Book Marks and Cover Illustrations: Still Selling Used Books on Amazon

bookmarks IMG_4018Bookmarks: they’re something I hadn’t thought of finding when I started going through Bob’s books. I guess I’ve always imagined that, unlike me, he finished everything he started, or maybe with his photographic memory he magically remembered what page he was on. Some of the markers I’ve found are common — advertisements, library inserts — and some are handwritten lists, a poignant reminder of our mortality that always stops me short, reminding me that the real reason I’m doing all this is that he’s not here to do it list IMG_4017

Some markers tell me what he was doing at the time. Here are some travel related ones that make it obvious. Trans World Airlines is gone now too, so these days we refer to this as “TWA memorabilia.”

TWA memorabilia: boarding pass and seat-occupied card.

I can’t remember the last time I saw a “seat occupied” card.

Anybody remember mimeographed copies? This next one takes me straight back to grade school, when the teacher would hand out copies of something and the first thing we did was smell them.

Mimeographed copy used as a bookmark, "The Law of Trivalence"

Someone should bottle mimeograph-scented perfume for Boomers.

As for the books themselves, here’s the inventive cover illustration of one I sold this week…Walter M. Miller is the author of A Canticle for Leibowitz (still on my for-sale shelf if you’re interested).Best of Walter M Miller IMG_4011I know if I had a new pair of boots, the first thing I’d do is put on my orange evening gown and (clutching my nearly naked boyfriend) go for a ride on a giant flying bug. What, wouldn’t you?

Especially if the bug had rockets on its butt! I wanted to find an attribution for this cover art. There was no listing inside the book, but Google led me to a great new discovery. Forget IMDB, who knew there was an that lists all sorts of details about sci-fi lit? The site tells me: ‘Cover art not credited, but there is a truncated signature (“McA”) on the cover, which is assumed to stand for “Mara McAfee“.’ (b. 1929-d. 1984)  And now that I know, I see she also worked in film and is listed in IMDB too. Let’s appreciate it in detail…Best of Walter Miller detail IMG_4012As usual, I was sorry to let this go, but I have to think about how many books I still have listed and how long it’s going to take to sell them at the rate of 2-4 per week. Still, it’s worth it, even though now I’ll never know the story of the bug ride. I get a thrill every time I sell a book and know it’s going to someone who wants it.

But back to the bookmarks… I still have boxes of Bob’s books to go through, so who knows what I’ll find next. Bookmarks are one more thing we’re losing with the transition to e-readers. Until I make that switch, I’m going to start paying attention to my own bookmarks too. How about you?


Plastic bags & bottles – but what about the plastics we can’t see?

I’m reblogging this thoughtful post from “PipMarks”. And yes, I’m still working on using less plastic. Now I see that success at using my own grocery and produce bags, plus limiting other purchases that come in plastic, is just the tip of the plastic iceberg. Please read this, and when you need to lighten up, do click on the “mockumentary”.

OK, I’m off to read the labels on my facial cleansers —

Sustainability soapbox

© Bidouze Stéphane | Dreamstime.comIt is one thing to talk about plastic bags and water bottles and other things that we can see and can make a conscious decision about (i.e. whether we buy or accept them in the first place and then how we reuse or dispose of them).

We at least know that if we do the ‘wrong’ thing, our discarded plastic items are likely to end up being preserved in a massive midden (landfill) for future generations to deal with or will eventually find their way to huge sinks (oceans and lakes) where they break down over tens and hundreds (maybe thousands) of years into tiny pieces that then wash up on beaches all around the world, including the otherwise pristine shores of Lord Howe Island. Or that are swallowed by turtles and fish and then eaten by birds (e.g. albatross in this post) and other species up the food chain…


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