Libraries & Archives

Libraries & Archives

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

'The Smell of Pure Print'

From Shelf Awareness
Wednesday, February 20, 2008

A couple of great items from this daily newsletter on the book business, particularly aimed at bookstores.


Quotation of the Day
'The Smell of Pure Print'
"Ah, the smell of pure print."--Spoken after a deep breath by a 10-year-old boy as he came into the Harry W. Schwartz Bookshop in Mequon, Wis., on Monday. The moment "made me smile along with the customers and booksellers who saw and heard him," Pattie Cox of Schwartz wrote, adding that Monday was the boy's birthday, and his parents had brought him to the store for a treat.


Bad news for the book biz? MSN Money offered "10 ways to save money on books:"

Avoid new releases.
Read reviews.
Find the classics online.
Search for bargains.
Make Amazon your all-purpose book tool.
Frequent your public library.
Explore used bookstores.
Harness the power of the Internet.
Buy only what you intend to read.


There's a new coffee bar in town, Scooter's downtown in El Dorado. Competition? Maybe, but we appeal to a different crowd here in Library Latte. And as one of my coffee bar business books pointed out, any time you increase the number of possibilities for people to buy premium coffee for a premium price, you are building a customer base who will take that habit with them where ever they go. I know MY coffee habit is two or three cups a day, and if I can get premium coffee, I'm likely to pass on the poor stuff, no matter how cheap, in favor of the good stuff.

Could be the same is true of buying books... there are so many options for book buying, those who need their 'fix' will get it anyway they can. And there's nothing to replace the experience of 'The Smell of Pure Print' by buying on the internet. Still, it does enrich what I can get - Paperback Swop is my daughter's favorite way of building and sharing her collection.

Then there's that favorite quote of hers:

"When I get a little money, I buy books. And if there is any left over, I buy food."

-- Deciderius Erasmus

Me too. Except now I buy more for my library here than I ever dreamed of buying for my own collection... one of my favorite parts of this job.


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