PaperBackSwap Blog

Archive for December, 2008

Dear Members, Newsletter – December 2008

Saturday, December 6th, 2008

For a lot of us, this is a very special time of year.  My family celebrates Christmas; others celebrate different holidays this month that are equally meaningful to them – Eid al-adha on December 8th, Chanukah starting the 21st, the Winter Solstice on the 22nd, Kwanzaa on the 26th…
The holidays can be as stressful as they are wonderful, and this year is going to be particularly tough, what with the recession and trying to celebrate on a budget.  And for the families who have loved ones far away, the festivities will be bittersweet.
Lately, I find myself thinking a lot about one Christmas in particular: the one when I was 16 years old.  Sixteen: not quite a grown-up but not a boy anymore.   I had just bought my own first car and I was responsible for all the expenses – gas, insurance, repairs – but I was still kid enough to want “fun stuff” at Christmas.   The country was going through a recession then, just as it is now, and money was very tight; my siblings and I didn’t expect too much in terms of presents.  But still…
I remember my initial reaction when I saw that the only present under the tree for me was 2 new car tires!   After the initial disappointment, I realized what that gift actually meant.  My tires were bald; my dad didn’t want me to have an accident; my safety was more important to him than anything.    Now that I am a lot older and (I hope) a little wiser, I appreciate the thoughtfulness of that gift more than ever.  Looking back on those Christmas tires just provides more proof that the memories that matter don’t have to do with material things.  We devote a lot of time to shopping at this time of year, but long after the “stuff” is gone, the intangible things are what stay with us through the years and make us smile.
I bet many of you have similar stories, of a “lean” holiday that nonetheless gave you some of the most special memories of all.   We would love it if you would share them.   Please take a few minutes out of your day and think back to previous holidays… then click here to share one of your stories with the PBS family!

Happy holidays, and best wishes in the New Year!
from Richard and
The PaperBackSwap Team

TIPS & TRICKS: Newsletter – December 2008

Friday, December 5th, 2008

Gift Books…It’s not too late to request books to give for presents!  Remember that you can buy new versions of any book using the Buy it New button on any book listing, to click through to Amazon and purchase a new copy there.   You can also send one of your books on your bookshelf to a friend, using the Send to a Friend feature…  Don’t forget that your book credits can also be used on SwapaCD.com and at SwapaDVD.com if you have CDs or DVDs on your shopping list…read about how to transfer credits between your accounts at the different sites here.

Friends of PBS… Newsletter – December 2008

Friday, December 5th, 2008

We have been asked so many times for a way to “give back” to the club – so we made this feature available for members who want to donate to PBS.  It really helps us to donate credits back to the club!  You can donate money too – who doesn’t like money?  🙂   Every bit helps!   If you donate 3 credits or more, you get a nifty badge to wear on your profile and forum posts – the badge color reflects your contribution: silver, gold, diamond!  Donations are cumulative, so if you donate more than once your donations will be combined to determine the type of badge you get. You can read more about this feature here, and you can donate here.

Books You May Have Missed: Newsletter – December 2008

Thursday, December 4th, 2008

Check out these books, currently available to request right now! These come highly recommended by the PaperBackSwap Team.

Historical FictionSnow Flower and the Secret Fan is a brilliantly realistic journey back to an era of Chinese history that is as deeply moving as it is sorrowful. With the period detail and deep resonance of Memoirs of a Geisha, this lyrical and emotionally charged novel delves into one of the most mysterious of human relationships: female friendship.
Paranormal RomanceJust Like Heaven…What do you do when you find a stranger in your closet, particularly when she’s surprised that you can even see her — and she can disappear and reappear at whim? What if she then tells you that her body is actually in a coma on the other side of town?
Biographies and Memoirs… A gripping memoir that reads like a political thriller–a heartrending account in the face of extreme deprivation and the courage with which one family faced its fate, Stolen Lives is an unforgettable story of one woman’s journey to freedom.
Mysteries and Thrillers… Special Circumstances…Introducing an electrifying new voice in legal fiction–in a phenomenal thriller unlike anything you’ve read before…Debut author Sheldon Siegel bursts into the legal arena with a riveting courtroom drama, exposing the world of big-time law firms and lawyers in a sharp-witted, wonderfully sardonic page-turner of a novel…

Fantasy… Carpe Demon: The Adventures of a Demon-Hunting Soccer Mom…Lots of women put their careers aside once the kids come along. Kate Connor, for instance, hadn’t hunted a demon in ages,  when one crashed into the Connor house, intent on killing her.  Now Kate has to clean up the mess in her kitchen, dispose of a dead demon, and pull together a dinner party…

Member of the Month – December 2008

Tuesday, December 2nd, 2008


“Manny” is well-known to anyone who frequents the forums.  She’s “a girl, dammit” – as her blinkie says.  We have been getting nominations for Chris for a long time.  Some of the nominating comments:

“…Highly intelligent with an off the wall sense of humor and a good heart, this gal is always interesting and fun to follow…”

“She’s always very nice to everyone. Oh, and she writes letters and sends them snail mail on homemade stationary to several people. She’s one cool chick!”

“She is consistently kind and levelheaded, and always helpful when possible….”

“Chris has helped many members with her image tutorial. She’s always kind and helpful … She hosts fun swaps! She’s thoughtful, writing notes to members on her handmade paper, sending surprise books and hot cocoa and just an all-around nice person! She makes PBS a great place to hang out!”

Chris, you are a wonderful pool shark!  You are our Member of the Month for December. Congratulations!

If you have any nominations for Member of the Month,
submit them to us here.  Your nomination will not “expire”–anyone you nominate will have a chance at getting Member of the Month if enough nominations accumulate over time. Each month the person who has the most votes accumulated when the Newsletter goes to press gets to be Member of the Month and gets a newsletter mention and a nifty MoM icon to wear on profile and forum posts with pride.  So go for it! Tell us who’s helped you in the Forums, who’s been a great swapper, who in your opinion is a credit to PBS.  We are keeping a list of all the nominated members.  Who knows–one of them might be YOU!

DEAR LIBRARIAN: Newsletter – December 2008

Monday, December 1st, 2008

Dear Librarian-I love Printed Postage!  Can’t believe I ever did without it.  My printer ran out of ink though and I had already downloaded the wrapper with postage – couldn’t print it.  I have put new cartridges in my printer – will I be re-charged when I reprint the wrapper?  – Nervous in Newton

Dear  Newt,

Nope! You won’t be re-charged.  If you ever need to reprint a wrapper for any reason, just start over by clicking Print Wrapper on the request, be sure that you choose the postage option on the Wrapper Settings page, and print.  You can confirm that you are not re-charged by looking in your Money Registry, linked from the top of your My Account main page.
Dear Librarian- I posted a book incorrectly – I used the hardcover listing when I had the paperback, and the ISBNs were the same so I was confused – and now I need to refund the credit.  Is there an easy way to do this?  -Careless in Coventry

Dear Carrie,

Yes, you can just go to the swap in your Transaction Archive (linked from your My Account main page) and click the Request Details link on the right, then scroll down a little on the details page and click the Give Refund button.

We are sorry you had this confusion when posting your book – because publishers sometimes re-use ISBNs and it is necessary for all books to match the listings used to post them (ISBN, title, author and booktype must all match), it is really important to double-check the booktype on the listing preview before clicking to post the book.

If you’re careful to use only listings that match the books you have (see How to Post a Book and Solutions to Common Book Posting Problems, both accessible from the Need Help? tab on the upper right of the Post Books page), you won’t have this problem again!


  • The year 2009!   Are you ready?  What are your New Year’s Resolutions?