Please, sir, I want some more. part 1

No, I don’t want another bowl of gruel, I had enough of that for breakfast (well, it was cereal), and there will be more for dinner (okay, it will be kale soup). What I want some more of is book shelves.

DSC_0027Yes, that’s right, though I have had shelves installed in two areas of the house, some of them shown here in a somewhat fuzzy photo, I have at least a dozen boxes of books sitting in a storeroom, and stacks and piles of the things lounging elsewhere. They need a home, and by golly I’m going to give them one, or try to. In an hour or so the fellow who built the other shelves in the house will be here to give me an estimate for more in yet a third room.

Though there is a good deal of wall space, my Wife insists on keeping enough of it clear for a bed or sofa bed in case one is ever needed, since this could be a spare bedroom / guest room. At least that’s what it would need to be if anyone came to stay who could not negotiate stairs. For now we’ll have the new book shelves, a couple of club chairs, a foot stool and a side table, to go along with the drafting table, it’s light and stool and some art supply storage in one area. I’m planning on 15 feet of shelves, 9 feet tall. That may sound like a lot of shelves, but I expect it will only hold a portion of the books needing a home. Stay tuned.

About Richard Robinson

Enjoying life in Portland, OR
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14 Responses to Please, sir, I want some more. part 1

  1. That is so exciting! I am very happy for you. More shelves is always a good thing, in my opinion. Books need to breathe, not be trapped in boxes. Make sure you share more pix when all is said and done.

  2. Biill Crider says:

    Ah, new shelves. What a great thing! I wish I had some.

  3. Evan Lewis says:

    Just keep adding shelves a few a time, and before Wife knows it, she’ll be surrounded.

  4. New shelves! An excellent way to stimulate the economy! The more the better!

  5. Richard says:

    Well, yes, but the economy may need to be stimulated beyond my paltry budget. The carpenter said he’ll see if he can work it into our budget, which we thought would be more than enough.

  6. Richard, that’s as wholesome a bookshelf as I have seen in a long time. Zooming in I could make out many familiar authors and titles and then many more I haven’t heard of. I am particularly intrigued by the books on the extreme right titled Total War, The Fleet, Secret Agent, When the Death Bat Flies, Secret 6, Phantom Detective, Blond Adder, Spider…what kind of books are these? I also liked the figurines of penguins, what looks like a sphinx, two dogs (or bears) reading back to back, and the folding book or Bible stand. Many thanks for sharing this photograph and good luck with the carpentry.

    One of the good things about living in India is that there is no dearth of cheap and unorganised labour in any field. If I need a carpenter, all I do is call any one from a list of trusted names in my personal telephone book and he’ll drop by the same day and give me a reasonable estimate, which works out a lot cheaper than buying a readymade piece from a furniture store. His price includes material and labour. A customised bookshelf as the one you have pictured would cost under Rs.20,000 (less than $400) to make, good wood and formica included.

  7. Jeff Meyerson says:

    I’m with Bill and George here – you can never have too many bookshelves (or books, it goes without saying). Fortunately, at the moment we have adequate shelves for all our books but then we don’t have The Kelley (or Crider) Collection.

  8. cgramlich says:

    Hardly anything is more beautiful than the lovely sight of great books on book shelves. You have given us a nice Valentine’s gift! 🙂

  9. Cap'n Bob says:

    Sofa beds are the pits. It’s nice to have classy bookshelves like yours, but I can get by with brick-and-boards any day.

  10. Richard says:

    Prashant, you ask an interesting question,; I’ll try to answer it for you. The part of the photograph, and I’m sorry it’s not sharper, you refer to is the last unit on the wall that has science fiction – fantasy on it, as well as pulp fiction reprints. That top shelf has sf-f anthologies and collections. The specific books you ask about is a 6 book series of novels and stories of The Fleet, co-edited by David Drake. These are older books but they may be findable in used book stores here, or if you are lucky, there. To the left of those is another series of books based on a concept by Arthur C. Clarke, Venus Prime, each volume written by various authors. Sort of like the books in Larry Nivens’ Man-Kzin Wars books, different authors writing in Nivens’ “universe”.

    As for Secret Agent, When the Death Bat Flies, Secret 6, Phantom Detective, Blond Adder and The Spider, those are pulp reprints, that is stories and novellas originally published in pulp magazines from the 1920s through the 1940s. They are all published by either Black Dog Books, Altus Press or Haffner Press. You might try their websites for a lot more information about their books.

    The penguins are bean bags, intended for juggling. I don’t juggle, but they also can serve to hold up CDs (though those are all in a separate room now) or as decoration. I have three of them and another set that are puffins. I’ve had them for many years. The bookends are bears reclining and the book stand is hand carved, it was my mothers. She used it to display art books. I rarely use it as it requires books to be spine-crackingly wide open.

    The room pictured is all, except for some of the pulp reprints, paperbacks. The mystery fiction is on the other two walls, and the rest of the sf-f is on a part of another wall as well as the rest of the one pictured. There are more pictures of the room, also blurry, I’m sorry to say, in this old post: http://wp.me/sCGOo-library.

  11. Richard says:

    Charles, I need to take a newer set of pictures of this room than the ones I took back in my post: http://wp.me/sCGOo-library a couple years ago.

  12. Cap'n Bob says:

    Since I do juggle, I was interested in the penguins you mention. I didn’t see any, but I did see a pair of puffins. Juggling, by the way, is easier with heavy objects. I have a set of regulation juggling balls that are about the size of baseballs but much heavier and denser.

  13. Richard, thanks for your email and all the fascinating and nostalgic information about your books and bookshelves. I’d sure like to see pictures of your mystery fiction bookshelves.

  14. Richard says:

    Prashant, follow the link, they are there, at least the paperbacks. The hardcover mysteries are in another room.

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