While e-reading devices are very popular there are still a number of people who prefer a book with actual pages that they can turn as they read. If you love books you know that they can quickly take over your home. Unless you have an actual room to use as dedicated library you probably have books tucked on various shelves throughout your home. This can make it hard to remember what you have and where to find it. For general home library advice you can refer back to our previous post. If you’d like to learn more about how to keep your collection in check by swapping books with your friends and neighbors this is the post for you. Plus, we’ll have some great Stockpile home inventory management solution tips as well.
Can You Host?
Hosting a book swap is fairly easy. You just need a space with enough flat surfaces or shelves to display a number of books. You’ll want to provide some snacks and drinks but since everyone is there to browse the books it doesn’t have to be a huge spread or anything fancy. Finger foods are great but forgo messy dips or anything that will stick to your guests’ hands. No one wants a sticky, smudged book.
Who Should You Invite?
Choose your guest list carefully. This isn’t a party that everyone would enjoy. You want people that love to read and a group with varied tastes but nothing too extreme. If you have one friend whose taste in literature is a little out there they may come with books that no one else wants and they will be unable to find options that interest them. That is not just disappointing, it can lead to a socially awkward situation and even hard feelings that impact your friendship. Really think about your friends and their interests before you send out your invitation. Also, consider the scope of your event. Do you want to include children’s books or just keep it to adult options? Specify your intent when you organize the event. That way will know what to expect and bring appropriate options to swap.
Are There Rules?
The next thing to consider is how you want to handle the actual swap. One option is a white elephant style swap. Each guest brings one book to the party. Everyone draws a number to determine who gets first choice and so on. The first person chooses a book, the second person can choose a different book or they can steal the book the first person chose. Each subsequent guest has the same option to choose a new book or steal from another guest. The only caveat is that a book can only be stolen twice so person number three to choose that title gets to keep it.
If you’d like to add an additional element of fun you can ask guests to wrap their selections and tape a brief description of why they loved this book to the outside of the package. Guests can read the description and then try to guess the title of the book before they choose. Reading the synopsis on the back of the book is one thing but getting actual feedback from your friends can be more enlightening.
Some people don’t care for the stealing aspect of white elephant swaps and they may want to allow guests to bring more than one book to the party. In that case you can allow guests to draw multiple numbers. After giving them time to mingle and narrow down their choices the guests go around the room in order of their numbers and select books. To ensure that everyone gets a fair chance you can have two or more sets of numbers. That way everyone gets a first round pick and then a second round and so on. Any lonely books left at the end of the night can be donated to a library, school, or other charity.
There’s So Much More
Hopefully this introduction gave you some great ideas on how to host a book swap. Check back soon for more tips on how to manage your library and other collections. Don’t forget to use Stockpile home inventory management solution before and after your event. You’ll want to track the books that you started out with as well as the new additions to your collection. Creating item records is so quick and easy. You choose which fields to include so you can track all the information that is important to you. Having all the data you need at your fingertips can save you time and money. If you’re ready to see what we can do for you try Stockpile today!