Tuesday, October 13, 2009

We Work the Food and Wine Show at the Midwest Airline Center

Gone are the days when you ran a bookstore by opening the door and waiting for the customers. I guess if I had the perfect high-traffic location with lots of tourist traffic and a really sweet lease, that might be a different story.

But that's not us. And that means, on top of the events and chasing corporate and school sales and textbooks and book clubs and the like, we've got to do offsites. Offsites do double duty--we add volume and get the word out about our store to folks who may not have heard about it. And despite lots of wonderful press about our store and events, there are plenty of folks who haven't heard about Boswell Book Company. We still get about a call a day asking for Schwartz Bookshops. Yesterday I got one for Mr. Schwartz. I'm not sure if it was for Harry or David.

So we've got a busy week. I'm presenting at a book club, another bookseller is at the Intercontinental, and all weekend Jason was at the Wine and Dine Wisconsin show (Melissa helped out on Saturday and I put in a few hour on Sunday) put on by the Journal Sentinel. We brought some of our favorite food books, and several books by featured authors.

One author you can't miss is Randall Grahm, whose book Been Doon So Long is a wine book nothing short of zany. And also literary--there are parodies of Joyce, Kafka, Pynchon and Salinger inside. Grahm was named wine and spirits professional of the year by the James Beard Foundation, and his Bonny Doon vineyards (which was being sampled across from our booth) is held in gets raves You've got to visit their wild website.

So we sold some of his book. Our two bestselling stock titles were The River Cottage Meat Book and The Best Casserole Cookbook ever. We also had some wine bottle magnets that were voted the cutest items on the table. We gave away some newsletters.

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