Morning Meanderings.. The Making of A Library Book Sale


Happy Wednesday!  I have not had much blogesphere time this past couple of weeks as life has once again taken a turn to the busy… good busy so I am not complaining…. I just really wish I could do it all. 😀 

My work life is busy at this time… a lot of exciting things happening that is keeping me moving (more on that some day soon) and it seems that now we sort of had a taste of warmer weather, my energy level has risen as well and I am doing more home projects as well, oh and yes… the running has started for the year – I had a 7K last weekend and a 5K coming up this Saturday evening, a night run… my first and it should be fun.

The majority of my time this week though, is going to our spring Library sale.  I have been working hard on the brochure for Wine and Words this year, the tickets, and a brochure and logo for our Friends Of The Library group as well… all to reveal at the Spring Library sale where all bookish people gather.  The sale starts tomorrow (Thursday) morning.

The gathering of the books is a year-long process.  People are welcome and encouraged to bring in their gently used books for the sale as well as the library donated books that have been withdrawn from the library.  Twice a year, the Friends bring these books upstairs into the large conference room and sell them to raise money for our group which supports the libraries needs that the city budget does not cover.  We purchase additional copies of best sellers, provide snacks for two library books clubs, a family one and an adult one, we pay the movie license for the library, new books for the kids area, and recently we helped pay for tall wooden barista style chairs and tall tables to line up along the back window for additional seating. 

Just a small sample of what the basement looks like, and this is after about 50% of the books were brought up for the spring sale. The basement becomes wall to wall donated books, all separated by genre. Thank goodness for the amazing co-chairs of this event who work hard all year to keep this organized.

But… back to the sale.  The set up started on Monday morning when the books are brought to the room by local volunteers.  They have been sorted downstairs by genre, hard cover/soft cover, and premium (hot sellers and/or books that have been released within the last 3 years).  Kids books are a quarter, regular soft cover and hard cover are .50, and Premium are usually between $1 – $4. 

I went into the library on Monday to help with the set up and worked with the premium books.  I separated these books into piles according to year and another lady who is a co-chair of this sale prices them.  Occasionally you will get a box of pretty sweet books donated and this year it was a box of gamer books – hard cover rule books for games like Dungeons and Dragons, etc… that were marked with the store labels of selling anywhere from $35 to $104 each.  To the right person, these will be a real find. 

This is the beginning of the set up.. The back wall is all children’s books. The center picture is the premium table.

Today, I took most of the day off of work to go and help with the sale.  This is the final set up day and I will stay as long as it takes to be ready.  Tomorrow morning, I will be out waiting in the crowds to come in and shop the sale.  As part of the set up team I can shop it early, but I don’t want to.  I love the community of hanging outside with the rest of the book lovers and talking with them. It is a tradition and they know me by name because of it. 🙂

Does your local library have book sales?  I would love to hear about them!  How much are the books?  How do they set it up….

16 thoughts on “Morning Meanderings.. The Making of A Library Book Sale

  1. Our library has a sale two or three times a year. They collect during the year and store them at the “old school”. It’ is all set up on bookshelves, so they are continually putting things out. During the sale, it is open to the public: 50 cents for paperback and a dollar for hard covers. Sometimes they have a “bag sale” – a certain amount for all you can fit in a bag.

  2. Our library has a sale each October, so each year I donate all the books I have read throughout the year. It is a good way to empty my shelves and buy more to fill them back up.

  3. My library has a huge sale each year. They use an elementary school for their sale. The gym has the fiction – in alphabetical order. The Cafeteria had the children’s books – divided up according to age group. Non – fiction were in a large room. In the hall way they had miscellaneous books, records and other things. Hardback books were 2$ Paperback were 1$.

  4. Our library does have a book sale but they charge a lot compared to everyone else’s library. The last time I went, I think paperbacks were $3 and hardbacks were $5.

  5. Our library has a book sale, but unfortunately not very regularly and they don’t promote it very well. However, when you catch it, its great. They sort it into children books, Teens and Young adults and Adult Books. The books then are very cheap, only 10p each, the main aim being to get space and not to have to throw books away. I have bought car loads of books for our school library and as the lending tickets are often still in it, it is easy to see which ones are children’s favourites.

  6. My local library doesn’t do book sales but having seen the prep work for your library’s, I wish they did! That’s a lot of books, I bet there is a great selection. I’d be in organisation heaven setting that up.

  7. My local library has a sale in spring and fall. I always donate but I don’t always buy. Maybe someday but right now I have too many books.

  8. Our library has an ongoing sale — It’s the AAUW that has our gigantic, week-long sale with tens of thousands of books. I don’t go to the sale anymore, but I do donate books.

  9. I haven’t been to our library book sale. I think they have it county wide and at the State Fairgrounds. So its sort of big and not near us. I should make a day of it and go with my book club friends and leave kiddos at home. 🙂 this sounds like a great sale and you make me want to volunteer at our library to help out.

  10. wow, Sheila, you’ve all got your work cut out! And what a nice, big assortment of books! Our library has a couple of little shelves when you come in near the entrance, but I don’t remember them actually having a sale event. It’s funny, too, though, how I know more about the varied library things YOU do ’cause of your blog than I know about my own branch! lol I tend to go in, talk to the librarians and pick up or return my books!

  11. Our library has a section that is full of used books donated to the friends of the library. I scour it every time we go (and we go a lot). I have found some real gems there.

  12. Cuyahoga County libraries (where Cleveland is) all have great book sales with great prices. I try to keep track of the few that are close to me, but often don’t have the time 😦 I do love to go on the last day, bag day. Filling a bag for $3,even if they aren’t great is so much fun 🙂

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