TBIF: Thank blog it’s Friday! 11-14-08

Tuesday Thingers (hosted by The Boston Bibliophile)

Today’s question: LT Things– t-shirts, bags,cue cats- are you into the “stuff”? Do you use a cuecat to enter your books, or do you enter them manually? What do you think of the stuff?

I enter my books in small batches as I acquire them, and since all it requires is typing in the ISBNs, I do it manually. When I originally set up my library on LT, I input the ISBNs into an Excel spreadsheet first and then uploaded them; LibraryThing was able to match most of them correctly, and I manually corrected the rest. That initial setup might have been aided by a cuecat scanner, but unless I unexpectedly inherit someone else’s book collection, I doubt I’ll be adding large numbers of books to my LT library in one fell swoop again.

When I was active on BookCrossing, I bought some of their merchandise – mostly stickers and bookmarks – because it not only helped support the site, it made identifying your books for “release” much easier. As far as LT merchandise goes, I’d consider some of the stickers – again, for my books, not for the suggested application to my laptop – but would be unlikely to buy a T-shirt or other personal item. However, I think the LT item I would be most likely to purchase would be a gift membership for someone else. I have been very satisfied with the $25 I spent for my own “lifetime” membership back at the beginning of this year.

(Hey, maybe I should do a holiday giveaway for a lifetime LT membership! What do y’all think?)

If you don’t use LibraryThing (or GoodReads, or Shelfari), do you have a method for keeping track of your books, or is that something you find totally unnecessary?

Why Buy? – Booking Through Thursday 

I’ve asked, in the past, about whether you more often buy your books, or get them from libraries. What I want to know today, is, WHY BUY?

Even if you are a die-hard fan of the public library system, I’m betting you have at least ONE permanent resident of your bookshelves in your house. I’m betting that no real book-lover can go through life without owning at least one book. So … why that one? What made you buy the books that you actually own, even though your usual preference is to borrow and return them?
If you usually buy your books, tell me why. Why buy instead of borrow? Why shell out your hard-earned dollars for something you could get for free?

Don’t forget to leave a link to your actual response (so people don’t have to go searching for it) in the comments—or if you prefer, leave your answers in the comments themselves!

Well, it’s not because I have all this extra cash burning a hole in my pocket or a bunch of empty space to fill in my house. (Having said that, though, one of my favorite things about my new house is the built-in cabinet upstairs that is absolutely perfect for book storage.) I think I’ve given variations on this answer in previous library-related BTT posts, but the main reasons that I buy books rather than use the library are convenience and time.

As far as the time factor is concerned, I have a full-time job and a daily round-trip commute exceeding 75 miles, which I make by car, so that’s a good 50 hours out of the week that can’t be spent looking for books or reading them. Although our local library has limited hours on the weekends (both Saturday and Sunday), our schedules just don’t mesh well. I can never be sure how long it will take me to read a book, so I prefer not to be restricted to the library’s due-date deadline.

Convenience may be an even bigger reason for my book-buying preference, though. Not necessarily the convenience of book-buying itself – although I do have some good bookstores near me, and what could be more convenient than online book shopping? – but the fact that when books are in my possession, it’s much easier for me to browse them and select my next read at any time of the day or night. I like having a wide selection of books at hand to choose from, too. Since I really can’t plan what I’ll be in the mood to read at any given time, I like knowing that I have a lot of options at the ready.

There are some other personal preferences of mine that play a role in my choice to be a book buyer rather than a borrower. I’d rather read books new, and the format I like best – trade paperback – isn’t common in libraries. Also, I just tend to find the atmosphere in bookstores more pleasant than libraries. It may be a hangover from school and college, but libraries seem to mean “studying” to me more than reading for fun.

Assuming you would rather buy books than borrow them from the library, what are your reasons?

Friday Fill-ins #98

1. Please feel free to disagree with my viewpoint, but be polite about it.
2. When I use my citrus-lime body wash I can’t help sniffing it occasionally.
3. My favorite thing to cook is pasta sauce, but my stepson’s favorite thing to have me cook is BBQ meat loaf.
4. Time for all the things I want to do is something I can’t get enough of.
5. That’s the thing I love most about morning – it’s a fresh start, every day.
6. Getting cut off in traffic always makes me think to myself, what the heck?
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I’m looking forward to a quiet evening at home (eventually), tomorrow my plans include getting pedicures with my sister and seeing Quantum of Solace with my husband and Sunday, I want to have a good time at the LA Moms Blog official launch party!

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  1. Hi, Florinda!

    Another great post… Thanks for the sweet comment. I’m bummed to miss but event on Sunday but it can’t be avoided, unfortunately. Hopefully we can chat in person at our next get-together…

    Hope all is well with you and that you’re settled into your new pad. Enjoy!



  2. Anna L – I’m bummed you won’t be there too. I think we’re talking about a post-holiday/New Year gathering in early January, and hopefully we’ll both be able to make it to that (whatever it is!).

    Kylee – Who objects to an award :-)? Thank you, and I’ll act on it soon!

  3. We had basically the same answer for #1…and I’m also going to see Bond (such yummy eye candy) Saturday 🙂 Thanks for playing, Florinda!

  4. Billy – It’s not bad for meatloaf. I don’t like ketchup or the tomatoey stuff people usually put on meatloaf, so I make it with barbecue sauce. And even though I left Memphis six years ago, I order my favorite barbecue sauce from back home (by the half-case) to make it with.

    Nice meeting you!

    Jerri – I think I may be eating the last of the leftover meatloaf for dinner tonight :-). I hope the movie’s good too. Thanks for stopping by!

  5. I buy books mostly because I tend to forget to return things. Just ask Blockbuster! 🙂 I don’t use any system to keep track of them since I usually only have one or two at a time.

    Enjoy the movie! I think the last Bond film I saw in a theater was For Your Eyes Only. I was a kid of course. 🙂

  6. Mike – Sheesh, you don’t even want to see my LibraryThing account. But to be fair, some of the books listed there are ones I read a while ago but don’t actually have any more.

    We saw Casino Royale at the movies two years ago, and have been looking forward to the new film. But before that, the last Bond movie I saw in a theater was A View to a Kill. If you’ve ever seen that one, you’ll understand why that soured me on Bond movies for quite a while.

    Janet – I’ve done a couple of posts on controversial topics lately, so that’s what came to mind for #1. Enjoy your time with Mr. Bond – I’m sure I will :-)!

  7. I bought a roll of BookCrossing stickers when I first joined. I’m still working my way through them. People seem to like them and I think they’re cute. I also have a little BookCrossing charm I wear on my work ID lantern (which says read in four different languages).

    I enjoyed reading your answer to the BTT question this week. I hadn’t thought about the trade paperback issue, but you are definitely right there. That’s my favorite format as well.

    I hate getting cut off in traffic. Ugh. I hope you are enjoying your weekend. What did you think of Quantum of Solace? Hubby and I went to see that this afternoon.

  8. Wendy (Literary Feline) – I found some of my BookCrossing supplies when we were packing up for the move, but I’m not sure where they are now :-).

    It’s nice to have hardcovers, but I just find trade paperbacks a more convenient and comfortable format for reading.

    Overall, I didn’t like Quantum of Solace as much as Casino Royale, but I thought it was pretty good. The action sequences were amazing, but I would have liked a little moe story. I do like the way that, by going back to the beginning, they really are shaping who James Bond is as a character, though. What did you think of the movie?

    Gautami – I guess I feel the same way about buying books :-).

  9. That’s pretty much how I felt about the new Bond movie too. I wish there had been more story. I kept waiting for the train chase since they threw in just about everything else. 🙂 The action bits were very well done, I agree.

  10. Wendy (LF) – Yeah, that was about the only thing missing. The boat chase scene was great, though :-). And apparently, hydrogen fuel cells can be VERY flammable…