Your Local Bookstore
We briefly mentioned in our last blog post, that your local bookstore is like a community treasure. As with all treasures, they are incredibly valuable and increasingly rare. Your local bookstore serves as a cornerstone for community, thought, and, gathering, and if we don’t support them, we’re at risk for losing them. So here are 10 reasons to give your local bookstore some extra TLC this holiday season as it is critical they remain in our communities.
1. Bookstores Support Local Authors and Artists
It’s always ideal to support locality regardless of the industry. Not only does the emphasis towards local boost the community economy, but it helps reinforce the idea that cultural identity is and should be always be a priority.
2. Bookstores Generate Community Centered Events
Many local bookstores invite authors and artists showcasing their work to come by for community events. These are wonderful opportunities to not only get to know your neighbor, but to experience the work of other artists from across the continent and perhaps even world!
3. There are Expert Readers at Every Turn
Are you struggling to find the perfect gift for your in-laws? Many book shops write expert reviews on small placards beside various books making it exceptionally easy to find the perfect gift for anyone. In addition, most of the staff at these shops are very friendly and are more than willing to help you pick a book you’re sure to love.
4. There is a Human to Human Aspect
When you browse an online marketplace for a book, there is no interpersonal communication happening between you and your screen. When you take the time to physically walk into a brick and mortar bookshop, you’re greeted (if you’re lucky by name) and welcomed to browse through the stacks. Taking the time to connect on such a level with another human being is important to feel as though the space you’re inhabiting is one that is personal — and that by itself is important for not only human morale, but for that of the community as well.
5. Bookshops Add Diversity and Boost The Local Economy
While we believe a neighborhood is only as good as its local bookstore, it’s true that local shops add diversity to the block. Did you know that despite various online marketplaces, according to statista the rate of local bookstores in the U.S is expanding!? Supporting your indie book store helps maintain tradition. When you shop local, the sales tax dollars stay within the community. This means that shopping at a little indie book store helps support public services that bolster the community and make it exactly that…a community. The money from the taxes go back into the community by providing funds for things like libraries and parks — both of which are expert reading locations.
6. A Bookstore is More Than It's Books
Your local bookstore is more than books on a shelf. Bookstores in their origin served as places of intellectual co-habitation; designated environments where thought was encouraged, provoked, inspired and, motivated. A bookstore (or library) has often been seen as a place of refuge. A bookstore is a place to study or get work done and if not backed by community support, these sacred traditions run the risk of being lost.
7. There Is An Emphasis on Local History
In local bookstores you’ll find a myriad of books centered around local history and culture. Ultimately, this is what distinguishes various cities, towns and countries from one another. Say you want to take a trip to Alaska. The first thing that crosses is your mind is that you want to learn more about where it is you’re going. As soon as you arrive in town, you venture out and pick up a copy of, Alaska’s History to learn all you can while you’re visiting. Not only does your trip become educational, but you’re able to ameliorate your time there by learning more about what makes Alaska so unique!
8. They Encourage Good Writing
Local bookstores encourage that the pool of writers stay wide. If there were only one pond in which all authors had to vey for space in, we’re certain it wouldn’t make for the best literature. Nor would it establish a sense of pride when a local author makes it onto a revered national best seller’s list.
9. They are Airports of Imagination
Bookstores are places in which thought and imagination are prized. They are tradition. They are safe. We love this quote from an article titled, “Why Bookstores Matter,” written by Alexander Matthews, “Bookshops are the airports of the imagination — the place where your mind can take flight to other worlds. They’re spaces for contemplation, relaxation and escape — and a place where, in most cases, lingering is actively encouraged.”
10. Shopping Local Is Good For the Planet
Shopping on-line leaves a huge carbon footprint requiring delivery of your package(s) to your house. Plus, consider the immense packaging waste on-line shopping creates. When you shop at a local bookstore, you’re limiting the amount of waste and carbon needed to get a single book from a warehouse to your front door. The way we see it, that’s cause to buy two books!
What's Your Favorite Local Bookstore?
Tag us on social media with the name and place of your favorite bookstore, as well as a reason or two that you love them. And make sure to follow us on social media @westmarginpress so we can see all your replies!