Books and Beer
Since the slideshow post from yesterday, Laura and I have been really pondering HOW it is we’re going to get rid of all the books. There are some obvious ones, donate the books to the local library, local book stores, local Goodwill or have a garage sale. These are fine and may be something we do, but they sure are boring!
Books and Beer!
So instead, in a a flash of inspiration (or perhaps it was the bottle of Port Brewing IPA staring at me on our coffee table), we’ve decided to have a Books and Beer party. Part book sale and part beer tasting – a good way to turn people on to good lit and good beer.
Since I really have no desire to go through and price all 1600+ books, I think we’ll probably do the sale on donation basis with a minimum recommendation per book. I think. We’ll see.
If you’re in Long Beach, stay tuned!
Photo Lending Library
Aside from hundreds of fiction books, I also have a great collection of photography books. Large tomes by Salgado, Nachtway, Bresson, Arbus, etc., When I first started photography, I pored every photo book I could find. Most libraries don’t have many, and most bookstores have none (or a very slim collection of the usual suspects).
I’ve emailed the local bookstore OPEN about the idea of creating photo lending library within their bookstore. With the idea that these great hard to find books will be around for other aspiring photographers. Books would be checked out for a fee and have to be returned within a week or so. Not quite sure the specifics, or how likely it will happen since they would have to manage them separately.
Where’d they all come from?
I know some are wondering where all the books came from in the first place. I was a literature major in college and was/am a voracious reader. I kept almost all my books. Laura studied American History and kept most of hers.
When I was younger, poorer and had my literary aspirations of being the next F. Scott Fitzgerald, these books were my friends. They were an inexpensive form of entertainment. They helped decorate my apartment (and probably provided some insulation in that one room studio of mine). I could touch the spine of each and remember when and where I read the books. They are a link to a romantic literary past of mine.
Things are a changing.
I have to lighten the load if we will actually break orbit.
Russ April 24, 2009 at 4:15 pm
Yeah, I’m not quite sure how the bookstore photo library will pan out. I like the idea of having the proceeds go to OPEN, since it’s right smack in the middle of a young creative community. I think more people will actually be exposed to the books at this bookstore than the library.
I would be less hesitant about donating them to our local library IF they weren’t under constant threat of closure or cutting funds! There was a whole debacle a few months ago where the city of Long Beach wanted to close and demolish the MAIN branch!
Fortunately there was enough outrage that this was stopped….for now.
We’ll see. The library is not ruled out, but I am looking for some more creative solutions 🙂
ethan April 24, 2009 at 7:35 pm
Your Books and Beer party sounds wonderful. Bummed I’m on the other side of the country.
Beany April 24, 2009 at 9:33 pm
My husband and I rode part of the way in our move from Philly to San Diego, so we too went through the exercise of getting ride of our collection of books. I used paperbackswap.com to get rid of the majority of the books and from the credits gained, I am redeeming them now. I love the philosophy behind the site.
P.S. I got rid of our music CDs via swapacd.com
Beany April 24, 2009 at 9:35 pm
BTW, we got rid of everything we owned, and we’re still rebuilding our lives here in San Diego.
If you need a place to crash in San Diego, we’d be happy to host you.
Laura April 24, 2009 at 10:29 pm
Wow, thanks for all of the incredible support everyone! And tips! I love the concept of the book swap site. There are just so many creative ideas all around us.
RowdyKittens April 24, 2009 at 11:42 pm
I wish I lived closer to you. I’d love to attend the Books and Beer party. It sounds like so much fun! 🙂
I can’t believe the City of Long Beach tried to demolish the main branch of the library. That is outrageous! I can understand why you are looking into other options.
Simpler Living April 26, 2009 at 5:34 am
I like the idea of a books and beer party, but if I held one, I’d probably just ask friends if they’d want to take a book or two home for free.
I’ve been giving books away in various ways for the past several months: to the library, on my blog, to friends. A friend recommended Paperback Swap to me; there’s also Book Crossing. I’ve also left books at local coffeehouses (you can do the same with games).
I felt unprepared to do a book inventory several months ago because I had so much I wanted to get rid of. Now that I’ve pared down, I’m finally ready to do some real counting. I’m thinking of keeping just 50 books and 50 CDs, so I need to know where I stand.
Good luck on your journey! It really can be done. I’ll be checking back to see how you’re doing.
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as the son of a librarian, i would say skip the bookstore lending idea and donate them to the local library. Get some stickers to put in them saying “X city Photo Lending Library” and maybe put your contact info (or not). The library has already got that whole lending thing down and the responsibility associated with it. Plus, it’s likely to last longer and reach more people (through inter-library loans, etc)
That said, I don’t think you should get rid of everything. perhaps limit yourself to one box each or one shelf total so that when you do finally settle down again, you retain some of your past fond memories. I’ve never been a book buying (again, son of a librarian), but the ones I do have, I cherish.
I’m looking forward to seeing this process of “letting go”. Good luck with it!