Showing posts from July, 2007

Meetings - reports TK

Sorry about the lack of post yesterday -- an early morning NAIBA board meeting. I'll have my run-down on the results of that meeting, and this month's ABA Digital Task Force, in tomorrow's post.

Friday Reflections: Whaddaya Mean, Brooklyn?

It's always risky to put your dreams out where people can see them. Some of the responses I've had, in comments and emails, to my posts about my "ideal Brooklyn bookstore" have caused me to rethink – or at least think through – a few of my assumptions. One of those, of course, is that adjective "Brooklyn." What do I mean by that, people want to know? It's a big place, after all – how could a bookstore possibly reflect all or any of what is meant by Brooklyn? First of all, I had to remind myself of what I already know, and have already said, in places like the Litminds interview I did a few weeks back. Brooklyn – like New York as a whole – is a city of neighborhoods, and each of them has its own distinct character. Those neighborhoods encompass an almost unfathomable range – from the Russian store signs in Bensonhurst, to the painfully hip bars of Williamsburg, to the posh baby strollers of Park Slope, to the West Indian restaurants of Crown Heig

Part 2 in a series: The Brooklyn Bookstore of my Book Nerd Dreams

This is the second installation in the series I began last week , describing my vision for the bookstore I'd like to own in Brooklyn. I welcome your (constructive) criticism, praise, or additional ideas. Next week's installation will talk about sidelines, extra services, and behind-the-scenes stuff; this week is about the bar. Around the corner, down the stairs, or next door to the bookstore, depending on the space, is the bar and café. The color scheme of the bookstore is maintained here, in slightly more intense shades, but the space is separate and can be entered without passing through the bookstore, though it is also accessible from the store. (Anti-theft gates at the street entrances of both the bar and the bookstore prevent theft of books through either exit, and signs inform customers that they will be asked to pay for any books that they may accidentally damage in the bar.) At a wooden bar, a barista serves coffee, tea, espresso drinks, and juices during the day;

Link-Mad/Reflective Chronicle Monday: Post-Potter

Okay, so I didn't post on Friday. Aside from domestic distractions, you might have heard of this little book that was about to be released at the stroke of midnight? The McNally Robinson Harry Party for Grownups wasn't by any means the biggest or the craziest party happening on Friday night in bookstores, but it had its share of big craziness. Read about how it turned out here in the Times ("swilling?!?"), here on the Obsolete Vernacular blog (scroll to the end - "classy" we like), here on NYT ArtsBeat ("stylish" is good too), and here on GalleyCat ("explosive" is even better). I'm sure there are more mentions out there -- would love to see them if you send the links. At the risk of giving away store secrets, I think it's safe to say we had no idea how big this event would be. The HP for Grownups party two years ago when Book 6 came out was festive, but manageable, and we sold about half our stock on the night and more th

Wednesday Waiting...

Could I ask you to wait until Friday for a new post? Little emergencies around the married home today taking up all the blogging time... but stay tuned.

Link-Mad(ish) Monday

Oh my friends, life is crazy -- sometimes I feel as though I'm paying some kind of karmic dues for the beautiful few weeks surrounding the wedding. You don't even want to know the details -- you've all had that kind of week. Anyway, here's just a few links to tide you over until things calm down. - This article from the San Francisco Gate is a bit old (June 17), but since it's a pump-your-fist-in-the-air, triumph-over-naysayers piece about Diesel Books in San Francisco, I recommend reading it anyway. (Thanks to LitMinds' Book Industry Forum for the link.) - This is old, but awesome news too: according to the NY Post via Brownstoner , Borders ain't coming to the Williamsburg Bank . (I'm fairly unsurprised, given what I've gathered about Borders' flagging fortunes.) What's almost as interesting is the comments below about what Brooklynites would like to see in that space... Anybody got a bazillion dollars to finance an indie bookstore

Part 1 in a series: The Brooklyn Bookstore of my Book Nerd Dreams

As an exercise in the process of writing my Brooklyn bookstore business plan, I dashed off a description of the ideal Brooklyn bookstore that exists in my head. It's a long one, so here's the first part. I'd love to hear what you think, and what your ideal bookstore would look like. The Brooklyn Bookstore, Part 1 The bookstore has big windows in which new books are displayed face out, along with book posters and large signs about upcoming author events (e.g. Three Lives ). Stenciling on the windows displays the old-fashioned but freshly designed logo (e.g. Jack's Coffee ). The exterior is well-renovated and clean-cut but retains traditional Brooklyn architectural elements, as does the interior of the store. (Tin ceilings, molding, and antique-wood counters and shelving fixtures would be ideal, but I'll work with what I've got.) Upon entering the door and passing through an open transitional space, customers first see a display of important new (and perennia

Wednesday Reviews: Vacation Reading

After much dithering, I of course ended up taking along half a dozen books on the honeymoon -- far more than I could possibly have time to read in a week; but the ALP did the same, as this is apparently the packing curse of the book nerd. Here are the ones I did get to. Frommer's Puerto Rico, 8th Edition (July 2006) Yeah, I know, not your typical narrative to review. But this is the one that's got the most signs of wear, and I probably read the whole thing cover to cover in various increments. Mostly we were interested in good restaurants (mmm, mofongos and mallorcas ) and bars ( mojitos of course), and a few historical sights (the 500-year old fort of El Morro, evocative of horrific barracks life as well as the occasional excitement of a pirate raid; and the well-preserved home of Dona Felisa, the beloved long-time major of San Juan, the first woman to be elected mayor of any Western city; and our own hotel, El Convento, which has its share of history from convent to flop

Book Nerd Returns; Link-Mad Monday; Preview

The ALP (whom I will continue to refer to as such, since he's still my Adorably Literate Partner as well as my legally wedded spouse) and I have just returned from our honeymoon -- a blissfully lazy week of good food and drink, ocean air, and of course, reading. Here you see the Book Nerd in vacation mode, and one of the books that made the honeymoon cut. We had a totally sweet and wonderful wedding -- our family and friends pitched in with cakes and decorations, and we danced the night away in our little Brooklyn church hall. I'm just coming back to earth, and I feel like I'm way out of the loop on happenings in the book world. But here are a couple of exciting links I've managed to glean from my inbox, for at least a token Link-Mad Monday. *In case you haven't noticed, it's Harry Potter Season. Along with the latest movie installation already out, the final book in the series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows , comes out at midnight on Friday, July 20.