PaperBackSwap Blog

Archive for the ‘Dear Members’ Category

Dear Members,

Monday, May 17th, 2010

With Summer just around the corner, my thoughts go back to that time as a child, anticipating the joy of release from school.  Just knowing that we were not going to be on a schedule or that we had to go to school was enough to get me out of bed and raring to go!   May was all about the thrill of anticipation: soon, no more homework, no more studying for tests, just long summer days running around outside, riding bikes, playing with my friends – the anticipation of summer was as good as summer itself!

Had I known that summer vacation was a childhood phenomenon and that this would all come to a screeching halt as an adult, I would have certainly relished that time more intensely.  The good news is that  I can still find that wonderful feeling these days…whenever I open a book I’ve been eager to read.  The simple enjoyment of falling into a story; what’s better than that?   Whatever you’re seeking – a thrillride or a return to the innocent fun of childhood or a devious whodunit – it’s all just waiting for you between the covers of a  book!

Have a great month of May.   And a special Happy Mother’s Day to all of our Moms out there!

Richard and
The PaperBackSwap Team

Dear PBS Members,

Tuesday, April 27th, 2010

Happy Spring!

Things are blooming and the birds are singing; nature is coming back to life.   Time for spring-cleaning and yard cleanup, looking forward to outdoor fun with the family.   It’s a wonderful time of year.   And we have wonderful news to go with it!  We’ve been able to expand our donations program with a new program for military families.   We are happy to announce Story Time with Soldiers in co-operation with United Through Reading.

United Through Reading is a nonprofit organization devoted to uniting families by the simple yet important act of reading together.  Their military program, as featured on NBC Nightly News, focuses on families separated by military deployment.  How it works : Prior to deployment, soldiers read a storybook for their children while being videotaped. Then a DVD is sent to the family along with the book, and the family can watch the DVD and read the book with the children.  Through Story Time with Soldiers, Paperbackswap will be providing new children’s books for the soldiers to read aloud – every credit a member donates will get a book for this purpose!  You can also donate PBS Money to offset the cost of buying and shipping the new books.  Your donations can really make a difference in the lives of our military families as they protect and serve our country.   You can read more/donate here.

We hope that everyone is having a terrific Spring!
and the PaperBackSwap Team

Dear Members

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb… If you’ve been snowed in and are going stir crazy waiting for spring, we recommend taking a mental vacation, with a great read.  A good book can absorb you and make the cares of the outside world fall away.  No need to put on winter gear to go bookshopping, of course – your next great read is no farther away than the PBS Market.

We’re really pleased by the feedback we have gotten from members since opening the Market, which offers NEW overstock books at discount prices.  Members especially love the ability to use a credit for each book, to reduce the prices even lower.  You can find the Market under the Search option in the grey menu bar at the top of any page on the site, you can see Market books during your regular book searches, and you can also browse Market books on your Member Homepage by clicking the “New Books for Purchase” link below the lower sliding display.  There is also one Wish Listed book currently available in the Market at the top of your homepage, which changes every hour.  Take a few minutes to browse the Market, and remember that each purchase supports PBS and helps keep membership free.

On a sad note, a very dear member of the club has left us – LeAnne Grant (Gracious-Granny) passed on peacefully after an illness.  Many of you knew her, had received books from her, or had been helped by her in her Tour Guide role here in the club. She was a truly kind and lovely person and she will be sorely missed.  Working with her daughter, we have set up a School Book Donation campaign in LeAnne’s memory.  It seemed a fitting tribute to one who touched so many lives, and to whom books and reading were so important. We hope that all of you will visit the donation page to leave your comments about LeAnne, which we will share with the family.
We also hope that everyone will hug a loved one a little extra hard today, or tell someone how much he or she means to you.  The few seconds you take to say “I love you” to your parent, partner, child or friend are never wasted.

Take care,
Richard and the PaperBackSwap Team

Dear Members; Introducing PBS Market – NEW overstock books at bargain prices

Thursday, February 4th, 2010

We are really happy about what we got for you for St. Valentine’s Day this year! It’s a very special addition to the site: the PBS Market. The Market offers NEW overstock books at bargain prices – many of the books are on your Wish Lists right now!
The Market is not like any bookstore you’ve ever been to – we’ve integrated it with your PaperBackSwap account so you can

  • Opt to use a Book Credit for each book purchase to lower the cost of that book even further
  • See at a glance if any of your Wish List books are currently available in the Market
  • Sort your Wish and Reminder Lists to show books available in the Market at the top of the list
  • Use the Buy from PBS Market button wherever it appears on any listing on the site, to buy a book from the Market
  • Support PBS with every purchase you make

Get books for your friends and family, and really share the love! Encourage them to shop the Market too – every purchase supports the club and helps to keep it free. Books are mailed to any valid USPS address. The shipping is Media Mail (in our testing so far the transit times have been quick), and you can save greatly on shipping and handling by ordering more than one book in a shipment.
You can find the Market under the Search option in the grey menu bar at the top of any page on the site, you can see Market books during your regular book searches, and you can also browse Market books on your Member Homepage by clicking the “New Books for Purchase” link below the lower sliding display.
Head to the Market to browse the selection (over 8000 titles)! New books are added every hour, so check back often. Please note – supplies of some books are limited, so if you see a book you want, you might be wise to grab it. You can read more about the Market in the Help Center.

We hope you’ll love this new feature and the newest way to support the club!

Happy reading to you, your friends and your family,
and the PaperBackSwap Team

Dear Members: Decluttering in 2010

Monday, January 18th, 2010

Welcome to the brand new year, in a brand new decade!  Doesn’t it make you want to get things all spick-and-span and orderly, to start 2010 fresh?

We Americans are lucky – most of us have too much stuff.   It’s a good problem to have, really–and a good problem to solve.  De-cluttering experts recommend some general rules of thumb:

  • Handle every piece of paper that comes into your house only once.
  • Don’t bring anything home that you don’t have a place and purpose for.
  • For every new possession that enters your house, one must leave.

This can translate into some simple actions: have a recycling bin for paper near the place where you sort your mail when you bring it in the house; visualize where something will go (and what it will be used for) before you purchase it; and for every book you get, send one out!

It’s a great time to get organized, actually.  If the behavior of past years is any predictor, Wish List books are going to be pouring into the system for the next couple of months, as folks read their Christmas and Chanukah presents and post them.  You don’t want to miss your Wish List book because you don’t have credits.  So now’s the time to go through your book shelves/piles/mountains and post the books you will not read again (and that meet club criteria for swapping, of course).  Get them out of your house and into the next reader’s happy hands, and get credits for your upcoming PBS orders!
Those of you who are buried under snow, we wish you well!  Be careful if you have to drive, keep warm, and remember that a cup of hot chocolate and a good book can go a long way toward curing the winter blues. Don’t forget the marshmallows – life is too short to skimp on the marshmallows.

To all of our members: Let’s have a wonderful 2010!

and the PaperBackSwap Team

Dear Members,

Tuesday, December 8th, 2009

When I was very young, my parents would often take us on vacation up north to visit my grandparents and other relatives.  The favorite topic of conversation on the drive up was whether there would be enough snow for sledding down the hills.  Well, it was my favorite topic of conversation, anyway!  I couldn’t wait to go sledding, and every year I spent the whole long car ride wishing and wishing for snow.

Nowadays, I still like snow…I like to watch it fall, from inside a warm house!   When it’s snowing, I am perfectly content sitting in a comfortable chair beside the fireplace reading a good book.  Sometimes I wonder where that kid went, the one who loved to rush down the hills, but then I am reassured by looking at my own kids, who still love snow and sledding and everything about Christmas.   We grownups grumble about holiday shopping and all the hassles of the season, but for the kids it is still pure magic.

So while you’re feeling stressed this holiday season and asking yourself whether all the effort is worth it,  take a moment to remember why we do it – because the holidays (whichever one you celebrate at this time of year) bring family together, make memories that last a lifetime, and let us “old folks” relive a little of that magic from our childhoods.

On behalf of the entire PBS team, we wish you and your loved ones a wonderful holiday and a terrific New Year!

and the PaperBackSwap Team

Dear Members- Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 23rd, 2009

The goblins and ghosties are gone from the door, we’re pigging out on leftover candy and gearing up for winter…and here it comes, the holiday season!   From Thanksgiving through the New Year, it’s a mad rush of family and feasting, decorating and cooking and shopping…we hope that you carve out some time to relax and enjoy a quiet read.

Those of you who haven’t ordered the PBS Cookbook, now’s the time!  There are all kinds of enticements – many member-submitted recipes that would be great for Thanksgiving, a picture of me in a chef’s hat (!), and also you can’t miss the famous author recipes. Some of them are funny (Dave Barry‘s extremely challenging recipe for example), some of them are fanciful (David Anthony‘s Crunchy Dragonscale Delight), and most of them I can’t wait to try – Ken Follett ‘s Hot Dressed Vegetables on page 98 look easy and delicious.   Hey, if anyone tries the recipe that I provided for the book, let me know how it turns out.  It’s one of my time-tested favorites.  You should get your order in now for the Cookbook before we run out!

Thanksgiving can be a matter of cooking and feasting, then snoozing in front of the game on TV – and that’s all good!  But I do try to keep the real meaning of the holiday in mind.   Some of us may have less than we did last year; some of us may be doing okay but are still worried about the future.  It is easy to focus on what we don’t have, and what is wrong.  If each of us takes a quiet moment in the middle of the hubbub to close our eyes and finish this sentence: I am so lucky because… we might be surprised by what comes to mind.  Let’s all join in acknowledging the bounty in each of our lives.

We wish everyone a great month and a wonderful Thanksgiving,

and the PaperBackSwap Team