I’ve been gaming for over thirty years. In that time, I’ve purchased thousands of books, magazines, games and supplements. Some are much beloved. Others less so. Some I don’t even remember buying.
Now, I’m quite lucky. We live in a decent-sized house and I’ve got space at Raging Swan’s Global HQ to have most of my gaming collection out on the shelves ready for immediate use. However, even given that there were still scores of books pushed into cupboards, drawers or even boxed up in the attic.
A few months ago, I culled my collection. I’d recently read a book on minimalism and decided to give it a whirl.
I went through my gaming collection and got rid of all the “low-hanging fruit.” In other words, I pulled out everything I was virtually certain I’d never use again. While I’ve enjoyed building up my collection, I’m not sure why I’d keep stuff I’ll never use. What’s the point? (And I can always re-purchase anything I end up needing again).
In any event, I literally filled my car with unwanted gaming products and sold them to a local collector.
It was liberating.
Selling my unwanted gaming stuff had four main advantages:
- I had more space. Raging Swan’s Global HQ feels larger and more spacious. Bafflingly, once I’d organised the shelves to my liking—a herculean task—they’ve stayed tidy. This makes my wife happy.
- I’ve reorganised my remaining collection so that I can see what I actually have and I’m now much more likely to actually find a book I need to reference.
- I have over £500 I didn’t have before that I could throw on the bed and roll around in. If I want, I can ever rub it all over my body in a seductive fashion.
- I can actually see what I have in my collection, and I even rediscovered some forgotten gems I hadn’t seen or read in ages.
Now, of course, there are some books in my collection that you won’t even pry from my cold, death hands. They are my Preciouses. (And in case you are wondering, they include my 1st Edition AD&D Player’s Handbook and my 1st Edition AD&D Dungeon Master’s Guide along with practically anything with the Greyhawk logo.)
There are probably a lot of other books, however, in all likelihood I’ll never open again. For example, while I thoroughly enjoyed playing 3.5 D&D—and did so for the best part of a decade—I suspect I’ll never play it again (and even if I do, I doubt I’ll need all 50 or so supplements WoTC published as I’m currently on a bit of a core-only gaming trip).
So, I might be having another purge in the near future. And the best thing is, I’m quite looking forward to it.
What Do You Think?
Am I mad? Once you’ve acquired a gaming book do you ever let it go? Or are you a gaming minimalist? Let me know, in the comments below.