First off, I would have a cafe!
(Pic courtesy of www.storiebookcafe.com)
Don't you just want to go there RIGHT NOW?
Next, I would address this issue raised at today's Digital Book World conference as quoted in today's Publisher's Lunch:
(Jane) Friedman scored emotional points in noting that "what we're talking about today is community" and independent booksellers "been practicing social media since the begin of time, we just weren't calling it that." She thinks the world has come "full circle" and indies "have an opportunity." Those stores are "going to be a very small portion of sales," Napack replied, "but their role in bringing books to market is essential." He added, "the challenge they face is being the showroom for online" purchases.
HOW would I tackle this problem? By having a few of these in my store. The wondrous, amazing, incredible ESPRESSO BOOK MACHINE. (Only I'd hire Datamancer to redecorate them.) In my store folks could browse, choose, meander over to the Espresso and order their book, and while it's printing they can order a drinkable espresso in the cafe. And MAGIC! A few minutes later they can sip and read. Convenience AND community!!!!
At the 2009 Pacific Northwest Writer's Association Conference I stood up and asked a panel of New York editors what they thought of the Espresso Book Machine. Many in the audience tittered, and only one editor had even heard of it. I hope that's changing. A world without book stores is a poor world.
So, am I horribly naive? Ahead of my time? A hopeless dreamer? Let me know. And I'd love to know what YOUR book store would be like!
Good news! I received an unexpected request from a literary agent for a full manuscript of my punk era novel. All because I couldn't resist the challenge of pitching my book in 140 characters or less on a crazy-fast Twitchat pitch session.
So I am in the land of speedy revisions, which are going well, but I have no new developments to report on the grand adventure I spoke of in my last post. Instead, I bring you deep thoughts on GARDEN GNOMES.
Recently I was in Westfield Center in San Francisco and a positively shocking advertisement forced me to reconsider my long-standing love of Garden Gnomes.
I must tell you this love goes WAY back.
There was Amelie, directed by the brilliant Jean-Pierre Jeunet. (And which I believe had a huge artistic influence on the show PUSHING DAISIES. RIP, sniff.)
And we can't forget The Garden Gnome Liberation Front.
There's also no forgetting my daughter and her friends in seventh grade at the annual Halloween parade. Girls, you were awesome! You shoulda won.
My daughter and I love gnomes so much that we have a secret Gnome Dance, performed to the closing credits music of Gilmore Girls. In honor of Babette's gnome Pierpont, of course.
But now Shakespeare and I must both endure the upcoming GNOMEO & JULIET. This reality begs the questions: Has our collective societal love of Garden Gnomes gone on too long? Have Garden Gnomes jumped the shark? Is it possible for a short-legged creature from the land of Kitsch to jump anything?
It is possible my even greater love for James McAvoy, who stars as the voice of Gnomeo, wins out.
And who knows, GNOMEO & JULIET just might be brilliant.