Saving Independent Bookstores

Rehiring at independent bookstores

Saving city lights

Independent Bookstore Day is coming up on April 25. While I had planned on visiting some in Berkeley and Oakland, it seems that isn’t going to happen this year.

I was glad to see that several bookstores, one mentioned in the link above, had to rehire people because online orders were overwhelming. Another, also linked above, had a gofundme page to help them out, and got an overwhelming response.

Support your independent bookstores! They need to be there when we get back to “normal.”

Independent Bookstore Day

independent book store day increases sales

This year, April 25 is national independent bookstore day. Last year I did a tour of some of the local independent bookstores, but I did then over a few weeks, instead of in one day. This year, I hope to branch out a bit more and visit some a little further away. I’ll see how I feel when the time comes, and if they are having anything fun going on.

The above linked article tells about how the day helped out sales for the bookstore. I hope to help out sales a bit, but I need to read some of the books I already own, so I’ll have room.

Catana Comics

About a month ago, I woke up in the middle of the night and was browsing events at one of the local independent bookstores. When I woke up fully, the next morning, I found that I had apparently registered for an event, and purchased two books! Thankfully, it was for a day that I didn’t have anything on the calendar.

I knew nothing about the author, and didn’t really have an idea about what the books were about, but, they were books.

The night before the event, I received an email with instructions, and reminding me that it was just a book signing, not an author talk.

I headed out early to the event and decided to visit a library that I hadn’t been inside. I dropped off some library books and looked around. I ended up interviewing the security guard. They put security into 8 branches starting in January. Interesting. Nice guy to chat with.

I took myself to dinner nearby and put the leftovers in my car. I headed to the bookstore from there.

I arrived at the event and got in line. The line was very long even though I arrived almost a half hour early. It moved fairly quickly for the number of people in the line.

I received my books and a bonus book with little games to play while waiting. I didn’t read it since I was busy people and book watching.

I was mentally shopping, but was being good, since I’m not supposed to be shopping until I get some of my book stack books completed. I did take some photos to put on my tbr list.

When I got to the front of the line, the author took my books to sign and started chatting. She spotted my sweatshirt which said, “don’t take me to a bookstore unless you’re willing to drag me out.” She told me with a sweatshirt like that, I must have a book recommendation for her. I recommended City of Girls to her. She had it and was planning on reading it soon.

I had my photo taken with the author and her boyfriend. Then I headed out on my way.

Amanda Rosenberg presents That’s Mental: Painfully Funny Things That Drive Me Crazy About Being Mentally Ill with Casey Childers

I decided to go to this book signing last week. It sounded interesting, so I preordered the book, so I wouldn’t back out.

I had had a long day at work, so I took myself to dinner at Parada 22, which is a Puerto Rican restaurant, with delicious food. I had a glass of wine and read a bit.

Chicharrones de Pollo with yellow rice, red beans, salad and tostones. Yum.

It was still early when I left the restaurant, so my book and I wandered over to the Alembic, next door to the bookstore. This is a brown butter old fashioned. It was better than I thought it would be. Delicious.

Amanda Rosenberg came out and announced that she hated doing these events and even though she looked calm, she was a wreck. Instant sympathy from me.

Casey Childers came and announced that he never leaves the house, so they were not paired up well for this event. They actually worked beautifully together.

After the Q&A portion, there was a book signing. I got in line and found that the author was chit chatting with everyone. My anxiety kicked in. I didn’t have anything to talk about. I got distracted by the fact that I had had a seat reserved in the front row, because I had preordered the book. No one told me I had a seat saved. I was glad I didn’t know, because it was in the front row. I picked up the note with my name on it and stuck it to the paper I already had stuck in the book.

I started thinking about how anxious I would have been in the front row, so I was distracted when it was my turn for my book to be signed. I said hello and thanked the author for coming. She thanked me and told me she was surprised there were so many people there and it made her nervous. She saw my note from my seat and asked if that was my name. Yes, it was! I didn’t have to spell it for her or anything.

On my way out, I bumped into her husband and he thanked me for coming, and then the other author thanked me for coming. I didn’t sneak out undetected.

I am glad I went and I’m looking forward to reading the book soon. It’s in the book stack at the moment.

July 2019 best sellers, per City Lights Bookstore

I have two of these, heard of two more.  I will have to look up the rest.
Bestsellers for the Month of July
Hardcover (Adult & Children’s)
1. Little Boy: A Novel by Lawrence Ferlinghetti (Doubleday)
2. On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous: A Novel by Ocean Vuong (The Penguin Press)
3. The Nickel Boys: A Novel by Colson Whitehead (Doubleday)
4. Mr. Know-It-All: The Tarnished Wisdom of a Filth Elder by John Waters (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
5. Grumpy Monkey by Suzanne Lang, illustrated by Max Lang (Random House)
6. The Hidden Life of Trees: What They Feel, How they Communicate––Discoveries from a Secret World by Peter Wohlleben, translated by Jane Billinghurst (Greystone)
7. Normal People: A Novel by Sally Rooney (Hogarth)
9. The Order of Time by Carlo Rovelli, translated by Erica Serge and Simon Carnell (Riverhead)
10. The Uninhabitable Earth: Life After Warming by David Wallace-Wells (Tim Duggan)
Paperback
1. The Grave on the Wall by Brandon Shimoda (City Lights)
2. There There: A Novel by Tommy Orange (Vintage)
3. The Sympathizer: A Novel by Viet Thanh Nguyen (Grove)
4. The Overstory: A Novel by Richard Powers (Norton)
5. Conversations with Friends: A Novel by Sally Rooney (Hogarth)
6. Deer Trails: San Francisco Poet Laureate Series No. 7 by Kim Shuck (City Lights Foundation)
7. The Immortalists: A Novel by Chloe Benjamin (G.P. Putnam’s Sons)
8. In the Distance by Hernan Diaz (Coffee House)
9. Bad Feminist: Essays by Roxane Gay (Harper Perennial)
10. Found Audio by N.J. Campbell (Two Dollar Radio)

Another long weekend away

I left after work on Tuesday to head to the condo to be poolside for the week and weekend.

The kids helped me bring stuff in to the condo when I arrived.

I settled in with a drink almost immediately.

Homemade whiskey sour. Yum.

I managed to get lunch in before my friends arrived.

We had poolside snacks.

A house guest gift.

There was a candy store in town.

There were a lot of types of candy I hadn’t seen before or hadn’t seen in a long time.

I bought nothing.

There was a cute little gift store.

We found a bookstore in town!

Of course, I found books I didn’t have yet. Again, I bought nothing.

We took the time to get a pedicure.

This guy was parked semi legally near the nail place.

This little one comes by frequently for pets and asking for snacks.

I got several movies watched while I was away. Things I’ve been meaning to see, but I don’t get the chance at home. The Upside. Isn’t It Romantic. Five Feet Apart. The Book Club. Crazy Rich Asians. I am sure I’ll remember what else.

I have another quiet today today, I hope. I’ll post about it later.

Afternoon dinner

Several months ago, my daughter chose a restaurant for her birthday dinner.  Her friends rejected the idea, since it was a seafood restaurant.  I promised her that we’d go sometime when there were fewer of us, since it was on the expensive side.

As I was leaving work on Monday, I realized that it was just my daughter and me home for dinner, so I suggested that we go to the restaurant.  They started us with edamame.

It was early in the day.  I didn’t realize until after we’d been seated that happy hour didn’t start for another half hour.  We decided to just go for it, since we weren’t expecting it, anyhow.  I had blood orange margarita and my daughter had a Thai iced tea.

We ordered calamari and brussel sprouts as appetizers.

I had the fish tacos with the salad, and my daughter had the special plate with a filet, crab cake and coconut shrimp.  She had fries and coleslaw with it.

We went to the bookstore across the street, Green Apple Books on the Park.  I figured it was perfect timing, since we were there.  My meetup group will be going for a book signing in a few weeks, so it worked out well.   There is no restroom there, but there is a reading room.   Huh.  I bought nothing for myself, but I got a book for my daughter.

We were going to go for ice cream, but we were kind of tired by the time we finished at the bookstore, so we headed home.  We were home in time to get the garbage out before dark and then to relax the rest of the evening.