Tales from a World Book Night giver
By Guest Blogger on April 25th, 2012
We were very excited that The Scholastic Store was a pickup site for Givers for World Book Night, and that The Hunger Games was one of the designated books! But even more, we were equally excited to see Shanella Ramlall on the list of Givers. Shanella works on Scholastic’s email marketing team, and she’s a passionate reader, which made her a perfect Giver! We here at OOM asked her to share her experience (in the hopes that maybe next year, you too will be a Giver!). Thanks, Shanella!
World Book Night originated in the UK and occurs every year on April 23rd. Passionate readers volunteer each year to hand out their favorite books – supplied by the World Book Night organization – to reluctant readers in their community. As a lover of the written word, I jumped at the opportunity to participate in this event!
The sign-up process was very easy. I filled out the form on their site, and was contacted via email when my application was accepted. Later, the title that I would be distributing and the pickup location were assigned. My mission, that I readily accepted, was to hand out copies of Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson to New Yorkers.
After the initial celebration and general confetti throwing died down, I realized that I would have to interact with strangers on the streets of New York City, sharing a book that they might not have heard about and telling them about an event that they might think I made up. Thankfully, the World Book Night books were branded with its name so that solved the latter problem.
The evening of the 23rd found me in Washington Square Park with a box of books and a cousin, another book lover who promised to help me. The plan of action was to approach strangers and ask them if they’d like a book to read. We received a few strange stares, a couple of “no thank you’s,” but generally our audience was accepting of Strange Ladies Bearing Free Books (note from the OOM team: LOL!). We were asked for more information by several people and I got the opportunity to explain in detail what World Book Night is and why we were giving the books away.
Overall it was an amazing experience, even for this bookish introvert. I’m looking forward to next year’s World Book Night and already formulating a game plan that might involve bright t-shirts, snazzy catch-phrases and more bookish friends.
Did you participate in World Book Night? Tell us about your experience!
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