Saturday, January 24, 2009

Shop for Hire....

I got some notes once from a speech that Patrick Neale did at the London Book Fair (thanks San). The speech was called something like 'How to Run a Succesful Bookshop in 59 minutes'. The notes looked pretty useful and a couple of the things in the speech stuck out as rather interesting.

I particularly liked the bit that said 'hire out your shop for other activities'. The idea is that people being filmed etc like the literary backdrop of a bookshop, and that a bookshop is seen as a place where well learned ( i'm well learned, me) people frequent.

So this is something that we do.

It doesn't cost much, and so far we've had management seminars and club meetings amongst other things in the shop.

Next Sunday the shop's being hired out to hold a debate about Barack Obama. For those of you who don't know, he's the New President of the United States of America (that's that big place a long way left of us geographically, and a long way right politically). Here's a picture of him

I think he's the one on the right.

Anyway, after all the hoo haa, and the furore, and the hype, and the bells and whistles,this debate will centre around what he can do for us in the UK (and even Wood Green). Should be a cracker. It's a fiver on the door, and no doubt there'll be refreshments.

I only mention this as an example of the things a bookshop can do to earn some extra dosh.

One of the things Patrick should think about adding to his next speech is to have Thomas the Tank Engine train track running above the kids section in the shop. Imagine this...
... going around and around on a track on see-through plastic above the heads of enchanted little people. Oh, it's lovely. Folk come from miles around to see its wonders.

I'm off for a week, but that'll probably mean i've got more time to do this kind of nonsense. I'm spending a week with the gorgeous Katie and our incredible daughter Freya. Yes, she's standing up in the bath.
Great product placement here. And yes, Greg, I am 'punching above my weight'. Thanks.

We were in the Guardian today. Look a doodle do. Hello new readers.



Anonymous said...

Did I ever accuse you of punching below your weight?

Simon Key said...

I think the exact phrase was, 'you're punching above your weight a bit aren't you?'. It was a continuation of the hairband mockery I was getting that day. In your defence though Greg, I am.

Alis said...

V. cool Freya pics. Lovely.
I have given you an award, hope you don't think it's too naff (esp after being v.famous in Guardian...) You'll find it over on my blog.

Vanessa said...

Hiring out the bookshop sounds a good idea - do you do that via an agency?

Simon Key said...

Hello Vanessa,
no we don't, but that's not a bad idea. We just advertise it locally at the moment. It seems to attract quite a bit of attention. I'm just home from a 'hire out' tonight!

Thankd v much for the award. I'll definitely do as i'm told very soon.