Celebrate World Book Day

Millennium Library Norwich

Today is World Book Day here in Blighty. One of the main aims of the event is to disconnect today’s cyber-mad yoof from their gadgets and gizmos and save them from irreparable damage to their imagination (i.e. anything beyond the visual). Pissing in the wind? I hope not. I’m an irrepressible optimist. So, my friends, support the cause by popping out to a bookshop and picking up the real deal in paper and card to have and to hold from this day forward. A bit short of the readies? No problem, join your local library. It costs nothing. Libraries can be exciting and surprising places these days. Gone are the days of stuffy shelves, dusty benches and bespectacled bookworms whose only words were “shush!” The best of the bunch are multi-media extravaganzas that stimulate all of the senses, none more so than Norwich’s Millennium Library at the Forum. For the sixth year running, this hi-viz high tech vortex of culture and learning has been named the most popular library in the realm, with over 1.3 million visitors passing through the doors each year. I knew it was quality the moment I found my own literary witterings in their catalogue. Naturally, I had to borrow the book to make sure. I won’t keep it for long. I know what happens in the end.

9781904881643-Perking the Pansies COVER.inddIf Norwich is too far to trot, you’ll also find Perking the Pansies in the British Library, The National Library of Scotland, The City of Sydney Library, The Liverpool City Library (that’s Liverpool in New South Wales), The Stonnington Library, South Yarra, Australia and The Wellington Public Library in New Zealand.

Not bad for a debut book by a nobody who is neither a reality TV star nor a celebrity cook. I’m gobsmacked, as they say in the tabloids.


Today is also my old girl’s birthday. She’s 84. Happy birthday, Mum!

14 thoughts on “Celebrate World Book Day

  1. . . my two modest efforts are in several libraries here including the national in Ankara – but that’s only because the bastards steal ten copies of every book published here!
    Amazed to learn that any libs have servived the cut-backs in UK.


    1. Remind me never to get published in Turkey! As a former bean counter, I know how libraries have been under pressure for years – often because of under-usage rather than financial problems. Many small local libraries have closed but those that have diversified have thrived. The Millennium Library has got it right because it’s an exciting place to visit and being right next to BBC East helps to create a vibrant cultural vibe.


  2. World Book Day almost passed me completely by, good thing I spotted your post, Jack.

    Today I promise to dedicate some more time to reading (cheap option, I was going to anyway :P), but I also promise to take a peak at a short story I began about 12 months ago.


  3. How do you know all these libraries have a copy, Jack? I only know that THE DROPOUT is in my local library here in Newhaven and the local HQ in Lewes.

    I discovered on Friday that the bookshop at Sussex University ordered two copies after I canvassed them last September (the book targets student-age readers), but the copies never arrived. Manager blames Orca, the distributors and said other books ordered from them failed to arrive. Troubador/Matador (my publisher) says there’s no problem with Orca.

    As you say, life is an UPHILL battle for us non-celebrity authors. I’m thinking of changing my name to Jennifer Lopez.


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