Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Guest Blogger: John B. Kachuba

We at Fine Print are very excited to bring a series of posts by local authors. We have asked them to share their thoughts about their favorite book, something they've read recently, or the role reading has played in their lives.  John Kachuba is the author of seven books, four of them about ghosts and ghosthunting. A noted speaker at universities and libraries, conferences, and on TV and radio programs, John also teaches Creative Writing at Ohio University, Antioch University Midwest, and the Gotham Writers Workshop. Dark Entry, a ghost story, is his new e-book available on Amazon.com. John’s Website is www.JohnKachuba.com John  Kachuba will be one of the local authors at A Tasting With Friends at Benham's Grove on September 13. For more information on this event or to buy tickets, check out this page.

A library is not a luxury, but one of the necessities of life. – Henry Ward Beecher

I can’t imagine what my life would have been like without libraries; simply put, I would never have become a writer. Even as a child, libraries inspired my imagination to wander down endless mental corridors, exploring rooms of wonder that I never knew existed. Igniting my curiosity, fueling my burgeoning passion for new words and new worlds, libraries have always been a necessary part of my life.

While libraries nurtured me as a writer they still play an important role in my writing life. Yes, they remain a source of research for me but they also have become a way for me to connect directly with my readers. Writers rarely get the chance to meet and speak to their readers but over the last several years I have given presentations about ghosts and ghost hunting—extremely popular topics these days—in over eighty libraries in my home state of Ohio, as well as in libraries in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Florida. The audiences have ranged in size (the largest was 72 people, the smallest 6) but in almost every instance the sponsoring librarians have told me that the numbers in attendance exceeded their expectations.

Part of the reason for that is the subject matter itself; it seems that everyone wants to hear a good ghost story. But there is another reason, I believe. In times of economic hardship, as we are facing now, many people simply can’t afford a night out for entertainment. When the local library offers a free and interesting program—whether it be about ghosts or some other topic—people recognize a deal that just can’t be beat. Such programming is a win-win situation. Patrons are treated to an enjoyable night out while the library draws many people who might not normally come to the facility---and once there, they have the opportunity to find out about all the other programs the library offers and to realize that, oh yes, there are books and DVDs aplenty and they’re all available free!

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