New arrival

June 25, 2009

As some of you may know my wife gave birth to our first baby, our daughter Phoebe, on the 11th. So if you’ve been sending me emails and wondering why I’ve not been replying that is why.

But now the chaos has calmed down a little, I’ve got more of a chance to get to my laptop and go through emails and maintain the site. So sorry if you’ve had any problems and there’s been no-one to look at them. I’ve awarded a whole bunch of awards on the site and been looking at a couple of bugs, so if you have any problems on the site please let me know.

By the way baby pics can be found at http://www.flickr.com/photos/weswapbooks

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Introducing Shuffling

April 28, 2009

Now I know I promised a newsletter this week, but due to losing my internet connection at home and BT looking into it, I’m not going to be able to send the newsletter this week. Instead what I’m going to do is mention “Shuffling”.

SHUFFLING

We have over 700 books on the site at the moment. I realise that some of them have been on for a while and may have slid to the bottom of a few pages. It may have been sometime since they’ve appeared on the front page of the site. And this is where shuffling comes in. We can take some books and change their submission date to the site, thus making them appear back at the top of the list.

I know what you’re thinking “Is this an attempt to boost the old junk people didn’t want to make them appear as if they’re new books?” and to be honest, partly. For one, they’re not old junk. Some of the books we have had on the site for a long time are considered great books. Secondly, we’re just trying to give all our members a chance to get rid of books they don’t want anymore and we think this will help.

HOW – TO

Just send us a list of the books you’d like shuffled, no more than 10, and we can re-jig their position on the site. If the book doesn’t have a cover photo let me know and we’ll do our best to find one.

Probably best to send the list using this page : http://www.weswapbooks.com/uk/contactus/

Don’t forget the Christian Aid book sale in Edinburgh next month (see you there) and we are planning to begin development of wish lists on the site soon as well.

You can catch me on twitter at http://twitter.com/weswapbooks. If you have any problems/questions/suggestions then either post them here or use the link above to contact me.

Anne Rice Books

February 25, 2009

One of our members just added a whole bunch of Anne Rice books if there are any fans out there

http://www.weswapbooks.com/uk/fiction/horror.aspx

February Newsletter

February 16, 2009

Sending out the newsletter tomorrow, but for you blog readers here it is

http://www.weswapbooks.com/uk/newsletter/newsletter_3.html

If you’re interested in signing up for our newsletter, click here

ok, we’ve come to the end of January and that’s the end of the first We Swap Books competition. I hope to get a newsletter out next week, winners will be announced in the newsletter.

I’ll send the winners an email in the next few days.

A new feature added to the site is you can now add your own book reviews. I’ll mention more in the newsletter but you can find more details here

Don’t forget you can follow the site updates on twitter at http://twitter.com/weswapbooks

Edgar would be 200

January 19, 2009

It’s the 200th anniversary of Edgar Allen Poe’s birth and the New York Times have a good article/slideshow on Edgar and his works at

http://www.nytimes.com/slideshow/2009/01/16/books/eapoe-SLIDE-SHOW-01-17-2009_index.html

Just a reminder as well that I now have a twitter account, so if you’re on twitter you can keep up to date on site updates and basic dribblings from my brain at http://twitter.com/weswapbooks

Also hope to have an announcement soon on book reviews, watch this space.

So, last night I went to the Edinburgh Internet Marketing Meetup and I heard Mike Coulter speak about Social Media and the way it’s been going and the possible road ahead. Now I’m not one for reviewing so I’m not going to list everything Mike said, but if he’s doing a talk near you and you have the opportunity to go along, then go. He had a lot of interesting insights, good ideas, cautionary tales and other assorted internet related adventures to share with the group. If you’re involved in the web in a professional sense in any way, I would recommend listening to one of Mike’s talks.

One thing he convinced me of is that my site (www.weswapbooks.com) is, in old diplomatic terms, a closed border country. I’ve been thinking since the talk that people are only going to visit the site to swap books, no other reasons. I was hoping to turn the site into a book community. Obviously that people would swap books there, but discuss books and participate in a community sense. It hasn’t happened and I just though “well maybe that’s not what people want”. But after last nights talk I think it is. I think somewhere for people to meet, talk about authors, review books and swap books is maybe what people want and I think maybe the site needs to be more interactive, more social.

So, planned improvements include

  • Members will be able to upload their own book reviews into the book reviews section
  • They’ll also be able to leave comments on other reviews, leave feedback and discuss the reviews as well as rate reviews
  • Only this week I’ve just started using twitter and I am going to use it, not only as a personal account but, also as an announcement service for weswapbooks
  • I’m not 100% what the tools are, but I’m going to look at the Amazon Developers Network and perhaps utilise some of their tools in the site

And I’m going to keep the old grey matter ticking over on what new and exciting tools we can use in an attempt to, going back to the old diplomatic terms, open the borders of our country.

And this is where you come in…if you have any ideas/suggestions on how to improve the site and/or make it more sociable, I’d love to hear. Post them as a comment to this post, please. Thanks.

By the way on a side note it was great to meet everyone at the event last night. Good people, good ideas, good beer, good chat, I will hopefully be along to the next one.

twittering

January 7, 2009

Thought it was about time I not only had a twitter account but that We Swap Books had one as well, so

http://twitter.com/weswapbooks

Follow for site updates and other inane stuff from my head.

Competition

January 1, 2009

CompetitionAnnouncing our first competition at We Swap Books, running throughout January 2009.

To find out more,  click here

1st prize is £25 in book tokens. Kind of excited about this and hoping for a good turnout, this being our first competition. Also in the next few weeks I hope to send only the 2nd issue of our newsletter.

Recommended Books

December 22, 2008

This Christmas the Scottish Book Trust has reviewed 16 books that they recommend for Christmas presents. Some fantastic books on this list, including one of my favourites “Day of the Triffids”.

The list can be found at the URL below.

http://www.scottishbooktrust.com/adults/books/recommended-reading/book-of-the-month-christmas-special

Great list and some great stocking fillers if you’re stuck for an idea.

And also to all our swappers we hope you have a Merry Christmas  and a Happy New Year.