It doesn’t seem to be a word right now, but I thus declare it to be one, and am quite confident that within ten years, either of the present moment or the singularity (whichever comes first), it will be taken up into the OED and my blog will be cited as an important source.

Bibliomigration, n. the phenomenon, similar to diffusion, whereby books tend to move from areas of high concentration (e.g. bookcases) to areas of low concentration (e.g. sofas, beds, nightstands, kitchen counters, floors, &c.)

Bibliomigration isn’t problematic in itself: books are there to be read, and my bookcases aren’t right next to where I (usually) read my books. But when unchecked, books can pile up in place which weren’t really designed to store them and the inevitable moment arrives when you have to sort through the pile and rehouse everything.

Even that’s not too bad, really. It makes this nerd feel a bit like a librarian. In my very own library!

What is somewhat concerning, though, is that this clear-up (I haven’t come up with a cool word for that part of the process yet) always seems to happen in the wee small hours. It’s almost like there’s some kind of restriction on tidying up during daylight hours. What does this say about either me or my books? Is my inner tidy-upper actually a vampire? Are my books ashamed to travel back to their places when others might be able to see them? Would net curtains twitch and women gossip? Is bibliomigration a modern-day moral scandal?



  1. I must disagree with your use of the word “bibliomigration.” If, as you describe, the books are moving from an area of high concentration to an area of low concentration, then this is clearly bibliodiffusion…

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