What’s better than chocolate? According to a friend of mine who just spent a year deployed overseas, a good book.
Jess Dawson (pen name Jessica Scott) is a lifelong book lover and a member of my local RWA chapter. She also happens to be a first lieutenant in the army, and she says that for many women in uniform, the selection of reading materials wears a little thin after a while. Why? Because (not surprisingly) the stuff on most military bases is geared toward a male audience.
“Most of the books on base are of the Vince Flynn/ Brad Thor variety, which is great if you’re a fan but not if you need something else,” she says. “Care packages that contain books are better than chocolate and almost as good as getting coffee!”
I don’t know about you, but I can’t stand the thought of anyone not having enough to read. My RWA chapter felt the same, and last year we started sending books to Jess’s unit. Romances, chick lit, mysteries, women’s fiction–we covered the spectrum, but tried to tailor it to a female audience. Now Jess is safely home (thank goodness) but there are still lots of female soldiers who could use a good read.
So please excuse the public service announcement, but I’m doing a paperback book drive today! I’m putting together a big (hopefully, very big) care package for our ladies overseas, and for every person who leaves a comment here, I’m adding a book to it. My goal is to send 100 books (which is probably crazy because the most comments I’ve ever gotten was maybe fifty or something), but anyway 100 is the magic number. Help me out. E-mail your friends. Comment twice, if you want to.
I’ve got a selection of books from our Murder She Writes authors, as well as donations from my Austin RWA chapter and other author friends. They’re all going into the box, along with a few other much-requested goodies, such as blank journals and, yes, chocolate!
And if you have some books on your hands you’d like to donate directly, you can contact Monica, a soldier who gets care packages to women in uniform. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
100 books… Are you up for it?