My Day as an Indie Bookseller

Last Friday I had the opportunity to spend the day at my favorite independent bookstore, The Bookstore in Glen Ellyn as a bookseller-f0r-a-day. This is something that I’ve been wanting to do for awhile and, since The Bookstore also had an author event on Friday evening I wanted to attend, it seemed like the perfect opportunity.

I chose Friday because it is the day that both Sue and Margie typically work – they call it Friday Funfest. Unfortunately, Margie wasn’t able to be there for much of the early part of the day after all, BUT it was really good that I was there to help Sue out, because the store was hopping, even though it was pouring outside.

The great thing about it being so busy, is that I had a great opportunity to handsell to quite a few people. Among other things, my customers left with:

It was just like blogging, but one on one and in real time, very fun!

It definitely gave me a new appreciation for my favorite booksellers, though, you really have to think on your feet based on what you customer likes and is looking for and, speaking of feet, standing all day sure isn’t easy!

I had a fantastic time at The Bookstore, thanks to Sue and Margie for letting me come in and hang out with them! Bloggers who are forming relationships with indie bookstores, I definitely recommend taking a day as a bookseller if at all possible.

Digiprove sealCopyright protected by Digiprove © 2010

24 comments to My Day as an Indie Bookseller

  • Awesome idea. Oh please do participate in the FollowReader chat on Thursday at 4pm ET if you can. This is they type of relationship that bloggers and bookstores should have.

  • Looks like you had a fun day at the book shop!! :) and I liked your review on “Secret Daughter” .. I had requested this book from the library a month ago and its available now for me to pick up…am looking forward to reading it.. and its only when i saw the pic on your post y’day did I realize that the author of this book is so young!!

    – arch

  • What a fun thing to do! I almost worked in a bookstore after college because my uncle was opening one but that fell through. Although I love my current job, I can’t think of a better job than working in a bookstore!

  • Sounds like a fantastic day! I may contact the my local (45 minutes away!) children’s indie bookstore to see if this is something we could pursue. I’m glad you had such a great time!

  • This is making me wish even more that we had an indie bookstore anywhere close to us. The last one went out of business a couple years ago, and Barnes and Noble would never let me do something like this. Actually, I applied to work at B&N a couple of years ago over summer vacation and after school. They told me I was too qualified to work there-that no one worked there with a masters in English! Do you think they just didn’t want to hire me?!??! :)

  • Suejustbooks

    We couldn’t have done it without Jen last Friday! What a relief it was to be able to spend quality time with customers and not let other customers “escape” without some excellent recommendations from a real professional! Our relationship with Jen at The Bookstore is what I truly love about Twitter.

  • Sadly we no longer have any independant bookstores in Glasgow – I feel quite jealous …

  • How much fun! I wonder if Borders would run me out of their store if I hung around? Often people will ask me for advice when I am book shopping (I have to ask myself why)and I think it is the best feeling to help someone find a great book!

  • That would be so much fun to do! I wonder if my indie would let me spend a day there? As it is, I am always handing people books to read in bookstores. I’m sure its annoying, but I can’t help it!

  • I LOVE my Indie Bookstore (Clinton Book Shop in Clinton, New Jersey). I don’t know if they could handle me in their shop for a day…but I am going to ask. Thanks for the great idea!!

  • How VERY fun! One of the highlights of my BEA was standing in a author-signing line and getting to know the bookseller next to me. We had the BEST time talking books and books and more books.

  • What fun! I always have a hard time just remembering what I’ve read lately when people ask me in real life–I can’t imagine having to match reader’s tastes to things I’ve read on the spot.

  • That sounds like a blast. You are so lucky to have such a great indie near you.

  • So much fun! I completely agree that handselling in real life is very similar to blogging. Hope more bloggers will have opportunities like this soon!

  • Jen: Truly, I don’t know what we would have done without you on Friday! And yes, the sore feet are definitely an issue. When I first started I actually wore support hose. Disgusting, I know. Anyway, thanks for your support (way better than the hose).

  • How fun! I dream of working in a bookstore. But I seem to be addicted to my current paycheck.

  • Wisteria Leigh

    Sounds like you had a lot of fun. I like your pic. Thanks for sharing. It’s nice to put a face to the blogger. LOL

  • This sounds awesome. I am so glad you had a good time! and judging by the bok you were selling I am pretty sure there will be some very happy customers and some repeat visits.

  • This sounds like so much fun, even if it does take standing up all day! I have actually never been hand-sold a book by a bookseller. I was looking forward to my first nearby indie – but then it closed!

  • That would be such a fun way to spend the day!

  • What a wonderful idea! I bet you were a fantastic bookseller!

  • Oh, wow! What a fantastic day – living the life of an indie bookseller for a day, followed by a great author event. It sounds like you had a lot of fun (and a productive day, with your handselling)

  • […] And also posted about a great author event at The Bookstore and my day as an indie bookstore. […]