I read the best article in The Bookseller’s newsletter recently and I just had to write about it here. A bookshop owner from Yorkshire is charging his customers 50p entry and he also, according to the article, called one of them a ‘pain in the arse’.
Now, I found this interesting for two reasons. Firstly, for what it says about the industry, and secondly, for the sheer enjoyment of calling someone a ‘pain in the arse’.
The age old question – Self publishing vs traditional?
Recent articles in the industry press are saying the Christmas period has shown an increase in print sales, so book sales from actual physical book shops and yet, this man has felt the need to charge an entrance fee to his shop. I don’t know how long he’s been doing it, but is that the state of the book publishing industry, right there?
We’ve all read about the demise of bookshops due to online purchasing and the growth of the self-publishing industry. As an aspiring author, it makes you think about which route is the right one to go down – traditional publishing via an agent (if you’re lucky enough to get one), or self-publishing?
When you consider most authors are also required to work on their own marketing, even if they do have an agent and publisher, why not self-publish anyway and keep more profits?
There’s also a wealth of information out there from those authors who successfully self-publish, including a lot on marketing for those, like me, who haven’t a clue!
I’m undecided about the whole issue and as I’m only on the second edit of my novel, it seems silly to get stressed over it now, but I will be looking into this more as my novel gets nearer the finish line. Just think though, when was the last time you bought a book in hard copy, instead of downloading the e-book?
Can you ever be rude to a customer? Hell, No!
Secondly, and this is probably my favourite bit from the article, the customer service! Oh my God, what amazing customer service!
For anyone who’s been the other side of the desk, there are times when a customer simply is just a pain in the arse. Regardless of whether they’re right, or wrong, sometimes people are just arseholes! If I owned my own shop would I bite my lip, or call a spade a spade?
From what I’ve read, it doesn’t seem like the customer was doing anything unpleasant, he just unfortunately arrived near closing time. But what a character the owner is! And it seems the owner’s approach has made him quite popular with some, who now can’t wait to visit.
If you want to read the whole thing, a link to the article is here: http://www.thebookseller.com/news/bookshop-owner-charges-50p-entry-fee-458771
Let me know what you think!