Hi Ho the Glamorous (Bookstore Owner’s) Life

My friend Pamela read yesterday’s post about kittens overrunning the bookstore, and said, “Do you ever get stray books?”

Why, yes. Yes, we do. Friday afternoon a couple called to say they were renovating their basement and had “several” boxes of old books they wanted to donate to Tales of the Lonesome Pine Used Books and Internet Café. About 700 volumes total, they thought.

“Lovely!” I said, swallowing a gulp. “Come on down!” Then I hung up the phone and poured myself a stiff one. Dear Lord, don’t let them be more than 10% Readers Digest Condensed Books, I prayed, sipping.

Free stock sounds good when you’re first starting in the biz, but as the years roll by, you begin to understand that the amount of time spent sorting such gifts is…. hefty, while the amount of income from finding gems among the dross is ….. not. It’s like panning for word gold.

But really, that’s what running a bookstore is anyway: searching out the hidden treasures in books and people, and trying to match the right mind to the right idea at the right time. Size ’em up; pair ’em off. It may not be lucrative, but it’s rewarding.

It’s nice to have 700 more titles to add to the mix, but they must be sorted and shelved so the right minds can lay claim to them. So if you’ll excuse me, the blog has got to be short today, because that’s just the stack from the front room table. The side counters and a section of floor in the mystery room remain to clear. Check back tomorrow, when I’ll either be finished, or dead….. :] And come visit! There’s a great book in here for you, I feel sure.

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Filed under Big Stone Gap, book repair, book reviews, folklore and ethnography, humor, small town USA, Uncategorized, VA

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