The book of the blog

From the outset, this daily diary was designed by its editor with a vision to help raise money for the charitable endeavours of the Allendale Lions Club, a member of the International Lions Clubs, the largest philanthropic service organisation in the world.

Essentially, almost all of the money raised by the local club is ploughed back into good local causes. In fact, all of the money raised in local events (especially the Charity Auction) goes as advertised directly back into the community. But the club, by virtue of its international affiliation, also has a responsibility for some international assistance, especially when great tragedies like tsunamis or earthquakes strike unexpectedly around the world. Although some 95% of the money raised by the Allendale Lions Club goes to local causes, additional fund-raising efforts help to support international causes where there is some sort of local connection, as for example, to help eradicate jigger infestation from the feet of children in Kenya, where one of the club’s charter members has emigrated.

But the fund-raising capacity of the Allendale Lions Club is increasingly limited by the advanced age of its charter members. That’s why the members were so supportive of a new fund-raising idea, based on the blog.

When 2020 finally rolls around, if all has gone according to plan, there should be 365 entries in this ‘Year in the Life of a Village’ diary. That should be quite a little volume of notes, musings, anecdotes and reminiscences, a kind of historical record, even, of what life has been like over the year. The entries have been assessed to see how well they might fit into one of a number of ‘blog to book’ packages, and after a bit of finessing, the template was renewed, a prototype booklet of the first four months of entries was produced, and the final days now minimally stretch ahead of us.

A crowdsourcing campaign at JustGiving.com was developed during October of this year, as the diary entered its home stretch. Some 30 orders have been received, at cost, towards printing of the complete volume, which will probably run to some 550 pages, so it’s looking like a first print run could be accomplished within a week or two, for delivery ‘hot off the press’ in mid-January.

Indeed, it doesn’t seem at all unreasonable that after several print runs, a charitable fund of some £5000 could be a fair ambition from the proceeds of the bound diary, which would go to the Lions charitable account for distribution to good causes. Of course, successful sales will depend on the quality of the writing, the universality of local coverage, and the diligence of the editor in acquiring input from a comprehensive variety of local sources. So, something useful to be getting on with, then!