Saturday, July 10, 2010

I ate my hat

After complaining about the unilaterally sucky poetry selection in my local bookstores (in a comment on my last post), I stopped into the Brookline Booksmith last night to escape the heat. And by jove, by gum, the poetry selection wasn't half bad! It wasn't terrific, mind you, but it was noticeably and significantly better than it's ever been before -- they must have a new poetry buyer or something. I saw 10-20 books by poets or small/indie presses I like. To show my support of its recent foray into not sucking, I bought a book: Shoulder Season by Ange Mlinko. I also picked up three used books: Or to Begin Again by Ann Lauterbach, The Red Bird by Joyelle McSweeney, and The Year of Magical Thinking (Didion). I'd offer the receipt to some prospective Tin House submitter, but it's got my name on it, so.

11 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  2. It's strange that you posted this, because I was complaining about the very same thing yesterday. I went to my local independent bookstore (with new books, not used. sigh) and there is a tiny tiny section (two little shelves) of poetry. I think the most recent thing is 'ariel,' no joke. And strangely enough, I asked the clerk to look up your book (the french exit) and she told me that they didn't have it, and neither did their warehouse supplier, and that 'most poetry these days' comes from tiny presses like birds. I wonder though...why not just order some books from the tiny presses? And this is a *good* bookstore, really. It's sad.

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  3. It's funny how otherwise good bookstores often have nonexistent poetry selections. Although my press is tiny, it works with a good distributor (SPD), so it's not hard to stock if buyers are interested...

    Thanks for asking about my book, even if they didn't have it!!

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  4. ange mlinko can be found at barnes and noble. (not to burst your bubble;)

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  5. That's just what I decided to buy. They had smaller press stuff.

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  6. Excited to hear what you (magically) think of The Year of Magical Thinking.

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  7. Isn't Carl of Greying Ghost Press at Brookline Booksmith? I remember thinking the same things when I went in there and saw some reviews by Carl. I think it's the same guy. In any case, big thumbs up from me.

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  8. Yes, I think he does work there and clearly has a hand in the current poetry selection.

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  9. i stopped browsing in bookstores a few years ago for that very reason, and started buying my books strictly online.

    but since i've moved to queens, i've been dying for a good indie store to open. i miss going in and browsing. it also makes me a bit sad that my kids probably won't get much exposure to bookstores (at least of the non- Barnes and Noble variety).

    unforch, there's no way a bookstore, esp an indie store, could survive in my hood.

    glad you found a cool place.

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  10. carl gives them advice at times but he doesn't do the bookbuying. he does, however, work in the used section and does a kickass job keeping some really interesting books in stock down there.

    i worked at the booksmith for over a year and there are good people there interested in small press/indie lit as well as the bigger presses/bestsellers. and, i know for a fact that the booksmith gets stuff through spd. i knew the fiction side of things a bit more, and you could find stuff from gary lutz to amelia gray to just about every title dalkey puts out.

    also, in the case of someone doing a reading there, they usually do a good job of keeping the book in stock for a while afterward in prominent display.

    booksmith is a good one.

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  11. Very cool about the used section. I definitely saw a lot of interesting stuff down there.

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