Discussion Forums - Love & Romance Love & Romance

Topic: My first Library sale

Club rule - Please, if you cannot be courteous and respectful, do not post in this forum.
  Unlock Forum posting with Annual Membership.
Subject: My first Library sale
Date Posted: 3/12/2008 1:26 PM ET
Member Since: 5/18/2007
Posts: 604
Back To Top

Tomorrow will be my first BIG Library sale at a convention center.  I have only been to one other sale and it was at  a small UBS.  Any advice for tomorrow.  I have a list of my TBR pile so I don't get any duplicates.  I have also my Wishlist.  If you get a lot of books, do you make several trips to your car to drop them off?  Do most put all of their books out on the first day?  Or are their new ones added each day?  (oh, I hope not.  I don't want to go everyday, LOL)  Is everything cheaper on the last day to get rid of everything?  It starts on Thursday and goes until Sunday.  Should I just sleep there?  LOL

Thanks for any advice,

Sherron

Date Posted: 3/12/2008 1:31 PM ET
Member Since: 8/12/2006
Posts: 1,012
Back To Top

I go to a lot of sales and I like to go the first day to get my must haves before they are gone and I like to go the last day (which is usually box or bag day) and scoop up everything else that still looks good.

I don't usually get enough the first day to have to run out to my car.  Usually I can find a spot to stash my bag or box while I am still looking.

I don't usually have lists, but I do look for certain authors.  I have been known to buy duplicate books on occasion, but so far, I have been able to trade those duplicates on PBS.

Good luck and have a great time.  I always spend hours going row by row.

Date Posted: 3/12/2008 2:17 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
Back To Top

Take a wheeled cart - especially if you go on the second day.  You'll need it.  Strap your box down and keep it close.  People will go through it if you fill it up and set it aside.:P  Go the first day, because that's when the resellers ALWAYS go, and "cherrypick" the collectibles.  The $10-$20 a boxload 2nd days are great, so I always go back for those, but the rare books will be mostly gone by then, and if there are any of those left they're usually stickered & stamped to high heaven.  If you find any beaten up great finds, go ahead and get them if you can get them really cheap.  I'll help you if anything needs to be reconditioned.  We may not get it perfect, but if you can get a rare one for 50 cents, it's always worth a try at making it postable or resellable.  And take my - er, your lists!

Date Posted: 3/12/2008 9:28 PM ET
Member Since: 6/9/2007
Posts: 745
Back To Top

The one I just went to a couple of weeks ago had an area designated for people to drop off their books to be held. There were people there all the time and they gave me a number corresponding with where my books were placed on the shelves. It made life much easier....but I also bought more books because of it! :p I went both days and spent more the 2nd day because I had them hold books for me.

I hope you find many treasures!

Date Posted: 3/12/2008 9:36 PM ET
Member Since: 4/25/2007
Posts: 11,361
Back To Top

Definitely bring a wheeled cart or a big canvas bag for books.  It's much easier to look around if you have someplace to stash the books so your arms are free.

I'd definitely go the last day too, they usually have box or bag day.

Date Posted: 3/12/2008 10:25 PM ET
Member Since: 12/30/2007
Posts: 184
Back To Top

I went to one a couple of weeks ago and I'm sorry to say that the dealers ran over us getting to books. My advice (besides go for authors rather than titles) is that I would prioritize what you want and go there first and also try to get there when it first opens.  Our library system is trying to figure out what to do about the dealers - they want to sell the books, but so many of the library patrons are not able to get the books they are looking for even within 5-10 minutes of the sale opening.  Sigh! 

Date Posted: 3/12/2008 11:05 PM ET
Member Since: 10/29/2005
Posts: 7,466
Back To Top

take a look at the club wish list and see what the books ar that are high on the WL.  You might want to keep your eyes peeled out for those too.

Date Posted: 3/13/2008 12:02 AM ET
Member Since: 9/15/2005
Posts: 319
Back To Top

The only library sales I've ever been to are one-day (and once a year) events, and they tend to be madhouses!  Well, for a quiet small town, anyway!  Everything starts pretty cheap and then goes to $5 a bagfull by afternoon. 

So yeah, pick up anything you know you want early on 'cos you can't count on finding it again later, and then if it were me I'd go back again when things get dirt cheap for trading fodder.

And uh, yeah, I sure do end up making a couple trips to the car!  LOL!  There's no room for carts and no place to put anything down.  The first time I ended up with major pulled muscles in my arms from carrying my stash!  Shoulda stretched out and limbered up before I went in.  Those library sale injuries can be harsh!  :P

Date Posted: 3/13/2008 8:41 AM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
Back To Top

Marilyn, if your library system is genuinely interested in leveling the playing field between resellers and ordinary bargain book shoppers, there are some simple things they can do.  Most of those library sales allow people to come in the day before a sale officially opens to "scout" the inventory for a $10 fee.  Resellers are primarily the people who take advantage of this opportunity, so they know what's there and where it is before the sale even opens.  They can put a stop to that if they want to.  They can also prohibit use of any electronic scanning equipment.  Many resellers carry PDA devices equipped with barcode scanners, and this, along with the pre-opening scouting, is what gives them an advantage over the average Joe.  They can just breeze through the tables and shelves, scan barcodes, and get real time resale price estimates on every book they scan, and then just nab everything above a certain price threshold.  This was initially not much of an issue for people like us who are in there shopping mostly for paperback books in specific genres, because the resellers were mostly nabbing up hardbacks, and of those, most were from non-fiction categories, as those tend to have the highest profit margins.  Nowadays there are a gazillion resellers on Amazon, Abebooks, half.com, etc. who resell used paperbacks, and the cost of the scanning equipment has come down enough to make it worth the investment even to people who resell on a relatively small scale.  All of that has significantly narrowed the gap between book resellers and the average bargain shopper, so that we're competing with them more directly than ever before for the available stock.  Last time I looked, you could get barcode scanners for about $75-$80, but then you also have to invest in a PDA of some sort, and you need some good book inventory software like booktracker or something similar, that provides instant internet access to Amazon, etc. where you get the resale price estimates from a barcode or ISBN# search.  It's all pretty sophisticated actually, and that's what you're competing against.  Our last library sale here, I only saw one person scanning books, which I didn't think was too bad.  I'm sure that will change before long however.  It will likely get to the point where resellers start paying fees directly to the library foundations to have their own advance dates to come in and purchase lots of books before the sale opens to the public.  The idea, after all, is to make as much money as possible to fund the libraries and their services.  I think everyone who frequents library sales should start writing letters now and try to derail this before it gets completely out of hand, and library sales end up being some sort of private affair for book resellers only, and the general public is stuck picking over the remains.



Last Edited on: 3/13/08 8:43 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/13/2008 5:13 PM ET
Member Since: 8/12/2006
Posts: 1,012
Back To Top

Marilyn,

It is always the same for our big sales as well.   We have about 4 big sales from April to August and the book dealers have caused huge problems including fights. 

This is why I look for authors because you have to be quick about getting the books you want.  I have had people snatch books right out from under my nose and it is so infuritating. 

Also, on the box/bag day, you will find people just piling books into boxes without even looking at them.  Then they go to the side and pick out what they want  and leave the books they don't want sitting there.  I think they got yelled at for this at one of the sales last year.  It was really unfair to all the other people that wanted to select books.

 

Date Posted: 3/13/2008 7:19 PM ET
Member Since: 5/18/2007
Posts: 604
Back To Top

I'm back and I had a blast.  I was there for five hours.  Oh, my.  My feet hurt and my neck from having to look side ways.  LOL

This is what I got:

Dance by Judy Cuevas

The Tea Rose by Jennifer Donnelly

Indiscreet by Mary Balogh

Those are my WL books.  I also got a lot of others that were on my RL. 

I can't wait to go back in October for the next one. 

 

Date Posted: 3/13/2008 7:41 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
Back To Top

Dance by Judy Cuevas!!!  My Ninja assassins will be visiting you shortly...

Date Posted: 3/13/2008 7:42 PM ET
Member Since: 5/18/2007
Posts: 604
Back To Top

LOL, I did the happy dance!! 

Date Posted: 3/14/2008 1:25 AM ET
Member Since: 12/21/2005
Posts: 1,012
Back To Top

Wow, Sherron!  That's awesome!!  Glad you struck gold, and had a great time! :)

Date Posted: 3/14/2008 6:14 AM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
Back To Top

Library sales are such a party - lol.  Funny how my idea of a good time has changed over the last 20 or so years...  They are fun though.  It's like going on a treasure hunt.