Bring Back Reading with Ripa--Stalking Kelly Ripa

Okay, we're not really stalking her (please don't call the FBI), but this blog was born out of the frustration of trying to get our books NOTICED when there is a sea of books published every year. If you can't change it, at least you can laugh about it....

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Guest Stalker
Deborah LeBlanc

Dear Kelly,

I've been a fan of yours from day one and dang near lit a fireworks display in my front lawn when you began the Reading With Ripa segment on the show! When Reading With Ripa ended, however, I wanted to conduct a funeral because another literacy advocate had bit the dust.

Kelly, America NEEDS your voice, and just in case you're not aware of how badly we need you, let me share this little story....

Last year I went on my first book tour, putting feet to the street, my debut novel in hand. During that tour, I visited over 250 book stores throughout the United States and talked with hundreds of their customers. I discovered that most of the people I spoke with fell into one of three categories:

Category 1: 15 to 20 year olds -"I don't like to read. I'm just hanging out here with my friends 'cause it's cheaper than going to the show."

Category 2: 21-35 year olds- "I don't have time to read. I'm too busy raising my kids and trying to make ends meet, and I come here for the free internet access." (or to have coffee with friends.)

Category 3: Everyone 35 or older--moderate to avid readers. Unfortunately, they constituted only 25 percent of the total visitors in the store.

Kelly, I can't tell you how disheartened I was by the end of the tour. If such a wide age range of people (15-35 year olds) are no longer reading, the chances of their children and their children's children reading would be slim to none. In essence, it's as though we're establishing a foundation of mental impoverishment for future generations. I couldn't bear the thought, nor could I sit back and do nothing about it. So I started a literacy challenge, one that offers those willing to read just two books and answer a few questions the chance to win $5000, plus an extra $1000 that will go to the public school of their choice. I have and continue to spend my own hard-earned dollars touring the nation, motivating kids in high school, parents in libraries, and basically anyone who'll listen, to read.

The challenge has made a small dent in our non-reading society, but we desperately need your help. Without wonderful people like you who have a strong voice and powerful influence, encouraging Americans to read, our future generations are in for some very hard times. Challenges already await them, Kelly. Mental impoverishment shouldn't be one of them. Please bring back Reading With Ripa. We need you.

All the best,
Deborah LeBlanc


  • At 8:28 AM, Anonymous Cele said…


    Your challenge was a great idea. I don't have a lot of extra time to read, but I do and my butt gets bigger because the time I use to read is the time I should be exercising. I like you much better than my cross trainer. I have a bad habit of veering - I'm sorry.

    Ahem....The challenge, a great idea, I liked it from the moment I heard of it. I have come to find that if I like a book I will buy it as gifts. Most people I know find a book a curious offering, but I am always thanked afterwards for the great read.

    psst you should have posted the link to your challenge, but I did visit your website...

    Visiting High School Lit classes? A great idea. Don't give up great writers are always preferred, over the once brilliant - now mundane mass marketed sell outs, by those who truly love to read.


Post a Comment

<< Home