Bookshelf started with a personal collection of 30 odd books. Then came surprises in form friends coming out with their contributions to the collection and a lot of serendipitous interactions regarding books, ending in friendships.
The cause had an enigma that attracted people, brilliant ones at that.
The potential of bookshelf in R-land seemed bright and we ended up with 150 books to offer by the end of the last semester. It was clear that contributions were the way to go. It ballooned our collection (which was, and is, never sufficient) easily and the books started moving among people more swiftly, safely and timely.
Alongside, as the collection grew, so did the required hustle. There was a need to refine the system so that contributions could be rewarding and fulfilling for people. We did recognize the fact that people are more than willing to be a part of this but we still felt that be it as good in its own right, it still couldn’t substitute a concrete model.
So coming on to the specifics, here is how it works.
How can you contribute: You just have to fill this form by clicking here or the bottom of this post and list the books you would like to contribute. That’s all.
Upkeep: We can collect your books and keep it with us. Some people prefer this for the books that are only laying around their rooms. It does seem to be a better option than losing it in the vortex of friends. The books are kept well filed to prevent any damages (the above image is an exception). Anytime you want your book back, you just have to give us a shout and we’ll give it back in your room.
On the other hand, there are some books you really love and want to keep with yourselves but you wouldn’t mind giving it to someone who wants to read it. In that case, you could just list the books with bookshelf and keep the books with you. In case we get a request, we will pick the book up from you and deliver it to the guy who wants it.
Rent: You will not have to pay a deposit on books you rent for yourself if it falls in the price range of a book you have contributed. Also, if a book you have contributed to bookshelf gets rented, you will get half of the rent paid for it.
But let me hold you for a second if you are already thinking about how your collection is going to bring you riches. It is unlikely that the sum you get from the books being rented will be large enough for a chapo. The essence of this arrangement is to try and eliminate monetary transactions altogether, especially among heavy readers.
For example, if you contribute some books, X,Y & Z, you wouldn’t have to pay the deposit of some book that you rent out for yourself, say A. And by the time you return A after reading, maybe your own books have made enough rounds so that you end up having not to pay even the rent for A (this actually started happening for a few people by the end of last sem.)
Damages: By far our experience has been good with the junta. It turns out that if you do your job well, other will do the same as well, even college students. Even then, in case your book gets misplaced, the costs will be covered.
Finally, we’d like you to be a part of this reading crazed group and will appreciate any contributions you put up.
Otherwise you can check out our collection on Goodreads and pick up something you like.