Ever since I accidentally hung out my book blogger shingle, I’ve tried to be honest. I haven’t got the faintest idea why people write nonfiction books, and I certainly can’t understand why they read them. It’s not that I don’t think they have their uses. The more non the fiction is, the fatter the books tend to be. I particularly like physics books. They’re perfect for boosting up your monitor to the right height. Engineering books make useful bookshelves, and (in a pinch) economics texts are exactly right to prop open old windows whose sash has given up pretending to do the job.
So when I recently got a very nice letter from Meghan Hill offering to have me read her new book, Making Room for You, I checked to see if it was one of those hot new erotic monster bondage stories. Which, of course, I…er…would never read.
Much. Hardly at all. But it turned out to be a book on organizing your house. If you read my blog—or see my house—you’d know the monster porn is actually more likely. Still, I looked over Meghan’s book to be sure there wasn’t a yeti under the (very clean) sofa on the cover. Huh. Interesting Table of Contents. Maybe I’d just take a look at the first chapter…
Actual email:from: Barb Taub <firstname.lastname@example.org>
to: Meghan Hill <email@example.com>
date: Sat, Oct 4, 2014 at 4:56 AM
subject: Re: Book review request Hi, Meghan:I was going to send you a polite note declining to review your book, because I don’t review nonfiction. I’ve never reviewed nonfiction. I don’t know how to review nonfiction. But I accidentally started reading Making Room for You. And you had me at “Letting Go”—I zoomed straight through your wonderful book. I would like to feature your book on my blog, perhaps with an interview if you’re up for that.
Meghan graciously agreed to step into the interview slot. And even though I’m sure you all believe that I’m actually interviewing my guests here in my living room, we can all breathe a sigh of relief that she only virtually visited my house. I know she’s a professional, but here at the Hobbit House, we have a bit of a… clutter… issue. It’s not just that we don’t have much closet space for storage. We don’t have closets. Not one. Apparently those adorable barefoot little Hobbits never had to worry about where to put their off season shoes or holiday decorations. So I’d like to avoid having Meghan open my (one) cupboard or look under any bed. Or chair. Or behind the couch. And the top of the fridge is definitely off limits.
- Who would you most like to sit next to on an airplane? Arianna Huffington. She’s a powerhouse, slightly controversial, and she has a wide reach.
- Best guilty pleasure ever? Sitting in the backyard undisturbed with endless cups of coffee and the New York Times Sunday crossword puzzle. I read the horoscopes, advice column and solve the word jumble and work on the puzzle until I finish it. Sometimes this takes hours.
- As a child (or now!), what did you want to be when you grew up? An artist and a teacher. I suppose I wear both of those hats now as a writer.
- What’s the best writing advice you’ve ever heard? “Some will, some won’t. So what? Someone’s waiting.” I take this to mean that there are always readers out there looking for what authors write – any genre, any style. Our job as writers is to keep writing and keep finding the people who need and want our words.
With Meghan’s help, I’ve started decluttering. Not only does she let readers forgive themselves for their stuff, but she gets it.
A professional organizer with years of experience, Meghan Hill shows you how to organize your home with practical tips, methods for sorting and letting go, pitfalls to avoid, and specific advice on shopping to outfit your home for ultimate organization. This book also addresses the emotional and psychological roadblocks that prevent us from getting and staying organized and gently explores how to overcome them. Written with directness, compassion, insight and brevity, Making Room for You simplifies the process of restoring order to your home and your life.
Our stuff is one of the precious few things in our life that we can control. Think about this. Let it sink in. From where you are now, you may not see it this way but it is true nonetheless. Realize that, because this is true, it is unnecessary for your stuff to make you feel out of control.
- Book Title: Making Room for You
- Author: Meghan Hill
- Genre: Home Organization
- Publisher: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
- Length: 104 pages
Book purchase link: Amazon
Author Meghan Hill accepts that our stuff is… well, Our Stuff. They are investments that connect us to our memories and feelings, ties that associate us with everything about us. But, she promises, her goal is to let us identify what is truly important, “…so that the useful and beautiful in your life can stand out instead of being eclipsed by all the things you don’t like or don’t use.”
Making Room for You is a quick and breezy read with several nice features. But if you’re in a hurry and you don’t read one other thing, you should take a look at Chapter 9: Room by Room. It’s just that—each room broken down by function and how to organize it. How to arrange your living room. How to set up your kitchen. (Oh, Meghan… where were you six months ago when I was unpacking and making all those bad kitchen choices?)
And there’s another place where this book shines. She doesn’t just tell you to replace all your bulky mismatched hangers with slim ones. No, she has a link to where you can buy them. And the drawer organizers. And the cabinet ones. In fact, every time she recommends a solution, she has a link to a reasonably-priced, attractive product.
The goal of Making Room for You isn’t that your underwear drawer is organized, but that your home allows the things that mean the most to you—your stuff—to take center stage. And how great is that? As I said, I have no idea how to review nonfiction, so I’m just going to throw my 5-star rating in here. It’s the least I can do now that all those slim hangers have given me an extra twelve inches in my wardrobe cabinet.
But I’m still not taking any economics books for review. Even if every window in the Hobbit House goes wonky. (About those yeti-porn books though…)
For this week’s contest, I asked Meghan to tell us about her favorite tattoo. Please enter your guess about which one is true in comments below for a chance to win a free copy of Making Room for You. (Winners will be announced next week)
- An anchor on my arm with the words “Old Salt” beneath it.
- A horse on my back with “Horse” written beneath it.
- My family crest on my back.