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GR-CSV Export to MS Access

Note: this is a reprint of a message I posted on the suggestion page at http://www.goodreads.com. I hold little hope of any help for the goofy series of problems I brought in large part upon myself, but figured I might as well ask. And at least a “no,” would confirm my suspicions that there’s not much to be done. And I’ll certainly bear no one any ill-will when the “no” is forthcoming.

It *seemed* like a good idea at the time. I figured I could bring my book data down every once in a while, play around w/it, and maybe generate some reports if and when I felt ambitious.

Anyway, I’ve gotten the export to work, but only after a fair amount of tweaking. The biggest (and weirdest) problem is that the CSV file automatically sticks an “=” sign just before both ISBNs in the file. And this makes Access go “KABOOM,” and not show any of the fields in most records after the equal sign. Here’s an example of what it looks like: Image 1

What I’ve been doing is opening the CSV file in notepad and < ctrl >H-ing out the equal signs, Taking [ ,=” ] and replacing it w/[ ,” ] globally. Image 2, a couple of those pesky “=” signs circled. In Access, I have to play around with the file specs, so it looks right… Image 3, s/b fairly self-explanatory.

And, taa-daa, here it is, working Image 4.

I realize:

(a) this is something I cooked up entirely on my own, and if I had known it was going to be half the pain it actually became, I’d never have started it

(b) it is my own fault I’ve been too lazy to play around inside Access, even though I *THINK* I could set all the changes I make manually (barring the equal signs) somehow to work automatically w/any one particular import without also upsetting the program defaults (which I want to keep as is)

(c) I can’t imagine the GR staff has been buried under a tsunami of requests for something like this, since everybody I talk to about the program seems to preface the words “MS Access” with some adjectives I probably shouldn’t repeat here

But…I’ll ask anyway: Is there any way I can get this done, while at the same time making my life a bit easier? As in, I guess, customizing the CSV export? Or perhaps something else?



PS: The booklists in the images are sorted by GR’s own Book ID. So if there’s any issue with that first title, it is just that somebody at GR gave it a very low number, in fact the only three digit Book ID I’ve seen, personally. Interesting choice, I guess.

PPS: Believe it or not, I tried to keep this post as short as I could. I could have talked about the linked table I have from Access to Excel and the other linked table I have from Excel back to Access…only way I could figure to split book title/series name/series volume into separate fields.


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