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Jan 17, 2016, 2:13 pm

Thought I'd make a thread to post general information that's not necessarily a question. Just things you discover that others might like or find interesting on this site.

Jan 17, 2016, 2:14 pm

I just wanted to mention that LT offers and "Early Reviewer" program. You can sign up to receive notifications of books that are being given away in hopes that if you win one, you will post a review for it.

Here is a discussion group for Early Reviewers and from there there is a link to sign up (it takes you to your profile info, so that's why I'm posting the link to the group):

Because LT is a smaller site than GR, for instance, your chances of winning a book are much better here. :-)

I've never won anything at GR, but I've won a few here. I stopped trying at GR.

Jan 17, 2016, 2:16 pm

Just a little fun thing (Kristelh found this and pointed it out to me a year or two ago)...

From your Home page, on the left menu, you'll see a link for "Folly". Click that.

At the top, you'll see "LibraryThing Roulette". Click on any of the options and it will take you to a random tag, member, group, etc. Just a fun thing to play with.

Jan 17, 2016, 2:38 pm

Did you all see this page:

This is helpful, as well. I'm going through it myself to find out things I didn't know!

Jan 17, 2016, 3:39 pm

If you go to your profile and then to Stats/memes, there's a whole mess of information about your catalog, all sorts of statistics and random info. (That is found here.) It's fun to poke around in.

Also, if anyone hasn't noticed yet, you have five viewing styles you can set up for your catalog (A-E). I would strongly suggest you go through and figure out which bits of info are most important to you for your catalog, and then alternate views (e.g. a particular style for when you've just added books and want to see particular fields that you'll want to fix up), and get that set up to your liking.

And, I'd suggest keeping the standing groups (like Talk about LibraryThing, Welcome to LibraryThing!, New features, and Bug Collectors) watched, so that you'll keep up on what's going on on the site. Additionally, check out the groups, and find some to your liking! There's lots of great groups here, challenges, general reading progress chronicling, groups for just about every genre, and hobby, etc. There's a group for just about everything, and if there's not, you can make one! LT's Talk is my main social networking area, lots of good stuff here. :)

Jan 17, 2016, 3:44 pm

Thanks again, Monkey!

Jan 17, 2016, 3:47 pm


Edited: Jan 19, 2016, 12:54 pm

This group is a great idea! I wanted to pop by and say "hi," and also mention that I've updated our recent blog post to include a link to the group, so that other incoming Shelfarians can find it easily.

Welcome, everyone! If there's anything I can do to help support you all, my inbox is always open (

Jan 19, 2016, 1:32 pm

^^ What she said! :) I keep a close eye on our help email ( as well. Welcome, Shelfarians!

Jan 19, 2016, 3:32 pm

I hope that non-Shelfarians are allowed to answer questions here. I totally understand if you want us to stay out so that you can answer each other's questions, but there may be cases where those of us who have been on LT for a long time might be able to help out where people who are all newcomers may not be familiar with every detail.

Jan 19, 2016, 3:42 pm

Some of us have been answering questions, and been thanked and not run off yet.

Jan 19, 2016, 9:04 pm

>8 lorannen: Thank you so much for the welcome and the link!

Jan 19, 2016, 9:06 pm

>10 lorax: Oh, I see >11 MarthaJeanne: beat me to answering you, but yes, of course. There have already been others pop in to help out. You can all be of so much help to us! I've been here a couple of years now, but there is still so much more I don't know!

Feb 6, 2016, 4:10 pm

I've just looked around a bit and found that you can create lists here, like we could at shelfari. I'm adding most of the lists I had over there over here now.

In case anyone else wants to, from your Home page in the left menu is "Lists".

At the top of that page is a link to "Create new list". There are options for you to choose from there. You can allow anyone to add to your list, or keep it so only you can.

Feb 6, 2016, 4:24 pm

>14 LibraryCin: I'll tack a question on to this, for those LTers who have been here longer.

I see there are different ways I can sort my list - one of those ways is by "score". What does that mean, "score"? The scores just appear to coordinate with the order I added the books in. The score numbers are different, but the order simply remains the order I added the books, but the books at the top are "scored" higher than the books at the bottom.


Edited: Feb 6, 2016, 5:46 pm

You can reorder them on the right, for your personal version of the list. Score means rank. If more people use the list and add the books, then the ones they've added will have a higher score. And of course, the score is weighted, the closer to the top of your list (the higher the rank), the more it's "worth."

ETA Here's a popular scored list, you can see how it works.

Feb 6, 2016, 11:29 pm

>16 .Monkey.: Thanks so much!

Edited: Feb 7, 2016, 11:18 am

>5 .Monkey.:
Thanks, .Monkey, for pointing out the different views (A-E). I actually like A ... BUT ... would prefer to have DATE READ than Entry Date. I don't keep my tbr on the site, only the books I've actually read. I've explored a bit in the settings, but don't find a way to add the DATE READ column.

Is there a way to do this?

Feb 7, 2016, 11:22 am

The views are entirely customizable. When you go to the styles page ( you can see the box on the right tells you "Drag and drop these fields into your styles." This page used to be a royal pain, awful to fix up, because every one was a dropbox, so if you simply wanted to add one in near the front you had to go through every field after it fixing them back. Now, it's easypeasy, simple drag & drop however you want it. :)

Edited: Feb 7, 2016, 12:48 pm

>19 .Monkey.:
Yes, I've gone to that page but DATE READ is not one of the option to drag over.... What am I missing?

Oh ... I figured it out ... I had to click on the PERSONAL tab to find the DATE FINISHED field. YAY

Feb 7, 2016, 1:36 pm

A quick note about lists: you can search them. For instance, if you enter "science fiction" in the search box and then click the Lists link in the left side, you'll find all lists that have science fiction in the title or description. I've found this quite handy because there's really no other easy way to sort through all the lists. It's also good to keep in mind when creating lists to use some keywords that people might want to search on to find it later.

Feb 7, 2016, 2:23 pm

>21 sturlington: Nice! Good to know! Thanks.

Feb 8, 2016, 1:36 pm

I'm happy you're doing that. LibraryCin has been talking up LibraryThing to me for several years now, and I'm starting to see why.

Feb 8, 2016, 4:07 pm

>23 Karin7: I'm glad you're starting to enjoy it, Karin! :-)

Feb 9, 2016, 9:22 am


Just an update regarding a recent improvement we have made for Shelfari imports.
We have it now so that the following columns are mapped to collections as:

Owned -> Your Library | Owned
Favorite -> Favorites
Wishlist -> Wishlist
Plan to read -> To Read
Currently Reading -> Currently reading
Read -> Read

So, now if you import a Shelfari file and the value is 'True' for any of the above fields, that record will map to the corresponding collection.

Jun 5, 2016, 9:05 am

I now have 2,000 tags. This same thing happened when I moved to LM. There, the LM moderator was kind enough to reduce then to 8. Is there a way to reduce my 2,000 book tags for my 820 books to a manageable number without doing each book individually?

Edited: Jun 5, 2016, 9:17 am

If you go to 'your books' and click on the tag tab at the top, you will get a list of all the different tags you are using. You can then edit misspellings and such to end up with fewer different tags. 'See all tags' on the profile page will take you to the same list.

Jun 5, 2016, 9:28 am

>27 MarthaJeanne: I see the list of all tags but I don't see the edit button.

Jun 5, 2016, 9:50 am

There are two different ways of clicking on them, but how is very browser dependant.

Jun 5, 2016, 11:34 am

>29 MarthaJeanne: which browser works best?

Nov 20, 2016, 2:02 am

So, someone in one of my groups had, a while back, asked about how to "force" a touchstone. That is, if you enclose the title of a book in square brackets, but nothing comes up in a list to choose. I honestly don't remember who had asked or which group, but I posted where I think the question was asked and decided to also post here for anyone who might want to know (it doesn't come up often, so if you are interested, you might want to "favourite" this post or link to it or something...

So, what you need to do is get the "work number" from the end of the URL, so for this one:
The work number is 16984377

Then, put that number inside the start of square brackets, followed by two colons and the title of the book, so
16984377::You Might Be From Saskatchewan If... Volume 2
but enclose that in square brackets and you get this:
You Might Be From Saskatchewan If... Volume 2

Nov 20, 2016, 3:23 am

>31 LibraryCin: If you are looking at a book you own, the URL will look like For forcing the touchstone you want the work number - 18639138, not the number at the end.

Also, these are much more liable to fail after a while, because the work number can change with combining, so if any combining is going to be done, you might want to do that first, before talking about the book.

Nov 20, 2016, 3:19 pm

>32 MarthaJeanne: Thank you for that! I guess the number one would want, then, is the number immediately after "work/".

Hadn't realized that about the the work number potentially changing. Thanks again!

Edited: Nov 20, 2016, 4:35 pm

>33 LibraryCin: Think about it. If two works are combined, one of the work numbers will no longer be valid.

Sometimes the words work and book may not be there, but it is always the first number that you want.

And another BTW. If you mention a book right after entering the first copy on LT, chances are very good that you will have to force. But do check that you are really the first, as recently published books usually need some manual combining of the first few editions. Combiners are always happy to help. The current topic for that is

Edited: Nov 20, 2016, 4:54 pm

>34 MarthaJeanne: Think about it. If two works are combined, one of the work numbers will no longer be valid.

Yup, it does make sense! I just hadn't thought that closely about it. :-)

Thanks for the extra info re: combining.

Edited: Nov 22, 2016, 1:06 am

>31 LibraryCin: When you force a touchstone I found that you MUST include the entire title of the record for example

X (Kinsey Millhone Book 24) by Sue Grafton
I kept trying to use the title as X by Sue Grafton
once I did the full title there it was.

I noticed marthajean's comment on using the first number

the 2nd number is actually my record of the book - so if I want to make corrections to any detail of "my" book that I entered I would do so on that record.

the 1st number is probably the most recent record id'd as the combined edition identifier (this is just a guess).

if you use the 2nd number is you may have to go into (others) to check the edition you want to use, but it will be your edition and cover image.

Edited: Nov 22, 2016, 1:02 am

>36 Bettesbooks: Your example isn't working.

Just X doesn't either, which isn't surprising.

X Sue Grafton does.

The current work title is X, BTW.

Look in the Book information box on your copy.
Your title is shown at the top of the page and near the top of the box, but the work title is shown at the bottom of the box. In this case it is set by a canonical title, which is correct because the series name is not really part of the title of the book. Amazon often includes it.

Nov 22, 2016, 1:04 am

>36 Bettesbooks:
Hi, marthajean. I got it to work .. I actually added additional info to the post after your response, which explains why it probably didn't work for you if you.

Can you try it again, to be sure it works for the non-owner record number?

Edited: Nov 22, 2016, 1:47 am

>36 Bettesbooks: as edited. Your touchstone still does not work. I'm guessing that you used the book number. The book number does not work for touchstones. You are right about what the numbers mean, but they are different series of numbers. This looks for a work number.

Also, if you force the touchstone it does not matter what you write after the two colons. It will go to the work that is indicated by the work number.

It's always a good idea to check the touchstone after saving. If it is a book you own, you should see the book information box. If you don't see it, there is a problem - probably just combining needed.

Jan 8, 2017, 2:38 am

Just thought people might be interested in this.

I, for one, miss the stats page on shelfari. There is a similar page here.

If you go to your home page and select Stats/Memes (one of the tabs), you'll see some of your stats there.

Jan 8, 2017, 2:49 am

>40 LibraryCin: You can also access it from your profile (or someone else's from their profile). Do check out the left side menu, as there are lots and lots of useful things hidden there. One of my favourites is right down at the bottom. The collections page lets you access books in two collections (for example all the Food that is in To Read - 14 books, most of them cookbooks) or you can get a list of all the books that are not in a specific collection.

Edited: Jan 8, 2017, 2:01 pm

>41 MarthaJeanne: It's interesting. I've been here a few years, now, and there are still so many things I haven't yet investigated!

And thanks for the extra info/tips!

Jan 10, 2017, 12:10 pm

>40 LibraryCin: that was totally fun! I have learned that my library contains 13,319 pounds of books, aka 689 adult-badgers-worth. Or 1 1/2 elephants. Certainly seemed like it when we moved.

My library's weight in gold is over 217 million! woohoo! Don't tell my husband - he already questions how much I spend on books :D

Jan 10, 2017, 1:32 pm

>43 Darth-Heather:

You only have ~700 books in your library. I think you've got some bad data there - an average book does not weigh as much as a badger.


Ah. You may want to double-check the weight on your copy of The Scapegoat (; I doubt it really weighs over 9000 pounds.

Jan 10, 2017, 2:36 pm

I suspect the weights are based on the weights listed in Amazon. Those weights are probably based on total shipped weight as dropped off at the Post Office. So that includes the cardboard package. You actual weight will probably be a little less.

Jan 10, 2017, 4:57 pm

>44 lorax: awwww, I fixed it but now have only 47 badgers.

Jan 10, 2017, 10:35 pm

>43 Darth-Heather: I have learned that my library contains 13,319 pounds of books, aka 689 adult-badgers-worth. Or 1 1/2 elephants. Certainly seemed like it when we moved.

Haha! Nice!

Jan 11, 2017, 1:03 am

I think that badgers or elephants would be harder to move than the same weight of books.

Jan 11, 2017, 8:35 am

>48 MarthaJeanne: I'm sure the badgers would be. I watched a Discovery Channel show about them - they are clever, stubborn, and grouchy.

Jan 11, 2017, 10:14 am

>47 LibraryCin:

Except see 44 and 46; DarthHeather's stats were thrown off by one bit of particularly bad data.

Jan 11, 2017, 10:35 am

I don't even want to move 47 badgers. Or take care of them without moving them.

Jan 11, 2017, 11:48 am

I'll take the elephants, rather than the badgers. (My own library is only about a quarter of an elephant; those stats aren't 100% checked against my physical copies, but there aren't any obvious problems in the non-verified data, so it's not going to be too far off.) The elephant could actually help you move your library.

Jan 11, 2017, 1:26 pm

>48 MarthaJeanne: said, "I think that badgers or elephants would be harder to move than the same weight of books."

Oh, I dunno... for the badgers, a trail of earthworms. For the elephant, a trail of peanuts - or a mouse if you prefer randomosity.

Those books are gonna sit there, stubbornly immobile, no matter what you wave at them.... and Darth has a quite a few smoots worth of pages to move, (33.17 Harvard Bridge lengths!) ;-p

Jan 11, 2017, 7:59 pm

>50 lorax: I did see that after! Oh, well, still a fun stat!

Edited: Jan 12, 2017, 10:44 pm

This message has been deleted by its author.

Jan 13, 2017, 11:00 am

By the way, my sincere apologies. I spotted this thread on one of my periodic visits to All Topics, and failed to note that it was in the Shelfarians group. I'm sorry for the intrusion, everyone.

Jan 13, 2017, 11:27 am

>56 lorax: I'm not a Shelfarian either, but lurk a lot, and throw in my pennyworth when I think a long time LT opinion might add to the discussion. (Or occasionally just to talk.) They have never acted like they want to throw me out.

Jan 13, 2017, 11:31 am

>56 lorax: Well there's no one left there to rat you out. You're secret is safe with us.

Jan 13, 2017, 12:33 pm

>56 lorax: everyone is welcome here, especially when you are helping us to learn more about LT. I am glad to learn that I can convert to books-per-badger-weight units :)

Jan 13, 2017, 1:38 pm

>56 lorax: I agree with Darth - no apologies necessary. Thanks to you, MarthaJeanne, and all the others, (you know who you are), for the help & great tips!

>58 .cris: Hah! Nice one, .cris! ;)

Jan 13, 2017, 9:56 pm

>56 lorax: and >57 MarthaJeanne: I was just about to comment not to worry about it! I think we're a pretty welcoming bunch! :-)

Jan 16, 2017, 11:45 am

Thank you, MarthaJeanne and LibraryCin for the info about my book stats! I found that I have some controversial books in my library, one of which is The Silmarillion. Who knew??

One thing I would like to ask the moderators and LT experts is how do I directly reference an individual's post in my reply? I do miss the nested conversations on Shelfari, and when I click on the "Reply" link I have a generic, non-referenced reply that goes down to the bottom of the thread.

Jan 16, 2017, 12:13 pm

>62 threadnsong: You use the > and the message number (no space) and you get a link including the member name. This works only for previous messages in the same topic.

To reference a message in another topic, you click on the 'more' below the message, then 'link'. This gives you the message URL up at the top of your browser window that you can copy and paste.

Edited: Jan 17, 2017, 2:41 pm

>63 MarthaJeanne:: Thank you, MarthaJeanne! Let's see if this works.

Jan 30, 2017, 9:38 am

>56 lorax:,>57 MarthaJeanne: I enjoy your remarks and insight