PaperBackSwap Blog

DEAR LIBRARIAN: Newsletter – May 2008

Dear Librarian– I got a book request for a book that is not on my bookshelf!  The request is staring me in the face on my account page, but when I go to my bookshelf the book isn’t listed there.  How did this happen?  Is there a book-posting poltergeist at PBS? –Chills Up My Spine in Chicago

Dear ChiChi,

Don’t worry!  The book was requested from you because it WAS on your bookshelf–until it was requested.  A book that is involved in a Wish List hold or an active request is removed from the bookshelf and displayed on your account page.  How did the book get onto your bookshelf?  It was posted there!   Maybe you posted this book long ago, and have forgotten that you have it, or have given it away since then.  Maybe you entered the ISBN incorrectly, and the wrong title got posted.  If you have posted a lot of books, it can be easy to forget one.

You can see when you posted this book on the request itself, when it is pending on your My Account page.  Sometimes it helps to “track it down” by looking at your Bookshelf and sorting the list there by Date (this = date posted).  You can see what books were posted at the same time as this one, if they are still on your bookshelf.  That may help you locate the book with those others in your house.  (Members who use Book Journal will also see the Space to which they assigned this book when they posted it, right on the pending request.)   That’s not to say there isn’t a book-posting poltergeist–but look for him or her in your house, not in the PBS system. 🙂

If you can’t find this book, you should click “I cannot mail”.  If you do that and find the book later, just repost it.

Dear Librarian–Do NOT tell me there isn’t a PBS Poltergeist.  My account keeps going on vacation, no matter WHAT I do!  Every time I look at my Bookshelf, there it is: the notice that I am on vacation.  I’m calling an exorcist, pronto! –NOT on vacation in New Hampshire

Dear Hamp,

The “Vacation Hold” you are seeing at the top of your Bookshelf is not a notice that your account is on vacation.  It is just a link to the page where you can schedule a vacation hold.  If your account is on vacation (or a vacation hold is scheduled), you will see a message telling you this in a pink box on your My Account page (at the top).   If you do see that notice and you didn’t mean to put your account on hold, just click the button in the message to Unhold your account.  Putting your account on vacation needs you to go to the vacation hold page, choose dates, and then click Apply Hold.  If you don’t do these things, you won’t be on hold.  You might want to send your exorcist over to ChiChi’s house in Chicago.  🙂

Dear Librarian–I got an email telling me a book I sent was received, but I didn’t get a credit.  What happened?  Bummed in Baton Rouge

Dear Batty,

Check your Credit Registry, linked from the top of your My Account page.  The credit should show there.  If you got an email telling you the book was received, and the credit isn’t shown as being deposited on the date/time of that email, check the email again.  If you used PBS-DC or Printed Postage, you may have already gotten your credit, and the email was just telling you that the book was received.  If that was the case, the email will say this, and you will find the credit listed farther down your Registry.  The Registry is a great way to keep track of your credit activity.

Dear Librarian–A book that I sent came back to me for insufficient postage!  I put on the amount of postage that the wrapper said to use!  Why was the postage amount incorrect on the wrapper?  –Puzzled in Peekskill

Dear Peek,

We’re sorry that this happened!  Sounds like the “estimated weight” of the book in our database was incorrect, and you didn’t adjust it on the Wrapper Settings page before you printed.  Our “required postage” amount is calculated based on what information our database has for the weight of the book.   We get our database from an outside source, and it has inaccuracies sometimes.

You can ensure that the correct postage prints out on the wrapper by adjusting the estimated weight (if necessary) on the Wrapper Settings page before you print, and you can submit a permanent change to the weight of any book using the Edit Book Data link at the bottom of any page on the site, to prevent problems for future senders of that book.

You can read more in the Help doc The *recommended postage* on my wrapper was wrong! in the Help Center.  You should also take a gander at the FAQs About Printable Postage and Sending Bulk (multiple-book) shipments, each of which has  information about customizing the Wrapper Settings page to get the correct postage and postal class for your shipment.

Check the weight on the Wrapper Settings page before you print, and you’ll never go “postage-due” again!

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