Second Hand Books

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ladymarella
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Second Hand Books

Post by ladymarella » December 15th, 2009, 10:24 pm

How much of your bookshelf comprises of second hand books? For me, I'd say about 98%. It does help I read alot of the old classics, but going to a second hand book shop and splurging on three or four books, the combined cost about half what you'd pay for one new book, is suh a good feeling.
Currently composing a sprawling family saga set in 19th century England
The world may be divided into people that read, people that write, people that think, and fox-hunters.'- William Shenstone,

Tzalaran
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Re: Second Hand Books

Post by Tzalaran » December 15th, 2009, 10:35 pm

My collection is about half new and half used. i've had to buy copies of books i loaned out and never got back quite a few times. My wife's collection is mostly new, as she devours all her favorite authors newest releases as soon as they come out.
I'd rather hate myself for failing, than hate my life for never having tried.
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Rhonda
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Re: Second Hand Books

Post by Rhonda » December 15th, 2009, 11:11 pm

We love used books. I simply can't afford to buy new books every time my kids want one, and they rarely settle with borrowing a book from the library because they always end up wanting to read it over again. I was actually on a quest with my son yesterday and today to find the second book (and if lucky, 3rd, 4th, so on) in the Ranger's Apprentice series by John Flanagan at our two local used book shops. No luck at either. Had to go to Barnes and Noble and even they were out and we had to order the next few in the series. On the plus side, while at one used book store, we picked up three hardcover books for $10: The Hunger Games; Catching Fire; and the complete Prydain series. THAT was a nice feeling : ) You know what else is fun about used book stores? It seems I almost always end up in discussions with others there about what my kids and their kids are reading, and exchanging suggestions. I actually sold The Underland Chronicles and Mysterious Benedict Society while out today. lol

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Nathan Bransford
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Re: Second Hand Books

Post by Nathan Bransford » December 16th, 2009, 2:26 am

I definitely understand second hand books for people who have tight budgets, but if you can afford it new books are the way to go if you want to support authors. Authors don't receive any royalties for used book sales, so if you want to write in this industry I feel like it's important to support the industry when you can.

That said, I definitely like finding a beautiful antique book as much as the next person!

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CharleeVale
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Re: Second Hand Books

Post by CharleeVale » December 16th, 2009, 2:41 am

I agree. I used to be a big library girl, and then I realized I wasn't doing the authors any favors by not buying their books. So now I buy almost all of my books.

But one antique treasure I did find was a 1927 copy of ten of Shakespeare's plays. The previous author has written all over it in quotes and brilliant footnotes! what a find!

This was the quote I found written on the end page. "Unless I can make clear what would otherwise remain obscure, unless I can make beautiful what otherwise would remain commonplace, unless I can make live what otherwise would remain dead on the printed page, I as a reader have no excuse for being." There is no author.

CV

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marilyn peake
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Re: Second Hand Books

Post by marilyn peake » December 16th, 2009, 2:56 am

It’s so cool, Charlee, that you found that book! Wow!

I only own one used book, and it’s not nearly as cool as the one Charlee owns. I try to buy all my books, in order to support the authors.
Marilyn Peake

Novels: THE FISHERMAN’S SON TRILOGY and GODS IN THE MACHINE. Numerous short stories. Contributor to BOOK: THE SEQUEL. Editor of several additional books. Awards include Silver Award, 2007 ForeWord Magazine Book of the Year Awards.

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Hillsy
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Re: Second Hand Books

Post by Hillsy » December 16th, 2009, 4:43 am

If you count one's I inherited from my dad then about 25%....if not then 0%

And don't think I can afford to just throw money away on books either...I mean I was so out of cash I actually had to read Digital Fortress once and that turned me almost off language as a whole!!

I just manage my funds and have a lucky taste in books. I've never not finished a book (and christ there's been a couple - Digital Fortress, The Amber Spyglass, Metamorphosis and the second in the Dune trilogy - can't remember what it's called as my brains protecting me by blotting it - spring to mind) so I always get value for money there....also I read Sci-Fi and Fantasy so the majority of novels I pick up are in excess of 180K words.....nothing makes you funds go further than reading the 'Wheel Of Time'...hehe

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Scott
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Re: Second Hand Books

Post by Scott » December 16th, 2009, 8:10 am

Nathan Bransford wrote:I definitely understand second hand books for people who have tight budgets, but if you can afford it new books are the way to go if you want to support authors. Authors don't receive any royalties for used book sales, so if you want to write in this industry I feel like it's important to support the industry when you can.

That said, I definitely like finding a beautiful antique book as much as the next person!
I agree, Nathan. That said, I will often borrow or pick up some stuff used on Amazon to get a feel for an author, and then go ahead and purchase just about everything they've written if I like them. I tend to specialize and load up. Also, I've had books lent to me that have turned me on to an author I probably would have never tried on my own, so lending and the like can be very important to an author's career.

Rhonda
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Re: Second Hand Books

Post by Rhonda » December 16th, 2009, 2:13 pm

I understand about used books not being good for the authors, although I have to say that they're not as bad as it might seem either. For example, I bought the first Ranger's Apprentice book at a second hand shop. I wouldn't have bought it new because I wasn't sure my kid would like it. In the end, he loved it and all told, we ended up buying the rest of the series new. That's 5 books sold that never would have been if not for a second hand book store. Also, the books I suggested for others to buy while at the used book stores, weren't available there. Those women went to Barnes and Noble to buy them. That's from 2 to 8 more if they end up buying the whole series of the books I suggested. There have been other books I've picked up used and ended up buying the rest of the series new, and also many we've borrowed from the library only to end up buying new for re-reads. It seems like a truly good book is going to make money from me one way or another ; )

greencastle
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Re: Second Hand Books

Post by greencastle » December 19th, 2009, 6:29 pm

I go into bookshops and buy something every couple of weeks, but I also go into secondhand bookshops.In a 'new' bookshop the books are piled up in a haphazard way. The shelves can also be strangely arranged in different categories. One shop had 'in order of publisher' - Penguins apart from Hodder, for instance. Very puzzling.
Secondhand bookshops have everything in alphabetical order,so you can find books easily.
In the secondhand bookshops you see what people have actually bought. The two don't tally at all. Danielle Steel, Catherine Cookson,Wilbur Wright, Jeffrey Archer - that kind of writer is what people have bought and read.
I only hope everyone is keeping the good ones at home on their bookshelves.

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Marla Warren
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Re: Second Hand Books

Post by Marla Warren » December 20th, 2009, 12:48 pm

Nathan Bransford wrote:I definitely understand second hand books for people who have tight budgets, but if you can afford it new books are the way to go if you want to support authors. Authors don't receive any royalties for used book sales, so if you want to write in this industry I feel like it's important to support the industry when you can.

That said, I definitely like finding a beautiful antique book as much as the next person!
I agree, Nathan. (But in the interests of full disclosure, I have to say that I work as a bookseller for one of the large bookstore chains--an insidious place to have an employee discount.)

I do patronize the local second hand bookstores, but the books I buy there are out of print. I also find many out of print books on Ebay.

Recently I had a nice conversation with the owner of one of the local second hand shops. He said someone told him that his business must be up because of the recession as people would buy books there instead of the retail book stores. He said that when times are bad, people don't forsake retail bookstores for secondhand ones. They forsake bookstores entirely for libraries.
“Good writing should be smooth, clear and short, and the art of saying little in much must be avoided at all costs.”
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Holly
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Re: Second Hand Books

Post by Holly » December 22nd, 2009, 5:25 am

Eight years ago, my husband and I moved to a tiny, historic town with NO BOOKSTORE (gasp, I almost died)... except a used bookstore that recently dumped all its paperbacks. Their hardbacks are way, way overpriced, so I rarely go in there anymore.

I order online, plus I buy cheesy mass market paperbacks in the Rite Aid and the Giant Food. I recently found out that I can get paperbacks for 25 cents at the Rescue Mission. The public library has a tiny bookstore with used books.

I buy anything and everything just to see what people are writing and how they are writing it. I skim a lot of paperbacks for ideas on dialogue, etc., but most of them are so awful I can't get into them.

The books I really want to read from cover to cover (like The Third Man) I order online.

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Bryan Russell/Ink
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Re: Second Hand Books

Post by Bryan Russell/Ink » December 23rd, 2009, 12:06 am

Dangerous question for me. I have, um, twenty thousand used books. But lots of new ones, too. :) And if I had money there'd be even more.
The Alchemy of Writing at www.alchemyofwriting.blogspot.com

Madeleine
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Re: Second Hand Books

Post by Madeleine » December 23rd, 2009, 12:17 am

I don't have many. I do have a second impression (practically first edition) The Chronicles of Avonlea by L.M. Montgomery and a really old copy of An Oldfashioned Girl by Louisa May Alcott, but besides those, I have hardly any used books. Those two are beauties....

-Madeleine
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casnow
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Re: Second Hand Books

Post by casnow » December 23rd, 2009, 12:23 am

I only buy second hand when traveling - I picked up a copy of Zen and the Art of Motorcycle maintenance in Paraguay a few years ago, a couple of Le Carre novels in Norway, and few others in central Amercia... I also once "liberated" a copy of catch-22 that was in the toilet paper pile of a hostel in Nicaragua (yes, that is what they were using books for).

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