Has your current financial situation got you tightening your belt and omitting things like gifts and entertainment from your budget?Â Has your weekly trip to the movies been replaced by Netflix?Â Do the books that you read primarily come from the library?Â Do you find yourself wishing you had more money to buy the things that you enjoy most? Stop fretting and start typing!Â By putting your good skills to use, you can acquire your fair share of blockbuster hits and bestsellers.Â From writing book reviews to mystery shopping to peer-to-peer swapping, you can acquire an arsenal of reading material and DVDs galore with little to no effort.
Hereâs a couple of ideas that will help you curb the urge to splurge but still provide you with all the loot you can handle:
Become a Book Reviewer
Being an ECW Press Shelf Monkey has its advantages.Â You select the books that interest you the most by visiting http://www.ecwpress.com and create a list of titles that you would like to read and ECW Press puts your name into a drawing for free copies of their upcoming releases.Â After reading the book, post your opinion on the publisherâs website and send them a link to your review on Facebook, MySpace, or Amazon.
Snag Advance Screening Tickets
Visit WildAboutMovies at http://www.wildaboutmovies.com and sign up for their newsletter.Â Every time advance screenings of new films are available, you will be the first to learn about them.Â Simply reserve your seats by selecting the city that you live in from the drop down menu.Â Print tickets directly from your email after registering for the event.
Register for a free account at PaperbackSwap located at http://www.paperbackswap.com and list titles from your library that you are no longer interested in.Â You get a credit for each book that you give away and can use them to purchase titles from other members for the cost of postage.
Theatre Checks Anyone?
A number of legitimate secret shopping companies offer free admission to the latest flick in addition to armloads of refreshments free of charge.Â Some also pay a set fee for completing the assignment.Â Certified Reports, Inc., http://marketforce.com, is one company that conducts checks in a number of markets. Â Registration on the site is fast and freeâ’two words that make an impact in this economy.
Scavenger Hunting Fun
Set your books free by registering them on Book Crossing, http://www.bookcrossing.com, and seek out desirable titles by following the clues left by others on the site.Â Half the fun of Book Crossing is hunting down the books that you want to read and passing on your good fortune to others.
Being budget conscious doesnât have to be so dreary.Â By âthinking outside the boxâ and making use of the resources available to you on the net, you can fill your empty bookshelves and squelch your need for films in a matter of minutes.
Charissa Arsaoui is a freelance writer for ChickSpeak, Buzzine, DisFUNKshion Magazine, Student Stuff, and a guest contributor for Wisebread.Â She loves thrift related topics and can spot a bargain a mile away.
Charissa is into frugal living and saving money.