Saturday, January 2, 2016

Don't Buy books

I read a lot of books. I have a bookshelf full of books that I don't read (maybe once in a blue moon). Usually after buying a book I will read it and then it will sit on the shelf forever. In my effort to minimalize I've come across a few tips on how to deal with the books in my life.

1) I am part of a huge book lending club where I pay a membership fee and in return I get access to a giant store of millions of books. Although I am not allowed to keep these books forever, I may take them into my possession for a short period of time until I am done with them, and then I give them back so others can enjoy them as well. I actually had forgotten that I was already part of this club and was paying the fee for quite some time w/o use. Its possible that you might be paying this fee as well and not reaping the benefits.

If you haven't guessed. I'm referring to the library. If you live in California you are paying for it via your taxes and thus you can apply for a library card which gives you free access to books. You don't actually get a choice whether to pay the library or not since its taken from your taxes. It might be a good idea to take advantage of it.

I've been pleasantly surprised with how many brand new popular books the library has since I had a previous bias that all the books were old and out of date.

Also a specific tip for those interested in Technical books. Once you register for a library card you get proxy access to the website which then has free access to Safari Books online which has pretty much any technical book you can think of. The only caveat is that you have to read it online.

To get to Safari Books online first log into your account on (SF Public library)

Then navigate to eLibrary > eBooks. Click on Computing and IT Books (Safari Techbooks Online)

There's already 16 books published for 2016 (as of January 2, 2016). Yay!

Now although I can still buy books from and read them on my kindle (which I still might do from time to time), I've found that since there are so many options available via the library (my first choice since everything is free), I usually don't have to. Knowing that I can pick up most of the books on my bookshelf from the library whenever I please, I can start donating them and save some room and clutter which I plan to do more of in 2016.