Paper Matters Blog
In Celebration of Poets and Writers

On March 29, the Poets and Writers Gala was held in New York City. As a life-long reader (and proud supporter of the book printing and publishing industry), I was thrilled to attend the first in-person gathering since 2019.

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Image Source: Poets & Writers Facebook

The Poets and Writers Gala celebrates the contributions of writers on both a national and local level. Hundreds of writers, agents, publishers and readers gathered online and in-person to celebrate each other. Viet Thanh NguyenJames PattersonSonia Sanchez, and Sally Kim were honored at the event and it was hosted by Seth Meyers, who recently released an excellent children’s book.

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Image Source: Poets & Writers Facebook | Photography by Margarita Corporan

For the first time in two years, the gala provided an opportunity to finally connect with colleagues and industry experts in person. Although, the gala also had another purpose. The proceeds and donations from this event help fund important programs and publications for writers.  Under the leadership of the gala’s chair, Dennis Abboud, CEO of ReaderLink, sponsors and donors contributed more than $965,000 to support the organization. If you are interested in supporting Poets & Writers, you can do so here.

The energy of the event was something that I have not experienced in a long time. Not only was everyone excited about meeting new people and interacting outside of Zoom, but they were also delighted to be celebrating artists who create something beautiful out of paper and pen – writers and poets. (As evidenced by the photo below, I was DEFINITELY excited!)

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Image Source: Poets & Writers Facebook

If you haven’t already, please take a moment to reflect on the benefits of picking up a book. In a world that is filled with work, societal obligations, and noise, reading books provides a simple way to disconnect. Reading a book also releases stress levels and helps mitigate some of the digital fatigue we are all experiencing right now.

Books are having a moment in 2022. According to the market research company, NPD, unit sales of print books were the highest ever recorded by Bookscan since they started collecting data in 2004.  This growth has been led by adult fiction and can be attributed to both the rise of online retailing as well as the perseverance of physical bookstores.

It will be exciting to see what the coming years have in store for books. Streaming video platforms, celebrity book clubs and the emergence of #BookTok have injected life into this segment most recently…. who knows what’s next?

If you’re anything like me, you may have recently lost your way when it comes to reading physical books. With the demands of being a full-time marketer, mother and wife, I forgot the bliss of running a hot bath and getting wrapped up in a good book. So, I took the time to rediscover why I love this self-care habit so much.  The good news is that it’s never too late and books are like a best friend—you can just pick up where you left off, at any time and any day.

I encourage you to take a few minutes to pick up a book and read a few pages sometime this week. Unsure about where to start? The honorees listed above all have great titles available at your local library or bookstore. Also, make sure to check out this list of book recommendations from Domtar employees.

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