books.jpgI know I’m a traitor to my fellow authors, but Warren and I have just purged the house of four big boxes of books and it feels great. This is what happens when you’re married 22 years and you’re both readers. The damn things multiply all over your house.

I had read on my own website calendar this morning that the College Women’s Club was taking donations for their annual book sale, and that was motivation enough. The used bookstore in town has gotten too picky, and won’t buy books on weekends, which is when the brute strength in our family is home to help. So this seemed like a perfect time.

Nothing was sacred. Okay, a few things were sacred. My own books, for example, and signed books from friends. But quality in itself wasn’t enough to keep a volume from the recycling bin. I got rid of William Shirer and Best American Essays and many volumes of short stories. I got rid of a duplicate of Garrison Keillor’s “Lake Wobegon Days.” I even pitched a copy of Edith Wharton’s “Custom of the Country.”

Warren raised his eyebrows at that. “Even Edith Wharton isn’t safe?” he said. Well, it was a duplicate and the print was really small, I explained.

When Warren got to the site of the putative book sale depository, the College Women told him they weren’t taking contributions, and I told him to tell the College Women that they’d put it on our calendar and they’d better take the damn books or they wouldn’t get any more free calendar listings on Baristanet. That’s what it takes to get rid of books these days. Being a small-town media tyrant.

It’s a heartless, heartless world out there.

Buy my book anyway.