The OF Blog: 1767

Saturday, January 17, 2009


That's the number of books (some of them duplicates, as many are galleys/ARCs and then final versions) that I currently have here in my possession. I knew it was somewhere around 1700, but I wasn't for sure how close it was to that. I suspect I'll reach 2000 either later this year or early next, depending on how many review copies I continue to receive and whether or not I spend as much money buying books (especially imports) this year.

What about you? What's the approximate size of your personal library?


MatsVS said...

Well, it's nowhere near that number. If I had to make a wager, I'd place the number of books in my possession (as in, bought by me) at around 200.

I've always considered myself a guy who reads more than most, but not as much as I should. I am 23 years old, though, so I have many, many years ahead of me to expand. ;)

Lsrry said...

If it'll make you feel any better, I think I owned right around that same number when I was 23. Helped then that I didn't have a job, so I could only buy books whenever I had a few spare dollars remaining after I used my student loan money to pay for tuition, housing, and textbooks.

SciFiGuy said...

Is there a prize? LOL. I have been reading and collecting SF&F for as long as I can remember and I've probably got 8 or 9,000 items (my count includes magazine issues. Here's the link for a look -

Probably another 700-800 Urban Fantasy/Paranormals in the last 3-4 years a as well.

Unknown said...

12,000. Give or take. I think the husband has another 2,000 in his office.

It's pretty overwhelming. There are books in every room, in every closet, in every cabinet. No, I haven't read them all. No, I haven't stopped purchasing books. Yes, I have a many-pages wishlist with Amazon. Yes, I am a bibliomaniac.

No, I won't die until I read them all. Yes, I will live forever.

Lsrry said...

Always good to see others whose collections are much larger than my own; gives me motivation to collect more. Seems as though I might be on a 250-300 books/year pace right now, so maybe in about 10-15 years, I can catch up to you, Terry? :P

Mihai A. said...

Well, I was just thinking the other day that I have to re-arrange my library and update my catalogue. But I aproximate 1000-1200 books.

Unknown said...

Larry, I'm 52. I did most of my buying when I was in senior management of a Fortune 500 company in the mid-90's and living in Omaha; I bought more than 700 books a year during those years. (There's nothing else to do in Omaha, after all.) Collecting has slowed to a crawl since I can no longer work full-time as an attorney due to depressions, which, yes, really can be disabling, which really pisses me off.

It also helps to find a spouse when you're in your 40s who has also been collecting all his life who happens to have tastes that parallel yours but are not entirely synchronous. Thus: he brought the Thomas Burnett Swann to the marriage, and I brought the Theodore Sturgeon. I brought the mysteries, he brought the poetry. Roughly speaking, he brought the science fiction, I brought the fantasy and horror. I recommend it, especially (well, only, really) if you fall madly, passionately and totally in love, surprising both of you since you'd both about concluded that it would never happen to either of you in this lifetime.

Eileen said...

Just counted - 179 books, mostly general literary fiction, American history, Star Trek, a bit of sci-fi, some Modernist poetry, and a few graphic novels. If I read a book and don't like it, I'll give it away. I too am 23 years old and have plenty of time to accumulate more.

I actually just got my first ARC: Fiction by indie writer Ara 13. (His debut novel Drawers & Booths won the 2008 IPPY award.) He was very pleased with both reviews I did, even though I only gave Fiction a rating of three out of five stars. I'll also be getting three more ARC's from Open Letter Press.

Lsrry said...


I do have someone to whom I send "special" sorts of books on occasion; she has sent me some memorable ones as well. While it's not what I'd call a formal relationship, it certainly is a meaningful one, even if I still have no plans at all to ever marry. But if I do change my mind, your words certainly are wise ones.


As I said above, plenty of time to start amassing the books, especially if you find your name being sent to all sorts of publisher lists. That being said, perhaps I ought to ask Open Letter for copies, since I do read and review those type of books on occasion.

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