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Fantasy => General Discussion => Topic started by: Rolnikov on October 04, 2008, 10:41:26 pm

Title: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on October 04, 2008, 10:41:26 pm
Any other Goodreaders here at the BFS? Or anyone using something similar like Shelfari or LibraryThing?

I love keeping track of which books I've read. I did it for years as a teenager, then got out of the habit, and now with Goodreads it's back in full force. I'm really looking forward to digging out my old notebooks and filling in the exact dates I read all my old books... It might not sound like much, but for me that'll be one of the most enjoyable days of my life. Not quite up there with the birth of my children, but certainly round about the same level as visiting the Eiffel Tower.  :D

What prompted me to start a thread was that you can now update your progress on books, and they'll be keeping track of the data people enter. It's made me think of how online feedback via things like Steam and Xbox Live has revolutionised computer game design in recent years: it turned out that huge numbers of people were never getting past the early levels of games, and that's led to a decrease in unfair difficulty spikes, for example.

I could imagine this having a similar influence on books... Imagine anthologists being able to see which story stumped their readers, or publishers being able to see which books went largely unfinished. Of course, the influence could be negative for authors: you could imagine authors being put under pressure to remove "difficult" sequences from reissues, translations, etc.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Troo on October 05, 2008, 12:50:12 am
I have a LibraryThing account, but neglected to keep it updated.

Doesn't the sheer vastness of the task (of cataloguing all that you've read) put you off?
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on October 05, 2008, 08:54:31 am
I already had all the old books I'd read in an Excel file, so I was able to just upload them in one go. For all my new books I had an insane couple of weeks where I worked through all my shelves every evening. It gets very addictive once you get started.

Keeping track of what I get now might be a chore if I didn't enjoy it, but for me it's sheer bliss. The best part of Fantasycon was getting home and adding all my new books...
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Jec on October 05, 2008, 11:34:22 am
I would not/could not catalogue all the books I have read!  Nor would I want to  :)  Life, on the whole, is far too short, M'Dear  :D

But if you really feel the need to catalogue stuff you can be an angel and come and list ours -  and if you include the massed boxes of duplicate copies and 60s through 80s zines in the store shed - you will be doubly welcome ::)

(though we have offloaded a fair stack of those at past Fcons to be fair  ;D )

But seriously? Yes, I too would be horrified to think of authors being 'intimidated' into writing 'down' to an audience...

Good fiction should never be allowed to fall foul of some ghastly Xfactor-styled homogenisation  8)
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: sink_plunger on October 06, 2008, 11:41:36 am
This is interesting.  I've recently started keeping a record of which books I've read (date started and finished, author, publisher, etc.), but in a simple spreadsheet on my laptop.  I hadn't realised there were online resources to do the same thing - I may well take a look.  To be honest though, I've had so little time to read lately that it's quite embarrassing to look back at my achievements.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on October 06, 2008, 01:09:14 pm
I've been a bit surprised to find, once I started to keep track, that I only seem to finish about two novels a month nowadays. I think it's partly down to working at home. Plus I spend a good part of the day reading for work and a lot of my leisure time reading submissions for TQF and Dark Horizons, so when I'm done with that I usually fancy a change.

I've also found that I've got about 1200 books that I haven't read or finished, which was bugging me for a while. I took a vow to not buy any new books till I got that number down, but predictably it didn't last very long.

One other thing that turned up was that I haven't read any Conan by Robert E. Howard... I'd always thought I had. They're all on the shelf, but when I added them to Goodreads I realised I'd only actually read the ones by people like Robert Jordan. Now the question is whether to read the paperbacks I already have, or to buy the newer, original text versions, like the volume Stephen Jones edited.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Pigasus on October 06, 2008, 02:52:06 pm
I have a LibraryThing account, but neglected to keep it updated.

Doesn't the sheer vastness of the task (of cataloguing all that you've read) put you off?

Me, too.. and yes it does.

I keep Excel-track of books I review - but have forgotten details of so much other stuff, read over the last 30 years, it's quite impossible to create a 'complete' list.   
 :(   
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: D. J. R. Allkins on October 06, 2008, 07:27:16 pm
Sounds like a great way to take some of the fun out of reading
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on October 07, 2008, 01:34:00 pm
Xbox 360 achievements divide people the same way. Some people love them, because they encourage you to get stuck into games, play them all the way through and get the most out of them. Others hate them for turning games into work and drudgery.

Maybe it's because I'm a gamer that Goodreads appeals so much - it turns reading into a game. You could even think of the charts of most prolific readers and reviewers as high score tables. That's probably not going to appeal to many of you as much as it does to me...

But don't be put off Goodreads just because the way I use it sounds dull. Most people just use it to rate and review their books as they go along, rather than trying to catalogue everything. And the way your friends' reviews are emailed to you each day (if you want them to be) is really nice - it's one of the highlights of every afternoon for me.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Peter Coleborn on October 07, 2008, 02:54:33 pm

 - it's one of the highlights of every afternoon for me.


I think you need to settle down with a nice cup of hot chocolate and a couple of digestive biscuits

 ;)
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Mark_Yon on October 07, 2008, 09:37:47 pm
I know quite a few people who use it and Library Thing; I'm even signed up for it. The problem is that I could spend time cataloging everything, or actually reading, when the time for reading is precious as it is.

For some - looks like you, Stephen! - it's a lot of fun.

More power to you, but personally I prefer to read.

Mark
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on February 07, 2013, 09:14:57 am
All seven issues so far of the BFS Journal are now set up on Goodreads, ready to be added to your reading lists, rated and reviewed: http://www.goodreads.com/series/96586-bfs-journal
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Dave Brzeski on February 07, 2013, 12:22:27 pm
I opened a goodreads account some time back, but I don't think I've ever been back there since.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Phillip Spencer on February 13, 2013, 01:23:49 pm
I opened a goodreads account some time back, but I don't think I've ever been back there since.

Likewise for me. It seemed to take too much time for the limited value I got from it.

I recently tried a new service, Bookish - http://www.bookish.com/home (http://www.bookish.com/home) - which had been touted in a blog I follow as having the potential to give Goodreads a run for its money. It may be too new at the moment, as genre fiction did not seem well represented and the focus appeared to be on selling books (priced in USD) rather than recommendations.

An example: I can buy Iain M Banks "Consider Phlebus" but cannot enter it as a book enjoyed to get similar recommendations. Admittedly, it does say "recommendations" is Beta, but typing "Ian Fleming" pulls up a prompt for biography of the author, not a single Bond book. "Iain" only pulls up a prompt for "Iain Crichton Smith" not any of the Banks books they list for sale.

Another example: No recommendations for Christopher Priest but the main search brings up a mixed muddle for sale of the UK author's books (but, surprisingly, not "The Glamour") and those of Christopher J Priest (graphic novels) and a bunch of African-American writings.

 At that point, I gave up.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on November 03, 2013, 01:15:21 pm
I've set up the latest BFS titles on Goodreads, so here are links in case any members would like to add them to your reading lists:

BFS Journal #9: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18456191-bfs-journal-9
The Burning Circus: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18749871-the-burning-circus
Unexpected Journeys: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18749889-unexpected-journeys

Not a BFS book, but quite a few of you may have it:

Flotsam Fantastique: The Souvenir Book of World Fantasy Convention 2013: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18749853-flotsam-fantastique
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Jay Eales on November 06, 2013, 08:54:24 pm
I've set up the latest BFS titles on Goodreads, so here are links in case any members would like to add them to your reading lists:

BFS Journal #9: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18456191-bfs-journal-9
The Burning Circus: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18749871-the-burning-circus
Unexpected Journeys: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18749889-unexpected-journeys

I've added The Burning Circus and Unexpected Journeys to Library Thing, too. Couldn't find a pic for Unexpected Journeys, though.

Jay
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on November 07, 2013, 11:58:13 am
Excellent! I've just asked Lee if he has a jpg of the cover, and will pass that on to you when I have it.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Debbie on November 09, 2013, 05:35:36 pm
I have a Goodreads author account and I tend to copy book reviews across from amazon when I remember, but I generally find Goodreads too volatile for any serious interaction. Say one thing in the wrong place and you can be trolled by angry mobs right across the internet. For those of us who rely on reviews to sell books, GR is way too scary to linger in....  :-\
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Wayne Mook on November 16, 2013, 09:03:36 pm
I keep a written record of the books I've read & most of those I've bought, fiction only. It's because I realised I cannot remember what I have read or own so I can check so I don't end up buying multiple copies of books. not fool proof but the action of writing them down helps me remember. Being dyslexic with associated memories problems can be a bit of a pain.


Wayne.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on February 12, 2014, 03:39:30 pm
Did your BFS Journal #10 arrive today? Are you on Goodreads? Add it to your booklist! http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20650686-bfs-journal-10

And once you've read it, ratings and reviews would be brilliant.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: David A. Riley on February 12, 2014, 06:08:30 pm
Did your BFS Journal #10 arrive today? Are you on Goodreads? Add it to your booklist! http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20650686-bfs-journal-10

And once you've read it, ratings and reviews would be brilliant.

Done.

Great looking edition of the Journal. I look forward to reading it.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on April 12, 2014, 07:54:41 am
BFS Journal #11 is up on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/21522853-bfs-journal-11), if you fancy adding it to your booklist.

The full series of BFS Journals is listed here. (https://www.goodreads.com/series/96586-bfs-journal)
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Dave Brzeski on April 12, 2014, 12:21:22 pm
BFS Journal #11 is up on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/21522853-bfs-journal-11), if you fancy adding it to your booklist.

The full series of BFS Journals is listed here. (https://www.goodreads.com/series/96586-bfs-journal)

Useful to me for working out which of the earlier ones I'm mising. Thanks.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on November 30, 2014, 11:48:16 am
BFS Journal #12 and BFS Journal #13 are now listed on Goodreads, if you're on there and you'd like to add them to your to-read lists:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23635694-bfs-journal-12
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23635701-bfs-journal-13

The whole series is listed here:

https://www.goodreads.com/series/96586-bfs-journal
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on July 26, 2015, 02:12:09 pm
BFS Journal #14 is now listed on Goodreads, if you're on there and you'd like to add it to your to-read (or have-read) lists: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25983160-bfs-journal-14
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on October 16, 2015, 10:04:21 am
BFS Horizons #1 is up on Goodreads, if you'd like to add it to your to-read lists:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/26594848-bfs-horizons-1
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Mythago on November 20, 2015, 10:26:46 am
I do tend to record my books on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/3440483-alan), but I find the site so huge it's rather impersonal. I sometimes wish there were a smaller, UK-based site.
Not everything I've read is on there though (that would take too long).
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on November 30, 2015, 07:47:49 am
It took me ages to get everything I'd read and owned on there. There was a month where I spent a couple of hours a day grabbing a shelf-full of books, piling them up on my desk, and adding them one by one. I didn't even have the app with a barcode reader then.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: jared on December 01, 2015, 09:15:31 am
That's extraordinarily dedicated. I use it to track current reading (it is useful when it comes to end of year posts and awards season and all that), but the idea of methodically tracking down everything from the past gives me shivers. I'm really impressed!
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on December 01, 2015, 10:58:30 am
It was a kind of mania. I already had a list of everything I'd read up until I was about twenty-two, recovered from old Amstrad PCW8256 disks, and I uploaded that which got me off to a good start. And then a lot of what I read was easy to track down - Doctor Who, Moorcock, Superman, etc. What took longest was cataloguing the books I own but haven't read, and manually adding small press books that weren't on there already.

I do find it useful to have, now it's done. It's surprising sometimes to see how few books I've read by some people. Like, I feel as if I've read a lot of Stephen King, but I've only finished nine of his books, and not all of those are full length novels. And it's nice to know that I'm now in my own top ten authors read list, level in tenth place with Philip K. Dick with 31 books each!
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Ken Magee on December 10, 2015, 05:58:10 pm
I went to add BFS #9 to my reading list and found the Goodreads link didn't work. Might be worth a look.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on December 10, 2015, 07:58:16 pm
Maybe Goodreads was offline that day? The full list of BFS Journals is here: https://www.goodreads.com/series/96586-bfs-journal
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Ken Magee on December 30, 2015, 04:37:37 pm
Maybe Goodreads was offline that day? The full list of BFS Journals is here: https://www.goodreads.com/series/96586-bfs-journal

I get the list OK, but if I go to, for example, BFS Journal #14, the Get a Copy Amazon UK button takes me to Amazon with the message "BFS Journal #14" did not match any products.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on December 30, 2015, 04:49:24 pm
Sure - that's because it isn't on sale on Amazon. It'll only show up on there if someone puts a secondhand copy on sale.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Ken Magee on December 30, 2015, 07:32:20 pm
Sure - that's because it isn't on sale on Amazon. It'll only show up on there if someone puts a secondhand copy on sale.

Ah right, I get it now. The 'Get a Copy' on Amazon threw me.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on December 30, 2015, 07:39:28 pm
If anyone would like to add BFS Horizons #2 to their reading lists, here it is: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/28400771-bfs-horizons-2
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on April 24, 2016, 05:10:11 pm
If you'd like to add issue fifteen of the BFS Journal to your reading list, here it is on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29989562-bfs-journal-15
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on July 11, 2016, 09:14:43 am
If you'd like to add issue three of BFS Horizons to your reading lists, here it is on Goodreads:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30986691-bfs-horizons-3
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Erana Mage on August 30, 2016, 09:51:45 am
I'm on Goodreads. I used to use it a lot, but since the recent changes and the general snarkiness of some people I cut down on the usage.  When I do go there it's to catalogue my reading - I tend to take the challenges, and I'm mod on the Smashwords author forum so I spend a bit of time there.  Now I stick to 3 or 4 groups as a reader.

As an author - hmm well I add my books, of course and check for reviews but I'm not that active now. One has to be really careful where one promotes on GR. I've thought about doing a giveaway but from what I've heard it's generally not worth it.

What I have found is my reading tastes have broadened since I've been on GR - I use the lists and added loads of books. I've bought books via the GR links so it does work for some.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Ken Magee on August 30, 2016, 10:58:26 am
I'm on Goodreads. I used to use it a lot, but since the recent changes and the general snarkiness of some people I cut down on the usage.  When I do go there it's to catalogue my reading - I tend to take the challenges, and I'm mod on the Smashwords author forum so I spend a bit of time there.  Now I stick to 3 or 4 groups as a reader.

As an author - hmm well I add my books, of course and check for reviews but I'm not that active now. One has to be really careful where one promotes on GR. I've thought about doing a giveaway but from what I've heard it's generally not worth it.

What I have found is my reading tastes have broadened since I've been on GR - I use the lists and added loads of books. I've bought books via the GR links so it does work for some.

I agree with the sentiment. I rarely promote on GR now, it never really worked for me and although I've never been targeted by the 'snarks', I've seen it happen to plenty of other authors.

I occasionally add books to my reading list there and I do post any reviews I do.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on August 31, 2016, 07:52:06 am
Yes, you do have to be very careful about self-promotion on there. There's a reasonably successful author who to me is still just "that spammer from Goodreads", even though it was half a decade ago now. It's best to avoid commenting on reviews of your own books, and authors who attack reviewers there and elsewhere can soon find that Goodreads members have turned against them. They can be very protective of each other.

I've found giveaways to be fairly effective. I got at least a couple of reviews from each one.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Erana Mage on September 03, 2016, 08:09:51 pm
I tend not to comment on reviews, at least not my own.

They've just changed the whole layout for GR and I can't find a damn thing now.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on September 04, 2016, 08:17:37 am
I commented once, I think, on a review that said:

"This man really has no clue at all when it comes to reviews and reviewing. It seems to me that Theaker enjoys writing self-indulgent twaddle – nasty gibes – and spends most of his time writing negative, not informative reviews. I haven't seen one he's written that I would say I agreed with."

There were none of my reviews in the book they were supposedly reviewing...
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on January 18, 2017, 04:57:34 pm
If you'd like to add issue four of BFS Horizons to your Goodreads reading list, here it is:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33916141-bfs-horizons-4

(I'll replace the wonky cover image with a better version if I see one.)
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Stephen Palmer on January 21, 2017, 12:22:26 pm
Goodreads is a sort of analogue of the internet - huge, overly complicated, partly impenetrable.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on January 21, 2017, 03:23:56 pm
One thing that could be improved is the way they distinguish between authors with the same name - at the moment I think the librarians are still adding a set number of spaces to the middle of each author's name.

Forgot to mention before, but I set BFS Journal #16 up on there too:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32181677-bfs-journal-16

(Because the BFS journals don't have ISBNs, they don't show up in the Goodreads catalogue unless manually added.)
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Ken Magee on January 22, 2017, 11:06:41 am
I dip in and out of my Goodreads catalogue and add books as I remember them or I have a little blast every so often.

One fun feature is to 'compare books' with someone. I've just done a comparison with Stephen and we're 79% similar in taste for the 71 books in common we've rated. I also use this feature to remind me of books I've read but not graded so it gradually adds to my catalogue.

All in all, I find it fun and not too time-consuming.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on February 19, 2018, 10:15:25 am
Didn't notice this before, Ken - 79%, that's not too shabby! My previous best was 74% with S.C. Flynn.
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Ken Magee on February 19, 2018, 10:38:22 pm
 ;D including a love of The Stainless Steel Rat  :D
Title: Re: Goodreads
Post by: Rolnikov on February 20, 2018, 09:42:31 am
Oh yes! I first heard of the Stainless Steel Rat in the Blake’s 7 magazine, where he had stolen something before Vila could get to it. I bought two of the books and was so excited I started reading both of them on the walk home from town. I wrote a terrible sequel to the series called Another Stainless Steel Rat in Tasword Two on the ZX Spectrum, and I was ridiculously happy when an SFX review called my first self-published novel a Stainless Steel Rat adventure with important organs missing. I must read the four newest ones at some point.