Books, Books. How Do I Keep Track of Them?

oldbooksIf you homeschool, you most likely have books around your house. There may be many. There may be few. They may be old. They may be new. (End of rhyme.) They may be real (physical/printed) books or they may be digital ebooks (on your computer or e-reader) or, more than likely, you own a combination of both types. You may also even have audiobooks that you listen to. As a homeschooler, there’s even a good chance that you are a bibliophile–a lover, and perhaps collector, of books.

If you have more than just a few books and/or more than one child, it may be difficult to keep up with exactly what you do have (in books, not children). There is a constant stream of free ebook downloads for home educators, in addition to the plethora of old public domain books available in free ebook format, and those can really add up and get scattered and buried in the digital space of your computer.

In this new series of articles, I’m going to address some ways to help you organize and catalog all your books–printed, ebooks and audiobooks. The not-so-secret answer to this dilemma is a computer database. But how to do that easily, though not a secret, may be not well known. It takes a bit of time initially, to get it set up. (How much time depends on how many books you already have.) But it is truly a time saver–and money saver–in the long run. There are many great benefits of doing this cataloging–insurance purposes being one–and it can be done relatively painlessly. It doesn’t (like you may presume) take long arduous hours of manually typing in all the info you want to store about your books.

Subscribe (to get updates to your email) to start learning how you can do this (or check back tomorrow). In the meantime, here’s a clip from what I wrote in 2008, on the beginnings of the journey I’ve taken to do this.

So, how do I keep track of all these books? Well, when children sneak them off and don’t return them, I have been known to buy duplicates. I see a book, and think, “Hmm, I know that’s been on my to-buy list for several years, but I thought I bought it.” I look on the shelf, where it should be, and it isn’t there, so I buy it again. Only later – usually much later – to have the original show up in some child’s possession. …

read the rest here

Have you ever done this, bought duplicate books? If so, you need to read this series.


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