It’s not a task I could squeeze into my busy editor/mum schedule more than once in a blue moon, but I really believe it can be a therapeutic activity from which you’ll emerge with that sense of satisfaction and serenity that can be so restorative in our high-tech, high-speed world.
Over the years my bookcases have been arranged in a variety of ways: by author surname, in rough chronological order, by author first name, and entirely randomly. These different systems are nothing more than an excuse to indulge in rearranging.
For those of us who love books, it can be a lovely opportunity to remind ourselves what beauties are lurking, semi-forgotten, on the shelves. A chance to handle (yes, handle; I refuse to believe I’m the only one who loves the feel and smell of books, especially old books!) volumes that we might otherwise leave untouched from one year to the next. And, for me, a chance to reconnect with memories. Many of my books carry specific memories: books associated with school, sixth form, university, holidays, projects, books that have informed my own writing … the list goes on.
But more than all this, rearranging your bookcase could be an inspiration. Sometimes our ideas struggle to be heard over the din of life. If you can make some quiet time, you might just catch that creative whisper once more.
So put down your phones, tablets and (certainly for the purpose of this particular exercise) e-readers, ignore the doorbell and start rearranging!
Proprietor of editorial business Splendid Stories. Experienced, professional editor offering creative guidance, developmental editing/critiquing, copy-editing, and proofreading. Follow @SplendidStories on Twitter. See 'What I do' for more information.