A bookstore friend of mine has long made a habit of this kind of behaviour. She calls it “catching readers in the wild.”
Two years ago, Toronto-based literary voyeur, Julie Wilson took the practice a step beyond and started a blog to document what she’d spied people reading in public. She called it Seen Reading, and I was hooked from the start.
What is Seen Reading?
- I see you reading.
- I remember what page you’re on in the book.
- I head to the bookstore, and make a note of the text.
- I let my imagination rip.
- Readers become celebrities.
- People get giddy and buy more books.
Why do you do this?
Readers are cool. Authors work hard. Publishers take chances. And you all deserve to be seen!
– Julie Wilson, about Seen Reading
I’m thrilled to announce that as of May 18, 2009, I’ll be a regular contributor to Seen Reading! Every MONDAY I’ll be posting my “sightings” on the Seen Reading blog, cataloguing the readers I’ve seen out and about in Nova Scotia.
(Tuesdays will be from Montreal’s Saleema Nawaz, Wednesdays from Julie Wilson in Toronto, Thursdays from Vancouver’s Monique Trottier and Fridays have been dubbed as a “Free for All.”)
I come from a long line of birders – intense birdwatching folk with keen eyes and serious life lists. LBBs (little brown birds) are seen every day, but it’s the rare bird that’s always on my mind.The indigo bunting that happens to stop in my yard on its migratory journey.The motorcycle mama, leaning against a bent metal railing along side the road, reading The Grapes of Wrath.
– Ami McKay, thoughts on catching readers in the wild
This spring I’ll be sticking close to home, moving between hikes along the beach and doctor’s visits, farmer’s market mornings and pot luck dinners, never wandering far from the Annapolis Valley. Where do you do your reading?
My first sighting is up today!!! (If you’ve ever brought a puppy into your life as practise for parenthood, this one’s for you…)
Before and After Getting Your Puppy
I hope you’ll stop by Seen Reading and let me know what you think.
I’ll be seeing you – reading!
PS Literary lad, Steven Beattie recently posted a wonderful interview/article on the new incarnation of Seen Reading with comments from Julie Wilson, Saleema Nawaz, Monique Trottier, and yours truly.
Seen Reading Goes National