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    I have two main interests, carving and reading. Unfortunately, my hobbies take up space; so much space that my wife has started to complain. It's not that she doesn't support or encourage me, it's just that my hobbies have just about taken up every blessed free space in my den and in the living room. I fully acknowledge that I have "hoarder" tendencies but books are like gold to me and I just can't stand to throw them out. I often re-read the fiction books and I'm constantly referring back to the non-fiction. The books wouldn't be such a problem if it wasn't for all my completed carving projects. Although I have 3 each 7' high bookcases filled with books, I was doing okay putting my finished wood carvings in front of them. That can't happen anymore. I've run out of room. I've agreed to go through the books and sort them out, keeping only the ones that I really don't think I'll need (Not an easy task considering every time in the past that I've thrown a book away, it seems like I have a need for it as soon as it's gone). So that leaves me with the carvings. I don't sell my work and have probably given away almost as much as I've collected. Now I need to come up with a way to pare down the rest. Other than deep sixing them, does anyone have a thought on what I can do with them?

  • #2
    When I retired, I had an office with more than 30 years of books in it. I have maybe 2,000 titles in the book cases in my house.
    I sorted out 2 piles: #1 went to the highschool library. Fiction, fact & reference. #2 went to the local public library, titles of more general interest. Honestly, I could pick out 100 titles and junk the rest.

    Maybe what you need to do is fewer carvings and much larger? Craft fairs? Local thrift stores?
    I know, I know. Looks fairly stupid when they are piled 2 and 3 deep.
    Brian T

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    • #3
      The bookcases in our condo are only 5' tall, but there are at least a dozen of them. My wife is an avid reader! She also had me make a 9' wide, three shelf bookcase for cookbooks. Long ago we decided that we could not display all of my carvings, so many are packed away. The most recent relief gets a prominent wall space facing the front door. I tell myself we're holding on to all the carvings for the "upcoming" exhibition at our local museum. When I see the exhibitions of "real artists," I realize it isn't happening.

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      • #4
        Oh I hear ya! Books cases fill up faster than our bank account, so I finally had to stop buying. I am fortunate to have lots of room in my basement shop/studio for carvings but some of the better stuff makes it's way into the living room and other walls upstairs. I have no idea how anyone could throw out a book, I might want to read it again some day!!! I am like you, four 7' book cases, each with two layers of books on each shelf, except for my reference case, it is only one deep. Good luck with thinning it out, if you can do that you are a better man than I , Gunga Din.

        Bob
        Before they slip me over the standing part of the fore sheet, let them pipe: "Up Spirits" one more time.

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        • #5
          Eddy,

          As I ready your dilemma I keep hearing questions in my mind.

          1. Who appreciates it more? When you say I don’t sell my work. I hear this as your moral imperative? I’ve recently change my thoughts on selling my work. I did an extensive carving for a family member who had repeatedly asked for one of my carvings. The carving now resides on storage shelf in the basement. I’ve decided people who actually pay for my work have more commitment to enjoying it.

          2. Have considered a Kindle? Me and my wife both enjoy reading, really cannot remember the last day when I didn’t read a book if only for a few minutes. That said I don’t think I’ve read a dozen paper books in the last 5 maybe 10 years. With over 1,200 books on my kindle and the ability to get more books wherever I go. Who needs more book shelves. We don’t still own enough books to fill the three small ones we have. All my books with me wherever I go.

          Sorry but you did ask.
          Ed
          Living in a pile of chips.
          https://m.facebook.com/pg/CentralNeb...ernal&mt_nav=0

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          • #6
            im not saying what i did for me is best for you but what i had done maybe 20 years ago, was to get a kindle ebook reader. and i got rid of my collection of paperbacks. i did find several sites where i could get plenty of free books, plus over the years i had bought into groups by author also. several tons of books fit into a simple computer file, digital.
            Denny

            photos at........ http://wiscoden.jimdo.com/

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            • #7
              My wife suggested you put shelves up near your ceiling all around the room. When we moved I downsized most of my books and gifted them to the library, sold on eBay, sold at garage sales, and now have boxes in storage. I sypathize with your plight, Eddy.

              A solution, that doesn't work for me but for my wife, is to get a Kindle reader. Cheap, and she has thousands on her Kindle. Very nice to be able to read them anywhere and even riding in the truck. I couldn't do that myself though.

              The conclusion is I'm in the same boat with you and most of my books are now in a storage shed. I keep a list of what is where (I number each box) and the storage unit just gets bigger. Our daughter came down a month ago and we gave her our boat and I filled it with boxes.

              Good luck and let me know if you have a creative solution.
              Bill
              Living among knives and fire.

              http://www.westernwoodartist.com

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              • #8
                You might do some research and so if any place like the children’s hospital, or the fire department might be having a charity auction. They might sell your work for a donation for a worthy cause. I don’t know if that would work for you, but it’s a thought.

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                • #9
                  Same problem here...had well over 1200 volumes at home at one point, plus some at the office. Now no office, and books at home down to a couple of hundred.

                  I still buy paper books when they are the type I want to underline and/or refer to again and again, or are unavailable electronically; mainly I use my Kindle to download from two libraries (free!) and Amazon.

                  My problem is that I also restore and collect antique clocks, and they gobble up a lot of room, too. My wife is very reasonable, but doesn't like too many clocks in each room!

                  I got rid of the books that duplicate information I can get on the web, got a Kindle (years ago) which allows me to read to my heart's content without taking up space, and rotate the carvings I display, storing the rest.
                  Arthur

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                  • #10
                    Sounds like a lot of good suggestions to a wide spread problem. It seems most carvers tend to be "old codgers" () and "old codgers" tend to do a lot of reading and hoarding ( I can say this 'cause I'm one ...)
                    I don't have an issue with the carving part of the problem as I attend 2 large craft sales each year and I always manage to give away a bunch of ornaments to family and friends each year as well.
                    As for the books;... we still have a couple (well maybe a lot) of shelves full of them. I've thought about donating the whole lot to the local library but haven't done that yet. I have however stopped buying books. I now read ebooks exclusively. What I did was instead of buying a Kindle or Kobo reader I installed an app on my tablet that lets me search and download books from any public library that I am a member of. Actually I just finished reading a book that you (Eddy) mentioned a while ago " IN The Heart of the Sea". Now the biggest problem I have is remembering to keep the tablet charged....
                    Wayne
                    If you're looking for me, you'll find me in a pile of wood chips somewhere...

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                    • #11
                      I guess we're not the only ones. My wife is worse than me about books. Down sizing will come and it will be bad.

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                      • #12
                        I second what Cut Up said about donating some carvings to organizations having auctions. I did this with some oil paintings I needed to re-home and it worked out very well. The senior centers are a good place, helps meals on wheels etc. And you can take a tax credit. Can't help with the books, I don't like kindle personally, I prefer a book in hand, but it is an option "if all else fails".

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                        • #13
                          Eddy, give the books to the library, that way you can check them out if need be. Donate the carvings to fund raisers, church bake sales etc. of course if you donate the books you will have more room for carvings. I have the same problem and that is what I do.
                          Herb

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                          • #14
                            I ran out of storage room several years ago and started selling my carvings on ETSY. Worked out well for me. I make enough to have to pay taxes on it, and I can buy a new tool/more wood when I want and don't have to worry about the finances. All tools and wood I buy are tax deductible, as well, because I have a legit business and file my Schedule D every year. Going through ETSY is easy. They handle all the credit card and pay pal transactions, charge me 3.5% for it, and once a week deposit funds in my bank account. BobK on here also has an ETSY shop, and he does better than I do... I carve what I want when I want. I discovered that several of my carvings were liked by multiple people, so I have those listed as "carved to order" and take a week or two to carve/paint them. With over 500 sales in 7 years, I've only had one where the customer changed his/her mind.

                            As to the books, I read a lot also. I discovered Kindle books and love it. I downloaded a Kindle reader app for my Mac computer and read them on that. In the evenings, when finished with my forums, facebook, etc., I can pull up the Kindle app and be reading in seconds. It's also way way cheaper than buying the books.

                            Claude
                            My FaceBook Page: https://www.facebook.com/ClaudesWoodCarving/

                            My Pinterest Page: https://www.pinterest.com/cfreaner/

                            My ETSY Shop: https://www.etsy.com/shop/ClaudesWoodcarving

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Nebraska View Post
                              Eddy,

                              As I ready your dilemma I keep hearing questions in my mind.

                              1. Who appreciates it more? When you say I don’t sell my work. I hear this as your moral imperative? I’ve recently change my thoughts on selling my work. I did an extensive carving for a family member who had repeatedly asked for one of my carvings. The carving now resides on storage shelf in the basement. I’ve decided people who actually pay for my work have more commitment to enjoying it.


                              Sorry but you did ask.
                              Nebraska.... Please don't say that dirty word in my presence!
                              I detest reading off a TV screen. As it is I try to remember use blue light glasses anytime I watch TV or use the computer. Otherwise I've got a headache in just a few minutes. I guess that I'm light sensitive. I have a couple of kids with the same problem.
                              But the real reason I hate kindles is that they just don't replace the smell or tactile feeling of reading from a real book. There's just something about opening a book and smelling the paper, and flipping the pages and marking your place with a favorite book mark. I guess it goes back to my experiences as a kid. I was an avid reader and even in the Navy use to carry a paperback around in my back pocket to pull out when I was off watch and off duty.

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