Tuesday, September 15, 2009

learning a lot & making connections at booksellers school!

Hello and greetings from Fernandina Beach, where it's overcast and breezy and I can *just* see the Atlantic beyond the condos across the street.  We're two days into the Paz & Associates workshop (Opening a Bookstore:  The Business Essentials) and I'm completely energized and excited by all the work we students have accomplished and all the great ideas I've had (or have stolen from other people in class).

                                                                                                                

One thing I keep hearing over and over is that it's a good thing that it's taken me a little longer than originally anticipated to open the store.  In the last two years, I've accomplished a lot in the name of Avid Bookshop and feel so much less daunted by the idea of opening the store.  Now I actually know what I'm getting into (which, in all honesty, I didn't quite get or want to get in the early days of planning when I was more dreamy and less realistic).  Much of the advice given revolves around booksellers' need to create and foster real relationships within the community, the need to get feedback from customers and find out how exactly the community will support an independent bookstore.  I feel spoiled and glowy when I think about how excited many Athenians are to have Avid coming to town next year.  There are many more marketing opportunities and connections to be made, but, all in all, we've got a head start on a lot of things.  I'm happy to report that in Athens fits the description as an ideal town to open a new bookstore in (more details on that later).

What do you want to get from Avid's presence in Athens?  What sort of environment do you seek, and what sort of books would you like to buy there? A more formal, specific survey will be coming soon, but for now please feel free to toss around some ideas and let me know what you hope to find at Avid Bookshop.

2 comments:

saratbaker said...

Hi Janet,
Just read about you in the Flagpole and I'm very excited about your bookstore. As a local writer, I'm keenly aware that we need community for the literary arts. I also checked out your book list: Never Let Me Go, Olive Kitteridge and Island of the Blue Dophins are three of my favorites. I can tell I'm going to be avid for Avid.

Avid Bookshop said...

Sara,

Thanks for the note! I'm glad you found the article on Flagpole, and I'm glad I found YOU! Can you email me at avid [dot] athens [at] gmail? I have some other things I wanted to talk with you about. Take care!

-Janet G.