It's about this time of year that I revert back to my childhood and get very excited about the prospect of watching 'Home Alone', 'It's a Wonderful Life' and 'A Box of Delights', whilst cracking open walnuts and finishing off the Quality Streets.
This fits in quite nicely with our plans for next week (yes, we're still waiting for the contracts to be signed and the lease to be written up). We're putting together our children's opening stock order. The kid's section will occupy about a third of the shop and is probably the most important section for us.
We've talked at length about how we're going to lay the section out and have come up with a pretty good template. Having worked in chain bookshops all our lives we realised that we'd become institutionalised. What I mean by this is that when we started talking about the layout of the shop we were breaking it down by the categories that we were familiar with at Wottakars, like '5-8 fiction', 'activities' and 'reference'. We realised early on that we could, in-fact, have any categories that we wanted, so we went for a bit of 'Blue Sky Thinking', if you'll excuse the business speak. Now ,what we have is something which we think is a lot easier for our customers to navigate, and also a lot easier for us too.
Now the challenge is to fill those shelves. As I said i'm reverting back to my chldhood now, so throughout the week i'll be giving you a few of our choices and recommendations for the shop. We've had some fantastic suggestions already. We had a great response for Children's Book Week in October, as well as plenty more ideas for the shelves from all you wunnerful wunnerful people. We've been inundated with catalogues and freebies, which certainly increase the chances of representation.
Anyway, that's all for now apart from saying that the kindle is a pile of poo (see i've started reverting already), 'cos you can't share your books, you can't smell your books, you can't look at your books, you can't feel your books and you can't write notes in your books. Oh and it looks ugly, and in 5 years time laptops will be the same size as the kindle, and be able to do the same thing, so if anyone without a soul wants to read like this, the kindle will be outdated. Which (except maybe the driving test practical manual) will never happen to books.
bye bye, i'm off to the sweet shop.