This is the eighth post in a series of 12 ways to help authors (and your writing) by reading.
We make requests for all types of things — special food at the supermarket or a song on the radio (OK, maybe that’s showing my age a bit) — so why not do the same with books?
Where can you make a request for a book:
- at the library
- at bookstores
- for classrooms
I have little contact with librarians, but I’m guessing when people ask for a title they take it seriously. You may even find out the book is on order.
In recent weeks, I’ve discovered a few books via NPR weekend radio programs. When I checked my library, I was pleased to see the books were on order. So, I put my name in the hopper to be one of the first readers.
In general, I am of the “what do you have to lose by asking” mindset. If you ask and they tell you no, then nothing’s really lost. If you ask and they tell you yes, well you can get your hands on the book.
I know you get can most titles via Amazon, but if you find a bookstore doesn’t carry your favorite author — ask the bookstore about stocking the book. If the seed is planted, perhaps the buyer will consider the author’s next book.
If you have a relationship with your child’s teacher, recommend books (especially, if your child doesn’t like the selections). I’m not at this stage yet and I’m sure there are processes to approve books — subject matter, reading levels, etc. If you know of an appropriate book by a local (lives in your state may be local) recommend it for classroom reading lists or speak with the school librarian about adding it to the school’s selection.
Have you requested a book recently? Was it an easy process? Were you successful?
Reading: Let’s call this random week. I saw a book on sale in my Facebook newsfeed and purchased it on my Kindle. After I
read blushed my way through the novella, I realized it wasn’t a recommendation of a friend, but a sponsored add on Facebook. Anywhoo, I’ve had my vampire, erotica fix for the year. I ended the week on a little less blush-worthy note. I read two novella-sized instruction manuals for a software I want to learn and began A Season of Love by Amy Clipston, an Amish romance, so much different than my earlier choice.
If you missed any of the Reader University posts,
- I share why I’m doing Reader Universtiy here.
- My first post Reader University: Try
- My second post Reader University: Read
- My third post Reader University: Name
- My fourth post Reader University: Review
- My fifth post Reader University: Follow
- My sixth post Reader University: Learn
- My seventh post Reader University: Share
Teresa Robeson says
I’ve requested (for purchase) books from my library many times. Easy peasy with their online form. They always get those books for me too. I’ve also requested special orders from bookstores.
Your vampire erotica mis-purchase made me giggle. I’ve not bought anything by accident. Even books that are recommended by friends are researched before I get them. I don’t care for romances or erotica…and would be embarrassed being seen reading either one. 😉
Apparently, I am loose on the Kindle Teresa! It’s true that it’s a purchasing machine. I missed the sponsored ad part on FB and clicked through and 99 cents later I had something new to read. I am typically more picky with purchases. I rarely download free books anymore. I have joked several times after the Denver-SCBWI that I loved one agent so much I’d write that genre to be represented by her. After my reading experiment last week, I know she will never be my agent. 🙂
Cathy Ballou Mealey says
Stacy – First “Augie to Zebra An Alphabet Book!” then “Vampires to Amish: A Romance in Reverse” ;-D
I almost suggested something for the Z Cathy, but decided perhaps I should just skip that. There is probably an A to Z romance guide. I’m still stuck on alphabet books.
Sue Wang says
So glad to see this post. There is something wonderful about sharing why one would request a book too. Gives it meaning to “an order” (like a Starbuck’s). Great idea, Stacy!
Great point to share the reason for the request!
Patricia Tilton says
I have a good relationship with my library, as I donate books that would not normally have access to. And, if I recommend a book, they are good about ordering it.
For my own sanity, I read a wide range of adult novels to balance all of the children’s books I read — including Amish, spiritual, self-help, favorite author books, fantasy, biographies and so on. A friend published a romance story that I eagerly read, and it was very steamy — shocked me because I didn’t know that side of her. I think reading is helpful to us as writers, and a nice balance to our own work.
Yes. Reading outside of our genre is like traveling – provides a new (and sometimes fresh) perspective. I’m more in line with Christian Romance, because it focuses on the story and not all the blushy parts. Of course, I read a wonderful piece once which discussed the issue of romance writers (and we think they are like the characters they create), but we don’t believe horror writers are like the characters they create. 🙂
Julie Luek says
I actually have requested books before and often will request books for transfer, which also brings it to our librarian’s attention. They really do want to support authors too!
Yes they do.
Penny Parker Klostermann says
I request book for “Hold” every week. If I can’t find them at my library or through interlibrary loan, I request that they purchase them. So far they have purchased almost every book I’ve requested. I’m lucky to have a library that has practically every book I want to read. The request process is online and simple!
Penny, It sounds like the library is helping you out and you are helping other readers out with all your requests!
The Armchair Squid says
Writers should be reading anyway. Support the cause and support the artist within.
To that end, Stacy, I hope you might consider joining my bloggers’ book club. Details are here: http://armchairsquid.blogspot.com/2014/02/the-cephalopod-coffeehouse-february.html
The book club is a great idea. I can’t do it today, but will try to write a post for March.