HometownReads.com and #ReadLocal Movement Reaches 75 Locations
As Small Business Saturday approaches, the team at HometownReads.com hopes people will frequent local, independent bookstores to combine the magic of shopping local with the treasure of reading books from local authors.
"With more than 12 million books on Amazon and more added every day, how can readers discover great books?" is what HometownReads.com founder Becky Robinson asked nearly two years ago. An ardent reader, Robinson was fueled by her passion not only for reading, but for helping authors.
"HometownReads.com creates community within the book universe. It is a way to harness the power of online connections to introduce authors and readers living in the very same zip code," Robinson explained. "Before HometownReads.com was launched in January 2016, there was no widespread way to connect book lovers with authors from within their communities."
From Albuquerque to Washington, D.C., and Asheville to Seattle, HometownReads.com has created listings for 75 locations across the U.S. - with Richmond, Virginia at #75 - with more than 3,500 books written by more than 2,000 authors, and more added daily.
Several more cities are expected to be added soon, as they near the minimum of 10 authors signed up for a location.
St. Louis author* Eileen P. Duggan added, "The 'Read Local' movement matters because each city is capable of turning out gifted people in all disciplines, and that should be celebrated. Even J.K. Rowling, Stephen King, Barbara Kingsolver, and Jodi Picoult are somebody's #ReadLocal authors."
Recently, HometownReads.com teamed with Arcadia Publishing/History Press, the leading publishers of local and regional books, to highlight even more authors and local bookstores.
In addition to finding local authors, HometownReads.com recently started a "Read Local Champions" section, with links to local bookstores, publishers, and others who want to support the #ReadLocal movement. Through HometownReads.com's digital bookshelf, visitors can browse books from their local area easily. The site also features "Find Me Local" buttons to help readers source books locally.
Authors can sign up to have their books featured for free at hometownreads.com/join.
Hometown Reads, launched in early 2016, is a division of Weaving Influence, a boutique digital and public relations firm that specializes in serving authors with comprehensive book marketing services. In addition to its custom book marketing services, Weaving Influence developed a do-it-yourself, book-marketing course called Book Marketing Action Guide.