Running Relays

I’m sure somewhere in this diary I’ve mentioned bookrings (where a book travels from person to person along a predetermined path, finally returning to where it started) and bookrays (like a bookring, but doesn’t return home at the end), but I don’t think I’ve ever explained bookrelays. The concept of bookrelays, like many things in Bookcrossing, originated in the forums, and was based loosely on the concept of the book/film Pay It Forward, that when someone does something nice for you you should repay the favour by doing something nice for someone else. The original idea was that someone would offer a book on the forums, and if you wanted that book you could ask them to send it to you, on condition that you then offered up a book, and so on. Someone coined the name “bookrelay” to describe the practice, and eventually there were so many relays running on the forums that CasualReader offered to set up the Bookrelay site to coordinate them.

I took part in a few relays when they first started, but (as with bookrings and rays) the postage costs started to get a bit much so I pretty much stopped visiting the site. But the other day Cyberkedi PMed me to say that she’d offered The Cat Who Went Underground by Lilian Jackson Braun on a bookrelay, and as she’d noticed I was looking for books in the Cat Who series she thought I might like to claim it. The relay she’d offered it in had a theme of cats, so I had a search around my releasable books for something I could offer that a) was about cats; b) wasn’t too heavy to post; and c) was a good enough book that someone else would claim it in turn (it’s not considered the done thing in a bookrelay to offer a book so bad that nobody wants it, thereby “killing” the relay). Eventually I came across the copy of The Unadulterated Cat that awhina had given me, which nicely fitted all three categories, meaning I could claim The Cat Who Went Underground and offer that up in return (and it was very quickly claimed by dittybopper, so my assessment of (c) was dead on).

Anyway, I posted The Unadulterated Cat off to dittybopper at the weekend, and yesterday The Cat Who Went Underground arrived from Cyberkedi, so now I’m desperately trying to resist the temptation to look at the Bookrelay site to see if there’s anything else interesting being offerred…

It’s nice when a themed release plan comes together. MrPloppy has a series of dentist appointments over the next few weeks (poor thing!), and I’ve managed to aquire several copies of Jaws which are just crying out to be released at a dentist’s. So ever one to take advantage of another’s misfortune, when he went for his first appointment yesterday I gave him a copy to release while he was there. Little does he know that I’ve got one copy lined up for each appointment…

Currently reading: Hunter of Worlds by CJ Cherryh (which unfortunately is proving to be almost as bad as daveytay warned me it was)

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