53 thoughts on “The Office: Now Spotless

  1. Might I suggest getting some signed and donating to Pat Rothfuss’ Worldbuilders for next year? Also, totally jealous that you guys are doing True Dungeon. I hope there’s a video of you Barding it up.

  2. Thoughts:

    1. Are you (or, more likely, Krissy) ever tempted to email the various publishers and say, “Please stop sending me ARCs!”

    2. I know a guy named Patrick Rothfuss who has a charity where he gives away ARCs and such. Maybe you know him? ;)

    3. I’ve been asking my wife for a desk–not an office, just a desk where I can work–since we bought our current home. No luck. Meanwhile your wife cleans yours while you’re away? Grump.

    4. I love how the cat follows you to the feeding area at the end. I can hear what he’s thinking. “He’s standing near the food bowls. Maybe he’ll feed me.”

  3. So, what’s the half-life before your office once again approaches status as a Library of Congress superfund site? :)

  4. This may have been asked before but… How do you keep the cats from sharpening their nails on your books? Being in the bookcase would only hold them steady for my herd.

  5. Hey, there’s a really beautiful office under there! I’m coveting that corner bookcase like a very covetous thing.

  6. Books! Happy Books! Wonderous Books! Man, Krissy is a Goddess for cleaning that all up. My husband looks at my growing piles of books and reminds me there is intervention for my particular hoarding problem.
    And that corner book case is so full of the awesome. There’s a space in my house that could so use one of those.

  7. I wish I had the problem of cool books just showing up at my door unbidden. I have to buy all my books. Ergo, my library is somewhat smaller. Feel free to forward any you don’t want on to me…

    Incidentally, I’m impressed with that part of your shelf with the two Hugos. Someday I need to get me one of those.

  8. You ever think of donating the books to your local library so they could start the John Scalzi Science Fiction and Fantasy Wing? It looks like a good start for a collection…

  9. I don’t even know what I would do if I were being sent piles and piles of free books all the time. I really would have to refuse the packages or tell the publishers to stop it, not least because I don’t have a Sterling Wife of Amazingness.

    Lost in Thought @ 9:48: Three options:
    1. Squirt gun. I figure the bit of water does less damage than the cat, and after a while it becomes unnecessary. This is my favored tactic.
    2. Doors on the lower shelves. Annoying, but this is the most sure-fire option.
    3. Cayenne powder or bitter apple. Cayenne works better, but you may have other reasons for not wanting that loose in your house (children, allergies).

    Also, having multiple good scratching posts impregnated with catnip helps. Mine have always liked to have more than one designated scratching area.

    Also also, I find mine usually goes after the books solely as a means of getting my attention. This is why the squirt gun is effective. If he’s being really recalcitrant, I lock him in the bathroom for 20 minutes.

  10. What happens to the ARCs? Will your library accept them and do they then shelve them? On the one hand, I don’t really want libraries to have ARCs of my books instead of the finished versions, on the other hand, I hate the idea of pulping a book, even if it is riddled with typos. Maybe they can go into the FOL resale shop and are treasured by someone who pays a buck apiece for them.

  11. I think it would be nice if you let us know when your Friends of the Library sales are; the pickings must be unusually good for us SF/F fans! If only I wasn’t a couple of states away. Your localish readers would appreciate it, though. And I bet the library would probably get a higher sell-through. Win-win!

  12. To run off on a short tangent, I am TOTALLY STEALING the phrase “Library of Congress Superfund site” as the official name of my small, 1-bedroom apartment. In which I have stored some 4k to 5k books.

  13. When I moved into my current house, one bedroom was designated as ‘The Library’. More shelves have been added, and there is just enough room now for one person to move around the shelves to find a book. I have boxes of books in another room. These are ones that I am pretty sure I want to get rid of (i.e. give away). I have a nice decorative media cabinet in the living room, with shelves on either side, and yes, there are books on them. Also on a not quite finished set of shelves in my ‘office’, a small bookcase in my bedroom, and in stacks on my dining room table. And yet, I keep buying them. When I am old (not quite there yet!) and retire, I may have time to catch up on my reading.

  14. That is NICE. If I were you, I would try to come up with some system/algorithm for the new books coming in that gets dealt with either daily or weekly so it can STAY nice in there! Maybe an instant sorting of “Take to Library” “Maybe?” “Yes–Keep!” on shelving somewhere other than the office. Then a second going through of the “Maybe” pile the next week. And you might want to have a one in/one out policy because it looks to me that you have plenty in the office so it’s just a matter of an area of shelves where books get read, then moved out and the “Yes” pile comes in to take their place.

    Just an idea. Or you could keep trashing it and letting her do this every once in a while. Whatever floats your boat.

    Looks great, though! Thanks for sharing.

  15. Be careful piling books on the table. We broke a table that way, it collapsed in the middle of the night, with a noise that sounded like an earthquake, avalanching books and papers all over the room.

  16. Krissy cooks you churro waffles after a busy day at her job. Krissy cleans your office while you’re whiling your time away at a convention, then in L.A. WHAT HAVE YOU DONE FOR KRISSY LATELY? (*kof* Sorry, didn’t mean to shout there. You’re a very, very lucky guy. But then, you know that already.)

  17. I am slightly confused. Why do you keep getting sent books? Is it due to your duties as president of SFWA, or is it because of some property inherent to being a Famous Writer ?

  18. Bravo for Chrissy!
    It often is easier cleaning up after someone if they aren’t around to get in your way… ;)

    Looking at all the books in boxes in the downstairs bookroom, Billy would be your friend (if I’m not allowed to mention anything from the famous Swedish furniture store, just mallet this please).
    I’ve got 7 of them at home, 5 in my bedroom and 2 in the guestroom. With one or two extra shelves added (depending on the amount of paperback/pocketbooks versus taller hardcovers that you need to shelve), they are the most efficient way to store lots of books I’ve found, that leaves them accessible and isn’t too costly. They store way more than the other four bookcases which I already had (and still have in my living room) before I found these, and the two I inherited from my grandparents. They aren’t nearly as stylish as the bookcases you’ve got, but if you’ve got simple tastes (like me), or for mass storage in a book basement or wherever they’re fine. You can even get glass doors for them, to save on all the dusting books need if you’ve got someone with asthma or a dust-allergy in the family; though that does make them a lot more costly.

  19. I truly, truly pity your Wife. She’s done this before for you and it’s merely a matter of time before chaos once again rules the Scalzi bolt hole/office. Krissy, my sympathies.

  20. To read all those books would be a full time job. How much do you actually get to and which one’s do you even know you want to read. Also, have you ever considered making a fortress of solitude out of all those books.

  21. I work in a public library. We do not put ARCs in our collections or in the booksales, since they are not the finished product and the publishers do not want them sold. We try our best to stay on the good side of publishers. (And authors. Hi Scalzi! I fed you pumpkin pie at Capclave!)

  22. My cats would love to have that much space! Also, I’m more than happy to give those lovely books a happy home, just forward them here to me in Athens, GA… :-)

  23. I note that Krissy uses the “Now you HAVE to deal with these books” method of cleaning. At least if you want your dining room table back….

  24. Wait. You have a WHITE fuzzy chair in a household with three cats? Longhaired cats, too. Why is it not permanently cat-colored and splotched with cat barf stains? This does not compute…. Particularly to someone who purchased her couch to match the color of her cat.

  25. Well then it’s settled. You must give us all the books in your house. (I’m seriously coveting that Chadbourn on the counter.)

    Also: Kudos to “Amazingwife” for making such a lovely home.

  26. Yes, the wine rack needs to be bigger — for your adorable and long-suffering wife.
    I can’t wait until I have a whole bookcase for my (translated) books. At the moment, just two feet of shelves…but growing. Kudos to the entire bookcase with room for more.
    I must agree with the fan who said that your wife deserves a spa day. Probably an entire spa weekend.

  27. Holy frijoles, Batman. Are all those boxes and piles of books required reading, or things you would only like to read at some point? You may have to do some serious triage before Athena comes home from school one day and finds nothing but a massive imploded pile of books where the family homestead once was, and her father buried under the book talus. Or is this already post culling?

    Monica has it right. Regrettably, most libraries cannot add ARCs to the collection, for all of the stated reasons.

  28. Man I wish I’d grown up in your house. I’d never have run out of books to read! New books all the time for free!

  29. Don’t you wonder what Lopsided cat was doing on the computer? Sending emails, planning world domination, surfing I can haz cheezburger.

  30. Damn. Now I feel I must clean MY office. I moved here in October, where I have a BIG,m BRIGHT, BEAUTIFUL office for the first time ever. It also has a HUGE closet. A closet half the size of my previous office!… And ever since I moved in here 3+ months ago, every single thing that enters this room that I don’t immediately know what to do with or want to deal with… gets tossed into that closet–which has by now reached that “don’t go in there alone, man!” stage.

    There are also Really Important Things somewhere in that closet, like my mortgage papers (dumped there in early October), financial records, warranties, book notes, etc.

    So all this week, I keep waking up and saying, “Today I will clean out that closet and finshing organizing my new office.” And every day, I find something else to do, instead.

    But now… DARN YOU, Mrs. Scalzi!–I fell I can no longer put it off.

  31. The Science Fiction Outreach Project would be delighted to take SF / F books that don’t go to the library. You know how to reach me. :-)

  32. Wow. Just wow. While I do have a pretty good stockpile of my own books, both of the “read” and “unread” variety, I am in awe of your collection.

  33. I think YOU, Mr. Scalzi, need to turn on some lights. That house was DARK! Als, I was waiting for the ineviable fall down the stairs and mad rush of cats who prey on weak, crippled authors.

    Send me some books!! I need a reason for more bookcases!

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