Hello nerdfighters! I don't know if you've heard, but here in the UK a great number of libraries are set to close and in America, Borders has announced the closure of hundreds of bookstores. I find this to be very sad news indeed. Ever since I was really little, libraries have been my 'happy place.' Whenever I felt out of place at school, picked on or bullied, I'd escape into the nearest library and into a favourite book. I used to suffer from panic attacks when I changed schools (which happened a lot) and the only thing that would calm me down was walking into the library. I love the atmosphere of libraries and the smell of the books. I love librarians and the idea that all the books are free and available to take home. Libraries are very special places, I have very fond memories of them as I grew up. And I think that libraries are important. It's important to give everyone access to books and the free internet access.
When I was old enough to work, I chose to work in a bookstore. I started off right at the bottom and worked my way up to assistant manager before I gave it up to have my children. I still miss it and think it'll be the best job I'll ever have. I love being surrounded by books, with working with people who love books, I love talking about books and selling books. I loved opening boxes to find out the new books sent from the publishers. It takes a certain kind of crazy to work in a bookstore and I feel completely home in that crazy world. I still miss my old bookstore and I can close my eyes and remember what my beloved children's section looked like. Sadly, my book store succumbed to the poor economy and closed down a few years ago. Don't let it happen to your local bookstore.
There are things that you can do to help save your libraries and bookstores. It's very simple: use your library. Check out books. Visit your bookstore. Buy books. If you value what libraries and bookstores represent, then do what you can.
Use your library's online services to reserve books. Tell your librarian how much you appreciate the job he/she does. Fill in one of those comment cards. Write to your MP or local council and tell them how much you want and need your libraries. Go to library events or volunteer your time. Donate your used books to your library, buy books in your library's annual book sale.
For bookstores, buy books. I aim to buy at least one book a month in a bookstore, an independent bookstore if possible, but do whatever works for you. Online websites have better prices, but if everyone buys online, bookstores will continue to close. Checkout the events that are held in your local bookstores. The bookstores around here hold regular events/book signings with authors or hold monthly book club meetings. Why not go along?
If you're out to promote specific books or authors, say John Green or Maureen Johnson, for example, then here are a few suggestions.
Buy their books
Recommend their books to your family and friends (or buy friends and family their books as presents)
Write reviews of them and post them on GoodReads, LibraryThing, Amazon or on other online bookstore websites (WHSmith, Waterstones, Barnes and Noble, etc)
Ask your local library or bookstore to stock your favourite author's books
Attend events by your favourite author
Consider starting your own book blog/vlog and talk about how wonderful these books are
Email or tweet at your favourite author and tell them you loved his/her books
Feel free to mention in comments any other helpful suggestions, or just share with us all your love of books, libraries and bookstores. Help decrease world-suck by saving our libraries and bookstores. Until next week, nerdfighters, DFTBA!