Getting Rid of Books the Smart Way

I have exactly 325 books that I’ve been trying to figure out what to do with.  Goodwill is one option, but I want to make some money instead of just giving away my books.  I’ve been looking at some alternatives, and if you’re trying to minimalize your possessions and books are holding you back, here’s some of the things I’ve found.

Half.com – This is a high traffic site, and it’s especially good for selling used text books.  They take a 15% commission.

Cash4Books – This is an online service that buys your books and pays for the shipping to send it to them.  They don’t pay much for the books, but since you don’t pay shipping, it kind of evens out depending on what you’re selling.

Amazon – Another high traffic site that is great for selling books fast.  They take a 15% commissions plus a $.99 closing fee when you’ve sold a book.  Amazon also offers a service where you send them your books and they endorse, package, and ship your books for a small fee which is nice because all you have to do is send a bulk shipment instead of paying for individual packages every time you sell a book which can get pricy.

Used book stores – We have a huge used book store in Knoxville that buys your books for a decent price.  If you have something like that in your area, it’s worth checking out.

Craigslist – Depending on your area, this might be a profitable option, but if you live in a small town or a place where books aren’t a big market, you probably would be better off trying one of the above options.

Anyone have any other suggestions about being smart with getting rid of books?  If this post was helpful, please leave a comment or tweet this.

A Formula for Minimalism

The Problem

Mankind is wired to conform to the enviorement around them.  So, when you read about guys like Everett Bogue or Leo Babauta, you might feel like in order to be a minimalist you’d have to do what they’re doing to achieve that type of lifestyle.  That’s not true, though, minimalism looks and feels different for each person.  It’s not practical to carry everything you own in a backpack when you have a 9-month-old.

The Variable

The point of minimalism isn’t to get everything you own under 100 items, it’s to get rid of all the things you don’t use or really need; and that’s relative to each person.  If everyone adopted the minimalist life and got rid of most everything they had, there would be no museums, no libraries, and can you imagine a minimalist hospital!?

The Equation

So, in your quest to be minimal, be aggressive in cutting out stuff but don’t be irrational.  Besides, the goal of minimalism isn’t to have less stuff, it’s a lifestyle that enables you to live out your dreams which is a byproduct of having less.  If your dream is to move into a smaller house and have a cheaper mortgage payment, then that’s not going to require you to get rid of as much stuff as if you were going to be a vagabond and travel the world.

My Solution

I’ll be honest, my dream is to quit my day job and take a trip around the world.  So, my life is going to look a lot like Everett’s, but I have library of books (some that are very rare) and a collection of indigeouness artifacts from my travels that I don’t want to get rid of.  My solution is to leave them at my family’s house.

What about you, what are your dreams?  And what will it take to accomplish those?