Publishing Talks: David Wilk Interviews Carl Lennertz about World Book Night 2012

January 28, 2012 by  
Filed under Publishing History, PublishingTalks, The Future

In this series of interviews, called Publishing Talks, I talk to book industry professionals and other smart people about the future of publishing, books, and culture.  This is a period of disruption and change for all media businesses.  How will publishing evolve as our culture is affected by technology, climate change, population density, and the ebb and flow of civilization and  economics?

I hope these Publishing Talks conversations will help us better understand the outlines of what is happening in publishing, books and reading culture, and how we can ourselves both understand and influence the future of books and reading.

Carl Lennertz has got himself a dream job, as he was happy to tell me when we talked.  Carl is the Director of World Book Night in the United States.  World Book Night originated in the U.K. in 2011 and has quickly grabbed the imagination of book lovers there and in this country as well.  Thousands of people will go into their communities on April 23, 2012 to give specially printed books away to potential readers.  The idea is to enlist volunteers – many are needed – so if you are interested, go to the website (now!) to register.  Even if you miss the 2012 deadline, you will want to participate in the future.

World Book Night is a great idea, supported now by Ingram Book Company in the United States as well as a number of terrific publishers.  A total of thirty excellent books (see the list here) were selected and will be printed in special editions of 20,000 copies each.  Libraries are signing up to participate, along with booksellers, and writers themselves.  Carl is blogging about the whole thing on a regular basis too, visit regularly or subscribe to keep up with all the many events and doings around the country.  This is a great project – we need more book readers in America, where we have far too many non-readers for the good of the nation.

Carl is a terrific person to have this job.  His enthusiasm and dedication is just what this project needs.  Please listen to our conversation about World Book Night, and do what you can to support this effort.