I have an app on my phone called “Book Library” where I scan the barcode of each book I own and it stores the books basic information for me through an ISBN look up (or title/author if there is no ISBN). You can add books to their own shelves, indicating if you own them, have read them or if you have loaned them. This app is far from perfect, so please don’t think I am trying to sell it to you. But, if you don’t do something similar already then I will try to sell you on the concept.
My top three reasons to catalogue your hard copies electronically:
1. Insurance– This is the primary reason I started. In Australia if you have a collection of something that is valued over a certain amount (differs from providers mine is $1000) then you must itemise it on your house insurance. For myself with approximately 400 books on my shelf at present at conservatively $15 per book we are looking at $6000 in books. If my house goes up in flames my insurer will ask me for proof that I had the 400 books itemised on my insurance. I can simply open the app, download my library data, send it to them and it is done.
2. Remembering what you own– I have upwards of 20 books by some of my favourite authors and when I am out browsing I can get confused as it which books I own, which ones I own but haven’t read and which ones are in my wish-list. An app makes this easy. Filter by author and the rest is there for you.
3. Loaning books to other– in general this isn’t something I do a lot because I have had some bad experiences with books never finding their way home or looking like they have been ran over a car when they are returned. Nevertheless, if you loan books you can record next to each books who you loaned it to. I currently have 7 books I have loaned out so this makes it easy to remember who has what and when I need to give a gentle reminder to give me my freaking book back.
Do you record which books you own electronically, if so which app do you use? Do you think it might be a good idea to start if you haven’t already?
Happy reading x