Monday, September 28, 2009

A Profession of Love for Books

Over the weekend, I purchased several new books. A few are newly published and are now sitting on one of my to read stacks and a few were used and will be added to one of my many contemporary author collections.

As I was looking through my reading stacks today I just felt the need to share my love of books with others. I have always had this strong connection to reading. I have books stacked all over my house. I carry books in my cars just in case I get stuck in traffic or have to wait in the car for someone I might be able to read for a few minutes.

I generally take a book or two to dinner with me, on airplanes, on the beach, on hikes, and even on walks, I might have to take a short break to catch my breath and it makes for a good time to read. Much to my husband's despair, I have to pack one bag with my books when we travel.

I don't how I would react if I suddenly found that I could no longer read. My father-in-law made a comment one time when he was staying with us that I have books in every room of the house including the kitchen and the basement.

I had a stack of cookbooks in the kitchen. At the time, my washer and dryer were in the basement so of course I had to have a bookshelf there so that I could grab a book to read while waiting on a load of laundry to finish.

My father-in-law also asked if I had read most of the books. What a silly question. I have read all or part of every book I own. The only exceptions are the sci-fi books that my husband reads and collects. I read some of the genre but not a lot of it.

I love the feel, the smell, holding them, turning the pages, and all of the physical aspects of books. But, the thing I love the most are the words, the story, the problem, the solution, the questions and the answers, the fantasy and the reality that books bring to one's mind.

It's the beginning, the middle, and the end that makes every book a worthy read. I love books, I love to read, and I'm not afraid to profess those facts to the world.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

National Bookstore Day

Publishers Weekly magazine announced the National Bookstore Day is scheduled for November 7 this year.

Start making plans now to visit your local new and used bookstores. I couldn't live without going to the bookstore at least once a week. I spread my business around too. I visit the big chain stores regularly but I also visit the used bookstores that are still left.

We have a very large flea market in our geographic area and my husband and I walk through and buy used books for our various collections from those vendors.

My secret dream is to own my own bookstore and coffee shop and sell new and used books, CDs, magazines, and newspapers.

So take some time on November 7 and go into your favorite bookstores and buy a book....

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Becoming a Category of One Book Review

Book Name: Becoming a Category of One
How Extraordinary Companies Transcend Commodity and Defy Comparison
By: Joe Calloway
Publsiher: John Wiley & Sons, 2003, 2009
243 pages

While Calloway's book is a revised and updated edition of his 2003 release, the information he provides is not any different than any other marketing or set your company apart from the others book.

The social marketing phenom om that has hit over the last two years is missing entirely. The most unique part of the book is that Calloway suggests that a company should develop their own category and by default that company would be number one in that category versus competing with other companies in the current categories.

The problem is that Calloway gives examples and case studies of what he feels are category of one companies, but he does not really give steps on how to create the category. He only details what a category of one company would do to become number one in a category of one.

The book is an easy read and includes a good chapter on branding. He reiterates that a company's brand is not created through advertising, public relations, or even product design. Brands are created by the customer's perception of a company. The customer creates the brand.

It is a good book for someone just starting a new company. The book does provide foundational theories for how to compete, what good customer service is, and how to be an exceptional company.

Monday, September 07, 2009

Good Reading Skills Vital to Success

International Literacy Day is September 8, 2009. Take a moment to think about how many times you read something each and every day. How many times do you read the newspaper, look up a phone number or address, look up directions, read instructions on how to take medications, read through all of the legal stuff sent through your credit card companies, or just reading the ingredients in a particular food or cleaning product?

What would it be like to look at a book and see just a bunch of letters and not be able to form the letters into meaningful words?

It would devastate me. My mother had low reading skills and even lower math skills. She was born in the hills of Kentucky and only got a minimal education.

I've worked in adult education with a GED and reading program and I can tell persons who cannot read or read very well are in great emotional pain. They hide the fact they cannot read more than any other factor in their lives.

So on this International Literacy Day, donate a new book or books to a local literacy program, they desperately need books. Or, offer to become a literacy volunteer, they desperately need volunteers.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged Final Review

I've posted several Atlas Shrugged (Plume, 1957) reviews at http://www.suite101.com/ so my final review here is just to talk about the message and example delivered by the fictional story.

The story is a solid example of what could happen if the free enterprise system that the United States is built on where to be governed out of existence. Too much regulation, too many restrictions, limits on production, laws that destroy rather than protect are all practices that would stifle competition and obliterate the rights of all entrepreneurs.

In the back of the book, the author Ayn Rand writes about herself and said, "My philosophy, in essence, is the concept of man as a heroic being, with his own happiness as the moral purpose of his life, with productive achievement as his noblest activity, and reason as his only absolute."

The book is a big read with an even bigger story.

Read my other reviews at:

http://classic-american-fiction.suite101.com/article.cfm/atlas_shrugged_delivers_timeless_message

http://marketingpr.suite101.com/article.cfm/atlas_shrugged_book_review

http://americanfiction.suite101.com/article.cfm/ayn_rands_timeless_writing_style