It’s practically impossible to be a successful book blogger unless you have some sense of organization, from how you keep track of the review copies you receive down to how you organize your bookshelves. This post & mini-challenge will help you better organize your books!
Organization starts the instant you receive a pitch for a book. Keep track of those pitches somehow! I personally use an Excel spreadsheet saved in Google Docs, which grants me access to my files anytime & anywhere! Here are some of the things you should keep in this spreadsheet:
- Date pitch received
- Publicist Name
- Book Info (Title, author, publication date)
- Date book was received
- Date review is scheduled to post
- Date review is posted
- Link to review
- Date link to review sent to publicist
Mind you, these are just suggestions!
When I’m considering a pitch, I always consult my Google calendar on which I schedule all my reviews. Within minutes I know if I’m able to accept a pitch for a book, based on the release date. While I’m in the calendar, I go ahead and add the book to my calendar, typically within a week of the review date.
Organizing your books once they arrive is the next step! Be it Goodreads, Librarything, or Shelfari, I always think it’s best to have your library organized somewhere virtually. I personally use Librarything the most because of the many labels I can assign to books. For example, I use the following labels: review copy, to be reviewed, read & own, read & not owned, library copy, etc.
Now, there’s no sense in getting organized if you can’t have fun doing it! A few years ago, I invested in a CueCat, a USB barcode scanner you can use to scan your books directly into your Librarything library! It also allows you to scan your books into other web sites like Bookmooch, Swaptree, Paperbackswap, etc. Adding your books to your virtual library will only take minutes (ok maybe hours!) instead of days! A great investment for a mere $15!
When I receive review copies in the mail, I follow these steps:
- Mark book as received in review database
- Add book to my Librarything library
- Check review calendar for review date. If none, assign one
- Write review date on post it & affix to cover of the book
- Add book to my review copy bookshelf, by date of review
Yes, I have a bookshelf devoted to review copies! This prevents review copies from getting lost among the hundreds of other books I own. It’s not a fancy bookshelf or anything, just a small cube-shaped four shelf bookcase from IKEA. Since I generally have review copies up to 6-8 months before publication date, two months worth of books fit on one shelf. This bookshelf sits at the end of my chaise lounge so it is within reach at all times.
Looking back on this post, it might appear that keeping yourself organized is a time-consuming task. I assure you it is not! Once you get used to this routine it’s a piece of cake! On average, I spend about 30-45 minutes per week organizing my books and I’m a little on the obsessive side.
Many of these tips will also help you in organizing your TBR (to-be-read) books, whether or not they are review copies.
So, how do you organize your books or review schedule? Comment below & become eligible to win a publisher-sponsor prize! Go forth and organize!
Interested in participating in Bloggiesta & some of the other mini-challenges? Check out Maw Books Blog to learn more!