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Topic: New Member Questions

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Subject: New Member Questions
Date Posted: 1/5/2009 5:15 PM ET
Member Since: 1/5/2009
Posts: 2
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Hello!  Thanks to a friend of mine I just joined the site today. I'm intrigued by the concept of this website and am excited about it. 

However after doing the beginning steps of listing my books that I am willing to trade at this time and writing a few reviews, I started looking around for some books that I am interested in.  Not one of the books (over 25 of them) that I am interested in acquiring for myself is available and many of them have a long list of people ahead of me (i.e. 200+ people have wished for them).  The book with the shortest wish list still had 28 people ahead of me.  So my question is, how quickly do this waiting lists turn around? 

This may sound *strange* but I love books and have a rather large personal library of which I am willing to trade only if I can in return get some of the books that I desire.  I'm not real big on wanting part with "high demand" books from my collection if I will rarely will be able to acqure a few of the books that I in return desire. Am I the only newbie or person with his delema?

Also in reading some of the other posts I noticed people commenting on how many copies of a book are listed to be given away before their copy is requested.  How to you determine this? For the life of me I can't figure out how to tell this.  I can tell by looking in the the club wish list how many people are wishing for a book but I can't tell how many books that are the same as the one that I posted are waiting to be given away.

I hope my questions make sense.  Thanks in advance for your help.

Date Posted: 1/5/2009 5:23 PM ET
Member Since: 5/10/2007
Posts: 5,526
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welcome Allison!

how quick the books turn around depends on how new/popular they are.  If they are recent books there may be a lot of people that purchase them and then post them here making the list go down quickly.  a few months ago I was #750 or so for a Jodi Picoult book and now I'm closer to 500.

all books are requested via the FIFO system (first in first out).  So if you happen to have a lot of Grisham books (for example) and there are already 100 copies ahead of you, you will have to wait for those to be mailed out before yours are requested via the FIFO system.  However many people will look at a new member's shelf if they post a lot in the forums because they like to order from people that they see active on the site.  To see how many copies are in the system, put the book on your reminder list and that will tell you

believe it or not, it does all equal out in the end.  you will get books that you want, even the popular ones.  Plus once a book has an ISBN put it on your wish list, even if it isn't due out for 6 months.  This puts you closer to the front of the line.  Also look for similar bindings of the book (paperback vs. hardback and vice a versa)

Date Posted: 1/5/2009 7:00 PM ET
Member Since: 7/23/2006
Posts: 15,930
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Hi Allison, and welcome!

Another thing to consider (and I'm sure I speak from many members here) is the longer you're here, the more you will expand your reading "horizons" so to speak.  While the books you're interested in now are wishlisted, you might look around in other forums like Hidden Gems or in the genre forums and get some ideas on other really good books that are available now!

As for how fast a wishlist book moves, Leslie is correct - it really depends on how popular the book is.  Some go really fast, and then some don't move hardly at all!


Date Posted: 1/5/2009 7:21 PM ET
Member Since: 1/19/2006
Posts: 472
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Hi Alison! 

Some of the books on your wish list should move faster than you might think, because while you might be way down on the waiting list lots of new copies are coming in at the same time.  For popular new fiction that is pretty common.  If you look at the "Top 50" list you will see that many of the Top 50 posted books were also Top 50 Wishlisted Books.  I thought it would take me months to get Twilight base on the number, but it only took a couple weeks.  Lots of people want to read it, but lots of people also got it for Christmas and are going to read it once and post it.

Other more specialized non-fiction on your list might take awhile, but you never know.  Like someone said it will all even out in the end. :-)

I hope you give us a try!

Date Posted: 1/5/2009 7:52 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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Generally those books with the really long lines are mega sellers where the line keeps moving pretty quickly.  2wks ago I looked up a book I had just gotten from AMAzon and it had over 80 people in line for it.  A week later there were only 7 left.  It just moved so quickly.  Recently I received a WL book that had around 50 people waiting and 2 wks later when I was ready to post there were 30 copies posted.  So the lines do move. Some of the oop/htf books or the expensive to buy/mail books might not move much.  Like thick heavy cookbooks or something like that.  But the best sellers move quickly. Also load up the WL..  THe more books you have on there, the more likely you are to start receiving them.  When I joined I though there's no way I'll ever come close to WLing 200 books. But I think I'm up to 150 now and have around 600 on my RL. 

Ok now I"m going to check out your shelf and your WL to see if we have similar tastes.


Date Posted: 1/5/2009 7:57 PM ET
Member Since: 12/6/2008
Posts: 245
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How about those that you don't think are popular? Those that are only a few of you in line or are the only one? Do they also tend to come after a while?
Date Posted: 1/5/2009 8:07 PM ET
Member Since: 8/10/2005
Posts: 4,601
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It really depends. There are some books I have wishlisted that have only ever had less than 5 people wishing, and the line never seems to move. Then again there are those with 300 wishers where the line goes fast. Another thing to do is to search under the author's name in addition to searching by ISBN if you aren't choosy about getting a certain version of a book. I periodically go through my wishlist and click on the link to the author's name and have found other versions of the book I have wishlisted just sitting in the system waiting to be chosen. (For example, sometimes a paperback version is wishlisted but there might be a couple of copies of an older hardcover version in the system already.) But most of the time, books tend to move through the WL at a slow, steady pace. Patience is definitely a virtue, especially at the beginning..

I would put as many books as you can on your WL, because obviously the more you have wishlisted, the better your chance of getting at least some of the books you want. You probably will never get all of them. I often grow impatient and will either check a book out from the library if it's a "next in series book" I need or something. But I have a fairly steady stream of books coming and going, although it will likely take you newer folks awhile to get to that point, especially if most of the books you want are very popular or highly wishlisted.

Welcome to PBS!


Date Posted: 1/5/2009 8:36 PM ET
Member Since: 10/27/2007
Posts: 2,287
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Welcome Alison!

Rhonda is right.....I thought I had down on my Wish List all the books I wanted.  Then I started to read threads in various areas like "Best Book of 2008" or "book that stayed with you the most" or for me "Most disturbing book" and BAM, there you go - at least 15 more books that I would have never even thought about now became ones I wanted because of the comments others had about the book. 

I hope your friend warned you that this site is highly addicting.

Last Edited on: 1/5/09 8:37 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 1/5/2009 8:55 PM ET
Member Since: 1/19/2006
Posts: 472
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Melissa, it all depends on what your idea of "unpopular" is. 

I've had several out of print books on here for years and I'd be shocked, but thrilled if they showed up.  I had a quasi-academic women's studies book on teenage girls who gave their babies up for adoption before Roe for more than a year that showed up and I'm mailing back out.  I got a book on the social history of knitting that is on it's way to me that I thought I'd never see.  It's not even in the library.  (Why yes, I'm a dork, thank you.)

On the other hand if by unpopular you mean a known writer who doesn't write blockbuster bestsellers, I tink your chances are pretty good.

Date Posted: 1/5/2009 11:45 PM ET
Member Since: 12/6/2008
Posts: 245
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What I was looking at was specific dog training and watercolor technique books. I'm not concerned or anything, just curious. And thanks, Kate, you gave me hope. :-D

Last Edited on: 1/5/09 11:46 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/6/2009 12:02 AM ET
Member Since: 6/19/2008
Posts: 1,976
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Allison, in your profile you mentioned you are a historical fiction fan.  Come join us in the HF forum.  Your WL will grow faster than you can imagine.  We just started a Historical Fiction 2009 Reading Challenge.  It seems to me some WL lines move really and some not so much.  I was 93 for a Dean Koontz book and I got in about 6 weeks.  Others I've been stuck somewhere less than 10 for 6 months, but I've gotten so many new ideas that I don't care.