Tuesday, 30 December 2008

Last Minute Details

I'm just reposting this for those participants who didn't leave an e-mail address. Everyone else should have received this by e-mail:

Thanks so much for your help with publicising the event, it always make me smile to see a new blog post about our charity efforts. I just need your help with a little housekeeping before we start, and I also want to pass on some last minute information.


If you know which charity you'll be supporting in 2009, but haven't declared it yet can you please send me an e-mail. If you could just include the name that you signed up with, the charity/ies you will be raising money for, and a link to their website that would be great.

I plan to send out three short newsletters throughout the year for you to pass on to your sponsors just so that they don't forget about what's going on. If you don't want to send newsletters on then please send an e-mail saying NO NEWSLETTER.

If anyone has not received an invite to contribute to the blog or has not received their sponsorship form please let me know by e-mail.

Extra Info

Each month I'll be holding a motivational prize draw with prizes designed to inspire you to read more. At the moment I've collected prizes like new books donated by publishing houses, signed copies, crafty items and Bookmooch points. I hope the chance to win goodies will make 'The Year of Reading' fun! If anyone wants to donate an extra prize just e-mail me.

I don't want to bug you guys too much throughout the year but every month I will be sending you a short e-mail letting you know when the monthly prize draw (see above) has opened. This e-mail will also ask for your book total for the month, and I'd really appreciate if you could send in your totals each month.

Some people have asked if they should collect all their sponsors money in to send it to their charity or if sponsors can send individual checks. Either way is fine but if your sponsors send their money individually please make sure you keep track of what they send so you can send me an accurate total of all the money you've raised at the end of 2009.

If you know of any other worth reading challenges/events to raise money for reading charities taking place next year (I know there are some people reading for The American Heart Association in Feb) let me know about them. I'm hoping to add a list of events to the blog.

That's about it. I hope you find some fantastic books (and feel free to talk about them at the blog) and raise lots of money for your worthy charities.

Sunday, 28 December 2008

First Book of the Year?

Hi there,

I'm Rob, aka Trebro, the person behind The Book Stew (for books) and Panel Patter (for comics). I will be personally hitting myself up for 10 cents for every book and trade I finish this year, which should work out to about 100 books and 200 or so comics, based on past years of reading.

I've always loved books from a very young age, and am looking forward to helping others share in the fun I've always had by helping out Reader to Reader.

So now that we're approaching January First, I thought I'd ask what other people are planning to read for their first book of the new year. In my case, I've selected "Lincoln's Youth" by Louis Austin Warren. 2009 is Lincoln's birth year bicentennial, so I am going to try and read 1 Lincoln book every moth this year. I got this book a few years ago when vacationing in Indianapolis, where their historical center has a Lincoln wing. It's about, well, I guess you can figure that from the title! I figured that's a great place to start my Lincoln reading.

What are you planning for your first book of the year?

Monday, 15 December 2008

The Campaign for the Book

Vulpes Libris (the book foxes) have a recent post introducing 'The Campaign for the Book'. This is a campaign organised by Alan Gibbons, a childrens author, who beliefs libraries are of extreme importance to our culture.

The campaign has a charter which outlines what those involved have deicated themselve to:

We, the signatories of this Charter commit ourselves to campaigning for the following:

1. The central place of reading for pleasure in society.

2. A proper balance of book provision and Information Technology in public and school libraries. We welcome the integration of new technologies but believe that they must not erode the key place of books and the need for a healthy and expanding book stock.

3. The defence of public libraries and librarians from attempts to cut spending in a ‘soft’ area.

4. An extension of the role of the school librarian and a recognition of the school library as a key engine of learning. All staff employed in school libraries to have access to appropriate and adequate support and training.

5. The recruitment of more school librarians. It is a national scandal that less than a third of secondary schools has a trained librarian.

6. The defence of the professional status of the public and school librarian. We oppose downgrading. In some places this has reduced librarians’ salaries by up to half.

7. A higher profile for reading for pleasure in schools, including shadowing book awards, inviting authors and illustrators to visit, developing school creative writing magazines.

8. To support the sustainability and future development of Schools Library Service provision nationally.

9. To promote a more positive reading culture in school, in which the reading of whole books is preferred to studying extracts alone

All of this is pretty important stuff. If you love reading chances are you've had a positive encounter with a library. One of my favourite childhood memories is finding the hardback copy of Philip Pullman's 'Northern Lights' in Dudley library. It was the first cover design edition, the one featuring the detailed version of the altheiometer and I loved it. I read it three times before buying my own copy but I never found a copy with that exact cover. This was just one of many wonderful encounters I have had with books in my local libraries.

In my area (West Midlands UK) there are several libraries which are well run but which would certainly benefit from increased funding. If you haven't yet picked your reading charity for next year I urge you to think about reading for your local library in 2009.


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