Love is a strong word that is sometimes used too much and sometimes used not enough.
There are many things I love but this is not what this post will be about.
On the second day of Christmas.... I learnt about "reader activism" - thanks to a retweet by @flexnib of the following blog post: Rise up, readers
The article talks about "reader activism." So how can you become a reader activist? The article suggests the following:
Write reviews on your favourite bookstore websites or those most often visited. On Amazon, for example, this makes a difference in the way a writer's books appear as "recommendeds". Use GoodReads like the passionate publicist you can now be. Let authors know that you are supporting them - as reader activist Peta Kelly does. Send out links to friends, sharing news of book blogs such as this one - or a particular review or article that's inspired you. Send them far and wide. Buy new, not second hand (no royalty for the author). Don't lend too generously; buy books for others - and for yourself. Most of all, value your vital part in any writer's success - or survival. Time matters as much as money. Use social media. Make your views known, and make them count.I always have good intentions of writing reviews of the books I've read, but then don't follow through - unless I'm doing reviews for Australian Library Journal (I class that as work not leisure).
I do use GoodReads to record what I've read and what I'd like to read, but only rate books using the star method - no reviews.
I try to let the author know that I've enjoyed their books when I can. And I use social media to spread the word.
However, I rarely buy new because I use the library and when I do buy new, I certainly share or donate to the library.
So based on their suggestions, would you consider yourself a reader activist?
Other suggestions include:
If somebody lends you a copy of a book she loved, buy a copy to give to another friend.
If you can’t afford to buy a new book, borrow it from your library. If a book you want to read is constantly on hold, ask your library to order another copy. Australian authors receive a small annual payment related to the number of copies of their books held in libraries, so every copy does help.
If an author you enjoy asks you to join her email list, don’t hesitate. Email lists are the best way authors have of communicating with their readers and letting them know of events, media interviews and that next book. You can also let your own friends know there’s a new book coming, making yourself look very knowledgeable in the process!
Attend literary events featuring authors you’ve enjoyed reading. Invite a friend along. Ask the author a question. She won’t bite – she will be relieved that someone has asked a question.
If you’ve just finished a book you loved, let your online community know about it. Sometimes a passing reference in a Facebook post is all it takes to convince a reader to finally buy that book she keeps hearing about.
I particularly like the "attend literary events" suggestion. I find it interesting that a number of people don't like to meet the author of their favourite books as it may spoil the illusion - like meeting the actor that played your favourite character and they are nothing like them. And some don't want to know what makes the author ticks - they just like to read.
Do you like meeting authors of your favourite books?
If you are interested in attending a literary event - the Bellingen Readers and Writers Festival is on in March 2013 - I'd love to say hello to my fellow blog readers!!
So in the end this blog post was a bit about love - it is about sharing the love of reading via reader activism!!