Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Second-Hand Surprise, Catalog Coincidence, Label Lament

We're doing inventory on Sunday, and that means Sharon and Jocelyn are furiously entering all the second hand books that got backed up over the holiday. Whenever either of them find something interesting inside, they know to show it to me. This week we found a copy of Lynne Sharon Schwartz's Ruined by Reading, a lovely memoir from about a decade ago.

1999 to be exact. It turns out that David Schwartz send out copies of the book to our Schwartz's customers, along with a letter thanking them for their business. A lovely idea, and it reminds me I am remiss on thanking, well, at least in a letter.

Another thing that means January is going through spring-summer catalogs, in print, online or sometimes just on excel grids, making pitches for various author appearances. The combination of successful events and potent pitches can pay off, as we have a nice assortment of authors coming over the next few months. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't.

I was looking through the Simon and Schuster catalogs and saw this interesting pairing of the paperback releases of Stephen McCauley's Insignificant Others and Paco Underhill's What Women Want. Of all the books in all the Simon catalogs (hundreds and hundreds), these are the two authors on this list that I had dinner with in 2010. It's actually not that interesting, but it gave me a little thrill. I still haven't read Mr. Underhill's latest, and I feel remorse.

And finally, a very odd donation. We decided to use our local vendor, who has provided great product and service for everything from our bargain and second-hand stickers, to our foil gift labels, for the Zebra printer book labels that we use. The first set were way too sticky. We returned them for a less sticky batch. But with 12 rolls still left, we decided that the new assortment still did not remove cleanly and we're going back to the vendor that Schwartz used. So Amie said that her daughter's school would love to use these labels for craft projects. Who knew?

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