I read an article in Bloomsberg Business entitled How to Run a Bookstore. It’s an interesting how to article written by an independent bookstore owner and author, Larry McMurtry. In the article McMurtry makes the case for a messy bookstore, claiming that customers prefer to sort through stacks of books piled on the floor than browse orderly shelves.
I’m not too sure about that. Although my home may be a bit messy with the books (I desperately need to buy an extra bookshelf…or two) when I go to a bookstore whether it’s to find a certain book I’m looking for or just to browse- I like neatly ordered shelves. When I walk into a bookstore with stacks I always feel that I’m going to clumsily knock a stack over and annoy the owner- it takes away from the relaxed feel that a bookstore should have.
I must be in the minority on this debate however, and I’m glad that what he’s doing is working for him. I love independent bookstores and I want to see them thrive and multiply.