Wednesday, 8 February 2017

The thing about books ... is I love them but ... they are killing me!

The thing about books is that I don't get round to reading them ... and they end up taking up too much space in a busy household. Despite the quality, despite the interest ... the shame of it is that I don't enough time to read them and they become a millstone around my neck. I have cracked the Audio "listen to while you travel" conundrum but I have to rationalise what I already have and place emphasis on quality. Aka I have more books than I can possibly still read in the remaining years of my life, so make sure you read the good ones.

Note: That was probably true twenty years ago, but I felt that time was on my side!

So project by project a 'culling' process has begun. It started with the Russo-Japanese war .. beautiful books I have had for in excess of fifteen years and they had to go. They were purchased before I had a family and were never read in the (double digit) time since I have gained one. As per the earlier post I exchanged then for US modern 1/3000 lead, a project I intend to do this year (asap) so I am happy they did not live in vain - they have also gone to a "good house".

My current rational is that I get intense enjoyment out of the painting and modelling aspect so that is where I an going to concentrate my efforts alongside actual game playing (board and tabletop). As in the case of the Russo-Japanese period I am keeping my 1/3000 Navwar kit and the Avalanche Press Russo-Japanese 1904-05 board game to generate historical scenarios. My hope is that the fellow wargamer of the exchange will be inspired to game a few naval actions with me.

The books I "will keep" fall into one of two categories. Those that I have read and mean something to me such as Green's "The Greco Persian-Wars" will be kept "as they are precious to me" (and there are quite a few of those .. so books won't disappear from my house) and those books that are effectively a painting reference or simple order of battle guide. The various Osprey's fall into that genre however .. not all Osprey's will probably be kept just the mainstream wargaming eras. Historical novels may/will have to go en-masse to the various worthy charity shops of this fair land!

Your thoughts are appreciated on the above. I know many other "a gamer" must have faced this dilemma. Is the above "a whim of madness" .. I am prising the "toys" above the "books" as I think all I really need is a good overview but not an exhaustive PhD depth of understanding of each period I play.


Simon Jones said...

Books are a great weaknessof mine also. I am running out of space and am considering a small cull. I would keep the Ospreys though, you never know when you might need them. I must have over a thousand Osprey titles collected over about 35 years.
I have been culling unwanted gaming stuff I have hoarded. I know that I was not going to complete most of it.

Good luck

Emjenic said...

Well, should say that one can never have too many books... I get your meaning, though, if I read a book every day it would take me at least about 5 years to get through them all. Still, I do have a lot of books that do not have to be read from cover to cover, per se. Many books are profusely and lavishly illustrated, and I just like to peruse them now and then and read parts that interest me; just like surfing the internet, really. Many I use as reference books, when I want to find out more about something. Others, I will read from cover to cover. And I do find it difficult to let go of them! I have far less qualms about novels, unless I really think I will read them again. So, the best of luck, and please let us know how it goes; this was a very enjoyable post!

Geordie an Exiled FoG said...

I hear you Simon ... the thought of a collection of 35 years of Ospreys is quite a scary thought in itself!

Gawd, I was on Amazon looking up a paper version of book that I have just finished listening to on Audible ... I then drifted into history from science and it is so tempting to be drawn in by the lure of the front covers. I could easily (apart from the expense) have bought ten books on the Russo-Japanese war - including the ones I have just traded for a 1/3000 CVN - on the basis of they look nice ... I am only allowed on Amazon under the guidance of a responsible adult


It comes down to knowing what you literally need as a "minimum"