Sunday, March 10, 2013

Unread Books and Convention Time!

With two months left until graduation, one question weighs on my mind: what will I do with all my books?

I haven't gotten to a book-hoarding stage, where paperbacks creep out of the floorboards and my hardbacks cut up my skin when I sleep in a pile of them at night, but my three bookshelves are stuffed with manga, YA, and children's books. All the textbooks from college and grad school have been exiled to the computer room in the front of the house. If you opened my closet, you'd find thrift store collections of Grimm's fairy tales jammed with retired library books, sold with the plastic and bar codes still on their covers. I even have one shelf in my closet dedicated to anthologies, since I've gravitated towards them after having to procure stories for my students during grad school.

Unlike this comic, I'm not keeping books for my future brood. Rather, I reread them many times, enthralled by my favorite scenes and characters, and I love being able to lend them to friends as well.

But after I graduate, what will happen to me? What will happen to these books?

I'm willing to make my life difficult: if I have to move, I will break my back packing and moving all these books with me. However, I want to make sure that every book I'm bringing is one I want to keep - and that means catching up on all the unread books I have.

Above, you'll find a chunk of one of my bookshelves - probably the most jam-packed section. I've read most of these books, but there are a few that I've lined up to read over the next few weeks.

The best part about finding books I don't like, or don't want to keep, is that I can donate them. It makes getting rid of books easy, because I know that other people will pick up those books and like them, even if I didn't. I could never, ever throw a book away *shudders* Always donate, kiddos, haha.

In addition to my book worries, spring break has started! I've got a thesis to format, adding the finishing touches on the persnickety formatting requirements, down to the appropriate spacing between headers, leaders, and margins. I must take naps, do laundry, clean my room, eat out, write, and do something fun. Well, the fun part is something I have covered this year.

On Friday, I'll be going to Megacon, a giant sci-fi and anime convention held in Orlando, FL. I LOVE these conventions, but you wouldn't know it from my blog. Come to think of it, I only started blogging during my first year of graduate school and, since then, I haven't been able to attend (due to a combination of deadlines, teaching, and creative writing events). The stars aligned this year, allowing my brother and I to have the same week off... and that week happened to include Megacon.

Couldn't. Be. More. Perfect.

In the two years since my last convention, I'm sure that a lot has changed. I'm feeling a little nervous, actually, because I've been out of the loop in what shows and fandoms are popular now. My life has revolved around devouring novels, memoirs, poetry, and studying craft... so I haven't had the time to watch a bunch of anime or buy new gaming systems to play some amazing RPGs (my favorite types of games). I've only recently gotten into Doctor Who (thank goodness), and I've reached Season 5, watching a few episodes with the 11th Doctor, Matt Smith, so I'm feeling pretty good about that.

Normally, whether I'm behind or not shouldn't matter, but I'm trying something new. Stepping out of my comfort zone, shall I say.

I'm going speed dating while I'm there.

Inspired by Geek Love, a sci-fi speed dating show that aired on TLC, I'm going to take a chance and have some fun (and hopefully swallow my nerves, haha). Even if this experience turns out to be a disaster, it'll make for a good blog post, haha!

Because I lack a fancy phone, I can't live tweet my Megacon adventures, but I will be taking my Kindle Fire. If the hotel and convention area have free wi-fi, then I should be in business!

What have you all done / plan to do for your spring break? How do you handle a growing pile of unread books?


  1. I'm just the same way with books, except I have a bunch that I haven't read yet, and I just reread a specific set (like Harry Potter).

    For spring break I plan to take it easy. The last few weeks have been hectic, filled with long car rides, school and a bunch of exercise; my mom is forcing me to get into it because she thinks I spend too much time in my room and not enough time moving. Gotta love her, though. :)

    I hope you have a good time with your brother at Megacon! I'm sure they'll have a bunch of booths featuring stuff you're into.

    1. Rereading is awesome, but I always feel slightly guilty when I know I've got a lot of unread books, haha.

      Ahhhhh, yeah, I need to get out more this week too. I've got a few small things planned to do, but, yeah, relaxing is a big one.

      Thanks! The booths are always awesome! :D

  2. I have to say, Kim, your bookshelf is one of the most beautiful sights I've seen in months. :D I'm probably the wrong person to ask, but if I were you, I wouldn't give any away. I'm a packrat when it comes to my books. It even hurts to donate the ones I didn't like. But I understand moving with a ton of books is a pain in the [back]... I've done it two summers in a row now! Good luck with the rereading and the donating and the prepping for graduation!

    Also, Megacon sounds so awesome. Document ALL THE ADVENTURES. And the speed-dating. Definitely document the speed-dating.

    1. Hahaha, I know what you mean! I actually donated a few books that I honestly didn't want, but because they had pretty covers and I spent a lot of money on them, I debated about them for a long time! In the end, I let them go.... but sometimes it's very hard!

      I will! I'll have my camera, ready to go. Hopefully by next weekend (or Monday or Tuesday), I'll have a blog post up about ALL of my Megacon adventures *wiggles eyebrows*

  3. Having recently moved with tons of books and bookshelves let me say: yeah it's hard but so worth it. Loved the image of your bookshelf, though I sheepishly admit I've heard of almost none of them.

    Anywho, have fun at Megacon. Few things in life are better than days when you can just nerd out.

    1. Ben! You have a lot of reading to do, then, hahaha! I've got a lot of favorites on those two shelves, though it's only scratching the surface of all my books.

      Yes! It should be a lot of fun :)

    2. If you have book recommendations, by all means, share 'em.

  4. Ha, speed dating. That should be a fun blog post.

    I'm a book hoarder and I come from a family of them. I try to donate books I know I don't read/won't read, but I'm pretty miserable at it. No good advise to give. But I've moved with piles of books, and I've become fond of shipping them. USPS has flat rate boxes that I cram chunks of my library into. A nomadic lifestyle for a book lover is a tricky thing.

  5. How I handle a pile of unread books: Buy more books and also check a new stack out of the library every week.

    I think I might be doing it wrong. :P

    If I put my mind to it, I could finish all the unread books on my shelf in a month or two. But where's the fun in that? I like always having books around I haven't read. Like a security I won't run out of new things to read if all the libraries suddenly close for a few weeks. Cause that's totally plausible. XD

    I can't wait to hear about your adventures at Megacon. You are so BRAVE for giving this speed-dating a whirl. I've just realized I probably have an weird view of speed-dating, because they've used it as a plot to catch a murderer on two different detective shows I watch. Haha.