Organizing your "stylish library"? Honey, please.

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Here's an article entitled "Expert Takeaway Tips for Organizing Your Bookshelf." The subhead is "There's way more to book organization than sorting by color."

Sorting. By. Color.

Stand back, I'm going in.

Okay, first of all, who are these people who regard books primarily as a way to "bring a house from drab to artsy"? Who the hell hires a "curated library installment and book organization service"?? Who are you people — because I think you'd also like to pay me to teach you how to be creative. Or at least buy my book.

Here's the tl;dr list:

  1. Keep favorites front and center.
  2. Determine your "what I've read" books.
  3. Information-based books should be easily accessible. (Can she possibly mean reference books?)
  4. Organize by family member.
  5. Organize books in different rooms.
  6. Arrange books according to their size.
  7. Use paperbacks to add height to a room.
  8. Color coordinate books in fun ways.
  9. Make sure you have your coffee table standards.

Wow.  Numbers 1–5 are no-brainers, but 6–9? We get such helpful suggestions as "Give yourself permission to get rid of books that don't (...) make sense with your interiors," and "Break up rooms by warm and cool colors."  Mercy.

Listen up, class, your school librarian would like a word right friendly in your ear: there are only two ways to organize your books, the Bodleian Library method (i.e., nearly random and mostly in order of acquisition); and the Dewey Decimal Classification System.  (The Library of Congress Classification System is for geeks.)

Do you need the granularity of actual decimal places? Probably not.  But you should at least go look at the "division" summaries, i.e., down to the 10s places. Trust your school librarian: it will keep your life saner.

Yes, you may keep your stacks of unread books separate. Yes, you should pull out the books that are your resources for whatever you're working on. (The photo above is my shelf of resources for Lichtenbergianism: procrastination as a creative strategy.) Yes, you're allowed to keep different kinds of books in different rooms (in my case, unread fiction by the bed; unread nonfiction in the living room).

But you may not organize your books so that House Beautiful will be proud of you. They are not your AUDIENCE.

And people who get rid of books because they "don't make sense with their interiors"? We call those people monsters.