Does the pandemic have you feeling like you’ve spent 100 years in solitude? Maybe the idea of having a room of one’s own doesn’t sound so great anymore? Dreaming of venturing back out to a bar in search of a lost weekend?
When the shut-downs started, many of us thought, “Alright! Now I can catch up on my reading!” Nine months later: “So, that didn’t work out … thanks a lot, Netflix!”
It’s not your fault. It’s really difficult to focus during a pandemic. But if you still have time on your hands and you’re looking to get reacquainted with your book collection, you could start by showing your bookshelves some love!
Here are a few ways to organize your shelves and get your inner bookworm ready to cozy up this winter:
Science Fiction. YA. Literary. Nonfiction. Poetry. Cooking. Travel. This method is probably best for those with eclectic reading tastes and large collections. You’ll also get a visual of which genres are lacking, which may inform future book purchases.
Organizing by subject lets you blend genres while still finding what you’re looking for. Let’s say you like to read about Paris. Oui! Put all your fiction, poetry, and nonfiction about the City of Lights in one place, and all your material about astrology in another. You’ll be reminded of past interests and you may even make connections between books you didn’t know were there.
By title or author name
The most practical of methods, organize alphabetically by title or author name. This helps you find what you’re looking for quickly. It’s especially helpful for text used for work or school. No time to waste with pending due dates!
For those interested in the history and evolution of literature, arranging your books by the years they were written is a great way to display your collection. Old to new, new to old. You’ll know exactly where to go, whether you’re looking for something ancient or modern.
How did your past reads make you feel? Did the book make you LOL? Did you find yourself tears deep in a box of tissues? Did it make you feel less alone? More courageous? Organize your shelf based on the feeling the book gives you when you read it. You can return to it when you’re in the mood for something specific.
For interior decor buffs, going by cover colors can turn a bland bookshelf into a work of art. Start with warm colors at the top and finish with cool blues, grays, or purples. Or pick a color for the center of the shelf and build out in either direction.
This one is for the re-readers. The folks who go back to their favorites over and over again. Put your favorite books in the spot where they’re easiest to access. Turn a few so their fronts face outward to give it extra style.
Feel free to mix and match methods! Either way, well-organized shelves will help you feel good as we move on to better things. Here’s to a literary 2021!
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