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Topic: Mixing up outgoing books

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Subject: Mixing up outgoing books
Date Posted: 9/7/2009 1:42 AM ET
Member Since: 12/9/2007
Posts: 9,601
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I know this happens on occasion.  So far I've avoided it.  I''m not sure how it is done by others, but I am sure to put each print out label to each member in the appropriate book at the time of printing.  Each label and info is folded without being cut up yet so that I can tell which book I'm working to wrap at a glance. I don't take the label out of the book until I'm wrapping it.  I do wrap each book one at a time from pre-wrapping in plastic and including the info part of the label under the plastic so it is visible to wrapping in the outer wrapper and taping it closed and adding the address portion of the label.  I use the one sheet print-out option.  So far so good for me.

For those who have mixed up books to recipients -how are you processing your books?  Are you hand writing the adresses?  Are you wrapping all the books in one stage all at the same time?   It would be interesting to know just how the mix-up occurs so others can avoid it and we can better help you.  Having to invest more than necessary credits is a bummer, I know.



Date Posted: 9/7/2009 2:28 AM ET
Member Since: 2/26/2009
Posts: 37,814
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I do the same as you Ruth, so far so good.

Date Posted: 9/7/2009 5:26 AM ET
Member Since: 11/30/2007
Posts: 5,014
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I like your method, Ruth. What I do is write down in a notebook  the details from the wrapper along with the name of the book being sent to them. Then while I'm wrapping the books I check my notebook to make sure the book is with the correct wrapper. It works for me. There are so many books being exchanged at one time in the BB that they must have to have a system so they don't mix up their books going out in deals.

Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 9/7/2009 7:40 AM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,094
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I do something similar.  I do use envelopes because I have a tough time wrapping.  My labels are printed on one sheets since I use actual labels.  As they're printed the sheet is stuck in the book.  Then when I'm putting the label on the envelope I have the bottom part and the book together.  Before I stick the book in the envelope I make sure the second part matches the first part and that the book is the right book.

Maybe we keep it straight because we have the things in seperated.  This book is what I'm working on and those are going to be wrapped.

Connie I like the idea of writing down the information.  I might start a record on my trusty pc. 

Date Posted: 9/7/2009 9:20 AM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2009
Posts: 6,852
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I do the same as you Ruth, Adrienne, and Geri.  As Geri said - I also look at the wrapper and check off that the book I am wrapping matches the books listed on the wrapper.

Instead of writing down the information I save a copy of the PDF wrapper on to my computer.  I also print of a second copy as my personal transaction history and if I am sending bonus books I will write the names/authors on the wrapper.  When the book is rec'd the copy of the wrapper is deleted from my computer and I shred the extra wrappers.  I have encountered any yet (fingers crossed), but if there were a problem swap I would make notes on the wrapper and file it away for history. 


Date Posted: 9/7/2009 10:45 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I've sent over 500 not counting BOBS, game books and deals and haven't mixed one up yet.  What I do is I wrap at my desk right by the printer.  My books are kept in my office and I usually have the ones that need to go out stacked near my desk. 

I take the book on top, figure out how it's going to be wrapped: do I have an envelope I can use, PBS wrapper or does it need a box.  Then I print the label I need and wrap that book up before I print out another book label.  With only lable printed I'm less likely to mix books up. 

Sometimes if there's a TV show I want to watch and I have a large stack of books to mail: I print all the labels. But I only take 1 at a time into the living room to wrap up.  I just pause the show or go into my office during the commercial to get the next one.

If it's a WL game book and I've had to use a dummy book to print a label then I write the correct name of the book on the invoice part of the label.

I've gotten the wrong book twice now. Both times the person had wrapped the book up in the invoice page of the right wrapper then mixed up the address page.  So I'm thinking they wrapped one layer on each one so that they couldn't see the actual book. When I use the PBS wrapper, I wrap both pieces of the wrapper together at the same time and only do one book at a time. So I don't end up mixing them up. 

Date Posted: 9/7/2009 10:46 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I also do the bonus books thing.  If I'm sending freebies then I write tthe names of those on the invoice label to make sure I include them. 

Date Posted: 9/7/2009 12:38 PM ET
Member Since: 7/23/2006
Posts: 15,930
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The only time I messed up was when one person had ordered 2 books and I put the 2nd book in the wrong envelope :-b

I print the label/wrapper, stick it in the book and set it aside then wrap all the books at once.  But I double check the titles as I wrap the book.

Date Posted: 9/7/2009 12:53 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 10,178
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In the past I have up to 20 books to be mailed at the same time. I accept book orders and time them all to be mailed out on the same day, once per week. (Usually I pick a weekend day for mailing.)

The night before the deadline for the first book, I print and wrap all the books going out that week.

I print one wrapper for the top book. Then I wrap that book and mark it Mailed. Next book is at the top, I print one wrapper, wrap, and mark it mailed.

I go to the Post Office the next morning and mail the books.

Its the perfect system (for me) because I cannot print a wrapper twice, or get the wrapper and books confused.

And, please don't tell me that the rules say that you can't mark books mailed before you mail them ... because they don't. (I've had that discussion already :)  )

Date Posted: 9/8/2009 6:59 AM ET
Member Since: 8/10/2005
Posts: 4,602
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I've never sent a wrong book to the wrong person either, and have sent out over 1300 books.

Before I accept any book request, I examine it again to make sure it's postable, that the ISBN matches what's listed. Sometimes I'll get a book request when I'm at work and won't accept it until I'm home and can double check it. When I've checked, and it's good to go, I accept the request and stack the books on top of the Rubbermaid storage bins where I have my PBS books.

I use the one-page wrapper and I print all the labels at once the morning the books are going out.

All I do is pick up a wrapper off the stack, and look at the book title which is in the lower section. I then take the book involved off the to be mailed stack and put it into the middle of the dining room table, thus separating it from all the other books. Even if the phone rings or the potatoes boil over or whatever and I'm distracted, that book is on the table with its wrapper waiting for me to deal with it when I'm ready.

When I'm actually going to wrap, I cut off the lower portion of the label and tuck it into the book, again checking that the title of the book and the name on the label match; I slide the book in the mailer and wrap, taping the label to the mailer with packing tape.

Once that's set aside on top of my purse, I grab the next wrapper and the next book and go on. By moving each book and wrapper from their stacks to a different place, I'm only dealing with one book/one wrapper at a time, and even when I have many books to mail at once, it would be pretty difficult to mix them up.


Date Posted: 9/8/2009 11:33 AM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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Similar Ruth, even then I make a final check before wrapping :)

Date Posted: 9/8/2009 4:13 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I think the key is to not have all the books and wrappers all together to do at once.  To either have all the books together but print the labels up one at a time.  Then wrap before printing next label. Or to get it together but then wrap in a different area and only grap the label and corresponding book one order at a time.

Subject: mixups
Date Posted: 9/11/2009 2:23 PM ET
Member Since: 6/2/2005
Posts: 5
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I've been PBSing for a long time and I just had my first error.  I sent a textbook someone ordered from me on Amazon to the PBS person and vice versa.  I asked the PBS person to mail the textbook to the guy Priority Mail and I paid her back in PBS credits.  I haven't heard back from the other guy yet but hopefully he responds and is willing to send me back the audiobook that I sent him by mistake!

The reason this mistake happened is that I ship everything using PayPal's multi-order shipping method.  Just got the wrong label onto the packages.  First time I've ever done it, but so embarrassing!!!

What I usually do is package up the books with the slip inside as I enter them on PayPal, and I keep the address part of the slip on the outside on top of the envelope so that after the labels print out, I know which one goes where.  I suspect that this time my 3 year old mixed up some of the address slips.  Although it could have been me!!

Date Posted: 9/11/2009 4:00 PM ET
Member Since: 6/17/2006
Posts: 563
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I try to mail out a bunch of books at the same time.  I print up all my mailing labels and packing slips all together.  My labels and packing slips are on the same sheet.  (THIS IS THE KEY)  I take all the sheets of paper and match them to their books on the floor.  Then one at a time I take a paper and its book (or books) and put it in front of me.  I read the slip and make sure it's for the right book, then I cut the label from the slip, put the slip in the book, put the book in the mailer (I use Tyvek envelopes), seal the mailer shut, and I tape the label to the mailer.  Then I'm on to the next.  I never cut the labels and packing slips in a group because I would get very confused!  I've sent out 350 books and I've never sent the wrong one yet.  I did get a textbook in the mail yesterday that I didn't order!  It's not the one from Rebekah though.  I'm still waiting for the sender to PM me back about it.

Last Edited on: 9/11/09 4:01 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/12/2009 12:29 PM ET
Member Since: 2/15/2006
Posts: 284
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I just goofed too. I sent the wrong book to someone. I just grabbed the wrong book and because i was so sure I had the right book even when I checked I just didn't see it. Total goof up. Now i'm trying to fix it before going on vacation. Problem is, I don't have her name. I didn't have her address and she finally pm'd it to me but not her name. I'm not sending a book off to 3 intials which may or may not be her name and an address to a major city and trust that the post office gets it to her. I may just have to return her credit.


Date Posted: 9/12/2009 1:05 PM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2009
Posts: 6,852
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did you look to see if she has her profile shared?  If so I think it lists the first name and first initial of the last name.  I keep a save a copy of the wraper until I know it arrived safely - then I delete it and I have a hard copy that I will shred when the book is rec'd.- my computer has bugged out a couple of times recently - so keepoing backups and hard copies of everything. 

I  know that doesn't work for everyone one - maybe just printing 2 copies of the wrapper.   Anyway - just a suggestion.

Subject: Happy Tale
Date Posted: 9/12/2009 11:16 PM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2009
Posts: 6,852
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Well - I just did it  -I mixed up a book with myself.  I had a WL book on my desk which has a similar cover (both red and yellow) and instead of picking up and wrapping the book that was requested I sent her my WL book - (chuckles - bang head against desk).   She was real cool about it.  I am sending her her book on Monday (FC - she didn't ask - I made the decision). She is taking me up on reading the book  (I told her not to worry about sending it back to read it and post it) and said she will send it back to me when she is done - no credit needed for postage - send it forward.  I told her no hurry for I have a lot to read and if she didn't want to send it back not to worry.  The reason I am sharing this embarassing tale is that she didn't ask for a credit  to return my WL book and told me to pass it forward.  How nice is that and I gained a buddy out of the whole experience to boot.  I just wanted to share positive experience since most post are to vent - I am venting happy. 

(Not to diminish members feelings/experiences that have had or having problem swaps and they are not turning out to be a win-win situation .  That isn't good and I am sorry -but positive things happen a lot as well)