Keeping Books Alive:
Resolutions for the Love of Literacy
It is resolution time!
may think it's a bit late for resolutions but I think it's
the perfect time. We've done our personal resolutions. Now
it's time to think about what we can do for publishing, books,
and literacy. All one has to do to understand how important
books are to so many of personally is browse Pinterest bulletin
boards. Doing so has convinced me there is one thing that
almost every reader and author could and should
put on his or her literacy resolution list. Are you ready?
often get e-mails from authors saying that their fellow authors
don’t buy their books. And I do understand how that
can happen. The longer we’ve been writing, the more
author-friends we have and, at some point it’s impossible
to support them all. Having said that, authors shouldn’t
expect fellow authors to buy books that don’t interest
them. Books they don’t have time for. Or books that
aren’t published the way they want to read them (paperback
or e-books, anyone?) That’s why we promote rather than
just depending on friends and relatives—which, after
all, isn’t the biggest pool of buyers in the world.
And I should think authors will even forgive their mothers
for not reading their books if Mom loves (and buys!) books.
think we should all (including Mom) set aside a budget for
books. It’s about Zen. It’s about supporting the
industry that we expect to supply us with books we love, with
the smell of ink, with great stories, with important information.
I love that many authors collect books—books written
in the same genre but also books on similar subjects. Somehow
we always get something new out of a new book or a new author
even if they look as if they'll have pretty much the same
information as the last book we read on that subject.
there are other ways to support our industry besides buying
books we want to read. Books make relatively inexpensive gifts
for holiday giving, for hostess and thank you gifts, for birthdays,
and even to give to business associates on appropriate occasions.
we all know that we tend to get lax with our resolutions.
So, to make your “Buy Books” resolution work all
year, go to your gift-giving list for 2012 and see how many
people on that list could get the gift of reading in 2012
instead of something that will be promptly tossed in the Goodwill
bin or re-gifted. Staple your gift list to your resolution
list. And then make another resolution to read your resolutions
and that attached list of gift-giving idea list at least once
everyone gives books as gifts, I see a bright, shiny year
ahead. A year where agents take on more clients because more
publishers are selling more books. A year when more publishers
take on new midlist authors. A year when bookstores both online
and off get a new shot of A-1 Energy. Just think! 2013 will
be the year of giving, the year gifts give back as
Tips and Tidbits
(Each month in this box, Carolyn
lists a Tidbit that will help authors write or promote
better. She will also include a Tip to help readers
find a treasure among long-neglected books or a sapphire
among the newly-published.)
I loved reading (studying, really!) Lisa
Cron's book called Wired
for Story. In fact, writers of fiction can
probably just pitch most of the other how-to books
they have on writing.
Tip for Readers' Tip:
It's not too early to be thinking
of Mother's Day gifts. Little gifts you could
send all mothers, not only your own. Gifts you
can give in person or send online. In the spirit
of this column, how about a book. Especially a
poetry book. What about She
Wore Emerald Then, an award-winner from
the Celebration Series from Magdalena
Ball and Carolyn Howard-Johnson available in both
paperback and e-book. .