Unique Rating System Makes Book Collecting Easy
I started book collecting as a hobby.
I wanted to have an interesting pastime and also … a bookcase or two full of valuable books.
After several years of learning about book collecting, I discovered a system that allows me to predict which books are most likely to appreciate in price over the next few years.
I reveal my system and book picks — for you — in this web site.
The Early Years
In 1998, I decided to become a book collector with super collector and brother-in-law Jim to help guide me along. I read books on collecting and constantly asked Jim’s opinion of various authors and books.
In the first few years, I made a few good acquisitions like:
Killing Floor by Lee Child (his first book and Anthony Award winner)
To Say Nothing of the Dog by Connie Willis (Hugo winner)
A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin (first book in a very popular series)
However, most of the books I bought early in my book collecting career did not appreciate like I hoped they would.
I was astonished one day when Jim told me he had a first edition of Cold Mountain by Charles Frazier. He had bought it for $20 and he said it was now worth $200 (it won the National Book Award). I thought, “That’s the way I want to collect books”. And maybe you would like to collect this way as well.
Developing the Rating System
In late 2007, after ten years of collecting, I read a line in one of Nicolas Basbanes’ books that gave me an idea for a rating system. Using a spreadsheet, I put together a numerical system for rating books with several variables I thought should affect a book’s price. I tested it out on several different books and then developed a web site.
Each month I picked the book with the highest rating that was being released or had been released recently. I tried to choose books that were readily available and could be purchased signed by the author. Visitors to my web site www.book-collecting-tips.com could stop by each month and see what the latest Collectible Book of the Month was. You can still see some of the early picks there now.
How FictionPrediction.com Can Help You as a Book Collector
I opened a new membership site in October 2010. I realized that some visitors like you may be more interested in a certain genre. And listing all the rated books may help you find more potentially valuable books to collect.
The rating system now has over 1,500 rated books
– the books are mostly fiction in the following genres: mystery, fantasy, science fiction, literature, history and young adult (but not children’s books)
- The ratings are designed to show the appreciation potential of the book
– in other words,a rating of 50 means that a signed first edition in fine/fine condition could later be sold for $50
- New book ratings come out a couple of times a week with about 15 -20 books a month listed in the data base
– I know what you are thinking – that’s too many books to deal with and that is why …
- I highlight anywhere from 2 to as many as 8 books a month in a post
– I talk about the book and the author in each post and tell you where to get a copy – near the release date. If there are UK versions, I discuss these as well.
- Each month I select the Collectible Book of the Month, which is often the highest rated book I have written a post about
– The members and I focus our purchases on the Collectible Books of the Month – you will usually pay $28-$35 for these or even much less if you can find a nice copy in a used bookstore and can later get it signed by the author
– I do not sell these books to the members as they are usually readily available from an independent bookstore (for signed copies) or a chain store (for unsigned copies)
Books My System Found
Here are a few collectible books the rating system has helped me discover:
- The Name of the Wind
- The Windup Girl
- The Help
- The Tiger’s Wife
- Sweeping Up Glass
- The Story of Edgar Sawtelle
- The Hunger Games
Most collectors understand how valuable these books are now but few knew about them when they were first released.
Award Winning Books
Books that win the major awards are highly sought after by book collectors.
I track the major awards for literature, mystery, science fiction and fantasy for you.
The awards can be found in links to Google spreadsheets.
I post the shortlists and winners as soon as they are announced (usually within 2-3 days)
Our rated books are often on the shortlists but we cannot guarantee that they will win the award.
Author Book Signings
About once or twice a month, I attend a book signing. Sometimes at a bookstore or at a book festival. When I do this, I take detailed notes about the author’s talk. I later post an article for you on the site. You will learn a lot about the collectability of a book and the author’s writing career.
What I Am Buying For My Collection
I really do use the system for my own collecting. You can see what I have purchased. My recently collected books are listed on FictionPrediction.com for you to see when you join.
I started book selling early in 2011. If you are not yet a bookseller, you will pick up many tips to get ready to sell. I have information and advice on the major book marketplaces: ABE, Alibris, Amazon and Biblio.
Forum for Members
A forum is also available for you to chat or ask questions of other members. The members have varying book collecting experience levels. You will find someone with similar book collecting interests if you need help in a certain area.
Not a Book Collector?
You will see several posts about the basics of book collecting.
The two most important aspects of book collecting are:
Edition and Condition
You will see many more details about identifying first editions and condition on the site.
The books we collect on this site are hypermodern books meaning they are less than 20 years old.
Nearly everything we rate and collect has just been released or has been out for only a few months.
Thanks for visiting.
E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have questions.