Options for Misfit Books

In this previous post I shared my tried and true method to spring clean bookshelves. By the end of the cleaning spree there should be a pile of books that either you will not read again or that you have never read.

Here are a few ideas of what you can do with these unwanted books.


Option 1: Turn them into Cash

This option works well if you have a recent mega hit or a classic series that is in superb condition. I don't want to be the bearer of bad news but if your stack of books are mostly run of the mill paperbacks, they more than likely will not bring in many dollars.

Turn them into cash by listing them on Ebay.  Sometimes I only make a dollar or five, but any money is better than none!

If Ebay is not your thing, you could take a box of unwanted books to a local used bookstore. This method has a faster turn around time than listing your books online. How much you make will be determined by individual bookstores and what books you have taken in.  I have walked in with a huge box and made twenty dollars. Again, I believe any money is better than none!

What to do with

Option 2: Give them away

Maybe going through the chore of listing books, mailing books or hauling them into a bookstore doesn't fit with how quickly you want these books gone. 
May I then suggest you give them away? 

In our area we have Goodwill stores. At Goodwill centers you can donate just about anything and it is tax deductible, if you list it all out. As an added bonus, these centers keep jobs in your local community.  Check around to see if one is near you.

My personal favorite place to donate books is the library. Again, this is a tax write off, if you list them out and get it signed. Plus, you are supporting the love of reading for others! 
My local library has a book sale corner in the library.  Every time I go in I have to check out to see if I can grab a new to me book for only a dollar! They also host a huge used book sale twice a year- guess where they get the books to do this?!
Yep- donations! 
Check and see if your local library could use your unwanted books.

Now the choice is yours- turn your unwanted books into cash or into a good deed by donating them.  Either way your bookshelves are looking good!

Spring Cleaning Bookshelves

Spring Cleaning is both a dreaded and anticipated ritual. A necessary evil in times past, more of a seasonal resetting for we modern folk.  I may not scrubbing kerosene and soot from my rooms but there may be a layers of dust and a few cobwebs.

Today I share how this Booksipper spring cleans Bookshelves.

Spring Cleaning copy 4

I have broken down this big task into four easy steps.  We will rinse and repeat for each bookshelf. Here we go!

Step 1: Good Music and Supply Gathering

Upbeat music can turn any task into an enjoyable one.  Well, maybe not enjoyable but at least bearable.  I love Disney soundtracks; they are cheerful, upbeat, and have catchy lyrics. What more could you ask for?  But any type of music that you enjoy is good for this step.

The music is playing, now gather up some cleaning supplies.

You will need something to brush away the dust, paper towels/rags and a cleaner to wipe the shelves with.  Choose the best cleanser for your type of bookshelf.  A wooden bookshelf will need a different cleanser than a plastic/veneer one.
I like to make my own ahead of time with vinegar and essential oils or I use: Seventh Generation Free and Clear All Purpose Cleaner when I am short on time.


 Step 2: Just Start

Pull everything off of the book shelf and stack it all on the floor or a table, whatever is nearby.  Using your choice of cleanser, wipe off all that dusty grime.
While the shelves dry from that good scrubbing, dust off the books, picture frames, knick-knacks that are in your piles. 

Do Not Put Anything Back on the Shelf yet!

Step 3: The Sort

Before any item goes back on the shelf it is time to make it pass these questions.

~Do I Love/Really Like this book/item?
~Will I ever re-read this book?

If the answers are Yes, it is going back on the shelf. 
If the answers are hesitant or a kinda, put it in its own separate pile that is walking distance from the work in progress.
If your answer is not really or No, it goes into a sell or donate pile.  ( We will talk about these options later )

Proceed with all the items that you have for your shelf.

Good job!  This is the most difficult step of Spring Cleaning a Bookshelf!

Step 4: Reshelving & Decorating

Probably the most fun of all the steps!

Arrange and rearrange until your hearts content on your squeaky clean shelves that are cobweb free.
Stack some books vertically, held up by knick-knacks or book ends. Lay books horizontal with a photo frame on top or nearby.  Arrange by color or author. Any way you please.

Need inspiration ~ Check out my Bookcases and Reading Spaces Pinterest Board.


 You've worked hard. Pour yourself a favorite beverage to sip, put up your feet and enjoy your beautiful shelves!