The past week has been sooo busy – again. Being a bookseller in the current climate means that you have to diversify in order to keep going. The mark up on books isn’t good, in fact it’s poor. So, we offer other bits and bobs along the way, in order to survive. Some of the added extras are unpaid, but that’s ok, because we get to spread the word about reading.
I thought I’d run through how this past week went, so that you can gain an insight about bookselling. You never know, it may be something you’ve been pondering…
On Monday and Tuesday afternoon I went off to Larchwood Primary School, to teach a target group of Year 6 pupils, who are all preparing for the dreaded SATs. This is lovely for me, as it’s all the positive aspects of teaching without the paperwork. Hurrah. Also, the pupils there are great, so it’s a real pleasure.
On Wednesday a visit was paid to Brentwood Ursuline, to speak to the girls about recommended books for their Readathon. They were so enthusiastic about books, it was inspiring. Their library is beautiful too, so it’s always a pleasure to visit. I’ll be back there in a month or so, to talk about the Carnegie.
A rest on Thursday? No. I was invited to spend a little time at Shenfield High School, for their day with BBC Radio Essex. A charming group of students interviewed me about books – wonderful. I have to say, their library is a superb place to be. It’s quite noisy, in a busy-hive-of-industry way and just a great space to spend time.
So, a rest on Friday? Well, no. On Friday we delivered training for some of the SEPT team, who work with young adults with a range of mental health issues. The team were keen and very happy to join in, making it a loud, productive morning.
Saturday – a chance to take it easy? Not exactly, although the great author Teresa Heapy did the majority of the hard work, reading stories, singing, puppeting (I know it’s not a real word) and so on. She was fab – see previous post. Creative Writing Club took place in the afternoon.
On top of all that, we sold books, ran tuition sessions Monday to Friday, took bookings for birthday parties, recommended books to visiting teachers, read stories, sourced books for a school, ordered stock, met with reps…and at some point I think we slept.
That’s it. An average week in the life of booksellers. We’re off for an afternoon nap!