What’s the value of a story?
I have too many books.
Novels and guide books and manuals and slim volumes of poetry. Serious hardbacks on serious subjects; textbooks I stole from school. They are largely redundant. They mill around my desk, haunt every table in the house, and huddle on my bookshelves, resentfully.
I think I’ve kept them because they prove something to me, about me. Like most people I know, I’m a cultural hoarder, gathering things around me that represent my tastes. My books are a kind of proof of what I’ve made of myself: my social bearing, my education, my place in this world. If I lived in a house without books, what would people think of me? What would I be, if they weren’t there?
Some of them, I’ve never read at all. Most of them, I’ll never read again. It’s time to set them free. They deserve more than this. So I’m shedding them, or at least the ones I don’t love enough to keep.
I’m selling my books on Ebay, and publishing an autobiographical story in the product description. It’s a unique love-letter from me to the book, which tells the tale of the part of me that bought it, read it or let go of it.
Here’s how you can take part:
Read my stories or bid on one of my books on Ebay. Or use the site to ask a question or make a comment.
Talk to me on Twitter. I’d love to see my books in the hands of their new owners.
Read about the books I’ll keep on Medium. Because there are some I can’t bear to throw away.