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05-19 Sarah Raplee – Riff on 7 yrs. Of SPAM & a Giveaway

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Saving the world, one book at a time

I don't have a particular charity I want to shout out for. Sure, I contribute to a few, but I'm not gonna force them down your throat. It's your choice what you care deeply about, and worthy causes are plentiful.

But I find it hard to think about charities without getting a bit depressed. There's never enough money to go around. Are my donations going where I think they're going? Can I even make a difference at all?

Truth is, we – and I mean those of us who've got the education, time and resources to read this blog and think about romance books and giving to charities – are the lucky ones.

Sure, our lives might not be chocolate biscuits and roses the whole time. We have our problems. Some of us deal with sickness, bereavement, discrimination, economic issues and other hardships daily.

But we have clean air, clean water and ample living space, when so many of our fellow humans have none of those. We have shelter, when thousands in our own cities sleep outdoors. We have enough food to sustain us, when millions worldwide are starving. And on a typical day, most of us can walk down the street minding our own business without getting shot at.

Feeling ill yet? Adults and children are suffering and dying by the thousand every day, and you and I can't do a damn thing. It's not a guilt-trip. It's just a fact. We can't save the world. All we can do is give our money to charity, and trust that by doing so, we can shine a little light of hope.

Doing something, no matter how small, has gotta be better than doing nothing.

I wonder if that's one reason why genres like romantic suspense and paranormal romance are so popular? Because in those books, we can save the world. The SEAL team will defeat the terrorists or the drug dealers or the evil slavery cartel. The plucky heroine and her sexy immortal hero will finish off the demon hordes and drag the earth back from the brink of destruction.

So next time you're wondering what on earth you can do to help, how about giving your old romance books to a charity shop or a shelter? Sure, it's not money. It might not feed the poor, or save a dying child. Give your money and time, too. But we are the literature of hope. Romance readers – and writers! – want to believe the world can be saved. And hey, maybe if enough people believe that, and act as if they believe it? It might come true.

Anyway. Sad post over. Go and spread some good!


Sarah Raplee said...


I enjoyed your thoughtful post. It reminds me of the story about a woman walking on the beach who comes upon thousands of stranded starfish. Without help, they will wither and die in the hot sun before the tide comes in.

She begins to ick them up, one by one, and through them back into the water. Another beach comber arrives and watches for a few minutes. then he says, "You might as well give upo. You[ll never save them all."

Her reply? "No, but I can save this one."

Sshe continues on her mission to do whatever she can to help.

Judith Ashley said...

Thoughtful post, Erica...our local chapter donates to a women's shelter in December and last year I cleaned out my 'saved forever' stash (it was either that or build an addition onto the house). It did help knowing those books were going someplace where women needed hope.

Hadn't thought about popularity of romantic suspense and paranormal being that the hero and heroine do save the world...I think you may be on to something...

Diana Mcc. said...

I enjoyed reading your post. When our family is done with books, we pass them on to the library or a charity group. Let's face it, a lot of folks don't have Nooks, I-pads, kindles or spare money for books. Books give not only knowledge, but hope.