There’s something I’ve wanted to do my whole life and it’s always seemed like a pipe dream because I’m easily overwhelmed and forever terrified, but recently I’ve learned that if you don’t at least try you never actually have a chance of it coming true. I also know that I let my anxiety trip me up and paralyze me and sometimes the only way that I actually accomplish anything is by writing about it so that it becomes true and also so that you guys can yell at me when I start to doubt myself and hide.
So, after years of thinking about it…I think I’m going to open a real, live bookstore.
Wow. That’s scary to even write.
It will be smallish and independent and will be filled with all the books that I want to read and that I want you to read too. It will have space for authors to come and talk, and for readers to hide away in cubbies, and for groups to meet for book clubs and writing workshops. It will have a small space for writers who need to write but who also want to not just hide away in their houses all day. And I’ll be there too, writing and working and asking random readers if I can read the chapter I’m working on to them.
In my mind it is filled with shop cats and surprise ferrets and a margarita bar and old wooden shelves and new, lovely books and people who won’t talk to you unless you totally want them to. In Victor’s mind I’m not allowed to bring any animals into the bookstore unless they’re strapped to my chest in a Baby Bjorn so that they don’t snuggle with people who don’t like ferrets. I disagree because I don’t think those people exist and also Victor just read this post and said that he never agreed strap-on chest ferrets but I guess these are the things we’ll need to work out as responsible business people.
There will be online clubs so that you can drop in to the store every week even if you don’t live in San Antonio, and live-streamed events where you can show up in your pajamas at the store or from your laptop, and one day if it makes a profit I’ll have bookmobile so that I can drive around to book deserts like my hometown which currently has no bookshop and makes me very sad. Also, the bookmobile will be filled with adoptable rescue kittens and raspberry donuts and I’ll pick up people along the way and we’ll go on road trips to visit authors and give out free books to kids AND OMG I’M SO EXCITED ABOUT THIS.
So here’s where you come in.
I have a lot of ideas and surprises that I’m working on but honestly I’d love to hear your ideas. What makes a bookstore great for you? What should we totally have or not have? What’s your favorite bookshop ever and why?
And if you live locally I have another favor. I’ve found a few spaces that are nice but maybe not perfect so I’m asking for your eyes because I don’t want miss something amazing. Do you know of an open space in San Antonio that needs a bookshop? Victor is leaning toward something in a nice, new shopping center with lots of light and a small bar and great landlords. I’m leaning toward a haunted Victorian with a friendly ghost and giant chairs and maybe it’s also infested with otters. We both agree that it should be 2800 to 4500 square feet with lots of parking for events and wonderful, lovely energy.