Discussion Forums - Questions about PaperBackSwap Questions about PaperBackSwap

Topic: Questions About 'Almost-Wished-For' Books

Club rule - Please, if you cannot be courteous and respectful, do not post in this forum.
  Unlock Forum posting with Annual Membership.
Subject: Questions About 'Almost-Wished-For' Books
Date Posted: 6/7/2008 8:29 PM ET
Member Since: 7/20/2007
Posts: 1,046
Back To Top

Okay, i have been cleaning out my shed, and i came out with a bunch of books to post. I brought them in and sat here and painstakingly looked up each one. If it had a ton of copies on here, i put them in my 'Yard Sale' pile.

If it wasn't wished for but only had a few copies (under 20) on the site, i posted it.

One was wished for, yay!

Some had no ISBN's at all, and i posted them as books without ISBN's.

Questions -

#1 - If you post a book without an ISBN, does it still go through as a book that is 'almost wished for', where an email goes out to everyone who wants a similar book (assuming they haven't turned off PBS emails)?

#2 - If you had a few books that were 'almost wished for', how long would you keep them on your shelf before you decided that apparantly anyone who might have wanted them decided they didn't want your version?

#3 - If you are wishing for a book, and one does come up that is similar to the one you ordered, how likely are you (in your opinion) to request that book?

#4 - When you are listing books you would love to have (Wish List), is there a specific reason you don't want another version? Most of the books i have that are 'this close' to being Wished For don't seem to get moving, poor things. Even when they are absolutely identical to the one wished for, except for a publication year. I kinda feel sorry for them.

It seems like i find a lot of books of the 'almost wished for' variety, and i just wanted perspectives. I've been asking a lot of questions here today, but i have a LOT of books on my hands.

Thanks for any input!

Date Posted: 6/7/2008 9:14 PM ET
Member Since: 10/23/2005
Posts: 7,719
Back To Top

Hey there Tracey,

Here's my /.02, for what ever it is worh:

#1, it should if it hits on the key words in the title, and author name, but spelling and spacing will sometimes make a difference, they have been working to standardize author names in the database. If you get some free time you can click on the Approve Book Authors link on the bottom of the page, and help if you would like.

#2, I post books and leave them, I figure the book will eventually work itself up the FIFO line. I am also a member of Box-O-Books, so books that are plentiful in the system are often ordered from me via BOB. But I will tell you this, I have had Grishams ordered from me in the FIFO line, it took about 18 - 19 months if I am remembering correctly, and there were hundreds of copies already posted when I posted my copy.

#3, If there is a book that I really want to read, I will wishlist all the ISBNs I can find and will accept any that are offered to me. I prefer mass market paperbacks, the size is the easiest for me, but I have wished for HC and trade size paperbacks also. (And about once a month I go through my wishlist and click on the author's name to see if that title shows up in green, which means it is posted. Red means not posted. I find lots of the books I want are posted, just with ISBNs that I didnt even know existed)

#4, For me, personally if I am number 2 for my preferred binding type, I will sometimes wait for that to be posted, but if I am 20 or above on a wishlist book, I will order the one that is posted. I know that some members have books wishlisted that are "keepers" and they want the whole series in one binding type or cover design so they all match.

Have a great weekend,




Date Posted: 6/7/2008 9:21 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
Back To Top

Well if they're the same binding type as the ones that are WL but they just don't have an ISBN or have a differernt ISBN: then I'd advertise them in my signature line and in the book bazaar. If yours are mass market paperbacks and the WL are for large print, audio or hardback then I probably wouldn't bother.  Especially if there are other paperback versions posted into the system already.  Most likely those people really want the HB/audio or lrg print ones that they have on WL. I have several James Patterson books on WL on audio CD. I only want audio cd.  If I wanted paperback or hb, I would order them.  I actually turned off the similar book posted email reminder because it was sending 20 a day. 

Also if you have a lot of common to PBS books becoming a boxer is a great idea.  Or run a deal of 2for1, 3 for 1 or something. The postage doesn't go up much (if at all in some cases) to add an extra book or 2 if they're paperbacks.  A lot of people will do box trades or order books on a deal that they wouldn't spend a credit on since they're so common.  You can always use the credits you earn doing a deal to get books on a deal from someone else.

Date Posted: 6/7/2008 9:31 PM ET
Member Since: 6/21/2007
Posts: 2,015
Back To Top



Last Edited on: 2/2/15 6:54 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 6/7/2008 10:11 PM ET
Member Since: 5/9/2006
Posts: 1,756
Back To Top

Where is the button to turn on the similar book posted email? I have never heard of it.

Date Posted: 6/7/2008 10:15 PM ET
Member Since: 7/20/2007
Posts: 1,046
Back To Top

Go to your Settings under My Account, and go down the page to Email Settings. I believe Default is to get the emails. But if you do NOT want the emails, you just clik the box next to I Do Not Want - Wish List - Other Versions.

Hope that helps!

Date Posted: 6/7/2008 10:19 PM ET
Member Since: 5/9/2006
Posts: 1,756
Back To Top

Thanks Tracey, mine is on of course but I have never gotten an email so thought maybe I needed to turn something on since it sounds like some people get a lot of the emails.

Date Posted: 6/7/2008 10:24 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
Back To Top

There probably aren't any other versions of your WL books being posted and not already also WL. 

I got a lot of emails because I had very common James Patterson books on my WL for audio.  Also some very common Harlan Cobens and so I was getting 20 emails a day because each book was available in 2 or 3 versions just not the CDS that I wanted.

Date Posted: 6/7/2008 11:59 PM ET
Member Since: 11/14/2005
Posts: 6,421
Back To Top

Non-ISBN posted books are not connected to the WL and will not trigger the emails. This is from the Help Center:

About non-ISBN items at PBS

Because the listing was created manually, the listing represents only one specific copy of the book, and the book is not linked to any other item in the database, even if the titles are the same.  This means that:

  • non-ISBN books on a Wish List
    • will not trigger "Similar-to-wished-for-item" alerts
    • will not trigger a Wish List offer unless that particular copy is reposted into the system by someone who received it through PBS (using the Repost Books area or TBR Pile)
    •  will not be removed automatically when another version of that title is received through the Wish List.
Date Posted: 6/8/2008 1:30 AM ET
Member Since: 5/10/2005
Posts: 2,359
Back To Top

I wish they'd de-link Audio CDs from hb/pb for the "similar book" mails.  They are so very different that it seems unlikely someone would only have the audio listed if they didn't care the format.

I usually accept a similar version, but I usually have all versions on my WL. I've learned to be careful, though, since the system was absolutely convinced that Volume 1 of a series was "the same book in a different format" as Volume...9 I think it was.   That series I had to keep an eye out when I got one to make sure it didn't delete other volumes as "the same book" off my WL as well. 

Mostly it's worked fine, just that one series was mis-linked for reasons I couldn't decipher.

(edited because I typed the wrong word in a case where it mattered)

Last Edited on: 6/8/08 1:30 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 6/8/2008 3:25 AM ET
Member Since: 7/20/2007
Posts: 1,046
Back To Top

That sucks that they won't know i posted these books!

I wouldn't expect anyone to want them who wanted audio books or a paperback instead of a hardback. When someone wants an audio book, i tend to assume that they want it for a good reason. Like, my MIL went blind for a while and had to have surgery on her eyes (diabetic thing where her blood vessels popped) and her only method of reading was to listen to books so i wouldn't expect someone who wanted an audio book to be interested even a little bit in a regular book. I figure maybe they want audio because reading is difficult. Of course, they could just be looking for something to listen to during gridlock, but that's not how i tend to think. For all i know, someone is collecting audio books for their Grandma who has cataracts, lol.

Date Posted: 6/8/2008 8:19 AM ET
Member Since: 3/4/2007
Posts: 4,570
Back To Top

Why not post them in the WL books with different ISBN thread in the Book Bazaar?  I check there a lot for my WL books in case someone has one that doesn't have ISBN or there's a version I didn't know about floating around.