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Book collecting as a Hobby



The collecting of any object is something that millions of people do in all parts of the world. For many, it is a hobby, for others a love, a passion or even an obsession. For true collectors many times there are no limits to do what is necessary to get what they want. Some of them are book collectors.

Exquisite, but also jealous, fetishists, lovers of the weird, of the cult piece. That's the way collectors of books are. By tradition, the Spanish market is smaller than the British, French or Italian, and is very limited to national publications, increasingly scarce, as many end up in libraries of public bodies.

Generally, book collectors are very studious people, who like to read and meditate on one or several types of books. However, it is not necessary to be a good reader to be a book collector. Next, we will know a little more about this hobby, and how we can be a book collector.

What is Book Collecting?

The collection of books includes searching, locating, acquiring, organizing, cataloging, exhibiting, storing and publishing any book that is of interest to an individual collector. The love for books is called bibliophilia, and the one who likes to read, admire and collect books is called a bibliophile. Bibliophilia is also a call sometimes bibliomania, but it should not be confused with the obsessive-compulsive disorder that receives this name and that is characterized by the accumulation of books.

It does not matter if you are a compulsive collector or an amateur since a personal library must be well structured and have a purpose. According to The Art of Manliness and Nate Pedersen, who is a librarian, historian, and writer; we mentioned some ways to do it:

Types of Book Collections

Although there are many ways to build a collection, here are some true and proven ways:

Collection by author

In this collection, it is constructed from particular authors. Normally, this means buying all the first editions of an author's work, but a complete vision includes reprints, foreign translations, special editions, and magazine appearances.

Building an author's collection is a costly option, especially if you want to do it with prominent authors. However, you can build a low-cost collection of a little-known author who is on the rise or an author who has gone out of style. There is also the option of acquiring books that have been illustrated inside by other artists; those editions are usually much cheaper.

List collection

In this collection, you can start with a simple and well-established list.
An example could be to create a section to place winning books of the Nobel Prize for Literature, so to speak, then go out and buy all the books that appear on that list.

If we talk about the Second World War, we can find enough books that could be part of your list collection. Books that talk about Hitler, The Holocaust, Tactics used, etc.

As in the collection by author, it would be best to concentrate on the first editions, but you can include reprints or classic editions.

The topical collection

This type of collection is widely used by collectors, as it is about collecting books that can be called informative.
We do not refer to a specific science in itself, but rather they are books that deal with topics such as the Olympics, the growth of plants in certain regions, world records, or any other type of past events, of which one does not stop talking or lose interest The potential list of topics is endless.

Aesthetic collection

This collection, as its name says, has to do with the binding of the book, the external part; its colors, etc. Building an aesthetic collection is similar to building a small art collection.

Here you can include books of your favorite artists, music, art, etc. This type of specimens is often pasted in a singular and colorful way. This area of your library will look very cool.

Steps to consider: 

1. The condition matters

The best thing you can do is buy books that are in excellent physical condition, that their pastes are not worn or mistreated as their leaves have no folds or amendments. On the other hand, the suggestion is that always do what is within your budget, maybe you cannot buy the best version of an old copy but you can buy a decent one that is at a lower price.

The bookstores, either online or physical store, classify the pieces according to their current status. Normally, the rubric begins in Excellent and ends in Very Bad, referring to the conditions in which the book is found.
Of course, each library will have its concept of what is good and bad, perhaps leaving it to subjectivity, but at least it is a good reference of the state in which you will buy the book.

If the book you want is in very bad condition and is your only option, remember that there are places where books are restored, so you can have a copy worthy of your library.

Never forget that a book with its original pasta will always be better than a restored one. Here is just a matter of tastes and possibilities.

2. Where to get collection books:

Tracking books can also be considered a complicated task since you have to be very careful depending on the book you want to acquire. Pages like eBay can help you with the search. So the Internet can be the most useful tool.

You can get help by contacting distributors of rare books directly. They are easily found online through the Antique Booksellers Association of America.

On the other hand, there are garage and bazaar sales where you can hopefully find interesting books, and obviously, you can go directly to bookstores and book fairs, which are very common.

3. How to save money while collecting books:

If you do not want to run out of your savings, pay attention to these tips: Do not be greedy Mr. Burns Sell the books that are no longer relevant to your collection. As you find more enjoyable books for your collection, sell those that are of less interest. Internet sales can be a great help for this.

Whatever your collection, the love of reading should not end, even if you like digital books more; it is a way that you not only cultivate but acquire more knowledge, have fun and can even travel beyond the stars.


Related hobbies: Book restorationScrapbooking, Antiquing










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