PDA

View Full Version : How do YOU buy books?



Fruitbat
01-18-2016, 02:06 AM
My question here is not "how books are bought," but "how do YOU, personally, buy books."

I buy nearly all of my books online at Amazon. I usually buy a few at a time to get the free shipping.

When I'm on a kick of using the library, I rarely buy a book I've already checked out and read. I'm sure I have then bought other books by the same author but it's rare.

I rarely go to a brick and mortar book store any more.

To find books, I usually just search on Amazon.

The recommendations I do follow upon are mostly word of mouth or word of "forum" (usually on here). Or I'll buy a book because it appeals to me and I know the author (usually on here).

I used to get giant bags of books at a time from yard sales and Goodwill but now I stay away from places like that because I've decided I like owning few things. Also, I learned about book mites, which grosses me out.

So, I prefer new books to used, and also paperbacks to Kindle. I'll get the Kindle version if I want it right away or maybe if it's free, but I'm not sure I'll ever get used to not being able to flip through actual pages. Kindle annoys me.

Latina Bunny
01-18-2016, 02:14 AM
Various places, but mostly either Amazon, my local Barnes and Noble, or used bookstore. I search based on recommendations from forums, Goodreads lists, and Amazon's "Customers have also bought..." feature. Once in a blue moon, I'll buy a few books from flea markets, but I prefer buying them from the used bookstore or Barnes and Noble.

For space reasons, I'm starting to get more ebooks nowadays.

I still go to brick and mortar places for manga/comics, graphic novels, and art or how-to books.

KTC
01-18-2016, 02:23 AM
Almost exclusively on Amazon. I read on my Kindle app on my phone. I no longer read paper... I don't like it. I will buy them to support friends at signings... But even then, I'll buy a second copy at Amazon and read it that way.

MaryMumsy
01-18-2016, 02:34 AM
I have a local indie store I support, also once in a while at Costco or my grocery superstore (not WM). Not every year, but maybe every other, I go to a huge once-a-year used book sale put on by a local charity. That is mostly for history, cookbooks and craft books.

My indie store is great. They will order anything that is in print, even if they don't stock it.

I prefer hard back, but will buy trade paper or MMP if that is the only format. I don't have an e-reader, and have no plans to get one.

MM

jjdebenedictis
01-18-2016, 02:57 AM
I prefer to go browse in a bookstore; I just haven't mastered the art of discovering books easily online. It always seems just a little more frustrating of an experience compared to grazing idly among the shelves. Also, I never buy eBooks, so I have less incentive to go to electronic stores.

The only time I buy online is when I already know which book(s) I want and I don't want to risk going to the store only to find they're out of stock.

I throw in a few visits to the library to decrease the total cost of my book-consuming habit, but I've noticed I tend to find more books that sound good in stores than in my library. Not sure why that would be.

Ari Meermans
01-18-2016, 03:03 AM
I have a running list of books I'm looking for that I've seen recommended here or have found on Amazon or elseweb. If they're out of print, I search used bookstores and eBay for them. If they're currently in print, I buy them at B&N or on Amazon.

Contented Reader
01-18-2016, 03:20 AM
I buy about half my books on Amazon.

The other half, I buy at brick-and-mortar stores - most often, Half Price Books, Barnes and Noble, and my two favorite independent stores.

Helix
01-18-2016, 04:23 AM
I have a hierarchy. If it's a bestseller or local title, I'll get it from the local bookshop. Most others I'll order from independent bookshops like Readings or Avid Reader. Sometimes I order titles from Book Depository. If I need something Right Now, I'll get it as an ebook from Amazon.

Kerosene
01-18-2016, 04:32 AM
This varies.

I prefer e-books for the ease of reading, but I mainly use .epub so if I have a book in mind I check Kobo and other sites that offer .epub. If not I go for the Kindle version and convert.

If the author sells their book right off their site or somehow gets more of a kick-back, I'll buy that way.

If the book doesn't have a digital version, I'll order it off Amazon. If it's an older book I'll just get a used version, but if it's recent I'll go new.

Sometimes I visit my local indie book store to browse, but their selection is small and the only section I find less-than-popular books is the poetry section.

I'm not a big fan of Barnes and Noble as looking up online for their inventory in store is complicated due to their different pricing and all the stores nearby somehow never had that book I asked to reserve. I sometimes go there to browse and coffee with people, but rarely pick something up.

redfalcon
01-18-2016, 04:47 AM
From my 2015 reading list everything available in e-book came from amazon. A good chuck of the audio books came from e-bay and goodwill, thank you old Toyota with a tape deck. The few books not e-book came from amazon, they are a life saver for those of us more than an hour away from a decent bookstore.

I hope we move somewhere with a good used bookstore, I want my son to have the same fun finding and reading a good book as I did as a child.

Brightdreamer
01-18-2016, 04:57 AM
More and more, Amazon all the way. Easy to navigate, huge selection of new and used items, plus Amazon Prime perks that go beyond books. It doesn't hurt that Coinstar gives Amazon gift cards as a payment option when I cash out my change bank...

Next up is Half Price Books, a good (or bad?) place for impulse buys.

Barnes & Noble, sadly, is fading to a distant third, though I still love my Nook and I maintain my membership card. Every time I go into the local store, they have less of everything, though they rearrange things on the shelves to try hiding it. (Most of the books are shelved cover out, not spine, meaning less inventory, and their SF/F selection shrinks every time I blink, I swear. I also saw such questionable categorizations as Outlander displayed under "New In Paperback"... new edition, maybe, but new book? Not by a few decades... and it looked identical to the version I bought over a decade ago, not even a new TV-show-inspired cover or anything to justify the location.) There are no indy bookstores around here anymore, save a few holes-in-the-wall downtown that traffic and parking issues keep me from exploring.

As for how I buy, that depends. I'm mostly an opportunistic reader. Thanks to BookBub, I have a nice stock of free/bargain-priced e-Books on both Kindle and Nook; I'm more likely to try something new or outside my preferred genres as an e-Book. I sometimes borrow e-Books through Overdrive on my Nook, too. But somehow my printed book pile keeps growing, too... impulse buys, plus things that have been recommended, or books by authors I know, or stories that just sounded cool enough to get me to cough up the money. (I don't have as much of a book storage issue these days since my aunt started a Little Free Library; any physical book I've read but doubt I'll read again, plus a few that I impulse-bought but which no longer appeal to me, go to her. HPB used to get them, but since they started getting new books in their stores have changed, most notably their payouts - and I keep my books in excellent condition as I read, far better than some of what they've pawned off on me, so I know that's not the issue.)

mrsmig
01-18-2016, 04:57 AM
Since Borders closed, I rarely go to a brick and mortar store any more (probably because I used to work at a Barnes & Noble and feel they're overpriced). I buy most of my books on Amazon, or trade for them through my online paperback swap club, or pick up a freebie at a local Little Free Library (http://littlefreelibrary.org/) (there are two in my town, and a third just appeared half a block from my house - in fact, I was planning to stroll down there tomorrow, drop off a couple books and see if there's anything interesting on the shelves).

I got a Kindle a year or two ago but only started seriously using it last year. I never thought I'd say it, but it's been a godsend as far as ease of transport and saving space.

beckethm
01-18-2016, 05:03 AM
I've been trying to make more use of my library, both for hardcopy books and e-books, so I'm not buying a lot these days.

I tend to find books through word of mouth, through what friends post on Goodreads, and to a lesser extent through print reviews and book blogs. I also subscribe to BookBub's daily deal emails and have purchased a lot of books on sale that way.

For pleasure reading, I prefer e-books. I may be in a minority, but I actually find it easier to read on screen than on paper, and having books on my tablet means I can carry them anywhere and they aren't cluttering my house (I have enough clutter as it is). When I buy e-books, it's pretty much exclusively through Amazon.

I do seek out hard copies of books I want for research purposes, because it's too difficult to mark up e-books. Again, Amazon is my primary source, but I usually buy used. I've had very good experiences with third-party sellers using the Amazon Marketplace, and since I'm usually looking for specific titles, it's easier to shop online than to comb through a used bookstore.

Liosse de Velishaf
01-18-2016, 06:42 AM
Barnes and Noble almost exclusively except for book fairs and the like.

Jamesaritchie
01-18-2016, 07:19 AM
I prefer brick and mortar whenever possible. I only buy online if I can't get it offline.

Milenio
01-18-2016, 07:38 AM
I've tried buying and reading eBooks, but I just can't get into reading a book on my laptop. I don't have an e-reader of any description, and I doubt I would find much use for one even if it were given to me.

I love brick-and-mortar book stores, especially old ones; they have a certain smell. I happened upon the six-book set of Casanova's memoirs in a tiny Discworld-type of second hand bookstore. I would never have looked for the set on Amazon or the like, but seeing them jumping up and down and waving to get my attention, I knew I had to give them a forever home. I also support our local Reader's Warehouse (a store that stocks end-of-range books at discount prices) and charity book tables.

I consider books my friends, so I don't get rid of them that easily.

shivadyne
01-18-2016, 10:44 AM
honestly, the only books i've bought recently came from google play. there aren't really any bookstores or anything in my town; the best we've got is the local walmart or goodwill.

i don't buy books very often. i usually just get them from the library when i want them.

Silva
01-18-2016, 10:53 AM
I rely pretty exclusively on the library. I prefer to real books to electronic and don't have a budget for either, really. If I figure I will want to read the book over and over and over, then I will look around for the cheapest option, which tends to be Amazon.

Roxxsmom
01-18-2016, 10:54 AM
I tend to buy books online, either from Amazon or B&N usually, though I've bought a few directly from author websites (I have to know, or at least have heard of the author to do this, obviously). I buy a lot of e-books these days and read them on my ipad via kindle or nook apps.

Now and again I go to a local bookstore and browse. I'm more likely to pick something up outside my usual reading interests (SF and F) when I do that, because I may peruse other genres and non fiction as well as the SF and F area. And a book sitting out on display or on the sale rack may catch my eye.

I learn about books and authors that might interest me from other writing/reading friends, Locus, author blogs, discussions on forums like this one, and sometimes just browsing.

andiwrite
01-18-2016, 11:16 AM
I always shop at Amazon, and I only buy Kindle books for the most part. I tend to move around a lot and hate having a huge collection of books to lug around everywhere, so owning a Kindle has been great for me.

mccardey
01-18-2016, 11:16 AM
I do everything I can to avoid Amazon. I'll buy books at one of my local bookshops*, or order them from the publisher if the bookshop can't get them in. I buy lots and lots and lots of second-hand books from my second-hand book-selling guy at the markets (even though he is as grumpy as all get-out and makes a fuss about having to shift his arse from the chair and take money - what is with him?) I also buy from thebookdepository.com.

Also - I feel this needs to be said - I swiped two books from a b&b recently, and only left one book in exchange. I feel bad about that.

ETA: *My little village has three local bookshops who really support Aussie writers. Also, every other shop has a second-hand-books shelf. This is because our books are so expensive. In Australia, paperback novels are generally around the $30.00 mark.

ETA2: Oh, god. And now I can't buy through thebookdepository any more because apparently Amazon bought them. God, I hate Amazon!

RightHoJeeves
01-18-2016, 12:00 PM
Australia has great independent book stores, but I like the convenience and cheapness of online... so I will buy a book by an author I already know online, and when I'm in a store I have a rule that I only buy a book/author I've never heard of. It's too hard to browse for random stuff the same way online.

mccardey
01-18-2016, 12:11 PM
Australia has great independent book stores, but I like the convenience and cheapness of online... so I will buy a book by an author I already know online, and when I'm in a store I have a rule that I only buy a book/author I've never heard of. It's too hard to browse for random stuff the same way online.

The writers you've never heard of thank you :)

awshaw2
01-18-2016, 12:12 PM
It depends on the book for me. Certain series I like to have a physical copy, and usually get them at brick and mortar stores. I got a Song of Ice and Fire box set on Amazon and the 'box' wasn't all that sturdy. If it's something I want to keep on my bookshelf I like to know the quality before hand.

I've been buying through the kindle app on my phone more often. Usually books or series that I've heard are good and want to give a try. It's nice to be able to get a four book series in a single file. Keeps things clean. The only down side with reading on my phone is it's a little too easy to get distracted at times.

Jamesaritchie
01-18-2016, 12:33 PM
honestly, the only books i've bought recently came from google play. there aren't really any bookstores or anything in my town; the best we've got is the local walmart or goodwill.

i don't buy books very often. i usually just get them from the library when i want them.

I find quite a few good books at Walmart, and dozens and dozens and dozens at our Goodwill. I've even found some valuable first editions at Goodwill.

I read a bunch of library books. Here, it seems like the only people who don't use the library are writers. I find this weird, but it explains much of what I see in the slush.

Helix
01-18-2016, 12:52 PM
I find quite a few good books at Walmart, and dozens and dozens and dozens at our Goodwill. I've even found some valuable first editions at Goodwill.

I read a bunch of library books. Here, it seems like the only people who don't use the library are writers. I find this weird, but it explains much of what I see in the slush.

Well, you know, the question is about buying books.

Becky Black
01-18-2016, 02:33 PM
Most of my ebooks I buy from Amazon. They dominate the ebook market in the UK. Now and again I might get one direct from a publisher's site, or from Smashwords. But being in the UK that often means paying in dollars, and not knowing exactly what I'm paying, and sometimes being hit with a non-sterling transaction fee on my credit card. Getting them from Amazon Kindle is just easier.

I do buy paper book, but I don't buy many of them new. I prefer reading on my Kindle now. Easier on the eyes for me and often easier to carry around. And there are no indie book stores in easy reach of where I live, so I'd only be giving my money to some big corporate anyway, just as I am with the ebooks. So I do buy paper books used, often from charity shops. There's one right on my street. Rude not to pop in...

Audiobooks I buy from Audible. I've bought a lot of new ones through the Daily Deal lately. An audiobook for the price of a fancy coffee. How can I resist? And it's making me try out books and authors I probably wouldn't have done otherwise.

mccardey
01-18-2016, 02:36 PM
Audible is also owned by Amazon which just makes me hate Amazon beyond the level of what I had thought of as hateful. :(

mccardey
01-18-2016, 02:38 PM
And it's making me try out books and authors I probably wouldn't have done otherwise.

You might have heard of them, if Amazon hadn't sucked up All Available Outlets.


Audible is also owned by Amazon which just makes me hate Amazon beyond the level of what I had thought of as hateful. :(

Milenio
01-18-2016, 02:38 PM
Audible is also owned by Amazon which just makes me hate Amazon beyond the level of what I had thought of as hateful. :(

Do you have something like "tape aids for the blind"? That might be one way of getting audible books and support a better cause than Amazon?

Kylabelle
01-18-2016, 02:48 PM
I buy used books almost exclusively, because new books are too expensive for me. Rarely will I spring for a new book.

I tend to buy from Abe Books which, (sorry, mccardey, I share your pain) was purchased by Amazon in 2008, but has advantages. Their website is far easier to use, because of the absence of advertising bling, and they source from independent bookstores all over the U.S., so buying books through Abe Books means I am supporting independent booksellers, albeit indirectly. Since I am limited as to where I can travel to shop, this works best for me. I'll buy from Amazon only if I can't find a thing at Abe. Abe's packaging is also simpler; Amazon's is excessive more often than not.

I also sometimes buy from Powell, which tends to be a bit more spendy than Abe. But with Abe, I like being able to get books from Connecticut, and Washington, and Texas and Nevada and Indiana and where-all-ever, little bookstores and even Goodwill stores. Most things I have purchased have been in good condition, too. And often, there is free shipping. I can pick up three or four books for the price of one new trade paperback.

I don't like to read online any more than I have to for using the internet, so not drawn to getting an e reader, except that it would be cool. :greenie. But I like turning paper pages, and filling shelves.

mccardey
01-18-2016, 02:49 PM
I tend to buy from Abe Books which, (sorry, mccardey, I share your pain) was purchased by Amazon in 2008,

ARGHHHHH!!!! Is nothing sacred??

Kylabelle
01-18-2016, 02:58 PM
ARGHHHHH!!!! Is nothing sacred??

:roll:

'Fraid not. Heck, for all I know, Amazon owns us, and we just haven't been informed yet.

Milenio
01-18-2016, 03:01 PM
ARGHHHHH!!!! Is nothing sacred??

It's called a juggernaut. Or in the case of Amazon and the like, a jugger-naught :roll:

Captcha
01-18-2016, 03:17 PM
The closest bookstore to me is about 40 minutes away, and it's tiny and crappy. The closest big bookstore is about two hours away.

I used to feel the loss, but, honestly, I prefer reading on kindle anyway, now that I've gotten used to it.

I keep trying to break the Amazon habit, but they're just so CONVENIENT. I know, I know.

I find most books from review sites or personal recommendations.

dawinsor
01-18-2016, 04:31 PM
I write at B&N, so I buy there a couple of times a month, but it's the smallest possible B&N so their selection is limited. Lately, I've bought mostly e-books from Amazon. It's so easy and I get the book right away.

I get audiobooks from the library. I can download them to my computer from home and then put them on my iPod.

brainstorm77
01-18-2016, 07:37 PM
I buy at:

The Book Depository
Amazon
Goodwill
Walmart and other retail stores on occasion.
Direct from the publisher.

ACAuthors
01-18-2016, 08:28 PM
www.thriftbooks.com

Most used books are between $3 and $4. They run addition discounts all the time, and any order over $10 is free shipping. Plus, for every $50 you spend, you get $5 off your next order. Love them. Shipping takes a little longer than amazon prime, but it's worth it.

I also do still buy new books, but the only bookstore near me is Barnes and Noble. I go there frequently to write, but I miss mom and pop run bookstores.

Cobalt Jade
01-18-2016, 10:47 PM
The last book I bought was off Kobo. The three before, off Amazon. I guess I've made the transition to e-books :cry:

RightHoJeeves
01-19-2016, 05:21 AM
I find quite a few good books at Walmart, and dozens and dozens and dozens at our Goodwill. I've even found some valuable first editions at Goodwill.

I read a bunch of library books. Here, it seems like the only people who don't use the library are writers. I find this weird, but it explains much of what I see in the slush.

Oh man, I didn't realise that buying books was where I was going wrong!

DancingMaenid
01-19-2016, 05:22 AM
It depends. I buy a fair number from Amazon, but usually only if I 1) want the Kindle version or 2) can't easily find the book elsewhere. I prefer buying paperback copies of books, but I do like my Kindle and sometimes having a digital copy is more convenient. However, I don't like using my credit card on Amazon, so buying from them usually means having to get an Amazon gift card, which can be a bit of an inconvenience.

If I can, I usually buy from a bookstore. The main ones near me are Barnes and Noble and Books a Million. Sometimes I go to independent shops, too. However, a lot of times Barnes and Noble doesn't have what I want. Occasionally I'll order it through them, other times I'll buy from Amazon. It depends.

Fruitbat
01-19-2016, 05:27 AM
I might be off-topic on my own topic here, but I do largely write rather than read now and have for some time. For many years before that, I read so much that I'm still a bit confused when people talk about reading like it's a good thing. I used it more like a drug, lol, and always felt like I was wasting time when I should have been doing something productive.

Silva
01-19-2016, 10:03 AM
Why do some here hate Amazon so much? I've never heard that opinion before.

Roxxsmom
01-19-2016, 11:11 AM
Why do some here hate Amazon so much? I've never heard that opinion before.

I think it's because it's eaten up so many smaller companies and helped to drive so many brick and mortar stores under. It's grown to a size where it's almost impossible not to use them or some of their subsidiaries when buying books. I'll admit, I've given up on fighting amazon. I bought a nook three years ago and tried to buy my e-books from B&N, but now that they've stopped producing and supporting nook readers, and they look like they may be circling the drain as a company, I'm kind of scared to buy books for a device that may not even work in a year or two (I've transferred all my nook books to my ipad, but what happens to them if B&N goes under? I've no idea).

I've got a kobo app for ipad too, but I've no idea how to purchase the ebook versions on Powell's (they're supposed to sell e-books via kobo) website. All I see listed for the authors I search are the paper books.

I still buy paper books online from B&N, even though they take longer to get them to me. But it's hard to beat Amazon prime's free, two-day shipping for other items I buy online. They sell everything from dog treats to furniture, and it makes me hate myself.

Liosse de Velishaf
01-19-2016, 07:29 PM
Why do some here hate Amazon so much? I've never heard that opinion before.

Because they went massively into debt subsidized by investors to undersell and outcompete other businesses who did not have the same option, and to be able to muscle suppliers. Amazon looks great as a customer until you realize their business practices are nasty poison and will only last as long as they can continue to cheat the market.

Kylabelle
01-19-2016, 07:32 PM
Why do some here hate Amazon so much? I've never heard that opinion before.

There is also the way their fulfillment workers are treated, which is pretty opressive.

Not to mention the whole thing about delivery via drones.

There are actually rather a lot of reasons to consider Amazon not-a-friend.

tiakall
01-19-2016, 07:44 PM
I prefer buying in bookstores for the immediacy - though the only thing convenient to me is a couple of Books-A-Millions in my hometown/near my work and a used bookstore in town. Occasionally I'll stop at the B&N along my commute, but it's in the middle of a big mall area so it's not that convenient (read: traffic). Amazon tends to be the non-book items or books I can't easily find offline (older releases, small presses, non-bestsellers...let's face it, B&N's selection tends to not be great or well-organized at times!) I don't have any variety of e-reader so ebooks are not a factor at this point in time but if I do I imagine most will come from either Amazon or Kickstarter.

nighttimer
01-20-2016, 01:00 AM
Why do some here hate Amazon so much? I've never heard that opinion before.

If the big boxes like Barnes & Noble and the now-departed Borders were a gut shot to independent bookstores, Amazon was the bullet to the head that finished them off. For that reason if nothing else, I will only go to Amazon for books or music if I cannot get it anywhere else.

The charms of e-books elude me. I prefer having the physical heft and feel of a book. Call me old-fashioned. I don't care.

Roxxsmom
01-20-2016, 01:26 AM
If the big boxes like Barnes & Noble and the now-departed Borders were a gut shot to independent bookstores, Amazon was the bullet to the head that finished them off. For that reason if nothing else, I will only go to Amazon for books or music if I cannot get it anywhere else.

I remember when Borders came to the college town in which I then lived. The owner of the local independent bookstore and a group of independent citizens did everything in their power to keep Borders out. The move failed, however, and Borders opened there. Everyone predicted that this independent bookstore would go under within a couple of years.

More than a decade later, Borders is long gone, and this independent seller is doing well. The owner has actually opened a couple other stores in surrounding communities. Note, I rarely go there, because I honestly don't think it's a great bookstore. It's kind of small and has a weak SF and F section (and if you ask the owner to order a title for you, he will act put upon and sneer at your plebeian tastes as he does so).

I still don't begrudge him his victory or success, though, and it's kind of cool he succeeded when Borders fell in the face of Amazon.

Obviously, things don't always work out this way, and I've lived in smaller college towns that have no bookstores at all :( I actually discovered Amazon when I lived in one such (in the late 1990s), and it kept me sane. This was back when Amazon was still (mostly) about books and before e-readers became a thing.


The charms of e-books elude me. I prefer having the physical heft and feel of a book. Call me old-fashioned. I don't care.

I used to feel this way, but I've gotten hooked on the way I can change font size and style (I wonder if this is why e-readers are more popular with older readers). I love being able to have dozens of books with me when I travel too. I no longer have to lug a heavy suitcase or backpack around on trips.

And as a writer, I love being able to make margin notes when I notice a technique or piece of writing I really like. Also, e-books have a search function, which is handy for testing the veracity of statements like, "No one uses contractions in narrative," or "No successful writer ever starts sentences with coordinating conjunctions," or "dialog is always tagged as "Bob said" instead of "said Bob." The search function has reassured me that no, I'm not nuts, and my memories of encountering these things (and more) in published novels are accurate.

The reason I got my first e-reader was so I could download drafts of my writing to read in something that more closely resembled book format (without printing reams of paper). It makes it easier to spot errors or klunky writing when I see them on my e-reader. But I gradually came over to the dark side, though I do still enjoy reading a paper book from time to time. I do find I read e-books somewhat differently than I do paper.

Roxxsmom
01-20-2016, 01:39 AM
And another reason to be down on Amazon--they seem to want to take over, or at least dictate the terms, of publishing too. They claim to be on authors' sides, but trying to force deals with publishers that limit the costs of e-books seems like it would put less money in the pockets of writers. And anything that makes it harder for publishers to make money or that decreases the number of publishers out there would decrease the options for writers in the long term.

Every time I've heard someone from Amazon being interviewed on npr or somewhere, they're insisting that their model can be all things to all people and anyone who still prefers walk-in bookstores or other sellers or publication models is just in denial. It's really worrisome. Once Amazon is the only game in town, they won't care as much about keeping prices down for consumers either.

Markets work best, imo, when there is healthy competition and varied choices, both for producers (in this case writers and publishers) and consumers.

Latina Bunny
01-20-2016, 02:28 AM
Damn. I often use Amazon US and Amazon UK to buy all sorts of stuff (not just books, though I do order some ebooks and rare/out of print books/manga/etc)...

At the same time, I really can't help it, though, because, besides eBay and some foreign online vendor websites, there are various stuff I can't usually find in many U.S. brick snd mortar stores...

Hmmm.... *shrugs* Can't be helped, I guess. *goes to order UK Japanese video game and an out of print manga, etc*

MaryMumsy
01-20-2016, 03:12 AM
I pretty much feel about Amazon like I feel about WalMart. They are a legal business, if people want to do business with them, that is their perogative. They just won't get any of my money.

MM

Silva
01-20-2016, 05:52 AM
Interesting responses re. Amazon; thanks for sharing.

There is one single bookstore in town, independently owned, I think, and has been around for at least a quarter of a century. Amazon is popular around here, but I don't see it shutting the local store down any time soon despite the local store's significantly higher costs and having to wait months for an order to come in. The library is probably a more dangerous competitor than anything else as we have a well-funded, well-staffed, and, relatively speaking to other rural areas, incredibly well-stocked public library. A perk of having a rather large and well-educated retirement community, I suppose.

blacbird
01-20-2016, 07:19 AM
Mostly via bookstores, both new (Barnes & Noble) and used (we have a really excellent large used bookstore in my town). Once in a while from Amazon or from a publisher's catalog.

caw

Helix
01-20-2016, 08:02 AM
Interesting responses re. Amazon; thanks for sharing.

There is one single bookstore in town, independently owned, I think, and has been around for at least a quarter of a century. Amazon is popular around here, but I don't see it shutting the local store down any time soon despite the local store's significantly higher costs and having to wait months for an order to come in. The library is probably a more dangerous competitor than anything else as we have a well-funded, well-staffed, and, relatively speaking to other rural areas, incredibly well-stocked public library. A perk of having a rather large and well-educated retirement community, I suppose.


Public libraries and bookshops have been coexisting for centuries, though.

Milenio
01-20-2016, 08:05 AM
Public libraries and bookshops have been coexisting for centuries, though.

But they generally had two different business models and markets. AND neither worked towards getting the other out of the business.

Helix
01-20-2016, 08:42 AM
But they generally had two different business models and markets. AND neither worked towards getting the other out of the business.

They still don't.

Amazon, on the other hand...

Roxxsmom
01-20-2016, 08:57 AM
I used to go to libraries a lot when I was younger and lacked disposable income to support my reading habit as fully as I liked. I went to our local ones, at least occasionally, as recently as a few years ago. I'd check out a stack of books and read them all in two weeks, only occasionally needing to renew.

But I read more slowly than I once did, and the more time I spend writing, the longer it takes me to finish books (I've also developed this habit of having more than one book going at a time). If I check out a stack of books now, there's no way in heck I'll finish them before they're due, even with renewals.

Is there a reason that purchasing the books I read instead of checking them out from a library is the reason my fiction isn't good enough to get out of the slush pile?

Silva
01-20-2016, 09:22 AM
Public libraries and bookshops have been coexisting for centuries, though.

Yes, and I don't think my library would ever truly drive the book shop out of business because there will always be a market for owning books, but recently I have seen more of a trend of borrowing and not buying things, being minimalist, etc., for environmentally-friendly and mental healthiness reasons that I suspect would make many people shift from book-buying to book-borrowing (or second-handing, at least).

Now, I was raised in a subculture that has been doing minimalism and get for free/borrow as much as possible out of necessity for quite a while and even made it a big holy lifestyle thing, and since a large part of my social circle is comprised of people who came out of that culture but still retained some very thrifty lifestyles (sometimes still due to necessity, sometimes just because that's all they ever knew), I would be willing to agree that my perspective on this may be skewed due to a limited demographic sampling.

On the other hand, it may be that it is a larger overall trend and I just see my social circles more readily buying in because it's a familiar concept even if it's presented in different packaging now.

Milenio
01-21-2016, 09:03 AM
Just to give the anti-Amazons the heeby jeebies:

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/billionaire-vc-says-most-companies-225104029.html;_ylt=AwrC0CaKZKBWeRIA4zHQtDMD;_ylu= X3oDMTByOHZyb21tBGNvbG8DYmYxBHBvcwMxBHZ0aWQDBHNlYw Nzcg--

shivadyne
01-21-2016, 11:33 AM
I find quite a few good books at Walmart, and dozens and dozens and dozens at our Goodwill. I've even found some valuable first editions at Goodwill.

I read a bunch of library books. Here, it seems like the only people who don't use the library are writers. I find this weird, but it explains much of what I see in the slush.


my goodwill usually has just about no books at all. well, unless you want dictionaries or cookbooks (which can be useful, obviously, but they're not usually what i'm looking for).

it is kind of strange for writers to avoid libraries, though i guess this has more to do with the topic than any type of aversion?

tiakall
01-21-2016, 09:18 PM
Speaking of buying books... anyone have any good sites/resources for buying children's/MG/YA books super-cheap/in bulk if you're not particularly fussy about what books? There's a Little Free Library by the park I try to keep stocked and they go out like hotcakes! (I'm down to my last bag for three large boxes of books that I bought at the beginning of October.)

oscar54
01-21-2016, 10:51 PM
Used book stores. I still like the physical...thing.

juniper
01-21-2016, 11:54 PM
Since the local Borders closed :cry: I mostly use the library now. We have a terrific county library system, branches all over the place, a small one just a mile away. I request books to be sent there, from the bigger branches.

There are quite a few independent bookstores within a 20 mile radius, plus a couple of Barnes & Nobles. Powells is about 15 miles away, but I go there only a couple of times a year. I sometimes wish I lived within walking distance of Powells - a place to go just to browse or soak up atmosphere. Of course I'd spend $ too - when I worked in a bookstore 20 years ago most of my paycheck went to books.

I also buy from a couple of different used bookstores and thrift shops.




Barnes & Noble, sadly, is fading to a distant third, though I still love my Nook


The last book I bought was off Kobo.


I bought a nook three years ago and tried to buy my e-books from B&N, but now that they've stopped producing and supporting nook readers, and they look like they may be circling the drain as a company, I'm kind of scared to buy books for a device that may not even work in a year or two (I've transferred all my nook books to my ipad, but what happens to them if B&N goes under? I've no idea).

I have both a Kobo and a Nook. Bought the Kobo at Powells several years ago, bought the Nook later. I liked the Kobo physical design, but their website was so impossibly difficult to use back then. Rumors about the Nook going under have been around for years and I imagine at some point they will come true.


I've got a kobo app for ipad too, but I've no idea how to purchase the ebook versions on Powell's (they're supposed to sell e-books via kobo) website. All I see listed for the authors I search are the paper books.


Powells no longer sells the Kobo and I think they've snipped that connection.

I'm one of those that doesn't want to support Amazon any more than necessary (textbooks mostly), I'll probably end up buying a Kindle. I prefer "real" books at home, but for travel, e-readers are hard to beat. I have an iPad but don't like reading books on it because of the screen glare. E-readers are great for reading outside, in the dark, wherever.

WeaselFire
01-22-2016, 12:55 AM
My question here is not "how books are bought," but "how do YOU, personally, buy books."

Depends on the book. Many are Kindle, for reference works I prefer paper. I frequent a used book store locally, and buy older books there as I find them. I also go to the Friends of the Library book sales. Sometimes I pick up books at conferences or book signings, sometimes at flea markets or garage sales. Many I trade with other readers.

I go to a Books a Million about once a month, make a list of books I want and order them from Amazon. Yep, I'm evil and would rather give a small amount of money to a giant megalopoly than support a local book store. There's no value there for me. About the only time I buy books at a traditional bookstore is from the remainder table.

I also shop at WalMart.

Jeff

Sammie
01-24-2016, 06:00 AM
If I had my way I would be buying books from bookstores. Ahh the smell of new paper or old paper, the smell of books in general I miss it so much it hurts. I live in Venezuela so all the books I purchase are off of amazon e-book format. Shipping here is crazy high at the very least 30 to 60 dollars per book! It's so hard to always purchase an e-book when in reality I want the paper or hardcover.

And the sad thing is when I do find a bookstore here that carried the types of books I read they are all in Spanish! It's a complete nightmare living in world closed off of books. Sure I could buy the Spanish version but just like no, I read and understand it but it gives me a headache to read in a different language other than English. Plus, it feels fake for some reason in a different language.

Jesus it's been a while so somebody, not giving me a crazed look from the computer screen, open a book flip the pages and smell it for me!!!

Chris P
01-24-2016, 06:11 AM
Since getting a Kindle, I buy most of my books from Amazon. For just text, I prefer the Kindle, but for comic strip collections, artsy books, graphic novels or novels with creative formatting I prefer the paper versions. I get a lot of my books as gifts, and Amazon makes that really easy for people buying for me. I get a daily email from Bookbub and periodically from Noisetrade (Noisetrade is harder because I have to download to my laptop, convert to Kindle format on Calibre, then transfer manually to the Kindle. I've also not been very impressed with most of Noisetrade's book selection. Their music is phenomenal, though).

I don't use the library much because until very recently I've only lived in small towns where the selection for fiction was very limited--basically best sellers that I've only rarely been interested in. For research though, a university library is my preferred source.

gothicangel
01-24-2016, 04:08 PM
At Bookshops (Waterstone's and Blackwell's). I only ever buy books from Amazon through Marketplace. As a writer, I want bookshops on the high street to survive and to ensure the Amazon have healthy competition from other retailers. An Amazon monopoly would be bad for authors and the book buying public.

LJD
01-24-2016, 06:42 PM
Kobo. I find new-to-me authors from book blogs and Goodreads. Sometimes I take a look at the Kobo deals too.

I_love_coffee
01-24-2016, 06:54 PM
I go to the library often. I spend about 20 minutes browsing. They have a new fiction section and a small YA section that I hit, grabbing a few from each. If one of the books turns out to be something so amazing that I wish I wrote it, I order my own copy on Amazon.


We moved two years ago and I really downsized everything I own. I have about 3 shelves of books and that's it. If it starts getting too full, I'll just get rid of some of the ones that have lost a place in my heart. And yes, I do re-read favorites.

Flicka
01-25-2016, 12:43 AM
Since I live in Sweden and mostly read in English, I have to go online and order from abroad, so I mostly use Amazon. For reference books I prefer paper so I order from UK Amazon (quite a lot from Marketplace since they're often books that have been out of print for decades), but fiction I quite often buy for my Kindle and then I have, illogically, to go via the US Amazon site.

Then of course I use libraries, but again, since I mostly read in English, the selection for fiction is small to nothing. The non-fiction selection is much bigger thanks to university libraries and the National Library. But for buying books, it's probably 90% Amazon, and the remaining percentage are probably either vintage editions bought from small sellers or books bought when I'm travelling (I shouldn't be let into museum shops without a guardian).

southernwriter
02-08-2016, 11:38 AM
I read Publisher's Lunch for the one or two line descriptions of manuscripts that have just been bought. When one grabs me, I make note of it and wait about a year for the book to hit the shelves.

awshaw2
02-08-2016, 11:54 AM
I've been trying to read a lot of older books that I missed out on. There really isn't a place around town to get them consistently. Gotta go with Amazon.

Sunflowerrei
02-08-2016, 11:56 AM
Mostly Amazon--and mostly on my Kindle. If there's a Kindle version, I'm much more likely to read that these days. My shelf space is pretty limited, so I'm much more careful about what books I physically buy. Plus, B&N recently closed their last two branches in my borough, so if I want B&N, I have to go into the city. I love The Strand, but I don't get there often enough to browse the miles and miles of books.

cmi0616
02-13-2016, 10:09 PM
The vast majority of my books are bought through the Barnes & Noble "marketplace" online (the marketplace just being a list of used bookstores that currently have a particular book in stock).

When I really want to treat myself, I spend a few hours in the local bookstore and pick out a couple of new titles.

ItsRachelConnor
02-14-2016, 08:20 PM
I have a 'books to read' wishlist on Amazon, and when I'm a bit skint (which is often) I'll add desired books to the list to pick up on payday. I love my Kindle so I mostly read with that. I'll also pick up the odd audiobook from Amazon or check out the public domain stuff on Librevox from time to time. My fave thing to do however is call into my local Oxfam Bookstore. You can find all kinds of gems in charity shops :D