Saturday, July 29, 2006

Releasing Books into the Wild

A few months ago I borrowed a book from a coworker that had a label for www.bookcrossing.com with a polite note to please register the find. Being the curious person that I am I went to the webpage www.bookcrossing.com and found a whole new hobby though one that is very low key and rather slow to reap any rewards.

Bookcrossing is an Internet community for people who love to read and share good books. You can read about the origins of Bookcrossing here: About Bookcrossing. It is free to sign up and register your books, unless you choose to support the site by paying for preprinted labels. All they ask you to do is make a journal entry saying where and when you found a registered book so the original owners can track the books journey.

We are voracious readers sometimes taking weeks to finish a single book but in other weeks we finishing 4 or 5 each. It depends on time and chores. I enjoy sharing my books with those who I think will enjoy them but something about the idea of releasing books into the wild struck a cord in me. So I ordered a release packet consisting of Labels, bookmarks, sticky notes for the front cover, plastic bags with Bookcrossing info printed on it, and a small rubber stamp for printing reminders in the middle and back of the book.

On Thursday last week I received the release package that I ordered. Friday I packaged up my first two books for release, registered them on the Bookcrossing website, and filled in the individual ID number that each book gets when registered. Today, we released those two books into the wild. One here in town and the other in the next town over.

Now I find myself as nervous as a mother watching her child take its first steps. Will my books be found and start a worldwide journey or will they languish unread and uncared for? I've checked the website several times since the releases to see if anyone has found the books yet but so far no luck. Perhaps after I have released a few more the nerves will settle down and I will just enjoy the ride.

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