While bored in the midst of the corona pandemic last year, I decided to publish a series of bookshelf tour posts. I combed through the two large bookcases and the one small one in my room to feature all the physical books I own and mention which ones I’ve read.
I had a lot of fun doing this; plus, it helped me to organize and catalog my books. I hope you all liked the posts too — it certainly seems as if you all did. But it was quite a feat. I began the tour in early May and published a post once each week until early November, which was surprising to me because I didn’t expect to complete the tour in 2020. I really thought it would extend to 2021. I was getting so overwhelmed by all my books!
But I completed it and then spent the time since November finishing up my cataloging, finalizing my decisions on what to unhaul, and actually unhauling the books, which is a difficult thing for me to do. I can easily let go of clothes but books (and shoes) are hard to part with.
Now that I’m done with all the prepping, I want to share my final stats with you all. In each bookshelf tour post, I included at the end the amount of bookshelves toured as well as how many books were mentioned, read, and will be unhauled. I’ll share those numbers below as well as the total number of books I have according to my Excel spreadsheet and the Book Collectorz app I also use to keep track of them.
Fair warning — these numbers are all skewed. I’m horrible at counting, it seems, so the total from my tour posts and my Excel file and my Book Collectorz app are all different 🤣. Really, it makes one wonder what’s the point of this post. And my answer is that I’m using it as an excuse to indulge in a bibliophile fancy — to chat about how many books I own. Obviously a future me will want to know.
Well, then. To the numbers!
I published 26 bookshelf tour posts. That’s a lot more than I expected when I started this thing. (I’ll list them all at the end.)
Final numbers from the tour posts
Total rows of bookshelves toured = 14
Total books shown on those shelves = 987
Total books shown that I read = 430
Total books shown that I planned to unhaul = 35
As I went along with my bookshelf tour posts, I used an Excel file to keep track of the books I mentioned because I realized that the collection I had in my Book Collectorz app was a bit off. I’d done an unhaul a year or so ago and didn’t accurately record which books I unhauled, so this exercise was intended to make my digital record of my collection as accurate as possible. Sadly, this did not happen.
Numbers from my Excel File (these are the number of books I own to date; they do not include the unhauled books numbers mentioned below)
Nonfiction = 187
Fiction = 570
Comics & Graphic Novels (physical) = 171
Comics & Graphic Novels (digital) = 36
Poems & Plays = 27
Picture Books (physical) = 39
Picture Books (digital) = 1
Others (coloring, hobby, coffee table books, etc.) = 11
E-books = 122
Audiobooks = 45
Total = 1,209
According to the Excel file, I own about 1,005 physical books, which means I gained about 18 new physical books since completing the bookshelf tour back in November. No wonder I ran out of space!
I had nowhere on my shelves to place books, so I gave in and unhauled many of the ones I considered getting rid of when doing the tour posts.
E-books unhauled = 34
Physical books unhauled = 53
Yep, I got rid of e-books too. Many of them were free or were ARCs I read and won’t want to read again. Some of them I hadn’t read but since they were free, I didn’t feel bad about deleting them from my devices.
As for the physical books, I ended up getting rid of 18 more books than I intended when I did the bookshelf tour posts. The books were either free, bought for college classes years ago, or were bought on discount, which is a big deal for me because I don’t get rid of expensive books because it feels too much like losing out on money, lol. The books were either ones I know I won’t read or will not want to read again.
So my Excel file tells me that I own a total of 1,209 physical and digital books. My Book Collectorz app tells me the following:
Numbers from Book Collectorz app
Physical books = 829
E-books = 123
Audiobooks = 10
Comics & Graphic Novels = 203
Total books = 1,165
Total read = 442
These numbers are skewed, unfortunately. And since I confused myself AGAIN when recording which books I unhauled, I don’t even know if I removed all the books from the app that I ended up unhauling. Smh.
I believe my Excel file has the most accurate stats, but one of these days this year when I’m stuck home and am MAJORLY bored, I’ll have to go through my shelves and my e-reader one more time to get these numbers right. Hopefully, I’ll learn how to count better by then.
But despite the skewed numbers, I do have a pretty good idea of what physical books I own. I’ll know if something is missing.
My plan moving forward is to cut down even more on the amount of books I buy, so I’ve adopted a friend’s reward system.
Reward system for purchasing books
After reading 5 books from my physical TBR, I can purchase 1 new book.
After reading 6 comics (digital or physical), I can purchase 2 comics (digital or physical).
After reading 5 picture books, I can purchase 1 picture book.
After reading 1 book from my digital TBR, I can purchase 1 e-book.
If I do not like a book and know that I will NEVER reread it, I must unhaul it.
Exceptions: my birthday; books for buddy-reads (because I WILL read those); Discworld books
Well, this post was longer than expected too. If you read it all, thank you. I appreciate you. If you ever do a bookshelf tour, please let me know. I love those sorts of posts.