Every so often I will go through my bookshelf to see what books would be better served at the library or the Book Rack. I love my books but sometimes I realize I don't need as many.

I started with two large oak bookcases full (5th grade) and now I am down to one row. Yes, that's right. One row not including my journals or writing help books.

About 3/4 of that row is taken up by both the Harry Potter and Laura Ingalls Wilder collections that I refuse to get rid of. The others are a (tiny) mixture of Sarah Dessen, Laurie Halse Anderson, Ann Rinaldi and a few others.

As a writer, I should, according to popular belief, hoard books. Love them, adore them, do nothing short of build an altar for them.

And yet, it is very therapeutic to only have maybe 20 books. Especially since I can't take all my books to college. Plus, having less books makes me truly examine why I like certain book and why they are my favorites - always something I believe a writer should do.

So what else is on my bookshelf?

On the top, top are two pillows I made, a stuffed lamb animal from my grandmother's preschool days (when she taught, and my American Girl doll.

The next two rows are cards from friends and family, reminding me I'm loved.

Then comes a row of books.

Then comes my CDs, writing books and journals.

On the bottom floor are my portfolio or reference binders and some index cards.

Regardless, I don't think the bookshelf is the important part - it's the knowledge imparted by the books.

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