Monday, April 28, 2008

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  • Let's Talk About Books

    A book is a gift you can open again and again.
    -Garrison Keillor

    It's Monday. A whole new week. I'm feeling all sorts of motivated this morning. Maybe you are, too? Many readers and knitters and many more readers are knitters, and after sharing my new favorite things with the lady at the post office, I thought I'd share with you.

    Book Swapping/Trading/Mooching
    I've gotten hooked on a few websites that let you trade your books for other books for only the cost of postage. The general concept is the same - list books (any books) that you want to get rid of, and people will request them. You mail them the book (media mail = $1.47) and get a point. Then you use that point to get any other book in the entire system from anyone else. Each site has its own small vagaries, but they all work about the same way. Now that I've gotten my postal lady hooked (she wondered why I sent so much media mail, and she's a big reader, too), I thought I'd be remiss in keeping this all from you.

    Bookmooch - This is my favorite site, the most transparent and easy to use, and it gives you the most control over what's going on

    PaperBackSwap - This is probably the biggest site, but I find it a little hard to navigate, and it's never really clear how many copies of a book are around. That being said, lots of available books.

    WhatsOnMyBookshelf - This is the smallest of the sites. The good part about that is that your copy of a book is more likely to be the only one available, and thus more likely to get mooched. I just found this site about a month ago, and the first weekend I listed my books I got 6 takers.

    For me, these take the place of the capricious staff at the local paperback bookstore (plus I never found one in San Diego). Instead of turning in three books to get one, I get 1 for 1. Even books that don't seem that desirable get mooched eventually. I take the approach of listing the same inventory at all three sites, and then deleting a book when it gets mooched on one site. (Hence the reason for the three sites - three times as many chances to get rid of books I don't want and get books I do.)

    The best part? People want the weirdest books! And I get new ones for free.

    And, if anyone is so inspired as to want to participate in a paperback book chain letter sort of thing (total comittment to you = 1 book), let me know. I need some volunteers.

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    Blogger Karin said...

    I love this post--I've got a bunch of books I want to get rid of, but didn't sell on amazon. I'll be sure to sign up here. Thanks!

    4/28/2008 3:45 PM  
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    It's good to hear that you like those sites. I have a pile of books that I'd like to "destash". The paperback book swap looks interesting. Let me know if you get any other takers.

    4/28/2008 5:38 PM  
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    No idea that such things existed. Thanks for the links!

    4/28/2008 7:09 PM  
    Blogger JayJay said...

    I need to get the hubby to do this. He is always looking for things to read, and going to the library is less convenient these days, whereas he can go to the post office at lunch. Thanks for sharing!

    4/29/2008 4:17 AM  
    Blogger Unknown said...

    Of course, I'm in! Probably have a few friends in Philly who are as well!

    4/30/2008 1:05 PM  
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    I'm a paperbackbookswapper myself... but I'm game to join in for a round here.
    Surely there's at least one book in the house I can part with (lol)

    4/30/2008 7:48 PM  

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