I've read quite a bit on t'web about how bad World Book Night was for booksellers, mainly comments that giving away 1,000,000 books would just dilute the market.
Well from my point of view, that's rubbish I loved it, and thought it was fantastic. I was one of the 20,000 people who gave out 48 books each. My task was to give away 48 copies of "The spy who came in from the cold" by John Le Carre.
I also went to the opening party the evening before in Trafalger Square.
The lead up to World Book Night or World Boo Knight as some have dubbed it, was interestesing there were a few errors with the website, including the fact that it was nearly impossible to log on in advance of the night, but hey, teething troubles are expected. We were sent an email on the 3rd of March explaing that the books had all been registered on bookcrossing.com so that we can follow the books as they get passed on, if, they register that they have received the book on the website.
The party was fantastic. It was sadly to short!! It went on for a couple of hours or so of famous authors, reading sometimes from their works, and sometimes just from books they enjoyed. I have added some photographs and videos from the site added to my Picassa photo albums, so click on the Photos link and you should be able to see them if you want.
World Book Night.
OK, well I cheated and started early giving away 6 books at the end of the Launch Party.
On the 5th of March itself I took 16 books into Loughborough and just hung around giving away 16 copies to complete strangers. Which was harder work then I expected. A lot of the people had a suspicious look as if they didn't believe me when I said free, as if they were expecting someone else to pounce and demand money for a charity related to me giving the books away. Anyway I managed to give the books away and some people knew what the WBN was about and seemed quite excited to get the books.
I also gave away 10 copies in my own street to my neighbours.
Later in the evening I went into Waterstones at 5 PM because they had a fantastic evening where lots of local people came to stand around swapping their books and giving them away to anyone who came into Waterstones and wanted a copy. They stayed open late for an hour just to help give out books for WBN which I thought was fantastic.
I also ended up with 9 different books of the 25 given away to make the 1,000,000 books given away.
The last few books are going to a couple of friends and a new book club that I am going to in Nottingham at The Walk Cafe. Which seems to be a fantastic bookclub.