack of books that they *didn't* want (to be expected), but part of me wasn't sure what I wanted to do with these books. I decided to try a little experiment (an "In sight, sort of in mind" process). I took all of the books and I stacked them next to the bookshelf in our family room, but in a way that was not going to block any one's way or get in the way of anything... and I lest them sit there for an extended period. My goals was to see how many of the books I pulled from, for any reason. If I pulled a book, it went back on the shelf, since it meant there was a value to having it after all (i.e. I'd actually referenced it or decided I wanted to read through it again).
The grand total of books that I pulled? Eight. The total number of books not touched in any way, shape or form? Close to 100. Now on to the next step.
This weekend, the goal is to find one of three places:
1. local used book store(s)
2. The public library
3. Salvation Army and Goodwill
At the end of the day this Saturday, it's my hope to see all of the books find new homes, outside of my humble abode.
What was the point of the exercise? It was my way to see if I would reconsider any of the items. For the most part, there were few books that, on further reflection, I was going to re-reference. Most of them were out of date, or otherwise had been transplanted with different interests and goals. For those that didn't fit that category, I had discovered that much of the information on any of the topics that I wanted to keep and hold on to was readily available on the Internet, and often in a much more easy to access manner (as well as much more up to date).
Again,I don't wish to appear the total Philistine... I do enjoy reading, and I enjoy having good books. I've decided, however, that the best way to reinfoce my love of reading, keep in the habit of finding new books, and not overcrowding our living space is to let the public library be my source of reading material. I do pay for it, after all (it's one of those things that my dutifully paid property taxes goes towards supporting :) ). Thus, while I shall see the tomes of days goner by leave my premises, I know that, for many of them, I can easily see them again. for the others, well, I haven't looked at them for this length of time, I'm pretty confident my life will go on without them there ;).