Visit "Destination Bookstores" During Your Next Vacation in New England
You Can Read My "5 Best" Selections
In Winter Issue of Yankee Magazine
The editor of Yankee Magazine asked if I could pick five of my favorite used book shops in New England for its "5 Best" feature. It sounded easy, since I have a lot of favorites and all I had to do was pick five.
Whoops! Imagine someone asking to pick my favorite grandchild? I may have agreed too quickly. But, after some careful consideration I felt I could pick five shops, after being assured that I could pick 10 runners-up. That wasn't a total solution, but it made the challenge more tolerable.
I am showing a copy of the magazine from a previous Winter Issue. This experience caused me to re-read earlier issues of Yankee Magazine where various writers picked 5 Best garden centers, theaters, baseball fields, and vacation cabins. I have a lot more respect for their courage in editing such lists.
It's not easy picking a few favorites from so many, but in the end it may help some readers get going on finding a great local independent bookshop.
Let me know how you think I did with my choices when the current issue is released. It should hit newstands on or about December 31, 2012.
"Bookstore Tourism" Was Launched 10 Years Ago by Larry Portzline
When I first heard about "Bookstore Tourism" I was immediately intrigued. The concept was the brain-child of Larry Portzline and he went on to describe it in his book, Bookstore Tourism.
What was special about this simple concept was that anyone interested in unique bookstores could join similarly obsessed persons on a journey to Greenich Village and in the course of one day see up to 20 different bookstores.
It occured to me that I had been making it a habit of visiting several bookstores in a single day as part of my weekend leisure time. I was not organizing a group to go with me, rather, I was plotting excursions into various rural parts of New England to see what was happening at the local bookstores.
Then, one day, I spotted an invitation on Joe Trenn's website for his book shop, The Book Shed, to go on a One Day Bookshop Tour of Vermont. He described a brief tour that took in other book shops near his book shop. I thought it was wonderful that he respected his customers enough to send them to nearby shops that might have something they needed and he didn't have himself.
On Saving the Rural
New England Bookstore
I write a blog about the bookstores I visit and occasionally about other things that relate to books. As I venture around New England, visiting new and used bookshops, I get a chance to see what it is that keeps the rural New England bookshop going in the face of a changing marketplace.
My sense has always been that those of us in New England had a better chance that independent bookstores could survive and so far it seems to be true. Even though we have had our share of closings, we have also seen shops open during recent years. We hope that trend continues. In fact one shop that opened last year has moved recently to a nearby town into a larger space. That's progress!
If you know of an independent shop, full-service or used/rare, that I haven't mentioned on the blog, on my website, or in my Guide Book, please let me know. I love visiting shops that are new to me. See you on the road.
Reed Books - Harwich Port - Cape Cod
This is one of my favorite bookshops on Cape Cod. You can read about my other favorites in my guide book.
Are You a Bookseller?
Here is my "Sell Sheet" for my book, A Vacationer's Guide to Rural New England Bookstores. This will give you the information you need to stock the book in your shop. Don't worry; any books that don't sell can be returned. I respect the time and effort you took to offer my Guide to your customers.
- Richard Wright