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Tuesday, July 14, 2009

A Little Dissapointed-What do you do with your old books?

For the past few months, my book collection has grown at an alarming rate. I had so many of them sitting around that I was desperate for space, so the great person that is me decided to give my old books to the library. That solution worked a few times before they very rudely informed me that they did not need anymore of my books. I was shocked. I could understand if they were old releases or battered and bruised...but I treat my books like they are my babies. They were receiving newly released books in almost brand new condition. Well...whatever...their loss. This, however, put me right back in the same boat I was already sinking in. I did not know where to go next.

After some deep researching (this geeky girl does not just do stuff), I decided that I would go ahead and give Ebay a try. For the first month it worked just fine. People were buying my books (for dirt cheap may I add), and I was sending them on their way to a new home. All good things come to an end though. After awhile, my books were no longer selling. Ebay still charges you a listing fee regardless if your listing sells or not. I was losing some serious cash, and the books I had sold where experiencing problems in the mail. Many of my costumers were not receiving their books till weeks later (lost in the mail), and one even was resent to me. Ebay was not working and I still had over 4o books sitting in my room.

Next I tried Amazon. It was amazing! The day I listed was normally the day they sold. I was so excited and I thought that I had found the solution. Amazon does not charge you a listing fee if it doesn't sell, but that was irrelevant since everything was. Unfortunately upon doing the math, I realized that I was not gaining much from my Amazon experience. They take a hefty chunk of your earnings and I wasn't charging enough to make up for that. I was basically making like 2 to 3 dollars a book. Another thing that annoyed me (which was not Amazon's fault) is that post office prices are insane. I sent out five books and was charged 18 dollars! I just did not seem to see the point of dealing with this struggle.

My last option was selling my used books to Powell's for hardly anything. I tried not to look at my payment amount when I clicked the approve offer link. 18.50 for 8 books that I know cost me over a 100 dollars all together. I just had to get rid of them, and even now I still have 10 books to get rid of or sell.

Which brings me to this question...What do you do with your old books?

18 comments:

  1. I know how you feel. I always felt like eBay and Amazon were just too much trouble in the end for not enough money--at least when it comes to selling books.

    I've recently been clearing out some books and I've just taken them to trade at a local used bookstore. The one closest to me lets you trade 3 PB for 1 PB or 3 HC for 1 HC and it usually works out nicely for me. No, I don't get any money, but I feel like I might be helping them out and I do get a few new books to try, at any rate.

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  2. PaperbackSwap.com (not just for PB, either) - I couldn't do without it, seriously. I'm AerinRose over there, if you join and want to friend me.

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  3. I tend to keep my books... I have issues with letting them go. But when I do get rid of them, I give them to a local thrift store where all proceeds go to charity (it can be a tax right off if needed) or I post them on Bookmooch.com. I like Book Mooch because I can get points to get another book.

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  4. I don't have the money to drench myself in books but I do plan on keeping the ones I have. I don't really like Amazon because they really gouge you on the postage. One time I was thinking about getting a few things and put them in my cart and when I saw the total for shipping I was shocked to find it was $35 and some change I think.

    That's weird that a library would turn you down like that. They can be strange places since I'm not crazy about the one near me. Oh how I miss the library in CA where the books were shelved and I didn't have to deal with idiots. Sorry this hasn't helped you at all but I wish you luck. Maybe PaperbackSwap would work. I never did figure that place out. What about Books-A-Million?

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  5. WOW what a frustrating experience you've had. I keep my favourites because I know I'll reread them eventually and the others I give to my friend who takes them to a local children's hospital for parent's to read when their kids are sick, then there are others I give to local charities.

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  6. Bookmooch. In return, I get the books I want. Of course it's rare for people to want some of the older stuff but once in awhile I'm lucky to rid a couple. I don't exactly have so much money for postage either.

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  7. You could either have giveaways on your site, sell them on e-bay or even amazon.com...sometimes I give them away to the library, I feel like I'm giving them somewhere that they will be used constantly :)

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  8. I donate mine to my local library or give them away on my blog. There'[s always someone else that could benefit from a free book.

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  9. I would also try half.com. It's still eBay but it might be a better choice for books, not giving them an end date maybe?

    I usually just keep them. Maybe give them away to family or friends.

    I've sold a bunch in a yard sale we had a few years ago. That was pretty easy. Just sat a whole box out and sold them for like $3-5. They were decent books too. But you can't be picky. Just get rid of them cheap and fast.

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  10. If you are just wanting to donate them you could always donate them to a school. I am always scouring used bookstores to stock my classroom library. A lot of teachers appreciate free books.

    One thing about public libraries- the ones around here anyway sell (very cheaply) a lot of books and things that people donate. Not much goes on the shelves from donations.

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  11. I am with Diana. Bookmooch all the way. Before bookmooch my only method for getting rid of books was garage sales or giving them to friends. And since I got basically nothing back I never wanted to give away my books. With bookmooch I get books back that I have really been wanting and I am able to get rid of the books I have been hanging on to but will never read. Shipping can be a dilemma, but if you are sending Media Mail it's cheaper and I always reuse bubble mailers.

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  12. Uh, usually they stay at my house... or I do giveaways on the blog if I know I'm not gonna read them again!

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  13. I actually just stack my books in the corner of my room!

    And I know what you mean about posting costs. Insane!

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  14. iluvhersheys_andbooksJuly 15, 2009 at 4:35 PM

    I would haave to say that my favorite would have to be all the book swapping sites. Bookmooch and paperbackswap are all book sites that you send books in and then you get points so that you can order any book you would want that is in their database. But the best one in my opinion would have to be swaptree.com. This book trading site is my favorite becasue i can always get new books through it for my old books. And it also doesnt use a point system which is great becuase whenever you are sending a book out you are also getting one back. Plus you can also trade books for dvd's. I definately reccomend swaptree.

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  15. DANG! You've got bad luck ;-D
    Actually, I was wondering the same thing since you really don't make much profit if you sell them at a bookstore. At mine, they give you one lousy buck for a brand new hardcover!
    I suggest just giving them as gifts...
    -amy

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  16. WOW! I am shocked that your library turned your books down. Who does that?! My library about does back flips if anyone donates any YA books. Have you tried maybe donating them to the school? I've never used BookMooch or the Paperback Swap, but it does sound like a good idea if you want to get rid of them.

    Amber

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  17. I really loved this book too. My book True Love Is Not Common; www.eloquentbooks.com/TrueLoveIsNotCommon, has similar main characters. I grew up reading this author since my high school. Hope one day my book will reach many readers as this author.

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  18. I will carry a couple of books around and leave them in doctor's offices or anywhere people wait. I usually stick a post-it on the outside saying something like "take me home & read me".

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