Friday, 25 March 2011

World Book Night (part 3)

Welcome to yet another post about WBN….

I received an email from WBN informing me that because my books had failed to arrived, I could distribute any books my collection point held, which had failed to be claimed by anyone else. So… a week after WBN I took collection of 48 copies of Life of Pi.

I felt really pleased to finally have some books and couldn’t believe that throughout my daily enquiries to the library regarding the whereabouts of my books, there was an unclaimed box sat there the whole time! It seemed such a waste that somebody wouldn’t collect them, especially when so many reserve givers - like me - were desperately trying to find books. I wonder which collection point my books ended up in? Hopefully they were distributed by another WBN giver.

As mentioned in previous WBN posts, each book should be registered online and have an identification number, allowing the books’ journeys from reader to reader, to be followed. I didn’t receive any WBN numbers, so I registered each book with Bookcrossing. Needless to say, it took a l-o-n-g time! I also printed out stickers to put on the books, informing the recipient that the journey of the book could be tracked through this website. So far, two days after all the books have been distributed, nobody has logged onto the site, but hopefully they will soon.

Monday, 14 March 2011

New Follower!!

Last night I noticed the blog has attracted a new follower! Welcome, Gems, to life here at BtB!

The blog only has 3 followers at the time of writing. I've not yet dedicated any time to promoting the blog and trying to increase its audience. Maybe that's something I'll have to look at in the not-too-distant future. But, in the meantime, Gems tell us a bit about yourself.... How did you stumble across Behind the Bookshelves? To write interesting and relevant posts, it helps to know who reads them.

Oooooh a new follower - it warms the cockles of me heart, so it does!

Sunday, 13 March 2011

Voices for the Library

A website I regularly browse is Voices for the Library. It provides support and a voice during this difficult time of public library cuts. It is well worth a look - if you aren't familiar with it, log on to it now!

At the end of February, Voices for the Library asked its Facebook followers 'what three words would you use to describe what libraries mean to you?' I said 'enjoyment, relaxation and community'. Voices for the Library has kindly given me permission to reproduce the image created from the responses. I love Wordles, often use them in my wall displays at work, and this makes for a rather interesting snapshot!

Monday, 7 March 2011

World Book Night (part 2)

Well, folks, World Book Night has come and gone. I would very much like to blog about how wonderful the experience was; however, here is the reality of it...

My original application was rejected but I was acceptyed as a Reserve Giver. I couldn't believe my luck. As a Reserve I wouldn't know which titles I'd distribute until I unpacked them, it's just whatever was leftover after all the original Givers had received their chosen titles. That's fine, I thought, just glad to be able to take part. I planned to distribute my books to staff in local schools.

Things seemed a little 'funny' right from the very start. Communication was patchy and I received only 4 emails in total - asking me to be a reserve, confirming a collection point 100 miles away, changing the collection point to a local library and then saying I should have received my books/numbers. However, my books AND numbers both failed to arrive.

I am so disappointed, I was thrilled to be taking part in it and feel very let down by WBN. Did they not research the undertaking beforehand? They knew exactly how many books were to go where, so I don't understand how so many complications could have arisen. It's just such a shame. I know it's a gigantic project and some people have said we shouldn't complain as it's free, but that isn't the point. There's even a Facebook page dedicated to people who failed to received WBN books! Hopefully I'll be able to take part next year and the teething problems which ruined it for so many people, will have been ironed out by then.

Despite this, I spent Sat night at my local library for a WBN event. It was great, 290 people turned up and I left with 3 free books! (Only 1 of which had a number with which to track its journey though...)

Thursday, 3 March 2011

World Book Day

Today is World Book Day. Relatively unheard of by the majority of people, but it’s a pretty big initiative in schools, especially primaries. Each year I promote it and this year it will be my last time of doing so in a school environment.

So what do I have planned for it? It’s a little low key this year… every pupil in school has been given a book token which they can take into a book store and use to claim a free book. There’s a wall display and copies of all the WBD books and WBD Quick Reads are newly available for borrowing as from today. Also available from today is the latest issue of the library’s magazine, ‘Words’. It showcases examples of creative writing from the student body and has – I’m proud to say – achieved cult status amongst the pupils!

All that’s left for me to say is: ‘Happy World Book Day!’

Wednesday, 2 March 2011

World Book Night (part 1)

Have had some good news this week. After initially being refused, my application to be a Book Giver for World Book Night has been accepted!

I apllied late last year and was turned down, but have now been accepted as a Reserve Giver. This means that whilst I'm definitely as Book Giver, I won't get to select the titles I distribute, I'm simply alloacted whichever ones are available.

I'm presuming anyone reading this blog entry will know what WBN is, but of course you may not. Very remise of me! 20,000 people are selected and are each given 48 books to distribute as they see fit. The idea is that each book has a number attached to it and by logging onto the website, the journey of each book can be recorded. It's a marvellous way of spreading the joys reading for pleasure - for FREE.

This is the inaugural WBN and I am thrilled to be taking part. My allotted pick-up point is Stone Cross Library (in West Bromwich) and from Friday lunchtime my books should be available for collection, and I'll attend a session on Saturday evening at Sandwell Central Library, to start the distribution process. It's a wonderful scheme and I am very excited to be involved. Reading has given me masses of pleasure over the years, and has helped me through some difficult times in life by providing an escape. Reading allows you to travel anywhere and live any number of different lives. To give that possibility to somebody, as a gift, is incredible.

WBN is a huge undertaking, and as this is its first year, there have been a few hiccups along the way. The WBN website has crashed and the Facebook page has forums dedicated to complaints. People don't know which titles they've been allocated, collection points haven't been confirmed, communication is patchy. So far, I've had confirmation of my pick up point but not my unique reference number or the titles to distribute, but I'm just going with the flow. This project is meant to be about fun, so I'm trying not to get too hot under the collar about it and instead remember the ethos of WBN.