Hooray for Libraries

How does a newly published poet get his book read ?

So, I’ve written a bunch of poems I’m happy with, I’ve gone through the self-publishing route and have 20 copies ready for some lovely people to read: I need to get some exposure for my book but how do I do that ? Not having done this before I’m guessing the local bookshop will put some on their shelves: at this point I don’t even want royalties for them, I just want my poems to be out there and read by people who like poetry, holding a book in their hands rather than downloading e-books and just seeing that my poems are read would, at this stage, be a thrill.

Dunstable High Street has had shop fronts boarded up for quite a few years but a stalwart, and a shop I thought was making it through the current troubles, was The Book Castle: a shop I’ve been in and out of since I was a boy. My mission today, with a couple of hours to kill, was to go and have a chat with the people that run the shop and see if they would put a few copies out for sale, like I said I wouldn’t even have wanted any money for them, before or after they had sold [if they had of course]. Imagine my surprise when I saw the sign on the door [and the pile of letters on the doormat as is always the case when shops are left empty for more than a few days] – The Book Castle has now closed, sorry for any inconvenience – books are being sold from Mullins in the old Woolworths building around the corner – the last post was sounding in my head.

My second port of call to get my book out there was Dunstable Library who were only too happy to take 4 copies and endeavour to pass any remainders around other libraries in the Central Bedfordshire area. Hurray for libraries I say, and what with many libraries in the firing line and closing ten to the dozen due to government cutbacks [I don’t do politics so you won’t see many of that type of phrase on this blog], I will be keeping my fingers crossed for them.

Not sure what the next steps for exposing my book to the world at large are, so, for now, I’ll be happy in the knowledge they are there on a library bookshelf, should they catch anybody’s eye.


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