My Name is Wendy and I Have a Problem…

*All Photos in this post are clickable to enjoy a larger view.

There is a lack of bookcases in my home – but perhaps the real issue is my obsession to hoard books. You see, I have just too many books and not enough storage. Kip has promised to get the guest room remodeled this winter so it can serve as a craft room (I don’t dare show you my hoards of fabric), a guest room (yes, there will be a bed in there), and a library with LOTS of shelves to store all my books. For now, unfortunately, this is what my storage system looks like…

Books in this bookcase have been read – I can’t seem to part with them because they are some of my favorite writers. The books stacked BESIDE and ON TOP of the bookcase are TBR:

Uh oh, more TBR stacks (95% purchases):

These shelves hold my short story collections, essay collections, classic books and non fiction (also TBR):

These are reference books, autographed books, non fiction (general) books – and all have been read (phew!):

Here is where I set out the books I want to read each month…you can see the problem, right? There are far too many here than I can possibly read in one month:

And finally, here are my ARCs and review books. I really need to stop accepting them…

Lest you think I never, ever give up a book – here is the (measly) amount I recently culled to giveaway or donate:

Not too long ago I posted about e-books and the sadness I feel about the possibility that physical books might disappear. Luckily, I have enough here to keep me in physical books for most of the rest of my life!

Do you have a problem like I do? How are you dealing with it? My solution is mostly denial…now if I could just have MORE bookshelves!!!!

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    • Wallace on January 22, 2011 at 10:39

    I have a similar problem! Then again, most book bloggers probably do, right? My solution is to (someday) get bookshelves and line my dining room with them. I think it would look so cool to be surrounded by books when people are over for dinner. Good conversation starters too, right?

    Good luck remodeling your room!

    • Wendy on January 22, 2011 at 11:15

    Wallace: Love your idea!!! I think ANY room lined with books is awesome 🙂

  1. Love those pics. Yes, I’m a book hoarder as well…

    I’m going to put some up pics in the next month or so after I’ve unpacked them all.

    It is comforting, though, to realize that I really do have enough books to last me until old age. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

  2. LOL! Yep, I have the same problem. How am I handling it? Pretty much ignoring it. Check back with me when my 2nd floor collapses into the living room! 😉

    • Frances on January 22, 2011 at 12:56

    Wallace has a wonderful idea. And I think that there are tons of affordable, sturdy options to make this possible especially if you have an IKEA nearby. Their shelving has been featured on tons of design sites, is being used in stores in lots of places, and they offer on-site design help so that you get proper fit for your space. Your only problem is not enough space! 🙂

  3. Wonderful pics! If I bought or accepted that many books, my wee bookshelf would become firewood 😀 I too need more shelving space for my literary pretties.

  4. Love it!

    • Laura on January 22, 2011 at 13:22

    Oh. My. God.
    I’m not quite that bad, Wendy! But we are talking about building a new bookcase in our upstairs hallway ….

    • EL Fay on January 22, 2011 at 14:05

    WOW. I’m a little concerned about those adorable shelves falling off the wall from all that weight. . .

    I have two bookcases, one filled only 80%. I’m generally pretty good about giving away books that made me go “meh.” Ever since I started reading the Unclutterer blog I’ve been thinking a lot about having too much stuff, and I feel like even books can be too much of a good thing.

    • Kay on January 22, 2011 at 15:18

    Hmmm….I recognize the symptoms, Wendy! My books are almost all packed up and in storage right now. I had limited myself to 1 big plastic bin – which has now morphed to 4 big plastic bins. It’s hopeless, I’m afraid. LOL

  5. Of course I have the same problem, and I’m still accepting books and buying them. I deal with it the same way – denial. I don’t have a problem, everyone else does.

  6. Don’t worry – you are not alone (as I am sure you already knew). My books have hit 400+, which literally don’t fit in a 2 bedroom unit – but can I stop? The answer is obvious 🙂

  7. I love seeing pics of other people’s books and shelves! I know you can’t wait to have your multi-purpose room with all those shelves for books. Dreamy!

    I can’t wait to show everyone all my books and shelves…3000+ books…now that’s a book hoarder. We decided to move in December and we’re still in the process of moving my books. We had a three bedroom house with two common rooms. I had a large room for my library. Now we have moved into a two bedroom apartment with one common room…a LR/DR combo. I have all my fiction books catalogued in a journal and I had decided awhile back to also transfer them to my blog. Then, after we moved, I decided to create a blog especially for that purpose, A Huge Library in a Small Apartment. As soon as I get everything organized here at the new apartment, I’m going to take pics and put them up there and start listing my books in pages. I’m excited, but it’s going to be time consuming!

    • J.G. on January 22, 2011 at 18:27

    I definitely have a binge-purge thing going when it comes to books. A while ago I had a quite relentless phase of passing along books I’d read and hadn’t revisited (mostly books from school; PaperbackSwap helped a lot). I convinced myself they would be available from the library if I ever really and truly needed them again.

    But then I found myself buying some of them again, because I went to look something up and they weren’t there! Between those old stand-bys and the endlessly refilling TBR stack, I am nearly back where I began.

    So yeah, I could use more bookshelves, too. It’s a nice problem to have!

    • Vasilly on January 22, 2011 at 19:01

    I definitely have the same problem. What I’ve been trying to do is read more books from my TBR pile. That way once I’ve read them, I can decided whether they’re worth keeping or not. Good luck with your stacks!

    • Sand on January 22, 2011 at 19:40

    The only thing that keeps me purging books is the dust here. Handling a book covered in Valley dust is gross, and I refuse to live with closed windows … and I think 8 bookcases in a house is almost enough. Almost.

  8. Like everyone else, I have that problem too! In fact, I’ve been pacing around, and just today located a new possible bookcase location and asked my husband if he would object to my having one made to fit that spot. (It’s a weird spot that normal bookcases wouldn’t fit in.) After yelling “ANOTHER bookcase?!!!” he finally agreed for the need for one! Actually, I would be happy just to line the floor by the wall of every room, but we are going to try to sell our house soon, and so we need to make it look sort of uncluttered!

    • Nicole on January 22, 2011 at 23:19

    Ahem. I love how the giveaway pile is so *proportionate* to the rest of the books. 🙂

    • Molly on January 23, 2011 at 07:33

    What a lovely problem to have 🙂

    Before teaching English, I could fit all my books on about two bookshelves. Once I started teaching I had to purchase another shelf to hold all those resources. And then I found book blogs and well…..I have purchased a minimum of 3 bookshelves and filled those. Yes, I do have a problem, but I am ok with it.

    • Lori L on January 23, 2011 at 09:41

    I guess confession is good for the soul: I too am a book hoarder.
    It suddenly occurred to me last week that if I were to start rereading all the books I have saved, I would probably not be able to do it in my lifetime. I’m thinking I may need to cull the stacks again… but, when looking at my book-companions, who do I eliminate?

  9. Ah, to have too many books. :O) SUCH a problem. I ADORE looking at stacks and shelves of books. Enjoy your chaos. ;O)

    • Amused on January 23, 2011 at 16:57

    Now I don’t feel so bad! I have stacks of books all over my house too! I think you are in very good company 🙂

    • Wendy on January 23, 2011 at 20:25

    Wow – from the response on this post, looks like I am definitely not alone!! LOL.

    Michelle: Looking forward to seeing your pictures!

    Les: Luckily, I don’t have a second floor…so we’re safe from collapse!! LOL!

    Frances: I have a feeling that in the next few years, bookcases are going up in my house. My husband is a little baffled at the numbers and the piles every which way!

    Teacher/Learner: It wouldn’t be so bad if I just had them being sent to me, but I also buy them! E-gads! I’m out of control!

    Lizzy: 🙂

    Laura: LOL! But, be honest – you’d LOVE to have this many, wouldn’t you!??!?

    • Wendy on January 23, 2011 at 20:30

    El Fay: No worries about those “little” shelves – they are solid and my hubby made sure he used BIG screws right into the studs. They aren’t going anywhere 🙂

    Kay: It’s a sickness! LOL!

    Kathy: I like your attitude!

    Becky: I’m afraid to count mine LOL!

    Michelle (True Book Addict): 3000!??!?! OMG! You make me feel so much better! I love your new blog idea – and I wish you luck finding room for all those books in your new place 🙂

    J.G.: So the moral to your story is do not give any away…because it will just cost you money to replace them!!

    Vasilly: I try to give away books I’ve read that I know I won’t want anymore (but I am also one of those readers who likes to collect books by the same author *sighs*)

    Sand: Only 8!??!? LOL!

    • Wendy on January 23, 2011 at 20:33

    Jill: Your hubby and mine must never get together – they would gang up on us! LOL!

    Nicole: Oh, you noticed that, did you? And here I though I was doing so well (not!)

    Molly: There definitely are worse addictions – at least all these books won’t kill me (unless a stack topples on my head!)

    Lori: Exactly! That is my problem – how do I start?!?!?

    Pam: LOL! Thanks!

    Amused: It seems I am…thanks for making me feel better 🙂

  10. My solution is to buy more shelves!

    • Wendy on January 27, 2011 at 08:01

    I like your solution, Kathleen!

    • Amused on February 17, 2011 at 09:39

    Yes you are right, this does help…or show me that I need more shelving…and that you do too! I’ve been thinking lately that what I really need is a shelf specifically for review books like you have!

    • Wendy on February 17, 2011 at 09:40

    I had to figure out how to organize review books – I was getting confused LOL! Having a dedicated shelf works for me…

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