Thursday, March 20, 2014

My billion dollar idea: Goodreads + Amazon = for book nerds

So, a Facebook post and consequent discussion with my friend Kristi got me thinking on a billion dollar idea...

Here's the conversation:

Later, I realized that in addition to browsing the titles in Goodreads, I also really like the social aspect of it. You can read a book, rate and review it, and discuss it with others. And on Amazon, like Kristi mentioned, I like the "you might also like" feature (although, I am REALLY glad they don't send emails like the one I suggested above). And then, the light bulb went on... 

"I should create a dating website for book nerds!" 

Yes, you read that right. Online dating for bibliophiles. It would take the bookiness (totally a word) of Goodreads, mix it with the relentless sales drive of Amazon and sprinkle in a little bit of 

Can you see where I'm going with this?

Users would sign up and create a profile that includes rating and reviewing at least ten books (to sort out the non-serious readers). Their customer emails would go something like: 

"You gave On the Road five out of five stars. User Kerouac1973 also gave it five stars. Would you like to discuss On the Road with Kerouac1973? If so, here are some great sample topics, courtesy of Shmoop

  1. We counted at least five different times where Remi says, "you can’t teach the old maestro a new tune." Does On the Road make an argument for or against this statement?
  2. You may have noticed that the book is in five parts. How do you think Kerouac's editors choose to divide the story (i.e., what are the starts and ends in each section), and how do these divisions create narrative flow?
  3. yada, yada, yada..."

Genius, right? Because I know that I suck at flirty chit chat, but I can discuss books with the best of them. In this scenario, I might even be able to claim that I've got some game (assuming it's even possible for a middle-aged woman to have game. Please tell me it's possible.)

Anyway, I've already started thinking up clever names for the site. Or at least I've tried to. All that I've come up with is "" but I'm afraid that would attract pyromaniacs rather than book lovers.

Anyway, I really want to make this happen. Now I just need to find someone who can create a website and write complex algorithms. Hmm, I suppose I need a computer nerd. Guess I'm going to have to start hanging out in the Dungeons and Dragons section at Barnes and Noble. *

*This is not an insult. My dear Vin Diesel plays D&D and even wrote the foreword for the 30th anniversary D&D book


  1. This is an amazing idea. I almost wish I wasn't married so I could be a guinea pig.

    1. Thanks, but you might want to hear the big problem I found before you volunteer...If you're the kind of woman who likes books like "Sexy Vampires in Love" and you're looking for a man, you're probably out of luck. Because the men who read "Sexy Vampires in Love" are probably looking for a man, too. I need a fancier algorhythm.

    2. See, maybe a less fancy algorithm would work better. Instead of men who also like "Sexy Vampires in Love," you would get matched up with men who like "Vampire, Death, Kill." Matching interest in vampires can also be discussed thoughtfully.