I hate the fact that I can't lend ebooks to my friends. I snort when I see electronic books priced higher than a pristine paper copy. I like the fact that people will understand something of me from the books on my shelves and can pick something interesting out, inspiring the sharing of some interest or passion. But this is going to change and I've run out of shelf space.
So I'm starting at the easy end. Old techy books have no value whatsoever. The Good Pub Guide 1995 is probably not going to recommend the best real ale experience in 2012. Drucker's views on management practice are from a world I can't even remember. I'm already pretty nifty with Excel 2007 and I haven't touched Vi for a decade. This pile is now in the green bin - and I reckon I can free up another 20 feet of shelf without getting too stressed about it.
Then I'll get to fiction. And books about cricket, their pages spilling the fug of leather and beer, linseed and tweed. Books I recall as much for the sunny day in the park when I propped them up against a folded blanket as I do for the words they contained. Books with a 14-year old's scrawls of panicked revision in the margin. Books that people returned to me many times over, with a grin or a sadness or a hysterical recollection or a recital. Spines that hold cracks I remember cursing over.
I may have to pause at that point. I'm not sure I'm ready.