Moving is hell, but it's a lot worse when you have a lot of books.
After I'm settled in my new, cheaper apartment, I will be back to a regular posting schedule. Until then, I'm going to have to figure out what to do with all these books. My mother spent some time berating me today about how difficult the move was because I seemed to have about 20 boxes of books alone, and reminding me of how nice it was to move my brother, who is less of a reader and more of a "TV'er" so his life, moving-wise, is less complicated. When you read a lot, you collect a lot of books. When you work in publishing, you collect a lot of books. If you like buying books randomly on the street because they peaked your interest and they were a dollar, you collect a lot of books. All of this is great if you own a house and never plan on moving. Not so good when you move around every 1-2 years from tiny Manhattan apartment to tiny Manhattan apartment. Today I was deciding between a bookcase and a kitchen table. There wasn't really a decision to be made - the books couldn't sit on the table - so I'll be eating in my lap until I figure something out.
My books fall into these categories:
(1) History (research for my writing)
(2) History (general interest)
(3) History (gimmick)
(4) Judaica (Mishnah, Talmud, Mishnah Brurah, Sefer Yetzirah, etc)
(5) General fiction I bought with the intention to read
(6) General fiction I was given and told to read, probably by my father
(7) Books I got at a publishing fair, like the BEA, where they hand out a lot of free books
(8) Books I got during my publishing seminar
(9) Books I got at work because extra copies were lying around, filling up the office
(10) Books I bought because I thought I could sell them but I couldn't
(11) Books about writing/publishing
(12) Books about writing/publishing (gimmick)
In other words, I really need to learn to say no to, "Would you like a free book?"