I can hear the cries of outrage from two friends in particular as I write this (not sure they will read it, but I know they will feel so strongly, that they will sense this anyway). I intend clearing book shelves this afternoon.
I am very much loving reading at the moment, really loving it. I suspect one of the reasons is that I am also not buying new books. I have a habit of heading into a bookshop and buying various books, which I have no plans to read right now, in fact sometimes I wonder why I ever bought them, as I can’t foresee ever having a plan to read them. Amazon is even worse for this. Someone recommends a book and it appears like magic in my home the next day.
At the moment I am borrowing lots from the library and a couple from friends. I am listening to a few on Audible, which is even more magic than Amazon, but I share my allocation of credits with the whole family, so that gives me pause before ordering.
I have even bought a couple of Kindle books, just because they were very cheap. And I read them immediately.
The ones on the shelf are not helping me love reading though. I’m not sure I have that many books in total, definitely not compared to some. But I am sure I have a higher proportion of unread books. My brain seems to think that buying a book is the job done, I never bother to read it.
I borrowed Marie Kondo’s Magic Tidying Up Book (that is not its actual title, this is the version that has lodged itself in my brain): the book is a fascinating insight either into Japanese culture (I quizzed a friend on that) or a fantasy world; it did not really inspire me to origami my clothes, or to start talking to my handbag. What it did do was give me the confidence to know that I really do not need to keep things that do not serve a proper purpose. That is greatly adapted as Kondo only keeps things that spark joy. A sense of purpose is enough for me, but where I am in agreement with Kondo, a sense of “but I really ought to read that someday because…” is not. What I did love about the book was the mindfulness of choosing what to keep, of having your home filled with stuff you have chosen and therefore treasure, not just things that we acquire.
So, book clearing it is. Hopefully it will inspire me to read more of the books in the house. And the resulting left overs will be sold to raise funds for CAFODin a couple of weeks’ time. If you have any books to donate to the sale…