The Marya Cummings Memorial Book Club

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Marya passed away on March 25, and that's left me with a hole in my life. I now have a number of (somewhat distastefull but necessary) things to do, like taking care of her estate, and distributing her belongings. These tasks don't give me much direction or purpose; I'm just a caretaker to her memory now.

But, I have a plan, of sorts. Over the years of her illnesses, she collected all sorts of books, most of which hold no interest for me. I have to figure out what to do with all these extra books.

Marya belonged to a book club the last few years. She loaned out many of the books she got for the book club, and I doubt that she really ever expected to get them back. Now, I don't know where any of these books are, and I am content to leave them in the hands of those who enjoy the reading of them.

But, what to do with Marya's other books? Well, how about distributing them to strangers? Give others the joy of reading something new, in the spirit of generosity that my wife so easily exhibited. Thus, the "Marya Cummings Memorial Book Club".

This would be modeled on the concept pioneered by such sites as BookCrossing, but would explicitly name Marya as the benefactor of the effort. Books would be labeled and numbered and left in public places for others to find, read, and redistribute. An email address would initially be the only contact offered to the books recipient; this would permit enquiries and tracking without exposing the source of the book.

I wouldn't distribute all of Marya's books this way. Rather, a select few of our combined library would be given to this "book club", and the effort tracked, evaluated, and refined.

A fitting effort for me, and a tribute to the generosity and spirit of my late wife.

Comments

I've discussed the idea with a few people, and so far, everyone thinks this "Book Club" is a good idea. So, I'll start the process this week.

I've got to pick out a few books, make up labels, and set the books free. I'm also going to set up a website to track the books (as best as I can) as they move around. I've already set up an email address (MaryaCummingsBookClub@sympatico.ca), which will be printed on the labels that go into each book.

If this limited trial is a success, then I'll move into a larger scale setup. We'll see how it goes.

Great Idea!!!!!! I think that is a great idea Uncle Lew!!!!!!
Chris Long

HI Uncle Lew Im with Becca and Aunt Staci we like the idea it should be good and nice web site!!!!!!

On Monday, May 8, 2006, I released the first book ("The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pitman") into the wild. I left it at the fountain in the Eatons Centre in Toronto, at lunch time.

We'll see what happens. The book was labeled and numbered, and was covered with that clear plastic book protector material, so it should be in fairly good shape for circulation. The label has the email address on it, and hopefully I'll get email tracking it's progress.

--
Lew Pitcher (lpitcher@sympatico.ca)

On Tuesday, May 23, I released the second book ("Gap Creek") into the wild.
I haven't had any response on either book yet.

--
Lew Pitcher (lew.pitcher@digitalfreehold.ca)