World Book Night 2012

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Yesterday, April 23rd marked the first US World Book Night. What is World Book Night? It’s an event to help promote reading in teens and adults by giving away free books. Volunteers had 30 different books to choose from (we made a first, second and third choice in case they couldn’t get their first choice).  The books were special printed and the authors of the books gave up royalties for the copies given out.

I decided I would give my twenty copies of Sherman Alexie‘s The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-time Indian away at my local Starbucks and the plaza where I hang out the most and do my writing.  Problem being? I’m super shy! I was able to give a couple away, but thankfully one of my closest friends was bribed by a free coffee to come help me. Thank God for her!

People were surprised but receptive. Free is free! The biggest surprise was probably from the guys in the Game Stop. Some of them totally didn’t want it but we pushed it on them. One of them, who said he reads on occasion, read a little aloud for everyone!  He was quite into it. He just happened along the part of the story where the main character talks about his love of books and how it gives him a boner . They were sold after that. Heh boys can be predictable! Haha!  There was one person who totally refused. Which made me sad. Who doesn’t want a free book? I figure she totally wasn’t a reader and that’s the kind of person this night is supposed to help the most. Shame.

I also contacted a couple friends of mine who are middle school teachers to see if they wanted a copy or two for their classroom or  to give away to special students in their classes. I love the idea that the book can be kept in the room for students to read or given away as a special prize for a hardworking student who could get a lot out of that particular book.

With the books, they gave us a  book giver pin, some stickers and bookmarks. Sadly, I only received seven bookmarks so I used some of my own promoting my book and some postcards promoting  The Spirit Keeper written by my author friend Melissa Luznicky Garrett.  Nice to be able to cross promote!

Even though I had to get help handing them out, I was still happy to be a part of the whole experience and look forward to doing it again next year. I’ll just have to work on my public speaking skills before then!

Here are some great articles on the program:

Millions of Books to be Donated Monday in Worldwide Charity Effort
World Book Night Celebrates Reading with Paperback Handouts

Did anyone else participate? I’d love to hear about your experiences!

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6 responses »

  1. That’s awesome! This is my first time hearing of it. I’d like to be involved next year. I guess I’d better get some books to print kinda soon!
    Good for you, pushing yourself to do it. Next year, it may be just a bit easier.

    • No, no! It’s not your books (although you could give some of your own out as well!). It’s best sellers chosen by the organization. I’m sure you can sign up for it next year :D

  2. I had a terribly hard time approaching people, too, but figured it was good for me. The Game Stop guys are probably your biggest win for the event! Perfect that they found the most convincing passage to read. And reading aloud is usually daunting!

    • They totally were! The other got all excited it had funny illustrations in it. Whatever works to get them reading! :D

  3. I totally didn’t approach people. There was one person that I handed it to, but I didn’t really wait for a response. She was a cashier at a Forever 21 store, after I paid for my stuff.

    For the most part, I did my passing around by leaving books for people to find. Mostly in clothing stores for shoppers to find :). It was pretty entertaining for myself. I think, next year, if I get it again, I will definitely be handing it out to people – just to see their reactions :)!

  4. Pingback: World Book Night 2012, The Day After « Laith's Ramblings

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