There’s a social gathering of atheists at a bar I sometimes attend, and I picked the correct week to show up this week. While there, I learned about an exciting new idea from Barbara Williams of Great Lakes Atheists through a mutual friend.
I’ll simply copy and paste the information she sent me. I encourage you to send her suggestions, or comment below and I will forward them on. Certainly contact any atheist authors you know who might be willing to help support such an outreach. If you are involved with any atheist groups, please let them know of the idea and encourage them to get involved! And please, please share this idea around on all your social medias!
Atheist Book Night
What is it?
A designated evening where Atheists around the country give out Atheist-themed books to the general public, free of charge. It is an outreach service to not only promote the understanding of Atheism among the general public, but to reach out to fellow Atheists, especially minority Atheists, who may not know that they are not alone.
When is it?
It will be held the first Tuesday of the month of May. Why? It will be much easier to find a group of people to give books to during the week. People usually have a routine on weekdays, getting off work, going to evening classes, using public transportation, etc… During the weekend, groups would probably have to attract attention to themselves, a much harder thing to do.
Why should we do this?
As an outreach, this is a simple, effective and fun way to get the word out and to possibly help Atheists who are still in the closet. Great Lakes Atheists have given books away two years in a row, with great success. Everyone we’ve given a book to has been eager to take a book. Not one recipient has been rude, not one!
What kind of books should be given away?
Each group should select books that they would like to give out. A big component in this project is to be inclusive. Please include books representing the broad spectrum of Atheists across this country. A good book is a good book, true, but if we want to make a connection, being inclusive is very important.
I read lots of science fiction/fantasy as a child. All of the characters were boys. I didn’t mind, but when I was ten years old, I read, Wrinkle in Time. The main character was Meg, an awkward young girl. Wow! What an experience that was to have a character in a great story with whom I could identify.
How will we get books?
The group will have to purchase books or ask for donations from authors. I hope that as we go along, organizations and authors will offer books free, or at a discount, to groups that plan to do this. Maybe some deals can be struck. An example might be that you get a free Skype talk with the purchase of so many books or maybe 10% off if you buy a certain number. Maybe national organizations with books to sell could offer a certain number of books to be used for ABN in return for so many people becoming
I am in need of feedback for this idea and I need support. If we want to build an Atheist community, I think this is a good place to start. Please let me know what you think.
2 thoughts on “Atheist Book Night”
Love this idea. Ran across it on Reddit. Have you made any progress?
Thanks! Mostly at this point we are trying to get various groups and authors involved. I’ve spread the idea to the SSA, and they are interested, but cautious due to the funding necessary.