In 2010, I started a holiday called Take Your Child to a Bookstore Day, which grew with the help of book lovers, bloggers, and cross-country trips during which we visited over seven-hundred bookstores. In just three years,TYCBD has grown to have a Board of Directors: three amazing, tireless, devoted bookstore lovers, who will be taking this homegrown, homespun idea and reinventing it as a national non-profit. We will have founding members: booksellers whose wisdom and advice have inspired me. Longheld hopes, like getting to send schoolkids on field trips to bookstores where they can each pick out their very own book, will become possible. I will be indebted forever to Beth Miller, Todd Monahan, and Paul Maguire, fellow writers and friends who have become part of this dream.
My life is fuller every day thanks to the people I've met on lists and in forums and as part of threads, on Facebook and Twitter and platforms I can't even pronounce. The world is much wider thanks to its online reach. It's amazing to know someone--there are people whose pets I've mourned and whose children's triumphs I've celebrated--even though we've never said hello face-to-face.
But there's nothing like real-time, F2F interaction. In this virtual world, which breeds as much disconnection as connection, sometimes it's just what we need.
One of the things I most look forward to is getting in the car again, returning to bookstores that have become favorites, and getting to see people who have meant so much to me over the years. Especially this year! And there will be new people, too--another part of the adventure. For those reasons and more, we will be hitting the road again in April 2014 when my next book comes out, and if our route looks like it takes us anywhere near you, please drop me a line. I'd love to find a good bookish location and come by.
Meanwhile, please check out the TYCBD web site to see what is in store for this year's Day. And be sure to take your child, or any child in your life, to a bookstore on December 7th and many, many other days of the year!