I haven't posted anything on this blog over the past month, because I've been swamped with the Third Annual Book 'Em North Carolina Writers Conference and Book Fair. It took place on Saturday, February 22, 2014 at Robeson Community College in Lumberton, North Carolina.
The event brought together about 75 authors, publishers, a Hollywood producer, and two rock star legends to raise money for literacy campaigns in Robeson County, North Carolina. I founded the event four years ago, and I've chaired it each year. I spend anywhere from 10 hours a week (during the slow periods) to 40+ hours a week on the event, year 'round. I don't get paid for it; it's entirely a volunteer activity, and it's a labor of love. I love reading as much as I love writing, and I can't imagine a world without the written word. Yet there are many in the world - and even in our own communities - who can't read at all, or who are unable to read past a third grade level.
Reading has always opened new worlds for me. It has allowed me to climb Mount Everest, be on a ship in the middle of The Perfect Storm, discover countries around the world, explore lives in ancient civilizations and times past, present and future... and fall in love over... and over... and over again. All without leaving my chair.
Where has reading taken you? Which world, scenario, or time period is your favorite?