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June 28, 2010

This book is a keeper. Or is it?

Posted by Dana

littlebee.jpgI am in the process of downsizing and am having to think long and hard about my books.  I mean after all, I'm sure you can understand, I love my books.  And I have a lot of them.

I have been collecting books since college which was longer ago than I'd care to admit and I even have some from before that.  And now I'm having to evaluate my collection and try to narrow it down to the most important ones to keep.

The only definitive decision I've made so far is to keep my signed copies (like LITTLE BEE pictured here!).  I keep hoping that I'll become the next Oprah and that therefore my collection of personalized signed copies will someday be worth zillions.  But even if that doesn't happen (what?  it could happen... you never know!), the signed editions I have all represent a memory for me.  So I'm keeping those.

But what to do next?  In some cases, I have entire collections of a particular author's work that I was really into at one time, but not so much anymore and will probably never read?  Do those all go?  Or do I save one or two as part of my history?

And what about hardcovers vs. paperbacks?  There was a time when I thought the only books I wanted to keep long term were the hardcovers.  But then I started reading more trade paperbacks because they cost less and hurt less when you fall asleep reading and drop one on your face.  So, do I keep the hardcovers and let the cheaper paperbacks go - or keep the paperbacks because they'll be lighter to move and I'm more likely to re-read them?

How 'bout audio books?  I have a fairly decent collection of those too.  Should I hang on to them or trade them in somewhere?

Argh!  So many decisions.  What would you do?  Have any of you been through this? How'd you handle it?  Help!!

-- Dana Barrett, Contributing Editor