Two years ago we did a massive decluttering effort in our house, and among everything else over the course of a week, out went boxes and boxes of books. We put them on the giveaway shelf in the basement of our apartment building, and as we came and went we would check to see how many and what titles had been adopted. Happily, most of our books found new homes.
The clutter is starting once again to proliferate, with books shoved carelessly on shelves or left in piles on surfaces. I go from enjoying the sight of books all around to wanting to restore visual neatness to our shelves. When we first moved in and again when we decluttered, I arranged our books not alphabetically, not by type or genre. Instead I set them out on our shelves in height order, pulling each book forward as needed so that the spines also lined up evenly at the front. My family thought this weird, but no one felt invested enough to challenge my system, which I decided was as valid as any other.
So how do you arrange your books? What is your preferred order and are you passionate about it or laissez faire?