2017 Reading Challenge

2017 Reading Challenge

Tina has read 2 books toward her goal of 40 books.
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Monday, July 20, 2009

MUSINGS on OWNING A USED BOOKSTORE - part 3

Although I sold my bookstore 4 years ago (actually it was on June 24, 2005 to it is close to the anniversary of the sale) I have often thought about all the things that I missed about owning a bookstore and all the things that I don't!

One definite thing that I miss are my clients. Each bookstore owner ends up "creating" their own used bookstore. Although I tried to buy all types of books, my character was reflected in my store - I know this because the person I bought the store from had a different personality than I did and therefore the store, although situated in the exact same place, had a different character, different stock, etc. The person who bought the store from me actually moved locations (and took all the inventory) and her store looks and feels wayyyy different than mine did.

I totally miss my clients the most. I had some of the best clients in the world. As I previously mentioned, so many of them offered to help me clean up right after my "first" flood :) I had an older lady, who took the bus in to the store, about 3 times during the summer and stocked up on all type of romance books. She would do this because she did not like to come out in the winter and would stock up all summer for the long winter months. On one of her last visits in September, she brought me some Christmas ornaments that she made herself that she wanted me to have. They were beautiful!!!

I had a client that was a former circus MC - his son actually works as a clown and together they created a "Circus Archive" in which they are collecting everything they can find on the circus - starting with PT Barnum (which I now know more about than I care to :) The father is also an author and wrote a series of books on the circus and asked me to edit one of his books (he wrote it in English and his English is not great). It was called "Les Freaks" which was about all the different "odd" things you see in a circus ( like the bearded lady, etc.) I HATED seeing these pictures, so I would edit the text by putting my hand over the pictures so I would not have to look at them.

One of my other clients was actually a published Sci-Fi author with a real publishing house (not self-published). I actually had some of her books and she signed them. I won't mention her name because she came in with her hubby one time and I caught him stealing a book right off the shelf. They were both very odd.

I also had a 26 year old man who had just lost his job and his wife and discovered, thanks to me, Harlequin romances. He would come in every day and buy tons and tons of them - which is a little unusual since most men do not read these. He was on unemploment insurance so he had lots of time to read and would just empty out my shelves. At one point, I bought about 500 Harlequin (all in boxes) and invited him to the store to help me price and shelf these - he was so thrilled - he got first dibs on anything in the box. I still see him sometimes and he tells me that he nows reads books online (not sure how he can do this - I HAVE to touch the book).

I had a client who was a very well known heart surgeon at the Montreal General Hospital.

I also had a client who wanted to own every Harlequin (in French) ever printed. She would come in with a list of all the numbers she had and would just buy all the books she did not own. She was keeping them all in her home and her dad kept having to build her new shelves. When I sold the store, I believe she said she had over 3000 books!!! and was still looking for more.

I had clients who never bought books - they just came in to say "hi".

I really, really miss my clients :)

7 comments:

Cindy said...

Another great article Tina. I know what you mean about customers. When I worked at Coles I had this one older gentleman customer who came in to the store to buy a romance books cause he worked at an home for the elderly and the ladies there devoured the books. When i got transfered from Dorval to Lasalle he followed me.

We bacame really good friends and he would bring me xmas presents and call. Sadly I found out he died.

Wow I can't believe that authors husband stole a book.

One meet up we all should go to the bookstore and check it out. See you soon.

bermudaonion said...

It does sound like you had great customers. I wish that one's dad would come build me some shelves.

avisannschild said...

Now I'm really curious about who that sci-fi author was! This is a great series of posts, Tina!

Serena said...

All this reminiscing must make you want to rethink that sale and open up another bookstore.

Yvette Kelly said...

Ahh what a nice post.You must really miss your bookstore.Don't you have any pics for us?

Tina said...

Hi: Some of you have asked me about pictures - unfortunately, all i have are "hard copy" pictures - this was kind of before digital cameras.

So, unless I can get my hands on a scanner, it will be difficult for me to post pictures! I will try though.

Thanks for all your great comments.

Linda Ellen said...

Wow, I didn't know being a bookstore owner can be so much fun. I didn't even know you had owned one in the first place. It sounds so cool!

Thank you for this post. I enjoyed reading it. =)

 
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