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June 10, 2015



What is your shelving system, Dean? Mine is too haphazard.

Dawn Kramer

I've been following you on my facebook page, so I know about your move. My relatives want me get rid of some of my books, they thing I'm nuts to have them, of course they don't read. I don't have as many books as you have but I have a few bookcases smaller ones. I really am upset I sold my hard cover Nancy Drews in a garage sale. Good luck on getting your books done.

Dean (Miranda) James

Kay, with the children's mystery series, I shelve them in series order. Otherwise I tend to group similar types of books together in sections, for example, Golden Age mysteries in one section, contemporary mysteries in another. I don't generally alphabetize by author, but I do alphabetize an author's titles, or else put them in series order. Quirky, I know...

Dean (Miranda) James

Dawn, though there are some other readers in my family, none of them collect books. So they do think I'm a bit odd for wanting so many books. :-) Years ago, I sold all my children's series, except for Nancy Drew and the Dana Girls. I have slowly been re-acquiring them.


I would love to see pictures of your series books once you have everything shelved. I also have books in every room except the bathroom and laundry room. Even my son's rooms upstairs have bookshelves with my books on them because I'm out of room. Does that stop me from buying? Absolutely not. :)

Donna Andrews

Hmmm....looks a lot like Chez Donna. Good luck with the shelving!


That sounds like an amazing collection, totally dwarfing my "tiny" 2000 book library.

Still, I'd like to put a thought in your mind...... LIBRARY SOFTWARE! I bought this program and it has helped me keep track with amazing speed.


And good luck in your new home.

Dean James

Dina, once the series books are organized, I will post them, probably on FB. Though I might do a future post on them for this blog. Hmm....

Dean James

Nora, thanks for a tip about that software. I did have another one I was using a few years ago, but the work involved was overwhelming, considering the size of my collection... and the fact that I was already spending so much time at the computer without spending many hours cataloging, much as I love it.

Charlaine Harris

When we moved, we gave ourselves the luxury of having the basement room turned into a library. Before that, we frequently had a hall lined with bookcases, and cases in all the rooms.

Sally Schmidt

Oh no, you are not nuts! Those pictures of all the boxes of books are beautiful ;-). I have a much smaller collection, guessing maybe 1500+ books, but we are getting ready for a home remodel and my husband and granddaughter have been packing books for what seems to them like forever. I tell them that well, no, I haven't read them all yet but I certainly intend to, of course I have gotten rid of some, they just can't tell, and I skip by the question of will I live long enough to read them because at my age probably not. I have many friends and family members who are readers but only one friend who loves to acquire them like I do. He loves library book sales - brown grocery bags full of books. Great post, looking forward to seeing the results when you are set up.

Marcia Talley

For the newer books, surely there must be end-user software that allows you to scan the barcode, like with your iPhone, thereby avoiding data entry? If not, someone should invent it!

Dean James

Sally, so nice to meet a fellow collector! Marcia, there is software that allows use of a barcode scanner, and perhaps even the use of an Android phone (in my case; no iPhone). I will have to check it out once the current deadline is past...

Hank Phillippi Ryan

Oh, I am SO relieved! Whew. I look at my books, sometimes, and I wonder--is his how other people live? Now, knowing "other people" is you, and he answer is yes, you have made my day.

Thank you!

My shelving system is: wherever there is room. Not the bet, indeed no. But! The easiest.

Happy move!


There are many of them Marcia. Such as: http://www.collectorz.com/book/ and https://www.libib.com/

We use an app for our wine collection that can also do books, but I can't remember the name of it.


I out mine on a container ship and brought them to the new world with me. You are not crazy!

Elaine Viets

Dean, Don and I moved 2000 pounds of books from DC to Florida and the movers thought we were crazy. After seeing your books, I realize we had a modest collection. Congratulations on your new house.

Mario in DC

Wow. Compared to you, I'm a rank amateur at only 4,000-odd books. (And that's only the ones I have catalogued -- I use LibraryThing, and commend it, also, to your attention. It allows search by scanned ISBN number.) It would have been far more books, but I just lost somewhere between 500-1,000 (uncatalogued) books in a basement flood -- never, ever again will I put anything in the basement that cannot be submerged in water safely.--Mario R.

Dean James

Mario, sorry to hear about the loss of books! I am now living in a non-floodplain area, thankfully. No basement, though, for extra storage.

Dean James

Catriona, the most I have shipped overseas is 26 kilos... a result of my 2006 visit to Blackwell's in Oxford. Glad to hear there are others who hang on to books the way I do!

Nancy Roessner

If you are nuts, you're my kind of crazy. I've had to cull my book collection so many times and had to curb buying impulses because of lack of space. Still, there are piles and piles of books on every flat surface. Your collection is most impressive!

Jerry Ann Berry

The last time I moved, I moved into a two-bedroom apartment so my books could have their own room. I still have stacks and stacks of unread books in my living room and dining area (most of them from Murder by the Book). A friend of mine once said, "There is no such thing as too many books; only not enough shelves."

Liz Caldwell

I'm delighted to see that it isn't just me! I have books in multiple bookshelves in multiple rooms plus stacks in the hallway and on a dog crate and stacked anywhere there is a surface for stacking. Thankfully, only one of my dogs has been a book chewer (and grew out of it after only one recent first edition fell victim). Happy unpacking!

Lora Devlon Eckler

My late hubby was in the military. We always had to pack up books and ship them overseas or from place to place as we were way over the allowed weight limit. Coming back from Japan we mailed so many boxes we filled up the small post office. People thought we were crazy to have so many boxes of books to mail from place to place. But books make it home.

Aubrey Hamilton

Books make me happy. Lots of books make me happier. I have forced myself to cull over the past few years but I still have at least a couple thousand books, probably more. Congratulations on the move!


Dean, congratulations on your new house! Years ago, we had custom cases built for my office and the library; I put five more shelves in the closet in my office.

B Knighton

You need taller shelves! I saw wall space above some of them. I use and recommend Librarything.com for its ease of use. You can use a CueCat to scan your bar codes to input them. (It is my dream to buy a library and remodel it so I can live in it.)

Linda Walker

I don't have as many books as you, but I have 2 5-shelf bookcases, 2 4-shelf and 13 3-shelf plus books in closets and boxes that have no permanent "residence". My husband asks, "Why don't you just check out books at the library?" Duh -- because I like to re-read them! My system is mostly alphabetical by author. He reads also (fortunately) -- just not as much! Linda W., Baytown, TX

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