Friday, 11 July 2014

The launch of the travelling book!


Today I launch a new project.

Have you ever wanted a little bit more excitement?  To perhaps do something a little unusual?  Preferably in a way that gives you something interesting to talk about, but without too much effort, time spent, or outlay of money!

I love books like Yes Man, and Are You Dave Gorman, where people go off and do something slightly unusual and odd, for no real reason.  If you're not familiar with what I mean, Are You Dave Gorman talks about a drunken wager that forces a guy called Dave Gorman to track down and find fifty four other Dave Gormans around the world.

But, the problem is of course that I don't really have the ability to up sticks and travel all over the place doing something random, as much as I'd like to - I do have a family (which I love very much), and a job that generally requires me to show up at a particular office at least a few times a week, and I'm sure that most of the people reading this are in exactly the same boat.

So, I've thought of a way that I, and you that wants to take part, can get involved in a slightly odd quest.

The Travelling Book needs you!

the travelling book
The Travelling Book.  Currently not travelling.  So  just a book really.

I've got a notebook, and put in the notebook a little bit of information about myself - where I live, what I do, a few photos, that sort of thing.  And the plan is for me to mail this book to someone else.  They write a page or two about themselves, where they live, anything cool, exciting, or interesting that they might like to say.

And then they mail the book on to someone that they know, for them to do the same (ideally asking the person beforehand if they want to get involved!)

And this goes on and on, until when the book is full, the last person will mail it back to me, and I will scan the book and put it up on the internet so we can see where it travelled.  This way, you can take part in a slightly unusual quest, and all you have to do is write a page or two about yourself, maybe stick a photo or two in, and mail it to someone else.

The book isn't too big so hopefully it won't cost too much to mail - it weighs in at about 350 grams, and I'm hoping that it won't take years and years for the book to be filled and to come back home.  I fully expect it to be at least a few months, maybe even a year or more, but hopefully I'll still be living here when it comes back!

As I say, I've already done the first entry, I've talked a little bit about where I live (Hull in the United Kingdom), I've sellotaped in a couple of photos - I've used really big sellotape so that the photos don't come loose, because hopefully this book is going to go far and wide and adventure for a while.

Now, this is how you can get involved.

I'm making five of these books, and I need people to send them to, people that are up for putting a bit of information in, and sending it on to someone that they know.

If you would like to get one of these books, email me at with your name and whereabouts in the world you live.  On Saturday 19th I will randomly pick five people to send a book to, who I will email to ask for their mailing address. We're doing something else now.

Do please be aware that whatever goes in the book is going to be for public consumption, names, email addresses, twitter accounts, whatever, it's all going to be scanned and uploaded, so don't put anything in the book that you wouldn't be happy with people on the Internet seeing!  When the book comes home I will email / tweet at people that wrote in the book so that they know it made it back okay and can read the scanned copy of the book.

One other thing that I need you for, and something that you can get involved in even if you don't fancy having a book sent to you - why wouldn't you though?!? - I think that the books need names.  Now I could certainly name them myself, but I'd either just call them book number 1, book number 2, and so on, or I'd give them rubbish names like Gandalf or Colin or Simon or something.  Not that Colin isn't a brilliant name for a cat or a garden shed, but not for a book.

So please do also get in touch with your suggested book names, email, put them in the comments, tweet me at ravenswingthog - whatever you prefer.

So that's the plan, let's see what happens and if you are up for this then thanks for taking part! I'm also doing a video about this on my YouTube channel (as I type it's still being put together ready for uploading overnight)

I really hope to find five people that are up for receiving a book, where you send it on to is entirely up to you, it could be to your next door neighbour or it could be another country, it's all good!

UPDATE: Here's the video if you want to watch it...


  1. hello petal I'd be up for it as long as you wouldn't mind me defacing it with my doodles :) D's family live in Oz and he's got a mate who lives in Bangkok so that's half a world away already :) Really great idea!!!!!! may be you could throw in a random book which you write in at the front asking the finder to start and pass it on and then leave somewhere not knowing who or where it will go, the book of unknown beginnings :) or you could just tell me to bugger off :) love you ;) Carolynn x

    1. I like it! I'll see what response I get, if I don't get five people volunteering I may well do that... or if I do it might be worth starting a sixth!

  2. That's an awesome idea. I'll post this to Twitter.

  3. OOOOh could you start a facebook page for friends of the travelling books so new and old holders can keep track of them as they wander the globe and people could post photos of it in new places too :) carolynnxx

    1. I'm definitely thinking of something like that. Due to the demand, I'm thinking if I get more than five people interested (which looks likely) I'm going to run it as a project on a crowdfunding website, so anyone interested in getting a book (beyond the first five which will get one for free) can fund one, and if I get enough cash I can put it into sorting out maybe even a little website for the books!


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