Colored Removable Stickers / Restickable / No Sticky Residue

Saving Bookstores

Saving Bookstores

My family reads books. Lots of them. Hard cover books and paperback ones. Large books with good sized print and small books with print so tiny I will soon need reading glasses. We have Kindles and read e-books too.  I have one aspiring young writer in my family that can spend hours reading online stories at Fanfiction.

We love books. All kinds. Fiction and non-fiction. But we still prefer the paper ones – even when they require reading glasses.You've Got Mail Bookstore

Ever since Barnes & Noble released their downsizing plan, I’ve been very attentive to bookstore news. How could this happen? First we lost so many independent bookstores. Remember the fictitious Shop Around The Corner being snowballed by the mega Fox Books in the 1998 movie You’ve Got Mail?  Did anyone predict that megastores would begin a steady decline?

We used to visit Borders quite frequently. The location was ideal, right next to a movie theater and a Five Guys burger joint. It was the perfect place to stop for a browse or a purchase. And there was plenty of parking.

The only Barnes & Noble close to our house has a parking lot much too small for the number of stores in the strip mall. It’s also on a busy street that requires a poorly timed stoplight to get out of the parking lot. Sometimes, you sit there for two to three light cycles to get on the road.

While I desperately miss Borders, I shop Barnes & Noble because it’s the only one left.  As Alexandra Petri wrote in The Washington Post, “It’s time we staged an intervention.”  Read her column.  She raises excellent points.  “Physical bookstores still serve a vital role as showcases for books. These are places where people encounter many titles for the first time, titles we may decide to buy later….”   How true.  The display of books is critical for their success.  “Lose the showrooms, and the book suffers.”

Hopefully, publishers will see the light and realize that they shouldn’t penalize retail bookstores with lousy terms and limited promotions in favor of e-books and online book sellers.   Retail bookstores are your showrooms, the destination that drives future book sales – whether those sales be at the retail store or online or on a e-reader.  Publishers, don’t let these bookstores disappear.


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