Friday, October 03, 2008

Piles and Piles of Books - Reducing Book Clutter

Now this is one subject I completely and fully understand! For the past 10-15 years I've become quite a book collector. I have books on travel, tons of great novels, cookbooks, photography books, old textbooks, books on writing...and the list goes on (and on and on and on, to be perfectly honest.)

If you love books, you'll understand this predicament. So -- add to your Weekly Clean for All list: "Book decluttering!" Yes, the exclamation point is probably necessary in this case. As you do with all your decluttering chores, make separate piles:

  • Books to Keep
  • Books to Give Away (to charities, friends, whomever. Remember that nice books make beautiful gifts -- and you won't have to spend an additional penny!)
  • Books to Sell

Ah ha, yes you read that last bullet correctly - you can SELL your books and make a nice little chunk of change! I did some research on selling books online, and came up with a number of ideas for you, on how to turn a pile of books you no longer need into a little much-needed padding for your wallet!

  1. Sell books on eBay - This is the old standby, and years ago I used to do this when I needed a little extra moola! You'll get an especially good end price, of course, if your book is in demand, or a rare edition.
  2. - An online book store that buys your books. It seems to have a fairly good reputation - if anyone has firsthand experience, please post a comment.
  3. - An online campus bookstore that buys back used textbooks. You can make a lot of money if you have textbooks that are in demand. So if you have scholarly friends, offer to help them with decluttering THEIR books and then split the profits. :)
  4. Sell books closer to home - Within a ten block radius of my home I likely have at least 2 or 3 used book stores. Go in and talk to the owner and see what kind of deal you can get for your old books.
  5. Last but not least - garage sales. You won't make a lot of money selling your books at a garage sale, but at least you'll get rid of the clutter. Most people seem to pile those books into a box and label them at either a buck or a quarter a piece. Hey, at least your books will find a good home, and someone else will read and enjoy them.

Back to the Decluttering:

Take one area at a time to declutter your piles of books. For instance, if your Focus Room cleaning area today is the den, then take a few minutes to work on one or two bookshelves, separating the books into the categories listed above (sell/give away/keep). You'll be surprised that a few minutes of work, done often, can really reduce book - and all other types of - clutter! Happy decluttering to you, slobbos!

Ahhh...Fresh Air

Want to know one of the best natural air fresheners you can ever use? It's called Fresh Air, and it's as easy to find as opening up the nearest window! Stale, musty air makes your home feel (and definitely smell!) gloomier. Whenever you're doing your housecleaning, open up some windows and let some gorgeous fresh air come wafting in.