How To Shop At An Actual Bookstore

by Jessica on October 2, 2017

Indie Bookstores are beautiful gems in this world. They cultivate community, friendships, common interests and often give you a chance to meet your favorite authors. Got a friend that doesn’t quite know the ins and outs of an indie bookstore? Here’s a nifty How-To Guide.

Take Your Time
You should block out a good chunk of time when you’re going to visit a bookstore. Weekends work great. No matter the size of the bookstore you’re visiting you will get sucked in and you’ll wonder where the last three hours went. You’ll find yourself reading every staff recommendation you see. You’ll find yourself wanting (and then probably buying) every non-book related item you lay your eyes on. Yes, browsing a bookstore takes time.

Go In For The Title You Want, But Leave With The Title You Need
You may find yourself seeking out a brick and mortar store to find the hottest new release of your favorite author that you just can’t wait for or for that book that that guy waiting in line at the grocery store told you to pick up. A bookstore will have those major titles, there’s no doubt about it. But they’re also going to have books you didn’t know about at all. They’ll have books that you just stumble upon and they’re going to change your life. Find those books. See above – take the time to find those books.

Strike Up A Conversation
Indie booksellers. They know their stuff. Talk to them. They’re generally very friendly people. They love books so much that they work at a bookstore – Of course they want to talk books with you! They want to know what you like and what you haven’t read so they can hand you a book that you absolutely must read. They also tend to know about a lot of lesser known but really amazing books and would love to introduce those to you as well.

Buy More Than You Think You’ll Read
You may want to go in, find what you want and leave. Sometimes that’s just what you’ll need to do. But sometimes it’s worth picking up a few extras. You’ll inevitably get home and yell at yourself for not picking up that other title. So just do it. Buy the book.

Grab a cup of coffee or a snack!
Books and coffee/tea go hand in hand. A lot of times, bookstores have coffee shops inside of them or right next door. Some even have bars and restaurants like our friends at Changing Hands in Arizona! So grab a cup and browse or use it to dive right into one of your new treasures.

Bring the Kids!
Indie bookstores are incredible places to bring children too. Yes, of course to introduce them to the printed word and to spend some time outside of the home reading to them but they have even more to offer! Indie bookstores like to host story hours that can give your little ones another way to consume wonderful stories. Some of them have small play areas for the kiddos. And believe it or not there are indie bookstores out there that are only tailored to kids and young adults. Seek them out for a new adventure!

We hope you’ll seek out and visit the indie bookstores in your neighborhoods or the next time you’re visiting a new town see if there is one to explore. We guarantee you won’t regret it!