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Topic: Having difficulty posting that a hand-printed book was mailed!

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Subject: Having difficulty posting that a hand-printed book was mailed!
Date Posted: 9/26/2014 6:30 AM ET
Member Since: 9/25/2006
Posts: 19
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Dear Friends,

I just mailed yesterday(Thursday, September 25th) two books whose address labels I had to print--my printer is kaput--and I cannot get an acknowledgement, though I've tried, that my books were mailed to the proper recipients.  I've had this problem before, and will continue to have this problem, each time I mail a requested book, because I've no printer.

Please--any suggestions, recommendations(magic wands? :-D) would be deeply appreciated.  Until I have access to a decent printer, this problem is going to repeat itself.  One more thing:  the information about hand printing labels is confusing, and there should be an option for those in my situation.

I really appreciate any help here.  I hope all of you are doing wonderfully--and I really love this site.  I cannot tell you how much I appreciate Paperbackswap!  I wish it were international!

Peace, hugs and love,


Date Posted: 9/26/2014 6:44 AM ET
Member Since: 8/30/2008
Posts: 2,207
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I'm not sure if I'm understanding your question properly, but I don't have a home printer - never have had one - so when I'm not at work and want to send out a book, I just click on 'print label', hand write the address and tx # on a piece of paper; then I cancel the print job.

It's always worked well for me and I doubt PBS even knows I haven't actually printed a label, and it allows all the other steps to follow happen. I get a lot of requested books that have hand-written labels so we're not alone.

Scott (scalta) - ,
Date Posted: 9/26/2014 6:46 AM ET
Member Since: 2/20/2010
Posts: 723
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Here are the instructions for handwriting the address label and how to access the "Book Was Mailed" button.

If you cannot (or do not wish to) print the wrapper, you may hand-write the address on your package. You will need to access the address from the request for the book on your My Account page, just the same way you would begin if you were going to print it; then just click the "hand-writing" option at the bottom to view the address that you can copy onto your package.   If you choose to hand-write the address to send a book, neither PBS Delivery Confirmation or PBS Printable Postage may be used for that shipment.

Please note that you must access (= view or download) the address from the request in order to enable the "Book Was Mailed" button.  That button needs to be clicked before the deadline to prevent the transaction from cancelling.

Here is how to get the address:

  • Click on the request for the book.
  • The Wrapper Settings page will come up.
    • Choose the orientation (layout) of your wrapper
    • Scroll down and click the link to "hand-write the address"


Be sure to include the Request ID# as part of your return address.

  • this is not crucial, but it helps us locate the request if you need to communicate with us about it.

Be sure to mark your package conspicuously MEDIA mail if that is the rate you are using to mail it.

  • If your package weighs 6 ounces or less, it will be less expensive to send First-Class.
Cathy A. (Cathy) - ,
Date Posted: 9/26/2014 9:08 AM ET
Member Since: 12/27/2005
Posts: 4,152
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How did you get the addresses? If you looked at the actual addresses for both books through the PBS "Print Wrapper" tool, then you will be able to mark them mailed. Remember, you must always use "Print Wrapper" to get the address, even if you don't have a printer. Once you open the print wrapper screen, you can either use the printing options to bring up the full wrapper and then copy the address, or you can scroll to the bottom of the screen and use the button for hand-writing it. That just brings it up on your screen in a plain text format instead of a PDF.

If, by chance, you sent PMs to the other members and they gave you their addresses that way, then you won't be able to mark the books mailed. If you did this, then you need to go through the print wrapper process up to the point where you can see the addresses they already gave you. Once you've seen their addresses on the screen, you'll be able to click the Book Has Been Mailed button.

Date Posted: 9/26/2014 9:53 AM ET
Member Since: 11/18/2007
Posts: 94
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I haven't been printing any wrappers lately. The cost of ink in my household is already high. I just don't need to add more.

BUT, I have to use the "Print Wrapper" link to get the address. I just close out the wrapper instead of sending it to my printer once I've written down the address. Since I don't use PBS postage anyway. I've saved the ink for another day.

Date Posted: 9/26/2014 12:09 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,226
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Here is how to get the address:

  • Click on the request for the book.
  • The Wrapper Settings page will come up.
    • Choose the orientation (layout) of your wrapper
    • Scroll down and click the link to "hand-write the address"


Make sure you do the last step to indicate you are hand-writing the address and are not just back-arrowing or Xing out of the screens after getting the address. That will activate the Book Mailed button for you. As long as you are clicking that, you shouldn't have any problems.

Date Posted: 9/27/2014 6:22 AM ET
Member Since: 7/26/2014
Posts: 63
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I handwrite my labels but don't use pbs postage. I just pick no services and then close out when I am done. It seems to recognize that I have printed or not in the case my label as it registers the date under the details. You could just do it that way and run the packages into the post office once a week or so and pay there then you wouldnt have to deal with the issues. They put a pid number on your receipt which for some glitch works as free tracking on the usps site. It takes a little longer to do it this way since the person has to mark it received but most people mark it pretty fast but without a printer and without the site registering it etc. It might be the easiest. Then when I get home I just click book was mailed and wait for the other person to mark it received. It just adds about a week to me getting my credit.