Wallingford’s Open Books: A Poem Emporium is launching several initiatives this holiday season for visitors to walk away with free tickets and books.
There are two opportunities to get free tickets for the Seattle Arts & Lectures Poetry Series. Visitors can cast their votes to help SAL choose next year’s lineup of poets in the 2017-2018 season. All those who vote will be entered for a chance to win two free tickets to next season’s opening event.
Open Books is also selling a limited number of pre-wrapped books from poets who will read in this year’s series. These books by Ross Gay, Ellen Bass, Alice Notley, and Carl Phillips will each include one ticket to the respective poet’s event.
In addition, the bookstore will host a book drive on behalf of the Seattle-based nonprofit Books for Prisoners. Anyone who donates may take a free book from Open Books’s back stacks.
“One of my primary goals is to continue building a community of discussion and learning around poetry,” explained Billie Swift, who took over ownership of the store in September. “We’ve already launched several poetry series and hosted readings, discussions, and children’s events. But we also want to support vital local literary organizations like SAL and Books for Prisoners, who are doing incredible work in their own right.”
All books are welcome as part of the book drive; it’s not limited to poetry books, though light poetry books are welcome. Books for Prisoners prefers those books that are most commonly requested by prisoners, which include:
- Legal self help
- Spanish books (including Spanish-English dictionaries)
- American Sign Language dictionaries
- Drawing instruction
- Games and crafts (including chess, crossword puzzles, Sudoku, origami, and role-playing manuals)
- Vocational instruction (e.g., welding, plumbing, carpentry)
- Starting a business
- GED preparation books
- African-American non-fiction and fiction
- True crime
- Paperback genre fiction: thrillers, mysteries, science fiction, fantasy, westerns, and horror
- Books on the occult, aliens, conspiracy theories, and New Age books
- Blank journals
Finally, if you’re looking for a family-friendly event on Dec. 24, stop by between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. for a Board Game & Cider Day.