Settling in Behind the Counter
It has now been a couple of months since Dreadnought Books first opened its doors. It took me a while to settle into my new working rhythm, but now I have got over the initial anxieties I am thoroughly enjoying tending shop.
The start has been encouraging. There is still much work to be done in terms of spreading awareness and generating interest in the shop. Nevertheless takings have been reasonable, and I have already accrued some regular customers. This offers a new, social dimension, largely absent from internet selling. Whilst I am still able to use quiet times in the shop to proceed with listing books online, the intermittent interaction with shop customers provides a good balance to the working day. No longer is the computer screen my only working companion.
I have been particularly pleased with the favourable reaction received from the public. Whilst many have commented on it being a somewhat brave move to open a second-hand bookshop in the current economic climate, both in general terms, and particularly regarding the current state of the book trade. Many are delighted to see a second-hand bookshop opening, in stark contrast to recent years, where Bristol, as in many other places, has seen the number of second-hand bookshops dwindle considerably. This popular good will has further confirmed to me that with plenty of hard work I can make a good go of things and hopefully be here for many years to come.
Adjusting to city life has also been a gradual process, and one that is still in progress, but I am already beginning to enjoy what Bristol has to offer.
Publicity is now the main item on my working agenda. I have been interviewed by a journalist from the Bristol Post for a feature on new independent shops which should hopefully appear in about a fortnight’s time, and am steadily disseminating my promotional propaganda across the city. I have set up a Facebook page for the shop and hope to use this for updates on new stock intakes, event announcements, and brief contemplations on books and bookselling more generally. Whilst continuing to post occasional blog articles should I feel compelled to write more extensively on something.
Please like the Facebook page if you wish to keep abreast with Dreadnoughts’ development: https://www.facebook.com/DreadnoughtBooks