Bookwards – A Club for Readers and Writers

I don’t know about you, but I’ve been noticing lately that the attention economy has steadily eaten away at my reading habit. Once upon a time, I used to burn through a book every three or four days. Now I’m lucky if I read three in a month.

I’ve been speaking to fellow reader friends of mine – there aren’t many of them left; everyone seems to have caught the same bug – and they named three top reasons why they aren’t reading books. Here they are, in no particular order:

  • Distractions from social media / the Internet / Amazon Prime / Netflix
  • They don’t have friends who read, so there is no ‘social incentive’ to do so (whereas there is plenty of social incentive to watch something that is trending on Netflix, say).
  • They don’t know how to discover new books / authors / genres that they might like.

These are my top three too. For years I’ve agreed with intellectuals that complained India doesn’t have a reading culture, but lately I’ve come to realize that culture is not something that is either present or absent, either ‘there’ or ‘not’. It is a more organic, fluid thing: it can be created, eroded; it can grow, thrive, die, change.

So I asked myself: can we not create a personal reading culture for ourselves? If you had access to a community which is off social media, which doesn’t impel you to login every single day only to scroll mindlessly for hours at a time, where you could meet other readers, where you could discover new books and writers – would you not read more?

Would you not enjoy reading more? I know I would.

I went searching for such a community, and when I failed to find it I did the next best thing and created one. Here’s what I came up with:

Bookwards – A Club for Readers

It is deliberately low-tech. It works on a monthly cycle. It is designed to be just one thing: a gathering spot for people who like to read books.

Come say hello. Let’s share what we’ve been reading. Let’s compare notes on writers we’re excited about. Let’s exchange recommendations. Oh and yes, there are writing contests too that we can participate in together.

Promises to be fun.

Image Courtesy: 1


  1. Madhavan Sadagopan says:

    A fine initiative indeed! This is Madhavan Sadagopan (Poet “Beerangi”) on Facebook. May I draw attention to my initiatives in this context? One such is “Spirituality Beyond Religion”. An article of mine on the topic can be seen google searching “M.Sadagopan’s articles”. Can readers feedback and/or supplement, to take the initiative forward in these days of turmoil?


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