It's that time of year for cleaning out the shelves and cupboards to make room for new Christmas items. If you're like me, the somewhat topsy-turvy condition of the house makes you go nuts after just a couple days, perhaps you'll be thrilled with this option for cleaning out your bookshelves -- BookMooch.
I did a little test run on this site so that I could give a good report on how it works, and I've been pretty happy, overall. Once you join, you create an inventory of the titles you are willing to give away (prepare yourself for a great relief -- getting rid of stuff!). Making an inventory is super fast, just type in the ISBN and it will pull up all the info for you, including an image of the cover. You get 1 point for every 10 books you list. The night I made my inventory, I instantly had 3 or so points to spend (every book costs one point). Before the day was over, another 12 points had been added to my total, because I had so many people mooch my books. Now, I had to send out all those books to whoever mooched them from me, but using media mail, the cost was not too much, and since the books are free, you don't need to worry about fancy packing material. I used quite a few of my points to mooch books I wanted from other people (it's super easy to search -- by title, author, ISBN). I've gotten books from the United Kingdom, Finland, all over! (Check out the Finnish newspaper that was wrapped around my book!)
Some of you undoubtedly do E-Bay or Amazon, and that's cool, but I've been burned by both of those before. BookMooch is nice because it's free, so the pressure is off, somewhat. And you feel like you are actually getting your books into the hands of people who really want them (for instance, I've sent out Josh's old textbooks, and academic books neither of us will ever read). In return you get the exact books you want right now -- and when you're reading them, they somehow doesn't seem to take up as much room on the shelf.