Friday, November 21, 2008

I'd like to buy the world a book

I recently joined a Facebook cause. I don't usually join Facebook causes because I can't see that they actually accomplish anything at all. The last one I was tempted to join was my friend Den's. It was the Put An End To Facebook Causes cause. But before I could join that one, I found a cause I said 'yes' to before I even had time to think about it. The cause is "Buy a Book Save the World."

The premise is that you promise to buy at least one book this - huh, holiday season, year? I can't remember when you're supposed to fulfill it. But I'm thinking those of us who join it have every intention of buying more than just one. The publishing industry is just one of the many out there hurting from the economy trouble, and this cause is our way of helping to keep it alive.

Above is a picture of how much I love books. When I joined the Literary Guild a few years ago, this is the stack of books that I ordered first and which came in the mail in one big, very happy box. That was the best day ever - having all those brand new books delivered to my house in one box. I spread them out and took a picture of them like they were my children's artwork.

And you know how your kids come home from school about every week with bookmarks from the library, with safety instructions, or even homemade? There are two kinds of paper I always save when it comes home from school. Anything with sentences the children made up all by themselves, like "My brither and I like football because we just have a thing about football", and those bookmarks. They get tucked into a pretty, round vase I got for my wedding, because you just never know when you'll need a bookmark. Especially since I'm usually reading more than one book at once.

The boys have two book shelves in their room - the one for paperbacks and early readers and cartoon characters like Spongebob, and the one they can't reach by themsevles with fairytales and hardbacks and Winnie the Pooh collector's edition and any others that I can't bear to find orange marker throughout or ripped-off corners or gum. I really like books.

So I was really happy to join the save-the-world cause by buying a book. I really want this industry to stay in business what with hoping to be a part of it and all. And this morning I was thinking we should all feel free to purchase things deliberately from now on from any of the industries we don't want to live without. Books of course, cars I guess - if you can afford it (just think of the single mom secretaries and dad-of-five-kids mechanics out there instead of the CEO's who flew to the meeting in their private jets, and you'll feel more motivated I think) - but there are so many more as well: Shoes (can I get an amen, ladies?), being able to watch television on the internet on our own time with less commercials (last season of LOST, I'm talking to you - I have to watch you again anyway because your producers spread your seasons so far apart), children's pajamas (I can do Christmas without Nintendo, but I can't do it without new pajamas), chocolate (hello, that goes without saying). You get the idea? Buy what you love, save the world. And let it start with a book.


Sarah said...

I like this concept: to buy or put our efforts into something we want to preserve. I think a lot about this everytime I put a stamp on a letter to mail it. I love receiving personal mail (a card, a thank you note, not bills). I think the world should write more letters. Email and blogging (not taking away from the wonderful thoughts you put here.) are making good-ole-fashoned letter writing obsolete. Unless taught, my children may never know what it means to send a letter or a card in the mail. Thank goodness for grandparents who keep the dream alive for my kids.
I recently had my son write a letter to his friend Kaitlyn, who recently moved to Washington State. It was thrilling for me to see the excitement on his face as he placed the envelope into the metal slot. It gave him ownership in keeping in touch with his friend.
There is just something about the extra effort it takes to go to post office, lick the stamp, and mail the letter. Nothing says I love you like a little spit.

serenity said...

So true, Sarah! Letters are highly underrated these days. I like blogging (I'm going to put a post up soon about why I do it at all), but I still journal, and I still would rather have a book on the shelves one day. I like the permanence of pen and paper, photos in actual photo albums - not just my screen saver, and well written words between two hard covers.

And letters to the grandparents - I love those. We've got to do it more.

Haley Ballast said...

love it. also love every book in that picture... also have a shelf of classic children's lit that my kids don't touch (and are currently too young for... but i can't wait to pull them out someday!). once again, very glad i found your blog! :)

Valerie said...

I should join your cause. I just ordered big from I got myself the Dreamcatcher series from Jane Kirkpatrick, and The Message thanks to Felicity. I ordered several early readers for Madison and Jaron for Christmas (Disney Princess and Nemo and Woody). My neice has read her first Little House book and she likes it(Yea!) I got her the set because, really, everyone should have it. And I ordered your Anne and May's books for my co-workers teenage daughters. They babysit my kids in the Summers and spoil them rotten. I did not stop to consider I am saving the world. Thanks for the reminder!

Kelly H-Y said...

Amen to that! :-) We just bought some Easy Readers and picture books at Braden's school's book fair ... we came home and spread them out on the table ... we were all so excited about our little pile 'o books! So fun!

I chuckled at your chocolate comment ... just because of all our similarities ... you've got to go read the post on my blog today. My hubby is actually the family chocaholic, but I do like some good dark chocolate (because I can justify it with the whole antioxidants argument!) now and then, along with the yumminess that I wrote about on my blog ... :-) you're going to laugh.

Den said...

Well. I don't think that you should feel like you shouldn't join facebook causes, and I definitely approve of buying books. I would buy more if I had any room left. I started my cause for two reasons. 1. Irony and I have been friends since way back in the day. 2. I don't understand how most of those causes are supposed to work, and I find all the extraneous information and features of facebook surprising and confusing. I take pleasure in working against them. This is not a habit I mean to encourage.

On the upside, the people on Planet Money podcast would applaud your spending. If everybody stops spending, the economy only gets worse. So, thanks for your contribution.