Saturday, April 04, 2009
Is There a Support Group for People Who Have a Book Buying Problem?
If you haven’t heard of the Fill in The Gaps project yet, here’s the basic gist:
Our beloved Moonie first posted the idea, which she stole from someone else at her place... If you want to read her list and rules, it’s on her project fill in the gaps post.
Basically, each participant comes up with a list of 100 books that they haven’t yet read. Your criteria might be using classics you’ve always wanted to get to... or your own ‘to be read’ pile along with some recommendations by others. We’re giving ourselves a five year deadline (a little more, really) – New Year’s 2015. That’s only 20 books a year. This way, we actually read all those books we’ve been meaning to read, simply by fitting them in between our regular reading - filling in the gaps.
The awesome Emily Cross took up the cause and put together a blog for those of us participating - Filling in the Gaps – The 100 Project. If you’re interested in making your own list, Emily’s information is up at the blog, you can email her to get an invite to join us (insert evil, mwa-ha-ha).
My list can be found here... and all of the participants’ lists can be found by clicking on their names in the right hand sidebar.
When Moonie first posted about this, I thought, “Easy cheesy – I’ve got a ton of books lying around that I’ve always meant to get to...” Okay, seriously, out of the 100, I own well more than half of them. They’re in stacks, and double stacked on bookshelves, and in boxes and closets... and... I could go on.
I started by checking out my friends’ lists at Goodreads and marking ‘to read’ all the ones that I noticed on their lists that I’ve heard about or wanted to read and never got to... then I expanded my list to include classics I knew I wanted to read that hadn’t made it onto their lists yet and books just out or soon to be released by writers I know. Then I went, from the stacks in my living room, tv room, and bedroom... and even my daughter’s bedroom (because yes, I will steal books from my children... can you say addict?) Finally, I ended my journey, at two in the morning, in my crawlspace. I have three large boxes of books down there... or that’s what I thought.
See, I only have so much book space and my insane need to own all interesting looking books I wander across surpassed my allotted space for them years ago. It’s one reason I’ve been trying desperately to stay out of book stores. I can’t buy just what I came in for. It’s not possible. It’s like sending an alcoholic into an open bar and telling him to drink water, it doesn’t work.
So I started putting books that, either I-don’t-want-to-part-with-because-I-liked-them-so-much-but-there’s-no-shelf-space-for-them, and ones I haven’t read yet but will eventually into boxes in the crawlspace. I meander through these boxes and pull out a gem a few times a year. Then those books wind up in my stacks until my husband forces me to re-box or donate some of them. All the while I’m magically accumulating more books – hey, some of them were used.
So, what did I find down in the crawlspace? A fourth box. I didn’t pack that box. I didn’t even know about that box. What was in that box? Every single flippin book was brand new and the spine hadn’t even been cracked (not brand new, I bought them brand new, judging by the fact that my just released copy of Sushi for Beginners was in there – which I still haven’t read- that box was packed and hidden at least five years ago) I know what happened. Husband type person went all willy nilly and packed up every book in his way one day figuring I had so many of them I’d never even notice. And look how much money I waste on things I don’t need... Okay, technically he was right. I’m sure I looked around for some of those books, but I didn’t know he’d hidden a whole flippin box of them... so yeah, technically he was right.... prick.
At the finish of my list, I actually had about thirty extras I couldn’t include... which just gives me something to fill in the gaps in between the gap books. How about you guys? Care to find an outlet for your book buying addiction?