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MoxieGal's avatar

How do you organize your bookshelves?

Asked by MoxieGal (358points) August 13th, 2010

I have to wonder if i’m the only person who is this “type A”. Do any of you organize your personal bookcases at home so the books are displayed in alphabetical oder by the authors last name? If not, how do you organize your books? or do you?

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33 Answers

rts486's avatar

First into fiction or nonfiction, then alphabetically by author.

CMaz's avatar

Size order.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I used to order them by size…but then I decided I liked a more informal look so they’re just in there. The best reading ones are in front. You can kinda see them here

mrentropy's avatar

I don’t have any, anymore :( But I did ‘em in alphabetical order.

Austinlad's avatar

I’ve accumulated a lot of books over the years and happily used to arrange it by category like a Library: Fiction, Non-Fiction, Biography/Autobiography, movie books, the Arts (theater, powtry, movies), a couple more. But a “friend” decided she wanted my bookshelves to look more showcasey, so she took all the bookcovers off, boxed my paperbacks and many of my favorite hardbacks, and then arranged the remaining books of cute little stacks and slanted all different ways. This was a “gift” from her for my birthday (she also painted an accent wall) so I never told her how much I hate it. I CAN’T FIND ANYTHING ANYMORE!

stardust's avatar

I like the informal look so I don’t have them organised in any particular way. My favourites get the top shelf
@Austinlad Aren’t you the lucky one:)

lostinnyc's avatar

Alphabetically by title. I can hardly ever remember an author, but a title on the other hand… almost everytime. Books I am currently reading can be found on the side table(s) next to my bed.

Mtl_zack's avatar

All the non fiction I keep organized by subject, then by author. I don’t read much fiction anymore, so I keep those on the bottom shelf. I also keep magazines in order on another shelf organized by date, of course.

@Dutchess_III I thought your dog was a sheep for a second

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

I organize them into whatever arrangement looks best on the shelf. Colors and sizes that compiment one another, but don’t look too intentional.
The contents of the books do not come into play… only the presentation.

wundayatta's avatar

Non-fiction/fiction, hard cover/soft cover, alphabetical, except for some hard covers that are small enough to fit on one of my short shelves.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Mtl_zack ROFL!!! Well, with the copious amounts of hair she sheds twice a year, she could be a sheep! I swear, I could make a sweater out of her hair, and I’m not kidding!

keobooks's avatar

I am noy type A by a long shot. But I have a huge book collection. If I didn’t organize, I’d never find anything at all.

It’s fiction A-Z author, nonfiction categoriized in a very very broad Dewey that basically goes by the hundreds (and very subjective in a quick thinkin thing from me) only and then A-Z author.

Seaofclouds's avatar

My books are organized according to the ones I like the most. The ones I like the most are on the shelves that are easier to reach, regardless of the author. For books in a series, they are put in order of the series. For books that stand alone, they are alphabetical by book title and grouped together by author. The college textbooks that I kept are on the bottom shelves without any real organization because of their weight.

Frenchfry's avatar

I group books with author… When I really dig a author. I will buy all his books. So that is how. I have few that are just one. I just put those any where really. Authors are always together.

Unexpected_Rain's avatar

I usually go by size, then author. Mostly because my shelves are all different sizes so some will only fit on one shelf, so I can’t mix them all together.

WiseOldUnicorn's avatar

I group them by series, so that all books of a particular series go together, and to a certain extent by author. After that, they’re arranged according to how well I like them. Books I really like get put where they’re easily accessible, whereas ones I don’t like so well get stowed away in the places that are harder to get to.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Frenchfry Yeah, I have all my John Grisham books together.

MacBean's avatar

Books by the same author go together, in chronological order. But where that author’s section on the shelves actually is, depends on where it feels like they belong. It might be a kind of synaesthesia, I’m not sure. I do have ordinal-linguistic personification syn, where things like numbers and letters and months and days of the week have personalities. That’s kind of what it feels like for me with books. So organizing my bookshelves is like making a seating chart for a wedding; I can’t put books that would hate each other together. So my system makes NO sense to anyone else, but I can find whatever I need easily.

jeffgoldblumsprivatefacilities's avatar

I’m with @TheOnlyNeffie. I arrange them by look. It doesn’t really make them easy to find, but then again, I don’t mind looking through all my books to find the one I want (Sometimes I even find books that I had previously forgotten about). Even after a move, I was able to recreate the order they were previously in just by look. Apparently, I dig my aesthetics.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

I just put them all together…then my best friend comes over and he can’t handle it so he organizes them by genre.

YARNLADY's avatar

The hundred or so nonfiction are arranged by subject. The thousand or so fiction are arranged by author or by series.

When the boys were home schooling, we did a section on the Dewey Decimal system, and the books and shelves all got organized with labels and such.

A few years ago, I wanted to move, and so I packed up all the books I wanted to keep. They are now on shelves in boxes, still in order, just waiting…..

filmfann's avatar

My books are grouped by subject.
My DVDs are alphabetized.

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

I organize by subject matter, then alphabetically by author within subject. I still keep an old style card catalog.

anartist's avatar

I organize by subject matter, with compromises for where they will fit.
Even fiction is loosely by type, the ones I want to keep anyway—read ‘em and toss ‘em paperbacks lie in stacks in front of other books when the shelf is deep enough. I try not to let the stacks get so high as to totally obscure books behind.

DominicX's avatar

Category/subject. Don’t have the patience for alphabetical.

aprilsimnel's avatar

I don’t organize them at all.

augustlan's avatar

Well, on the actual bookshelf, they’re pretty organized. Very top shelves are for fiction paperbacks, by author. All middle shelves are for hardcovers (most with their jackets removed… I just don’t like the look of “shiny” books), fiction and non-fiction-but-read-for-pleasure-not-for-reference I just made that category up , by author. Very bottom shelves are for reference materials, roughly grouped by category. I also have organized groupings of antique books in aesthetically pleasing locations, like my end tables.

However, I have far more books than will fit in my lone bookshelf. They have spread all over the damn house, and are not organized at all. They are on tables, on the floor in boxes, on my bedroom dresser, even in the bathroom! They’re everywhere. Ack!

Mom2BDec2010's avatar

I organize my books by there size.

iphigeneia's avatar

Fiction books organized by author’s last name, non-fiction by size. I tried getting into the Dewey decimal system, but it was too much work and looked messy.

Arisztid's avatar

My books are not organized right now… have not done it since the move. They are still boxed. This is how I organize them when done:

History together, broken up by topic matter, Holocaust section placed wherever it is not likely to be brushed against because I have some rare ones. Books about Rromani Gypsies in the Holocaust in a sub grouping. My Porrajmos DVD (our word for the Holocaust) goes in here, not in my DVDs. I have some historical fiction in there if it is accurate to my knowledge. For instance, I used to have (sob) a series of fictional representations of ancient Scottish history that jived with what I know of the topic… basically novels fleshed out of recordings of ancient Scottish history. They were really good, I purchased them at the Highland Games from the author (sobs again).

Rromani Gypsy… everything, fiction and non fiction, other than about the Holocaust, which is in the Holocaust section.

Nonfiction (other than history and about my people), grouped by topic, if more than one book per topic, the remainder in alphabetical order in its own section. Books like my Frank Lloyd Wright’s glassworks and Rennie McIntosh works go somewhere they are not going to be brushed against.

Fiction, by order of author. Historical fiction that is not accurate historically, rather just for fun, goes here. Most of this is sci/fi and fantasy.

perspicacious's avatar

I tend to alphabetize things.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I need a beeger book shelf.

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