This blog post is very much off the topic of my usual posts (author websites), but I had a realization over the holiday break that I had to share with all my author friends.
You see … I took a day to myself during the holiday break. That’s right, an entire day dedicated to doing whatever struck my fancy. I decided to spend it visiting my old stomping grounds: the neighborhood in New York City in which I lived for over a decade, but that I moved away from nearly a decade ago.
I spent the day walking miles and miles, retracing every step that I used to take. I found myself excited to see when some of my favorite stores and restaurants were still there, and appalled when others had been replaced by Starbucks.
But there’s one particular thing I noticed that I feel compelled to share with all of you… and it has to do with bookstores.
What Stayed, What Went
Interestingly, all the big, multi-level bookstores that I used to frequent are gone. The Borders. The B&Ns. They’re replaced by Staples. Or a gym. There really are no more super-sized bookstores. They’ve been usurped by Amazon.
But do you know what was still there? Every single one of the little, mom-and-pop, specialty bookshops that I had visited for years. The travel bookstores, the gay bookstores, the tiny little bookstores that you can barely fit through the door of. They are all still alive and kicking.
So no matter what anyone says, small bookstores are still going. Even Amazon hasn’t squashed them.
I take some solace in knowing that all those bookstore owners are still doing enough business to stay afloat. Do your part to support them. I hope when I go wandering those same streets again (hopefully in less than a decade!), they will still be there.