Joined Tuesday, May 13, 2003
Home page www.raybradbury.com
|I no longer monitor Private Messages sent to RayBradburyProj. If you want to communicate with me, please use my regular bookshelf -
2011: I have revived this project briefly for a themed release of a few books written by Ray Bradbury in his home town - in Ray Bradbury Park, Waukegan, Illinois. The released books are:
2003: Here's a chronological log of the development and realization of the original project:
5/13/03 - Hello fellow bookcrossers! My own screen name is TomHl, but I've also created this bookshelf to document the Ray Bradbury Project. You see, Ray Bradbury is a Unitarian Universalist and so am I. Every summer, there is a week-long summer camp of nearly 650 nation-wide Unitarians called the Lake Geneva Summer Assembly held in Williams Bay, Wisconsin. During the summer of 2003, I would love to re-release your Ray Bradbury books all over the campus to other UUs. Find out more about LGSA-UU at www.lgsa.org. The purpose of the Ray Bradbury project is threefold -
1) increase participation in bookcrossing among this demographically prone-to-read group. We are socially progressive, independent thinking, and literate. Find out more about UUs at www.uua.org.
2) promote Ray Bradbury's social messages regarding non-conformity, reading, freedom, etc. Can you even think of a book that deserves to be a bookcrossing title more than Fahrenheit 451?
3) celebrate Ray Bradbury's work by returning his books to within 50 miles of his birthplace (Waukegan, Illinois). The nostalgic American towns that are featured in many of his works such as Something Wicked This Way Comes, Dandelion Wine, and The Martian Chronicles are right here. And 2003 is the 50th anniversary of the publication of Fahrenheit 451 and The Golden Apples of the Sun, in 1953. Find out more about Ray Bradbury at www.raybradbury.com.
Here's how it works - Private Message me at RayBradburyProj to get my home address. Then you release any Ray Bradbury title you have at your local post office. The Ray Bradbury project will catch it when it arrives in my mailbox, and then re-release it at LGSA during the week of June 29 - July 5, 2003. It will have to arrive by June 28 to be included. You can watch the action by checking this bookshelf, or USA -> Wisconsin -> Williams Bay. There are walk-up internet stations at the camp. Feel free to include a post card, bookmark, sticker, ticket stub, or something that might add a little mystery for the eventual catchers of the book. Thank you and go read!
5/14/03 - It's been about 24 hours since the Ray Bradbury Project was announced, and I have received messages from a small flurry of volunteers. Let me say that I appreciate your contributions, no matter what size. Two of my kids and I made the rounds of local thrift stores last night and picked up a couple of Bradbury titles to start with. For now, the Ray Bradbury Project is housed in a shoebox on the floor next to my home computer desk.
5/16/03 - I've managed to find the time to pick up a few more Bradbury books myself at a used bookstore, and continue to answer inquiries for the address to send books to. Judging from the Private Messages I've received, I would have to say a lot of bookcrossers have very sentimental feelings and fond memories of their Ray Bradbury books. Me too. In fact, I'm about half-way through a re-read of Dandelion Wine right now - what a wonderful book to start the summer with! So here's my new idea - buy yourself a brand new edition of your favorite Bradbury book, read it again, and send me your old, your tired, your needs-to-be-passed-along-again copy from your bookshelf.
5/20/03 - It's now been six days since the project was announced, and the first book contributed through the mail has arrived. It's The Illustrated Man, and was sent in by avanta7. It fits nicely into the shoebox which is gradually filling! Thanks! In the past week I've had a couple of surprises - one is that people are interested in sending books from overseas, in spite of the cost. The other surprise is that I am finding myself reading the books I pick up; even though I thought I was already pretty familiar with Bradbury's work.
5/24/03 - Today, in my mailbox along the street, I found the first international contributions to the Ray Bradbury Project. Not one package, but two at the same time! From FutureCat in New Zealand came The October Country and Something Wicked This Way Comes. From Too-Ticki in Denmark came The Illustrated Man. My teenage children who have up till now rolled their eyes at their Dad's latest mostly-harmless foolishness, are now impressed. Even dear wife has been pawing through the shoebox thinking about reading one of them. While I'm here, I will also acknowledge the copy of The Martian Chronicles that came from thnxandyc in Pennsylvania.
6/2/03 - The Ray Bradbury Project is busting out of the shoebox! Just when I was beginning to wonder if the project was going to have every Ray Bradbury book EXCEPT Fahrenheit 451, gnissorkoob came through not one, but two copies. Hurray! But now the shoebox on the floor next to the computer is actually bulging outwards from squeezing in the most recent books, and I know there are more on their way. I'm hoping I can find a second shoebox around here somewhere.
6/8/03 - The Ray Bradbury Project is now in a Girl Scout Cookie Carton. So the whole idea of shoebox storage has broken down due to the arrival of a hard cover book. Many thanks to jazmin for sending in Bradbury's recent book: From The Dust Returned. (I'm going to read it myself before releasing.) Fortunately, we have in our house a supply of the cardboard cartons that Girl Scout Cookie boxes are shipped to Girl Scout troops in. The shortbread cartons are perfect.
6/15/03 - The custom bookmarks are ready. If you'd like a sneak preview of the bookmarks that will be used in the Ray Bradbury Project release, you can see a sheet here raybradburybookmark.doc for a limited time. The idea is that the words "FREE BOOK" stick out on the top and the bottom, and the bookmark can be trimmed to the size of the box later. This week the project has received The Illustrated Man from phantomreader42, The Golden Apples of the Sun from solittletime, and Something Wicked This Way Comes from Mandali.
6/20/83 - Last Call! If you've been thinking of sending something to the Ray Bradbury Project, I am reminding you now that it will have to arrive at my house on or before June 28 in order to be included. As a final enticement, I am announing publicly that contributors are invited to participate in an exclusive bookring to be launched at the same time as the themed release. For details on the bookring, see The Vintage Bradbury.
6/28/03 - The Ray Bradbury Project release starts tomorrow! The June 28 mail delivery has come to my house now, and so the collecting phase of the Ray Bradbury Project is finished. I will travel to the release site Sunday, and won't see my mailbox again until after the week is over. In this last week, I am grateful to have received books from k-j-h, Betsy-STL, scavok, grover3d, AmberLee17, and bookscout, and have been forced to move into yet a bigger box. I am taking a total of 37 books, 36 of which will be released in the next week, and one of which will start on a bookring. There have been contributions from 16 bookcrossers, representing 4 countries. If the release phase is as much fun as the collecting phase, this is going to be a great week! Watch the RayBradburyProj bookshelf or go hunting at USA->Wisconsin->Williams Bay to keep up with it.
7/5/03 - The Ray Bradbury Project release has been completed. I am just back from week-long family summer camp at Lake Geneva Summer Assembly-Unitarian Universalist, where I successfully released the 36 books collected for the Ray Bradbury Project. I held a meet-up one day after lunch, although the truly wild releases were more successful. I even managed to get one copy of S Is For Space into the nearby Yerkes Observatory. Almost all of the books disappeared within 24 hours after their release, many disappeared within the the first hour of release - although none of these catches were journaled during camp. Hopefully, after people get home they will journal. Being able to monitor the releases and in some cases talk to the finders later, I have some lessons learned to report -
1) People alone are much more likely to pick up a book than people in a crowd.
2) People who pick up a book, tend to keep it.
3) People don't always pick up a book the first time they see it. But they come back later to see if it is still there.
4) Sometimes people take a book, intending to release it elsewhere without reading it themselves, just because they believe in the principle.
5) The benches on the porch at the Administration Building during LGSA-UU are "hot". Books get picked up there within minutes.
6) Recording all the releases each day while at LGSA-UU was much more time-consuming than I anticipated.
7) Once people "get it", they are enthusiastic. Many thanks to all!
-Tom Hl. Thanks to all the contributors to the Ray Bradbury Project, whose bookshelves you can visit from these links... TomHl (Wisconsin), avanta7 (Arkansas), thnxandyc (Pennsylvania), FutureCat (New Zealand), Too-Ticki (Denmark), gnissorckoob (Florida), jazmin (New Jersey), phantomreader42 (Alabama), solittletime (Maine), Mandali (Washington), k-j-h (Australia), Betsy-STL (Missouri), scavok (Michigan), grover3d (West Virginia), AmberLee17 (California), and bookscout (California).