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Reminds me that I want to visit BookMarc on Bleecker Street when the weather warms up....
By STEPHANIE CLIFFORD and JULIE BOSMAN
Published in the New York Times: February 27, 2011
Kitson, a group of boutiques based in Los Angeles, is the kind of store that appears regularly in the tabloids for both its stylish clothes and its celebrity clientele like Sean Combs and Joe Jonas. But in a town that is all about flash, Kitson is finding a surprising source of revenue that is not from its fashionable shoes or accessories. It is from books..... Read the rest here
This Is Why Your Used Bookstore Clerk Hates You
Although bookstore workers love their customers, or are at least morally obligated to, sometimes the love is so great it turns murderous. Ever tried to finish all-you-can-eat coconut shrimp? That's the love we're dealing with here. Although your narrator worked at a used bookstore just outside of the city more than a decade ago, he shut his eyes tight, remembered three years of Fat Slice Pizza, and relived some moments of quiet desperation.
Paging through a life tied to books
Jonathon Welch didn't plan on making Buffalo his home when he chose the University at Buffalo for his post-graduate study in the early '70s, but once he got here he never left. The owner of Talking Leaves bookstore on Main Street in Buffalo, NY has run his shop for more than three decades, adding a second location in late 2001 on Elmwood Avenue.
Welch, 60, grew up in Mukwonago, a village in southeastern Wisconsin, where he took to books at a young age -- and also developed a lifelong habit. Look closely at his hands, and chances are you will see written notes scrawled in pen.
Why is Barnes & Noble performing well as a business while Borders is near (or has even reached) bankruptcy?
What is so different about how they are run?
1.Failure to adequately address the internet sales channel and the subsequent ebook market.
2.Poor real estate strategy - Borders leased space that was too large, the storefronts did not compare well to B&N, and they were complacent in picking and relocating existing stores to the best locations.
3.Over-investment in music - while this was a big plus for this in the early to mid 90's, this was a disaster in the long run.
4.Over-reliance on assortment size to compete as opposed to efficient operations - Borders was renowned for its wide and quality assortment of titles.
5.Failure to build efficient systems and processes
Who Wins As Bookselling Suffers?
Does the search for volume sales drive publishers into doing more high discount deals, or what is often termed as ‘special sales’ with supermarkets? As these retailers have demonstrated they will drive down the price narrow the range and will only entertain books if they make their square footage contribution.
It is difficult to envisage the Independents being able to take up the slack. If fewer inventory is going through the traditional channel, will this impact the economics of the current supply chain?
Borders files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection
Borders Group is filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization after a long struggle to stay afloat as the book and music businesses changed beneath its feet.
The 40-year-old company plans to close about 30 percent of its stores, or about 200, over the next few weeks.
From The Irish Times:
LOOKING OUT the window of her bookshop on Avenue Bouguiba, where two dozen curious faces are pressed against the pane to catch a glimpse at her latest display, Selma Jabbes is a picture of quiet satisfaction.
The crowds outside the Al Kitab bookshop are staring at a selection of newly arrived titles under the heading Livres interdits , a selection of books banned under the regime of deposed president Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali and now freely available for the first time.
Most concern Ben Ali, his wife Leila Trabelsi, political repression, Islamism and corruption in the regime.
Al Kitab is still awaiting delivery of its first order of banned books from Europe; those in the window were donated by readers and put on display “to give an idea of how we suffered here”, says Jabbes, a softly-spoken woman greeted by name by many of her customers.
Under Ben Ali’s rule, booksellers required a visa from the interior ministry for every work they wanted to import, and the process could take several months. The list of sensitive subject matter was long and ever-changing, but virtually every foreign title that touched on the president or his entourage, or which denigrated his policies, was strictly prohibited.
Helping indie bookstores survive on thin ice
But all that's changing now. As competition from Amazon.com stiffens and the long-looming specter of e-books materializes into a stark new reality, indie bookstores are broadening their outreach in an effort to establish themselves as community nerve centers.
From LA Observed: Owners Kirk Pasich and Pamela Woods say they can no longer compete with Amazon - and a sour economy hasn't helped. The decision to close comes just as the Borders' store in Westwood is in the process of shutting down. That leaves Westwood without any bookstore, chain or independent. I also believe it's the last mystery bookstore in L.A. From an email being sent out:
We simply cannot compete with the Amazons of the world and the impact of the economy. We love the bookstore and mysteries and the relationships we've formed with authors and publishers and agents and publicists. But, we do have retirement to think about (not in the near future!), and family and, well, all of those things that require money. So, it is with considerable sadness that we announce that The Mystery Bookstore, Los Angeles, will--after many years (and as apparently the last-standing bookstore in Westwood, other than UCLA's student store)--be closing. Last day is Jan. 31.