On Bookshelf Organization




So if you caught my #shelfgoals post recently (I’m writing both of these on the same day so no idea when I’m actually scheduling them haha) I shared the current disaster that are my shelves (embarrassing pictures and all) and talked about my plan for a revamp project for my shelves this Spring.

I outlined a number of things that I’d be doing to revamp my shelves and one of those things was to think about my shelf organization but I had so many thoughts about this so I promised a full post instead of jam-packing that post with it. So here we are to talk all about bookshelf organization.


How My Bookshelves Are Currently Organized


I currently have four bookcases in my bedroom that have pretty much been organized the same way for many, many years.

Bookshelf #1: This contains all my adult fiction, new adult and non-fiction books. I have them separated by those three things and within that they are all alphabetical by author last name.

Bookshelf #2: This houses all my ARCs. They are organized by release month but within that release month there is legit no order.

Bookshelf #3 & 4: These house all my Young Adult books which are alphabetical by author last name.

Then I have a shelf that Will put in behind our couch that houses some of my favorite books. I like having them on display in our living room. Those really aren’t in much order at all except for obviously keeping an author’s books together or a series together. I have about 25ish books out there.


Shelf Organization I’m Considering


*In all of these scenarios my ARCs would likely still have their own shelf because I like them to be all together*

1. I could keep things the same — it’s pretty easy to find everything that I need. Plus when friends come to borrow books it’s easy to tell them what is where. Though, with my whole revamp project, it might be boring to keep it the same.

2. By color: Some of the shelves I shared in my #shelfgoals post were organized by color and aesthetically it’s the most pleasing to me. But my concerns are: HOW WILL I FIND EVERYTHING? What do you do with series because most of those covers won’t match? Also, what happens if I have like not a lot of variety and it looks funny? Or what about spines that are multi color and don’t fit in one color category? While my favorite option aesthetically I already have a lot of logistical concerns.

3. By read vs unread (and then alphabetical): My friend Anna did this at one point and I really liked the idea of this because having my unread books altogether and seeing the unequal distribution of unread vs read would maybe guilt me into reading things I own. I also just like the idea of seeing my physical TBR. My only thing is since so many of my favorites I own are shelved out in the living room that I wouldn’t have very many read to be shelved back there. I outline my whole process with what I do with books I’ve read but the essence is that I only keep books that are favorites or that I would reread or from fave authors (even if the book itself isn’t a fave) so I really don’t know what this would look because I haven’t counted my read books that I own.

4. By genre (then alphabetically): I kind of really think this idea would be fun. Sure, my current organization is broken up into adult, new adult, non-fiction and YA but those are pretty broad. I like the idea of putting fantasy, contemporary, mystery, historical, romance, etc all together in their respective genres because I’m SUCH a mood reader and sometimes being able to look for a certain genre of book might help me. Plus I really like the idea of my YA and adult fic books mingling together within genres. My only roadblock with this one is sometimes I hate categorizing books because they don’t always have a clear genre so I would have to just do my best and realize I might classify something different than others.


Since I’m still in the culling stage/figuring out a system to keep a good flow of in/out books, I have some time to think about this. I’ve got a LOT to think about from a lot of angles. I could see myself honestly doing any of the 4.


So let’s talk:


So what I want to know from you guys is 1) how do you organize your shelves? 2) are there any other shelving ideas I haven’t considered maybe? 3) which way do you think I should go?? Talk to me about ALL the bookshelf organization.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
About Jamie

Jamie is a 32 year old married lady (with a new baby!!) who is in denial that she's actually that old to be a married lady and a mom. When she's not reading you can find her doing Pilates followed by eating ice cream, belting out Hamilton (loud and offkey) and having adventures with her husband, daughter and rescue dog.


  1. Alexandra says:

    I categorise mine by genre and subgenre, simply because that makes most sense to me and my fondness for order, but within the genre it’s loosely by overall aesthetics rather than author last name – so size, and colour. The plan was that I would have an overall pleasing aesthetic, but still be able to find what I wanted quickly. The reality is that there’s never enough room so books get stacked on top of other books so in the end it’s not all that ordered by size and colour at all.
    My housemate at one place I lived at ordered her books by colour. While it did look nice (she had a good split of colours too) I quickly realised it just wouldn’t have worked for me because I hated that series-es were all split up. It felt like more of a design/”I have excellent taste in decorating” statement than a practical/”I am a reader and here are my books” statement. But… it worked for her.
    When discussing a similar topic a couple of years ago on another blog, I read one commenter who said they organised their books by Dewey Decimal Code…that one stuck in my memory.

    • Oooh I like this idea — functional to find stuff but also pleasing to aesthetically.

      YES that is my biggest thing is that I don’t want my series split up. SIGH. IT LOOKS SO PRETTY THOUGH.

      and huh Dewey Decimal Code! so interesting!

  2. My books right now are organized by color, and because I’m such a visual learner I can just remember which shelf and in which spot each book is?!? (haha) Sometimes I’m a little thrown off if the spine color doesn’t match the cover color but generally the system works and I just LOVE how it looks. I suppose if you are really concerned about finding things in a super timely manner this wouldn’t be the system for you, but scanning the shelves looking for a title is sometimes fun (I often rediscover books that way), so it definitely works for me.

    • I wonder if that would be the case for me, too. Like I would remember pretty easily and am just THINKING that it would be hard to find stuff? But you bring up a good point about scanning your shelves if you can’t find something — 1) Scanning the shelves can be fun and 2) also it’s not my library is THAT huge that is really going to take me that long to find something if I can’t remember!!

  3. I’m in a similar boat right now trying to reorganize/clean up my bookshelves. Currently they’re kind of a mess. I have a main shelf that’s loosely my favorites and it’s got everything just mixed in together in alphabetical order by author last name. I also have a shelf that’s split between unread books, nonfiction books, mythology books and the couple of anthologies I kept from my college classes. I also have a bunch of hidden shelves in these little cubbies in my wall where I just store all the books I can’t fit on the main “favorites” shelf. Plus I have another small bookcase that’s just got a bunch of random stuff shoved on it that I’d like to figure out what to put on it (I’ve been thinking of bringing out all my Tamora Pierce books since I’ve been wanting to do a reread and they should be displayed as favorites somewhere.)

    I feel like you’ve voiced all my feelings on bookshelves organized by color. I think they always look so beautiful in photos but I could never break up a series. Plus I like instantly knowing where a book is on my shelf and I don’t think I’ll remember where anything is if it’s organized by color.

    • It’s so hard to figure out a good shelf organization system I feel like because then you have to maintain it. I tend to do similar to you where I end up just putting stuff places randomly just to fit it somewhere.

      I guess maybe the solution is to pick one and realize I can always rearrange if I hate it. Not the end of the world I suppose! Hopefully we will both find a system that works for us! Good luck with your reorganization and cleaning up!

  4. I agree on the color thing. I think it looks super cool but I like things organized and would want series books to be in order and just want to be able to find things easily. I just recently re organized mine. I had stacks of books sitting around for the LONGEST time and finally just got tired of trying to remember what was in each stack and got a new bookcase and started organizing. Before I did that I had my classics together, organized by author’s lasts name. Then series also organized by author’s last name. Then I had stand alone books. Now, I just have the classics together and the rest are simply organized by authors last name. It started to get confusing because if I received a book from a publisher that I hadn’t heard of and I didn’t know if it was stand alone or not I didn’t know what to do with it. I like the idea of arcs on their own though.

    • Oooh I kind of like the idea of doing series together and then standalones. You’ve given me something else to consider! But yeah, you did bring up a good point with that — determining if something is a standalone. PARTICULARLY because so often I think a (YA) book is a standalone and SURPRISE series.

      • Since I reorganized it has been only a couple of weeks and already there is a part of me that want to go back to the way I had it. If I do though I think I would put ARCs by themselves so I don’t have to worry about series or standalone until I read it and find out. Although last night at work I had an idea to put signed books together. It is kind of a random idea but it could be cool to look over and see the collection of signed books.

  5. I do not recommend shelving by genre. My friend did and said it was a terrible mistake and that she can’t find anything (albeit she has like 1000 books). Good luck with your shelves! I’m so lazy, I just sort mine into read and to-read haha

    • Hmmm something to think about! Thank you!

      And see, I don’t think it’s lazy….I think it’s super practical. I really love the idea of unread vs read. Gives you such a good look at your TBR.

  6. My bookshelf is mostly organized according to height and if I have more than one book from an author they’re books are normally grouped together. I tried shelving by genre once and it was a nightmare and I gave up because there were way to many sub-genres to sort out and blegh. I’ve always wanted to organize my books by colour but I don’t think I could deal with all my series being seperated and same as you, HOW WOULD I FIND ANYTHING?!

    • Ooooh by height! I like this as another aesthetic option!

      And okay this is my only worry with by genre because SUBGENRES. I don’t want to go too deep so I’d probably be pretty vague/loose with my genres but then would it annoy me?? Something to think about!!

  7. I definitely understand your pain. I want my shelves to look beautiful but the rainbow shelves don’t really work for me either. I like my series together too much. I used to organize by alphabetical order but later on I just kind of put books together that look good. Like series and stuff that looked nice. Bright contemporaries together… That’s kind it.
    So right now I have a really big shelf in my living room and that’s for all my favorite (read) books. It’s full now so I’m basically going to have to start swapping out books I guess if I read a new one I love more than a book already there.
    Then I have a bookshelf in my room that is mostly all read books but a few unread books I want to get to soon. Then a small shelf in my office of books I’ve read (and liked but didn’t have room elsewhere). Last, I have a unread bookshelf that is a mixture of review books, arcs, and just unread books I’ve bought but haven’t gotten to yet.
    I really need to come up with a better system for that shelf. A couple years ago when I first started receiving arcs and review copies I was able to keep track and I knew how long I’d had the books. Now 3 years later there are sadly STILL books there I haven’t gotten too… I guess I need to start a list of when I got everything and from whom etc..
    Good luck organizing your shelves!!.

    • YES the series not being together is probably my biggest thing that throws me off with the rainbow shelves. I feel like I would learn where stuff is or at least be able to scan quickly but GAH I would be twitchy about broken up series.

      I REALLY like your idea of putting series together on the shelves and just things together that look good. I have lots of bright contemporaries so this could work! Something to think about, thanks!!

      And YES the shelf behind my couch with all my faves is kind of the same way as yours — I am at full capacity so I’m going to have to swap stuff out.

      And ooooof I feel you on the review copy organization. A couple years ago I was cleaning out my shelves and stuff at my childhood house and I found arcs from when I started blogging in 2010. WOOPSIE. I tend to only keep arcs for a full year and then I get rid of them because I figure it will be better for the author if I get it from the library instead of reading my 3 year old arc. Plus it saves me room on my shelves bc if I haven’t read an arc in at least a year than it’s clearly not a priority for me so if I DO want to read it I go to the library. I just keep a list on my library account website called “had arc” so I know what I had and what I might want to get to. My method for receiving them is by having a review copy shelf on Goodreads and you can put stuff in the private notes if you need to so I know when I received it. I like having them all there bc Goodreads makes it so easy to sort by pub date which is perfect when I want a quick glance at what review copies I have for a certain month. I hope you find a good system that works for you!! Review copies tend to get out of hand so I understand!

  8. I have a few bookshelves – one for FOREVER BOOKs – these are the ones I will never part with and they are ordered by size/series. Then I have my TBR bookshelf – again I line everything up by height and anything that I must read (usually for a review or because its calling to me) goes on my bedside table. Otherwise I try not to hoard and anything I read and know I won’t read again I usually donate to charity 🙂

    • I like the idea of ordering by size and series between read and TBR. I have my own version of FOREVER shelf on that shelf behind my couch so this could work! I like it because then aesthetically it’s still pleasing with the height. Now, here’s a question for you: what do you do with series that you’ve only read one or two books of? Do you keep the ones you read on your read shelf and the others on your TBR? Or just pick a spot and keep em together?

      And I’m the same way with my read books — I only keep them if they are favorites or if I would reread them one day or if it’s a favorite author I will keep a book that maybe I really liked but not a favorite or a reread.

      • Ooh… good question. Generally when books are part of a series, the ones I’ve read go on my forever shelf until the series is either finished or (sad to say) given up on. Only once the whole series has been read can I truly decide where they belong. However the ones I haven’t read remain on my TBR shelf – since rarely when I read a series, do I read one book after the other. It also helps me remember what I have and haven’t read.

  9. Organizing bookshelves is hard! I don’t anything but me understands how I order my books/would find a specific book based on my structure haha.
    My shelf is roughly sorted by genre BUT because I want my favorites on eye level and the ones I liked less on the bottom of the shelf it doesn’t always work out. AND I don’t want to split up authors, so sometimes when an author writes in different genres, the books don’t really fit in.
    So far my collection is still small enough that I always know where everything is 😀

    I tried sorted by color once but gave up again pretty fast because it’s a pain in the ass when you get new books and have to move like half of all your books so you can fit the new ones in.

    • I think that is probably the only thing that matters in the end — that WE understand our system haha.

      One of the girls in my book club does something similar to your — puts her faves up top and then ones she doesn’t like as much on the bottom.

      OOOOH that is a good point about genre — splitting up authors who write across genre. GAH. Something to consider!

      AND another good point about the color system. Could be hard to maintain!!

  10. Stephanie Volkmer says:

    I have 3 shelves and they are all organized differently: my first is my TBR shelf, it contains all my unread books as well as all the ones I want to read again sometime this year. My next shelf is my Agatha Christie/Grace Livingston Hill shelf, because I have so many of those they take up that whole thing. Then my last shelf is (in my opinion) one of my most interesting ones, because I organized it with each shelf having something different: top shelf is hardcovers, organized by size. Next is series, organized by how much I liked the series and then by size. Then is my non fiction by author. Then the leftovers are organized by rainbow. I never thought of just doing a small rainbow till about 2 months ago when my friend heard me complaining about my series being split up and she came up with that.
    Hope that helps, and good luck!!

    • I love that you have your own unique organization system! I feel like that DOES kind of make a book lover’s collection even more cozy and wonderful.

  11. If it helps, I have colour organised shelves, and I’ll answer some of those questions.

    I tend to find that I remember a book by it’s cover and colouring, and if you look at your shelves often enough, you probably do too. In terms of books with numerous colours, always go for the one that has he brightest or most colour. If you can, put it between the colours it shares the most with. I have one book (UK edition of Into the Still Blue) that’s half blue and half purple, so I put it in the middle so it flows well. This step is very experimental, move it around until it look good, but I usually save them for last for that reason. In terms of not having enough of one colour, it’s just something that happens. I have a lot of white, but hardly any purple, and it doesn’t look /that/ odd..

    I would personally go the rainbow shelves, but I’m biased 🙂

    • Ah you are the best for answering these!!

      You are probably right that I would remember the coloring of a book more than I think I would. Also, someone else commented above about just having to do a quick scan if she can’t remember and I was thinking that it’s not like I have 5000 books so if I *can’t* remember where something is it would really be that big of a deal just to scan my shelves quickly.

      I like your tip about the multi color spine issue and remembering that it could be experimental and moving stuff around after I get general colors together just by eyeing it up and seeing what doesn’t look to fit.

      What about your series? Does it bother you that they aren’t together?

      • I always thought having my series mixed would bother me, but no, not really. There’s only one series I keep together, and that’s my Gallagher Girls series, only because the spines don’t really fit anywhere, but all my other series are mixed.

        I tend to find that series either have completely different coloured spines, or they have completely matching, and when they match, they can stay together or at least close, but when they differ so much, it’s actually less annoying to separate them because they blend with the other colours on my shelf. It’s been helpful for series like Blood of Eden, when the UK spine of The Forever Song is red, while the other to are black, or for my Boy Nobody series, which is one original cover (black/red/orange), one ARC copy (black) and a cover-redesign (bright blue).

        It’s a tough decision to make, and I’m going to be honest Jamie, I had SO MANY logical reasons not to go rainbow before I did, so many of them like yours, and it took me a few tries to get the organisation perfect, and when you get new books, it takes some fiddling to find homes for them, plus if you do try it, you’ll find a specific shade might look better somewhere else, or you want to move around a whole colour section and run your rainbow in a different order, and it’s heavy work at first, but the aesthetics and how pretty it looks, how it makes a statement, and organises your colours in a way that allows for mix-matched series covers, formats and sizes, I don’t think I could ever go back to anything different 🙂

  12. I am in the same boat right now. I just got some new bookshelves and now have to figure out how to organize them all. Knowing me, I will probably end up pulling all of my books off their shelves and organizing them a few different way on the floor/bed before I decide on a final arrangement (and even that can change). I have been leaning towards thematic organization simply because I typically pick a book based on my mood. This would also let me keep series together (which is the main reason I haven’t tried color coding my shelves).
    Let us know what you decide, I will be interested to see!
    Thanks for sharing and I hope you have a great rest of the week!

  13. Heather says:

    Currently I have 2 smaller shelf where I have my complete series and a few authors I have a large collection of their work, plus one row for comics/graphic novels and another for my husband’s books (apparently I have to share my limited space lol). The other 2 large shelfs are all alphabetical.

    I would love to take the time to organize them based on colour – but at the same time it would be harder to find books, plus I’m afraid they will be all black spines and therefore really boring lol

  14. I’ve just done a complete revamp and now that my shelves are organised nicely I can’t stop looking at them!

    Mine are organised by read/unread and then by genre within those. I also only keep read books that are favourites so to stop it looking so unbalanced I split my read books into series and stand-alones and then spread them out a lot (like with the cover facing out rather than the spine) and that helped to make it look more full.

    I tried to go with rainbow shelves because they look so good but it was far too much maintenance for me! I am far too lazy to find the perfect stop for each new book I get so my new books ended up piling up until I could be bothered to organise them. Now it’s much easier just to throw them in with their genre and not worry about how the rainbow looks.

    I hope you find a way that works for you!
    Sophie 🙂

  15. This is fun to think about. The good thing about reorganizing your bookshelves is that it doesn’t have to be permanent — try something, and if it doesn’t work out just try something new!

    I admit to organizing by a combo of genre and how the books just *look*. A few really nice boxed sets and fancy bindings and limited editions actually go in the living room, where we can really show them off. The rest of the books go in the “library” (really was meant to be a dining room, but clearly books and shelves are more important than a table and chairs in our house). They’re done roughly by genre, but I do have the slightly more impressive science nonfiction and classic fiction on the nicest shelf facing the front door (the grungy, well-loved little pulp SF paperbacks are off in the corner). What can I say, I like to make a nice first impression, haha.

  16. I have two shelves set side by side, and the top row of eight cubes, plus about four more on the second row, are reserved for favorite authors. I’m really trying to stop so much hoarding and just collect what fits on these two sets of shelves. But I’ve also got favorite genres/subject matter, so that’s what fills up the rest of those shelves right now. I separate by genre and then break it down further, but I try to keep all of an author’s work together. For example, paranormal/supernatural gets broken down into angels, vampires, etc. Space operas and the like are all shelved together, while retellings also get their own shelves. Contemporaries are broken into those that make me cry and those that are fluffy. Things get a little more difficult when an author writes across genres. I just had to bite the bullet and shelve Pivot Point and the sequel with my sci-fi’s and put the rest of Kasie West’s books with the fluffy contemporaries.

    Still, it bugs me. They should be together, lol. Which is why I’m contemplating reorganizing my books again myself. I’ve always wanted to color code them, but that would legit drive me insane after it was all said and done. Pretty but nerve-wracking. I used to organize alphabetically but that is just so BORING. I do like the idea of read versus unread, but then I’d have to drag all those from my “saved for Katie” shelves and work them back into the library and then my shelves would be double-stacked again and I just can’t do that. I probably just need to buy a couple more shelves, lol…

  17. I actually don’t own a bookshelf (due to lack of space and books), but here’s a suggestion: why don’t you have 1-2 shelves with all your series, organized alphabetically, or by genre or whatever. Keep your arc shelf the same because it’s useful to have it organized by the month each book is being released. For all your standalone books, organize them by colour! You could even go further by dividing it into read and unread if you want. Hope that helps!

  18. I think I may have mentioned it previously, but I currently have my shelves organized by genre, then alphabetical by authors last name! I quite like this method because, as you said, it makes it easier for me to find the read I’m in the mood for when I’m looking. However, I’ve been debating returning to the rainbow shelf because I loved the way it looks; I may just do it for my contemporaries!

    Also, my ARCs and library books are all in separate shelves. I like to keep it that one so I have an area for books that have a “deadline”, and can prioritize them as I need to. My ARCs are in pub date order, and library books are in order of due date.

    I think it would be fun to do different sorts of arrangements on your shelves! I like the idea of you doing a read/unread. Maybe you can further organize within that system? (I’m still willing to help out, by the way. I love organizing shelves!)

  19. I keep my (relatively few!) arcs separate as well, just so I’m forced to look at them and hopefully read them in a timely manner! I also have a small area in my bedroom for library books. Harry Potter gets two shelves all to itself (lots of editions), but otherwise, I love organizing my books by genre! It’s pleasing to me aesthetically and it helps me a lot because I’m a mood reader. I don’t worry too much about subgenre but I do have fairy tale retellings near my fantasy, sci fi near paranormal, etc. I mix read and unread books together, although I’ll pull some unread books I really want to read soon out on my floating wall shelf. Because I have one shelf in my living room and one in my guest room, I keep more of my favorites out for display in the living room. So, I have YA contemp on both shelves for example, but the YA contemps I really loved are in the living room whereas the ones I liked/haven’t read yet are in the other room. It’s not as organized or perfect as some people’s systems but it really works for me. Plus I could never split up a series for a color shelf! And for some reason alphabetical doesn’t appeal to me either. Can’t wait to see what system you come up with!

  20. I didn’t read any of the other comments so I’m sorry if this has been said! I love the idea of rainbow shelves so much. What I would personally do to keep things together is just only do it with standalones instead of series. That way, your series can go in a separate location (maybe just at the bottom of that shelf or on another one) and take all of your standalone YA, for example, and make one bookshelf unit all rainbowed. Otherwise, I would keep the “age target” books separate. I guess this is more my dream shelving situation! LOL

  21. Kathleen P says:

    I love some of these ideas! My books are currently all grouped together in alphabetical order by author’s last name. I do have my complete sets separated, though. I love the rainbow idea too, but I have the same concerns as you. I’m OCD with my books and have to have them in alphabetical order. I’ve been debating on organizing them by genre. My reservation with that option is, how many genres should I make and what if a book falls into two or more. :/ Anyway I can’t wait to see what you choose!

  22. When I was a kid I organized my bookshelf by publisher. I find this really amusing now. I liked the little publisher symbols on the spines to all line up in a row. Looking back it seems as if that was a sign that I would become a book blogger. So, you know, there’s always that option. 🙂

  23. I am looking for a better system right now too. My shelves are pretty ad hoc and in need of organization. I tried organizing it in rainbow color and it was pretty cool until j realized I couldn’t find anything.

  24. Mine are organized by read/unread and are, for the most part, (unintentionally) organized by height; due to current lack of space, I have them double-stacked so I usually put read in behind and unread at the front. After reading this post I may steal your friend’s idea and alphabetize them!

    I love the idea of color-coded shelves, but, like you, the idea of not having some kind of order stresses me out! I would suggest maybe sorting them by genre and alphabetizing – it would just be a little change from what you have currently but would be enough to feel like a whole new system!

  25. I like the visual aesthetic of arranging them by format. I have two bookcases, one for read books and one for my TBR.

    My two favourite series take up the top shelf on my read bookcase (Harry Potter and The Hollows series by Kim Harrison). Then I have shelves for mass market, shelves for trade paperback, and then hardcover near the bottom. I always buy series in the same format so this works for me. And if I need more than one shelf for a format, I have no problem letting it bleed onto the shelf below because visually it’ll still flow.

    My TBR shelf is much the same, except on a tinier scale and I’m less OCD about it.

    I find this the easiest to manage but also the best to look at, since I also can’t do the rainbow idea without cringing that my series wouldn’t be together.

  26. I have two bookcases, one for read and one for unread. Then I’m quite boring and just organise my books alphabetically by author surname then title (or series order if a book’s part of a series). I like it because I can find specific books so much easier. I do like the look of rainbow shelves but, like you, all I can think is how the hell would I find anything… one day when I have loads of spare time I’d like to organise them all by colour temporarily just to get the picture.

    Lauren @ My Expanding Bookshelf

  27. I love a good shelf organizing conversation. I organize my books similarly. I have an adult shelf that is organized by size, so mass market paperbacks on top and hardcovers on the bottom, a YA shelf organized by genre, and an ARC shelf organized by release date. I like the way that the rainbow shelves look but I would never be able to find anything.

    I think after BEA I may do a whole reorganization and purge. I’m considering reogranizing my adult shelf by genre too. I have too many mismatched series and it’s really annoying that all my Wicked Years books aren’t shelved together, for example. But I like the way it looks aesthetically to have them organized by size. I see the value in alphabetical order by author but for some reason that is always confusing for me. Maybe because my first thought it title.

    I don’t know. Sometimes it’s fun to just play around with it. Great post!

  28. Right now I have three bookshelves. The most recent change I made was keeping my TBR books separate from my read books, (2 large bookcases of read, and one small bookcase of unread) I loved that I separated my TBR books because than I have them all together and it’s so satisfying when I don’t finally read it and it goes on my read shelf! I can’t imagine mixing TBR and read books anymore. You are right that it has you being more conscious of reading your own books and also seeing what you are still excited to read. I separate my books by genre but keep authors together. I have two Read cases, one is YA to children’s and the other is adult books and separated further into categories/genre (classics, historical fiction, romance, chick lit/women’s fiction, nonfiction, horror) it’s not all perfect though I kind of focus on each shelf one by one and what books I want to be displayed together but it’s hard when I have a little amount of certain genres! I want to figure out a better way but I think I’ll always like keeping them by genre or categories.

  29. My main shelves are all YA and organized by author’s last name and then publication date. I also have a separate bookcase for my middle grade, classics, and authors who have a lot of books (Rick Riordan and Heather Vogel Frederick mainly, although Sarah J. Maas might need to move to that bookcase soon…). I like being able to find everything quickly, and I like my series and genre-crossing authors to be together.

  30. Patty @ Patty's Book Corner says:

    I have three-ish shelves. I say ish because I keep my unread books in the drawer in the base of my bed so they’re within easy reach. That being said, I also have books in there I have read, but need to re-read because they’re part of a series where I need to read the latest book. My other shelves are actual shelves. My adult fiction goes in one and my YA goes in the other. My shelves are cube things so for my YA I organise by genre and however they fit in the cube haha. I just find this the easiest way because the cubes are such an awkward size, so everything is double stacked in front of other books. At least with them being in genres, I know where a book should be haha.

  31. I organize my books by height(but not in ascending or descending order.) Although I’m probably going to try by genre soon, as I’m getting tired of seeing by books organized by height. Also I need to make room on my to-small shelf, because my library is having a huge book sale soon, and I’ll probably come home with 20+ books….
    Honestly, if your looking for a very aesthetic design, organizing by color is the best, except for the fact that all the series are out of order.

  32. Ooh, fun! I have two bookshelves: one for fiction with a small shelf for plays and poetry (mingled by last name) and the other for fiction series (for which I own more than one book) and nonfiction, split into actual nonfiction and, like, “coffee table books.” Everything is by author’s last name, but I flip the book upside down if I haven’t read my copy and rightside up if I have.


  1. […] Jamie from The Perpetual Page Turned updates us on her Bookshelf Tidying Project. […]