Thursday, September 18, 2008

Maximum Capacity

I like books. A lot. So much, I got a degree in them. And now, ten years later, I've reached maximum capacity. Just an example:

Just the middle section from one of my bookshelves*. That doesn't include the boxes full, the ones still stored at my parents' house, or the several boxes sold at every garage sale I've ever had, or the stacks in the living room, bedroom, and office. And come to think of it, I just remembered another plastic storage box under the bed in the guest room. Hello, my name is Susan, and I have a book addiction.

Somewhere between my sticker shock at paying $15 for the last books I bought and my utter paranoia at losing a library book if I take it on an airplane somewhere, I decided I had to do something to stop the madness. So I joined Paperbackswap last weekend. You get 2 credits for listing your first 10 books, then one credit for each book you send out to another member. I listed 15 books and as of today I've mailed out 5 and requested 2. It still costs me money in postage, but at least $1.50 or so per book is better than $15!

What I've found interesting is the trend in the books being requested from me. The first two to go right off the bat were both Christian books, one fiction one nonfiction. Everything else has been something I had for school, either high school or college. I figure students are using this as a way to swap literature texts, which is brilliant. There are quite a few that I don't think I can part with, but there are quite a few more than I can. It's a relief really. I couldn't bear to just throw them away (although, Lauren, I did toss some of those wack texts Colloquium in the trash) but would love to pass them on to somebody who can use them! I haven't searched through their cookbook section yet, but it's high on my list once I get a few credits built up! (So if anybody joins they can use me as a referral so I get more credits. Just saying you know... my username is Casper803... heh. More books...)

* The bookshelf in the picture was built from scratch by my dad. He built it for me for my 18th birthday. It's designed so that the bottom shelves are tall to hold bigger (and heavier) books and the top few shelves are just the right size for regular paperbacks, with the shelves in the middle average sized. It's awesome and I love it. And it says something about how long I've lived with this addiction!


Sandi said...

Holy cow thanks for posting this. Wow ... I'm so overloaded with books. Hope I can exchange some!!

Susan said...

There a way to search through books that other people have put on wish lists. I'm planning to go through there and see which of my books are on lists and post those first, since they have the best chance of being requested quick. And since I posted this, I've had another one requested. That's six!

Sandi said...

That's so cool ... I'm going to go through all my books when I get home and start posting those suckers. I'm cleaning out my book shelves fo shizzle.

I love books and I love to read and some books I'll keep forever. But they do pile up on me. And besides, it will be nice to send them to someone who is going to read them. That's better than them sitting on my bookshelf.

I'm also telling my co-workers. If any of them like my list, I'll just hand deliver the books to them. :)
We're all a bunch of bookworms at the paper.

Susan said...

They work on a "first in first out" system, so if you want to give it to a particular person locally you'll probably have to either make sure nobody else has that book listed or delete it from your bookshelf and do it outside the site without credits. Otherwise they're likely to request it then get it from somebody else! But you can always just pull it off your list and just not get credits for it.

I'm planning to post a lot more after vacation. I have quite a few young adult novels I'd like to post, but the guidelines say they have to be in good condition with no marks or writing in them. I had self-laminated most of mine and put stickers with my name on it in all the covers when I was teaching so I could use them all in my classroom library. I'm afraid that would be considered "marking" in them.

Sandi said...

I don't know whether to thank you or curse your name. This site is like crack for book lovers.
I've got to run to the post office ...

Susan said...

Go ahead and curse me. Clearly, I'm there myself! (Mailed two today...)

Sandi said...

Girl, I've mailed eight books today! That sucked, but it will be worth it to get eight new ones in the mail. :)

Susan said...

Dang girl, you have some good books!

I figured out pretty quick that I won't be posting any heavy or bulky books! The way I see it, the postage has averaged about $2 a book, so it's like paying $2 each for used books. Most of the ones I'll end up requesting would cost $5 or $6 if I bought them at the used bookstore anyway, and this way I'm getting crap out of my house at the same time. And in a small way, helping reduce waste in the world!