How to decide what to part with?

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How to decide what to part with?

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1anxovert
set. 7, 2006, 11:32 am

I first heard about BookCrossing a couple of years ago and I thought it was a fabulous idea but I never thought it would be relevant in my small part of Regional Australia.

after seeing BookCrossing mentioned in a LibraryThing discussion today I took a fresh look at their site and was surprised to find almost 100 people in my home city are registered there, and so I signed up.

now I'm scanning through my library looking for likely books to "release" - I have multiple copies of a few and they'll be the first to go, but after that I don't know how I'll decide what I can part with.

As I consider each book I can't help wondering whether I (or my wife, or my kids when they're older) will ever want to read it in the future. In reality (with a to-be-read "pile" of many hundreds) I seldom re-read anything but there's always a chance.

so how do experienced BookCrossers decide what to release?

2SqueakyChu
Editat: set. 9, 2006, 8:48 am

I buy trade paperbacks ($2 each) and release those on bookrays and bookrings after I read them. I basically have stopped wild releasing because I feel as if most of those books end up trashed, although I will still sometimes wild release books I don't care very much about.

I'm also surprised how many people from Australia are BC members. I am very happy to include Australian bookcrossers on my bookrays even though I know it costs a lot to post from there.

Personally, I don't save books to reread. I know I'll never do it. My personal collection is for books I want to keep--for recipes, for sentimental reasons, etc. If my family wants to read my books, they need to request them or out the door they go! (the books...not the family members) ^-^ I can always get another copy of any book at a later date.

Trust me. You are going to have a nasty surprise when you start releasing books. The more books you will release, the more books you'll acquire! You'll see...

Come back here a year from now, and tell me if you have more or less books in your possession than at this time. I already know the answer. :-)

3anxovert
set. 7, 2006, 10:08 pm

I wish I could buy books I want to read for $2 - they're mostly closer to $20 here :(

I managed to pick a dozen books I can live without and the first one (Robert A. Heinlein's The Green Hills of Earth) became a "wild release" at a bus shelter I walked past this morning. I realise there's not much hope of it being logged by whoever picks it up but I can always dream :)

I think I've come up with a good spot for future "wild" releases - a park bench in a public hallway inside a building opposite the city library. I'm going to start leaving a book there each time I visit the library and see what happens from there.

I've had three "release alerts" for my local area so far this morning so there are active Crossers out there somewhere...

4SqueakyChu
set. 7, 2006, 11:27 pm

The books I buy are from the used book store associated with my library. They really have a great turnover of books, and I can always find something new.

Why not start a bookray or bookring with one of your books and only circulate it within Australia (to keep costs down)? It's quite a lot of fun to track books that you previously owned. You'll see that books have a much greater value when they are read. One book I had has already traveled to 34 different people in 7 different countries. I sure got my money's worth out of that book!

http://www.bookcrossing.com/journal/1416352/

Happy BookCrossing!

5anxovert
set. 7, 2006, 11:46 pm

Wow! that's an impressive run for one book!

6SqueakyChu
Editat: set. 8, 2006, 9:25 am

For me it's a lot more rewarding to know that others have enjoyed that book as much as I have. Truth be told, many of the bookray books simply disappear in transit or are never forwarded by participants, but I have so many books traveling that I never really get upset about lost ones. I simply don't release books that I don't want lost. However, with the books that are fairly common and easy to obtain, I find more pleasure in releasing them to selected others than in keeping them.

I'm secretly in competetion with the book Funny in Farsi which has been read by 35 people (including myself) and has traveled to 9 countries. That book also started its travels from the DC metropolitan area (where I also live).

http://www.bookcrossing.com/journal/1274671/

If I were a book, I'd want to be a BookCrossing bookray! :-)

7anxovert
set. 8, 2006, 9:38 am

it was probably a foolish thing to do but I just went through every BookCrossing member in my city and other than a dedicated Bookcrossing table at a local College Library nobody has ever caught or found a book.

now I feel discouraged. I was hoping to avoid spending money on shipping books out.

maybe I can break the trend...

8SqueakyChu
set. 8, 2006, 10:17 am

Well...it'll be fun to follow your adventures with BookCrossing. I've found it quite addictive myself and am not discouraged by the lack of other BookCrossers in my area.

If you don't want to spend money shipping books out, the only other alternative is letting people give you free books as RABCKs (Random Act of BookCrossing Kindness). There are people who are willing to gie away free books to others wanting to read them. A lot of those are contests, but many are easy to win. It's all in fun. Nothing too serious. Their hope is that you'll pass the book you receive for free on to others when you're done and not keep them.

http://bookcrossing.com/forum/10

9anxovert
set. 8, 2006, 10:29 am

I'm not really in this to receive books - I just want to pass them on to others but I don't want to incur any expense in doing so.

I'll see how my planned drop-off point near the City Library goes next week. maybe it'll be a big success...

10SqueakyChu
set. 8, 2006, 10:36 am

Can't wait to hear!

11SqueakyChu
Editat: set. 8, 2006, 10:55 am

Another alternative is to post a message on the Wishlist forum at BookCrossing telling what books you have to offer and that they are available for postage. In that way, you will be mailing the books postage already paid by the recipient. You can work out the details via PM (private messaging) on BookCrossing.

12sqdancer
set. 8, 2006, 1:17 pm

freelunch - Don't get discouraged if you don't get a JE right off. Some people wait to journal until after they read the book and some people leave the book on their shelf for months (years). Just picture your book out there busy making other readers happy; so busy that they might not *write home* for a while. :)

And, of course, there are people who don't have internet access or are a bit paranoid about the internet. But that doesn't mean they aren't enjoying your books.

Good luck!

(And, if you're like me, you'll get hooked on wild releasing and start being more ruthless when culling your bookshelves.)

13anxovert
set. 8, 2006, 8:15 pm

well the book I "released" yesterday was gone this morning so I guess that's something :)

14LyzzyBee
set. 9, 2006, 1:12 am

A couple of my personal guidelines (I was going to say "rules" but that sounds a bit official)

I release books that I think hard about and know I won't read again. This includes cheap copies of classics that I know I can get for £1 or from the library

I wild release books that I won't be upset if I find them in a bin. Mind you, one book of mine someone else released DID end up in a bin, but was rescued and read!

I will only ring a book that I can get again - otherwise that will be the one that goes missing.

If you want your own copy of a BC book, send your BC one on a ring and another copy will appear in your local charity shop (this has happened 3 times to me so far)

I buy books from our local charity shops for wild release.

Start an official bookcrossing zone (OBCZ) in a cafe or elsehwere - this will become a safe place to leave books for you and others!

If you want to increase bookcrossing in your town...
- leave books everywhere
- PM everyone who releases a book in your area
- PM everyone who catches one of your wildies
- Set up a Yahoo group and link to it in your profile
When I came to Birmingham 18 months ago there wasn't much going on but we gradually grew and did these things, and now there's a whole bunch of us

Re the expense of it all - weigh it up against another hobby. My OH keeps tropical fish, and spends more than I do! I know postage from Australia is expensive, but then I post TO Australia, Japan etc. I still think it's worth it (and it's fine to send surface mail). What I do is save all my loose change in a jar. I convert it into real money once every couple of months, and with the odd fiver from my purse, this seems to keep me going with postage etc - and I am a VERY active BCer

Hope all this helps. I'm fairly seasoned (2 years and a bit) and it all seems to work for me.

Oh and yes, wildies can take YEARS to check in!

15anxovert
set. 9, 2006, 8:25 am

thanks for the advice. I'm still not sure about spending money on the project...

...but yesterday I bought a couple of bundles of books on eBay specifically to release so I guess I've passed that hurdle.

and my first release has been caught already :D

http://bookcrossing.com/journal/4401046

16SqueakyChu
Editat: set. 9, 2006, 8:49 am

and my first release has been caught already :D

A hearty congrats! You'll soon begin to see the addictive quality to BookCrossing.

I seriously agree that the little we spend on postage and used books is far smaller than what others spend on their hobbies. My husband and one son are into radio-controlled cars. My other son is into computer games.

I see, too, that you've already learned how to get books for much less $$$.

17LyzzyBee
set. 10, 2006, 9:01 am

and my first release has been caught already :D

http://bookcrossing.com/journal/4401046

--- Ooh well done! One of my first three got caught and I think that's what got me hooked!