Tag Archives: cats

ARE THESE INTERESTING QUESTIONS?

Finally, I have done as my wise (and patient) agent Pamela suggested, and written “Questions for book group discussions of The Little Bookstore of Big Stone Gap.” Since many minds make smooth sentences, if you have any suggestions, please send them along. I’d particularly like to add a couple on bookshop management, if any other store owners out there have ideas. I kinda hit a blank wall, writing stuff that was too esoteric. Thanks!

1. Have you ever tried to fit into a place you weren’t from or familiar with? What did you find were the joys, the barriers, the unexpected curve balls of doing so?

2. Is there a snake pit in your life? Do you agree with Wendy’s assessment that almost all of us face such job situations at some point?

3. Cats: what place do they have in the lives of bookstores? Have you seen the newest cats and fosters at Tales of the Lonesome Pine (online via Wendy’s blog)? What do you think about the overpopulation problem of companion animals in the United States? What responsibilities, if any, do humans have toward animals?

4. Of all the stories in Little Bookstore, the two that seem to resonate most with people are of Wee Willie, and the Kiwanis letter. People run the gamut, don’t they, from being unpleasant to one another, to being generous beyond imagination. Why do you think these two stories have been the most mentioned by readers? Do you have circumstances in your own life where you experienced something similar?

5. Fire victims replacing childhood books is a poignant expression of loss, love, and memory. What do you think this priority says about us as humans?

6. Reading Little Bookstore, do you see places where people misunderstood each other, misrepresented each other, yet overcame these miscommunications to understand each other? Do these moments have echoes in your life?

7. If you could suddenly change your life tomorrow, start a business, leave your residence or job, whatever…would you? If so, what would you do? If not, why not?

8. What’s the difference between luck and learning fast to adapt? Where did you see these differences in how Jack and Wendy survived their inept start at being bookstore owners?

9. Wendy talks a fair bit about happiness and contentment. She quotes several other authors and how they describe happiness. Does happiness disappear when you look it square in the face, or elude us when actively pursued? Is it true, as Garrison Keillor (an author not quoted in the book) says, that the realization of happiness comes moments after whatever has made us happy ends? Or can we recognize contentedness when we have it?

10. Discuss the role independent bookstores play in reading satisfaction. Is the process of acquiring the book part of the story it tells, or is cheap, fast, and easy what we want in our shopping experiences nowadays? Is it worth paying more to visit a real bookstore (and do you really pay more)?

1 Comment

Filed under animal rescue, bad writing, Big Stone Gap, book reviews, bookstore management, humor, Life reflections, out of things to read, publishing, reading, Sarah Nelson, small town USA, Uncategorized, VA, what's on your bedside table, writing

Lost in Translation, Found in Humor

hyoungThis is Hyoung Eun. She translated Little Bookstore into Korean and got it a whole bunch of great publicity over there. And we really enjoyed chatting while she was working on the book and she loves cats, so of course, we became Facebook friends.

With the result that sometimes my Facebook timeline reveals lovely, inscrutable conversations like this one, which appeared below the picture of this lovely, fluffy white cat that I think is Hyoung Eun’s, and pregnant:

hyoung cat 2

원고료 받으면 얘꺼부터. 달라고 기다리고 있지만, 너 아까 간식 먹었잖아…
나는 아직 겨울옷 장만도 못했는데, 겨울 다 가버렸네.

The manuscript fee received, showed it off. Waiting for him, but if you like I ate a snack …
I still haven’t get winter clothes, winter is gone. -_- (Translated by Bing)
Okay, let’s admit that’s a beautiful haiku, but say what, Bing Translator? Hyoung Eun speaks flawless English, but of course she was talking to her other Korean friends there, people who are also friends with me but read my book in their native language and don’t use English as their primary on Facebook. Thus I offered the following.
Wendy Welch Adorable! (This seemed like appropriate and safe commentary.)
Yunjung Sung 나비다~~^^ 혹시 저 박스가 다 나비먹을꺼?The butterfly is a butterfly that is ^^ all ~ ~ have you ever eat? (Translated by Bing)
홍장근 나도사줘I give Imam (Translated by Bing)
Hyoung Eun H Wendy Welch He is, isn’t he? – a proud [cat] mother. : )
Hyoung Eun H Yunjung Sung 모래도 있어.^^ 모래랑 간식. 이제 사료는 병원에서 따로 처방사료 사서 먹여야 해 ㅠ ㅠIt’s also Sung sand Yunjung. ^^ Sandy lang snacks. Now feed in hospitals set aside to buy feed and fodder prescribed ㅠ ㅠ (Translated by Bing)
Hyoung Eun H 홍장근 뭐 사줄까? ^^Hong Chang-Geun what buy? ^^ (Translated by Bing)
Hyoung Eun and friends, I want to thank you for the fun you’ve added to my life, and I hope your pregnant male cat enjoys the coffee. (Yes, everyone, we all know that cats mustn’t have caffeine.) And I want to say that Hyoung Eun is a better translator than Bing will ever be. And that the butterfly in the winter snowstorm is beautiful – almost as beautiful as Hyoung Eun’s sweet kitty. God Bless us, every one!
Hyoung cat 1

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized