Monday, August 25, 2008

17 feet high and rising

I've said before, we have a lot more stuff than storage space. Or house isn't exactly large, but it's not exactly small either; and other than bedroom closets, we have very little inbuilt storage (1 broom closet, 1 utility closet, kitchen cabinets and that's it).

Our biggest storage problem is books. Together, Mel and I have about 2000 books (that's after seriously aggressive pruning, sending perhaps half of our books to donation and/or used book stores), several hundred dvds, several hundred more CDs, and a substantial home theater setup

Several hundred of our books are in our bedroom, my office, and her office; but the majority of them are currently shelved two deep in out living room; or boxed up due to lack of room.

We've decided that the only way to deal with the living room properly, is putting up custom builtins. Thankfully I've done it before, and have the tools to do it right.

That's going to be a 'nother post... or more likely series of posts; and it's going to be a while from now, since the materials are going to run at least a grand, and honestly there are higher priorities right now.

So, my main task this weekend was to reorganize the storage in our bedroom; no small task. Actually, the only room in my house with enough storage is my bedroom; which is amazing given how small it is (12x14 with attached 4x8 3/4 bath).

We've got a 5 foot high 3 foot wide 5 drawer bureau; a six foot long, 8 drawer, counter height vanity dresser; a 5 foot high, 2 foot wide, 5 drawer chest that fits in between our his and hers closets; the aforementioned two, 7 foot wide (one full wall of our 12x14 bedroom) 2.5ft deep his and hers closets; a night stand with two VERY large drawers that act as my desk drawers; and full length underbed storage accessible on one side of our queen bed (it's backed into into a corner which is why only one side is accessible)

Other than in the living room, mostly we use steel wire shelving. It isn't the BEST looking stuff, but it's sturdy, and it can hold a hell of a lot.

So as of Sunday, I've got a 3ft wide seven tier (14" deep) unit for hardcovers, and 2x 2 foot wide 4 tier units for paperbacks.

I have a 4 foot long counter height desk in my bedroom, and the 4 tier shelves are set up as it's kick panel; with the seven tier unit on the wall perpendicular.

...No, there are no blank walls left in my house that don't have shelving or a drawer unit on them.

Anyway, before this weekend, we didn't have near enough shelving in our bedroom to hold our entire "to read" pile (well... mostly MY to read pile. Mels is like a dozen books); and books to be read were in a bunch of amazon boxes etc... so I couldn't get a good count, and sometimes couldn't find one of the books when I wanted to read it.

That is no longer a problem. In fact with the new 7 tier unit in place, we have enough shelving in the bedroom for about twice as many books as we did before.

Of course this means that now I have a good count of my pile...

... whoooo boy....

(that's a trimmed down export from our excellent catalog software, Readerware)

175 books in the to read pile... 17 linear feet of books, with a collective page count of about 61,000.

Now, I read fast. In fact, I can average over a page a minute when I'm into it... but even at my best rate of around 100 pages an hour, that would be about 610 hours of nonstop reading.

If I could manage two hours a day of recreational book reading (vs the 12+ hours of reading a day I already do between work and websites)... which is at least somewhat realistic; it would take me about a year of reading.

... and it's only getting bigger. They're releasing good books faster than I can read them.

On the one hand, great, I'll never run out of reading material. On the other hand, seems like I'll never get to some of those books I want to read.