April 27, 2018
INDIE. BOOKSTORE. DAY. 2018. *keyboard smash redacted*
by Peter Clark
What do you get when you combine the time delineated by the rotation of the planet with a local economic unit designed to educate and entertain by wares made of paper, glue, and ink? INDIE BOOKSTORE DAY!!!!!!
The fourth annual Indie Bookstore Day comes tomorrow, not a moment too soon. With the number of insane presidential tweets officially tallied at “a gagillion” and a world that makes no damn sense even without Twitter, I think it’s time for everyone to head to their local bookstore and find some sweet relief.
Just as in the three previous years, indies around the country are planning a full day of author events, games, and drinking. And as always, Melville House will be dropping by stores around New York delivering treats to the booksellers that make all of this possible. This year, we’ll be including some branded Trump / Russia vodka in preparation for the book’s release on May 8. We also like to give things away on Twitter, so make sure to tweet some of your bookstore adventures our way — you might just win some cool stuff.
If that doesn’t lure you to the book-slinging saloons we call indie bookstores, perhaps a sampling of tomorrow’s highlights will:
- MINNESOTA: Gumballs? Poems? What if a store had an apparatus that could dispense both? To learn the answer to this glorious imponderable, head to Content Bookstore in Northfield. The first twenty customers to spend over $100 will also get a free tote designed by Caldecott Honoree Carson Ellis, and there’ll be donuts and coffee at 9am, for the early birds catching bookworms. Stay till 3 for the third annual book open mic, where anyone can come talk about and recommend books they love. Yes.
- ILLINOIS: Chicago bookstores believe in cooperation. They have banded together using the mighty powers of the Chicagoland Independent Bookstore Alliance to design a store crawl that’ll leave you well-fed, well-read, and *other rhyming word*. With a $25 purchase, you’ll get a punchcard. If you visit 10 other stores during the day, you’ll get a ten percent discount for the remainder of 2018. That’s worth its weight in books. Literally.
- COLORADO: While there are many wonderful Colorado stores, I’d like to give a special nod to Out West Books in Grand Junction. Once during an interminable roadtrip, I passed through Grand Junction and enjoyed a taco and a book. It’s a charming store, and on Saturday they’ll have an old-fashioned typewriter setup with a local poet peddling poems like a prince all the live-long day.
- NEW JERSEY: We hear it’s the garden state. I’ve yet to see any gardens of particular splendor, but I’ve definitely seen some great bookstores. At Booktowne in Manasquan there will be raffles all day and door prizes. A couple authors will be coming by to do readings, including Ross Baruch. His kids’ book Truck Full of Ducks sounds like an adult making a cover story for cursing in front of their children.
Of course, with more than 500 stores around the country participating, there is too much to list it all here. You can find out more information and locate an indie at www.indiebookstoreday.com.
As always, buy lots of books. Support indie bookstores. Wear sunscreen. Drink water. And enjoy!
Peter Clark is a former Melville House sales manager.