Monday, February 27, 2017

Five Fav Shelfies

by Joanne Rock
My actual shelves

I’ve been on the road and away from my bookshelves lately. I miss them! As a book lover, I find it fun and inspiring to work while surrounded by stories I love. Plus, when I want to promote my own books or run a contest, it’s tricky to manage when I’m not within arm’s reach of my personal archives to take photos and post online.

I asked one of my sons back home to take some photos of my books for me, and in describing to him what I wanted, I got thinking about my five favorite shelfies—bookshelf shots that are art for art’s sake. I follow lots of them with the bookstagram hashtag on Instagram or shelfie tag on Tumblr. I know… some people follow cute animal pics. I like following books.

Anyhow, here are some of my favorite kinds of book pics:

PopSugar - see full article here
Rainbow- I think I love this motif because I’d never copy it in real life. Who could possibly USE a bookshelf organized by color, after all? I tend to group books by theme on my shelves. Medieval history in one place. Decorating in another. Romance goes together. Literary fiction has a place. But if you start grouping by color? I’d never find what I needed! However, it’s so pretty to look at and makes you focus on the physical joy of a book as opposed to the content. And sometimes, that’s really fun.

Teacups and Flowers- Less a shelfie than a book montage, the photograph of a beloved cover with coordinating teacup or flowers has timeless appeal! A colorful Harry Potter cover next to an equally jazzy bouquet or a quirky mug. A classic Jane Austen novel beside a teacup on white linen. It makes me want to run to the library and start reading.

White – Like the rainbow, I could never go for a color theme, but I’ve seen shelves where people wrap their books in protective papers so they all match. All white paper wraps are insanely pretty! I like the clean look of lovely white rooms that feel like a breath of fresh air. And to give the white some texture and depth with one book spine after another is so beautiful.

Vintage... so pretty!
Vintage- The history lover in me could stare at vintage book bindings for days. Gold leaf. Worn leather. A hint of must. It makes me wonder who else has held the same books as me, and how many other minds have wrestled with the ideas in those tombs. There’s a beautiful sense of connection to share a book, or maybe to find an insightful marginal note scratched eons ago in a margin. It’s what makes estate sale shopping so rewarding.

Fairy lights- My fanciful romantic assures me every bookshelf in the world is just a little bit better with fairy lights. I would fret that too much heat would hurt my precious titles, so LEDs are a must with a little bit of distance from the books themselves. But I think seeing the tiny twinkling lights around a bookshelf reminds me of the transporting magic of a story. One of my favorite quotes is from the storyteller Clarissa Pinkola Estes who talks about the power of story this way, “Whenever a tale is told, it becomes night. No matter where the dwelling, no matter the time, no matter the season, the telling of tales causes a starry sky and a white moon to creep from the eaves.” Fairy lights help give that feeling, like the stars are coming out as night falls and a story is about to begin...

Win my April release!
What about you? Have you ever followed the art of book photos? How do you like to see a shelf arranged? Share with me this week on the blog and I’ll give one random commenter a copy of a red-spine book for your red themed book shelf—an advance copy my upcoming Harlequin Desire, The Magnate’s Mail-Order Bride. In the meantime, please be on the lookout for the next book in my Harlequin Superromance series, "Heartache, TN," Wishes at First Light, available March 1. 


Laney4 said...

I have not followed the art of book photos intentionally; however, I HAVE enjoyed looking at all those spiral staircases filled to the brim with books (and have wondered how a person would be able to get a single book out without creating an avalanche). Having volunteered in libraries most of my life, I prefer books in alphabetical order; however, when I began blogging with authors in 2009, I found it made more sense to file my books by first names rather than surnames, as I thought of the authors by their first names instead. (Call me crazy.)

My keeper books are kept in alphabetical order by author (and by publishing date within that order). My TBR pile is in alphabetical order only. Since I have hundreds of books and no shelf space, they are "filed" inside paper ream boxes in order - one layer only so I can see the author names.

Anonymous said...

I have two book cases . One is built into my computer desk. It has two large section's and I have it set so there is one row with books laying on top. The bottom section also has books on top . I have never seen a computer desk made like mine. I eventually got a single one and it too is packed. I don't really have an order except the older one's are the top shelf of the computer desk. I have my old Lassie and the Munster's books together in the new shelf. I have a box filled with Desires, a bag filled with just Sherri Whitefeather's that I'm keeping. I have books stacked at the end of the couch. You could say I have books all over! When I go to a shop that sells books I look for the desires and intrigues. If I don't see a red binding or a purple binding I keep looking! Pam Hamblin

Tina Carlson said...

I put my books in the order I receive them,but I do like the first one,
I have 3 books case of books,
Thank you for the chance
Tina Larson Carlson

Connie said...

I have books still packed from a recent move but WHEN I do display them, I may do a color theme but this retired librarian will have to arrange the authors last names alphabetically. Sorry, I just can't help it!
I also like the teacup, flowers and book montage idea.

jnalpath said...

I have several bookcases overflowing with books! I love to add mementos and pictures on the shelves with the books.

Carla said...

I don't think I've followed this art on purpose, but I do love books so having them as an art makes sense. My paper books are lined up in the order they were published. My ebooks are according to when I downloades them.

Charlene Whitehouse said...

In order by Author name. But since I moved to a new house and have not had the chance to arrange them, they are a mixed up

Donna E said...

My books are not in any order at the moment. And in fact, I still have packed books from our move 4 yrs ago.
I like seeing the pic of the ways books are arranged, but don't know how I really want mine. Probably alphabetical by author, subset series in order.

Donamae Kutska said...

Mine are in series just authors grouped with their books.

dstoutholcomb said...

I need some bookshelves.

I post pictures of bookshelves I love on pinterest.


Anonymous said...

I love the sorted by color Beth Reimer

jcp said...

by author or theme

alysap at yahoo dot com

Joanne Rock said...

I'm going to redo a couple of shelves when I go home this summer and see what I think... just for fun. It will ensure I dust the books, too :-).

Charlene Whitehouse, I have an ARC for you! Thank you so much for visiting the blog. All you need to do is email me at with an address and I'll ship the book out to you ASAP!

Charlene Whitehouse said...

Thank you very much. How exciting.

Charlene Whitehouse said...

Thank you very much. How exciting.