Is your patience beginning to wane? Are you fed up with bad memes on social media and trying to get work done from home and still find time for laundry? I get it. Every day I get on a Zoom meeting call with other independent booksellers throughout the southeast and I’m not going to sugarcoat it: Times are tough! The most popular lament I hear is, “I’m working three times as hard for a fraction of sales.”
Again, I get it. Besides our store usually being a magnet for out-of-town visitors, we really, like most indie bookstores, thrive on community. Our clubs and events serve the community. We do off-site events at libraries and school fairs. We donate books to schools and hospitals. We cater to the Saturday farmer’s market crowd and the Sunday after-church crowd and the daily lunch and post-work crowds. To have all that on hiatus, well (enter expletive here!).
And while we’re delighted and oh-so-grateful to embrace taking your orders for curbside pickup and home deliveries (thank you!); and seeing your orders on our online Bookshop (thank you!)l and looking forward to the day when you’ll be in to browse selections for those gift cards (thank you!), it’s soooo quiet here. The square is empty, save the occasional jogger or walker taking a bench break. The sidewalks are eager to welcome the daily visit from the mail person and the rare dog walker.
Sometimes, when we want to wallow in despair, the comfort we can take (besides knowing that this IS temporary) is that WE’RE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER. If you get sad and are tired of Siri’s jokes, or just want to tell us about a book you loved or hated, we’re here. Hey, we readers may be introverts, but that doesn’t mean we don’t want to chat about a book here and there! And I’ve been delighted to speak with so many of you in the past few weeks. Each of you reminds me why we love Summerville and our reading community, and how much we enjoy being a small part of your lives, in good times and especially in challenging times like these.
Meanwhile, stay home, stay safe, and please join us at the upcoming virtual events below. We’re embracing these chances to meet authors and see other readers online – we sincerely hope you will, too!
Keep calm and read on, Shari
Reader Meet Writer: Lee Smith
Let us deliver authors to your living room. The next author in the Okra Pick series is Lee Smith. You may have read Lee Smith’s earlier works (seventeen!). Lee Smith will be talking with us about her newest book Blue Marlin and answering your questions.
“Complex characters and surprising plot twists…Smith has become a master of coupling tragedy and humor.” – San Francisco Chronicle
Here are the details you need:
Date: Tuesday, April 21, 2020
Time: 4:00 p.m.
Attendance is limited. If you elect to attend, we will email you on Tuesday morning with the link and password to attend this virtual event, plus the link to purchase books. Learn more about Lee Smith and Blue Marlin at our special event page HERE!
Reader Meet Writer: Ruthie Lindsey
Then, on Wednesday, April 22nd, join us at 5 p.m. for our Reader Meet Writer, Southern Edition
featuring Ruthie Lindsey. She will be talking with us about her newest book There I Am: The Journey From Hopelessness to Healing, and answering your questions. Ruthie Lindsay is one of many authors we’ll be bringing into your living room.
“Ruthie Lindsey’s voice speaks directly to the heart. There I Am is a testament to the things that break us, heal us, and make us who we are.” – Glennon Doyle, author of Untamed, and founder of Together Rising
Here are the details you need:
Date: Wednesday, April 22, 2020
Time: 5:00 p.m.
Attendance is limited. If you elect to attend, we will email you on Wednesday morning with the link and password to attend this virtual event, plus the link to purchase books. Learn more about Ruthie Lindsey and There I Am at our special event page HERE!
Independent Bookstore Day: April
Event Postponed ’til August 29th
Independent Bookstore Day is a one-day national party that takes place at indie bookstores across the country on the last Saturday in April. But not this year. The date has tentatively been moved to August 29, 2020 but that doesn’t mean we can’t celebrate our wonderful indie bookstore community!
And thus begins our #VirtualBookstoreParty week! #books #Bookstores #ShopLocal – Watch for these hashtags all week long with links to new books and cool happenings throughout the week!
Next Week’s Sneak Peek
April 28th is the release date for best-selling author Kristy Woodson Harvey’s Feels Like Falling. Click on the image below to learn more and pre-order your copy for store pickup! (Hint: There’s a sneak peek chapter there for you, too)
The COVID-19 public health crisis has put our nation’s independent bookstores in grave danger. Through the support of James Patterson, Reese’s Book Club, the Book Industry Charitable Foundation (Binc), the American Booksellers Association (ABA), and YOUR GENEROSITY, together we’re all doing our part to save independent bookstores, our brothers and sisters in books, the hearts and souls of main streets in cities and towns all across the United States. CLICK HERE to learn more!