Messy Shelves

I have a bit of a problem, and I’m not sure what it says about the rest of my life: I have an extremely messy bookcase. No matter how often I try and tidy it, it always seems to revert back to its original state.


As you can see here, everything is chucked around and in messy piles. This is mainly due to YALC, where I had to uproot everything to take to signings, and also for photographing book hauls and other posts. It makes me cringe to look at it! No matter how hard I try, it’s still a state.


Here is the reality: I cringe every time someone breaks the spine of a book, but I treat my books no better. There are many types of book cruelty, and I’ve cried out many a time because of fallen books from my shelves. Please, just take me to book jail now… I don’t think there’s any hope for me!

Every now and again, I have a very good tidy up and weed the books I don’t want anymore from my shelves, and pretty up the ones I do want to keep. How long does it stay pretty? A week, maximum. It frustrates me to no end, but I can’t seem to stop.


So what am I going to do to try and stop this dreadful behaviour?

  • I’m going to put each book I take out of my shelf back on as soon as I’ve finished with. No more books hanging about with no purpose!
  • I’ll be having a very big clean out this autumn of all the books I absolutely do not need to keep, and organising things properly, so they can easily be taken out of their slot and put back in without disturbing the other books.
  • The hardest one: I will stop buying multiple copies of books, and stop buying books I absolutely know I will not read. I love buying books, but there’s always a downside!

Are your shelves messy like mine, or do they have grace and finesse? Let me know!

You Might Also Like


  • Reply
    Hazel @ Stay Bookish
    3 September, 2014 at 6:50 am

    Lucy, my shelves are just as messy! I have four separate shelves in my room and they are beyond chaotic. My mom goes ballistic every time she sees them. In my defense, like you, I keep pulling out books to photograph them. Also, I sometimes unearth them when I get a book I’m going to read and it’s at the bottom pile.

    I think I need to join you on that mission to stop this disorganisation when it comes to to books! (Btw, I think your shelves still look pretty even though they’re not perfectly arranged!) Great post!

  • Reply
    Nina @ Death, Books and Tea
    3 September, 2014 at 7:01 am

    I totally get where you’re coming from! Last year I made my (small) bookshelf of books I love and must keep all nice and colour coded, but as that collection grows they’ve become double stacked and very messy. And my toread pile is just four minitowers that are stacked in such a way that they comply to the laws of physics to not fall over.i should be getting a bigger shelf soon though 🙂 Have fun on the reorganization scheme!

  • Reply
    Sandra @ Sandra's World of Books
    3 September, 2014 at 7:56 am

    I have to agree, your shelves are kind of messy. I must admit, mine are messy too, not specifically the books, but it’s just that I dump everything in my shelves too, like empty drinking cups and other stuff like my hair brush or make up. Really weird habit.

    I don’t know, I never really buy books that I won’t read, thank god. I don’t even have money for that, but I can understand that it’s kind of annoying. I hope you can keep to your promise and make your shelves look less messy in the end!
    Sandra @ Sandra’s World of Books recently posted…Knife Edge – Malorie BlackmanMy Profile

  • Reply
    3 September, 2014 at 6:27 pm

    Yes, they are rather messy, but they say that intelligent people have a knack for being messy!
    I wouldn’t say I’m a perfectionist, but if there’s one place where I like things to be perfect – it’s my bookshelves. About 18 months ago, before I really expanded my reading, my bookshelves where a complete mess and one day I just decided to change them completely, and ever since I’ve been unable to cope with anything being out of order at all.
    Have fun reorganizing!
    Holly recently posted…August Wrap-UpMy Profile

  • Reply
    3 September, 2014 at 8:07 pm

    My shelves aren’t super messy…but as soon as I run out of room on them I just start shoving books where ever they will fit. So that pretty much ruins any time I try and categorize my shelves! But hey, I know where everything is, so that counts for something…right?
    CaitlinMarieReads recently posted…WWW WednesdayMy Profile

  • Reply
    Jesse Owen
    4 September, 2014 at 1:33 pm

    My shelves are currently quite tidy… but then that’s probably because I’ve only recently got a new bookcase so it’s looking a lot tidier than it was. But that goes out the window once they’re full and then they go wherever they fit.

    As for books I haven’t yet read – well, they’re in piles around the floor and on top of a chest of drawers hehe 🙂
    Jesse Owen recently posted…Top Ten Book Characters That Would Be Sitting At My Lunch Table (Top Ten Tuesday)My Profile

  • Reply
    6 September, 2014 at 8:26 pm

    If I HAD shelves…they would be messier than that, let me assure you! For now, all of my books are stacked haphazardly in crates (because I’m always digging through said crates to pick out a book to read). Before I had crates, books were “stacked” into towers on the floor, shoved in dresser drawers, and sprawled across night stands. I refuse to say i have too many books, so I will just settle with saying I’m a very disorganized person.
    Jackie recently posted…Feature & Follow: On WritingMy Profile

  • Reply
    6 September, 2014 at 10:11 pm

    No No No No NO you can’t throw away books! Do a giveaway, give them to charity, send them to me?! ANYTHING BUT!

  • Reply
    10 September, 2014 at 9:47 am

    My whole collection is a mess. I have no room on my shelves, so I have piles scattered around the room and I even started with piles in my boyfriends apartment.. I can’t wait to buy a house together with him, so I can buy more bookshelves :p
    Mel@thedailyprophecy recently posted…Thirteen days of Ash & Fire blog tour.My Profile

  • Reply
    Weekly Highlights; The Blogoversary Edition | A Daydreamer's Thoughts
    21 September, 2014 at 9:00 am

    […] Lucy has admitted to having messy shelves! To have a look at them and to help her or even to share your own messy shelves, click here. […]

  • Leave a Reply

    CommentLuv badge

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.