May 30, 2016

Using Goodreads


If you remember, I recently did a review of Goodreads. This the second part to that post. It is dedicated to using Goodreads, whether as a reader or a writer.

How Goodreads Works

Goodreads is a site that is designed to help people find things to read. You can make friends with people and see what they're reading, and look at Goodreads recommendations (more on this in a moment). Using it, you can look up whatever book(s) you're currently reading and add it to your shelves. Once you finish it you can rate the book from one to five stars and add a review if you want. It can then use the books you've read to suggest books you might like to read.

Using Goodreads as a Reader

If you're always looking for new books to read, Goodreads is certainly for you. Let's start with finding books to read.

Pretend you just added a book as a currently reading- for this example I'll go with The Selection. If you look on the right side of the page, there is a spot called "Readers Also Enjoyed" that you can look through. You can also check out the lists with this book, which can be found below the questions.

The second option to find books is to look through the recommendations. It's under browse and is organized by your shelves and favorite genres. I found the recommendations quite good. If you don't like one of the books they suggest, just hit "not interested" and they'll revise what they show you. Simple.

Lastly, there's just browsing. You can search for a genre you're interested in, mark your favorites, and look at new and/or popular books. Say your on a fantasy kick. Click on the "All Genres" button under browse. From there you can find the genre you're looking for. It can get very specific, such as high fantasy or YA fantasy.

Note: Never read the reviews. I don't find them helpful at all. Most of the top reviews are ones that tear the book you loved apart. Not that there aren't good reviews. I won't say that. But it's best not to look.

Using Goodreads as a Writer

Goodreads is also helpful to writers. First of all, it's a great way to find new books on writing. They have a whole genre on it, plus you can look at related books to the one you just finished. You can't read too many books on writing, right?

Second, you can use Goodreads to find books similar to your WIP. This can be great if you're trying to find out what genre your book is in, what people think of books like yours, and just to read similar books. First, you either find a book that is similar to yours and click on "Readers Also Enjoyed" or lists, or you can search for similar books. It's all up to you.

Last, Goodreads also has an author program. I can't claim to know much about this, so you'll have to look it up yourself if you want details. Here's a post on setting up a Goodreads author profile and the reason's you should. I personally want to learn more about this as I continue looking into publishing.

A Note About the App

Yes, of course Goodreads has an app. Everything has an app, or so it seems. I have it, and here are my thoughts.

Pros to the app-
It's a quick and easy way to add books on the go
While it loads, it shows you a quote from a book
It's fairly simple to navigate
You can scan your book's bar-code, which can be easier than searching for it (does not work on library books as they cover the bar-code)

Cons to the app-
It's hard to rate books and add a review, which is why this is easier on the computer
Not all of the same features are available on the app as on the computer
It can be slow

Personally, I prefer the computer, but if the app works better for you, great.

Was this post helpful to you? Is there anything you don't understand or want to know? Let me know in the comments, I'd love to hear from you.

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