Like with like. I’ve heard this organizational idea quite often. Keep like things together. I thought I had been following it, until I did a bit of reorganizing last weekend.

First I worked on my bookshelves. I have one in my office, one in the bedroom and one in the living room. All three had various categories of books. And my office had three extra stacks of books that I started last year, but lost interest in.

The stacks of books taunted me and drained my energy. While the kids and my husband were gone, I took all my books and piled them into stacks according to category. Home, Creativity, Novels, Reference, Family, Personal Development, etc. Then I decided which category would go into which bookshelf. One category per shelf for the most part. The books that overfilled their shelf were first in line to be decluttered. And other shelves have room to grow. I labeled the shelves feeling rather organized.

I found some books that I may want to read this year that I never finished, so I listed them in a notebook. I didn’t want them to be forgotten. Once I read my current books I can check my notebook for what to read next. No more “to read” piles.

My library books are on my file cabinet. And finally, I have my stack of 5 books I am reading. I got the idea from Mark Forster’s blog post. I rarely read just one book at a time and this system allows me to flow through several books until they are completed. If another book catches my interest or I buy a new book, I can write them in my notebook and shelve them in their proper place until it is time to read them.

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  • Irene F. Songco


    I love books for the ideas that they provide. I have collected books and I have given away books that I have outgrown. I kept my books in clear plastic containers according to topics. Recently, I decided to do an inventory so I will not buy the same book. A simple way to do a book inventory is as follows: (a) go to an online bookstore site, (b) search either for the author or the book title, (c) copy and paste the author and the book title in an excel sheet (author’s name and book name), and (d) sort according to author’s name. By doing so, you do not need to type the author’s name and book title. In addition, you can include the book category and shelf number in your book inventory excel sheet.

  • Ce Gordi

    there is a website called librarything …all you have to do is put in isbn number or librarey cong. number and all the info pops up … its a great way to keep track and also to show friends or 2nd hand book sellers what you have.

  • Wie sortiere ich am besten meine B├╝cher? | emptysignifier | The Weblog of Jacob Fricke

    […] Beth von hat ihre Bücher nach verschiedenen Kategorien sortiert (Home, Creativity, Novels, Reference, Family, Personal Development) und jeder dieser Kategorien dann ein oder mehrere Regalbretter zugewiesen. Alle Bücher, welche sie dieses Jahr noch lesen möchte, schreibt sie auf einer Liste nieder (hier könnte das bestehende GTD-System verwendet werden) und stellt sie ebenfalls im Regal ab. Schlußendlich hat sie noch ein gesonderte Ablage für Bibliotheksbücher und fünf Bücher, welche sie aktuell liest. […]

  • Robin

    I like the tip of writing down the unread books in a notebook instea of having a to-read pile! That tip is going to be very helpful as I sort through my books-thanks!!

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