What is it, you ask?

haven't seen this for awhile

It’s my desktop!  My non-electronic desktop.

I guess I’ve been busy. My home study had been reduced to about 4 square feet of uncovered floor and my desk, well, let’s just say I’ve forgotten how pretty the top of it is. For weeks, perhaps months, I’ve been carting stuff from the kitchen counter, car, living room and mailbox around the corner to the study. The piles grew, teetering with late bills, many books, appointment reminders and the other ephemera of life. Feeling claustrophobic this morning, I launched a full assault. I’m happy to report that I am now heading to bed with a book and my office is once again spacious and inviting. I wish I could keep it this way.   Sigh.

Published in: on October 24, 2010 at 5:40 am  Comments (4)  

Wrapped up in Words


Words can surely do this


Already this morning, words have wrapped themselves around me.  The nutrition info on the  Trader Joe’s Apricot Mango yogurt and the hilarious caption on my Argyle Sweater daily calendar have held me close in their cozy familiarity.  Words from Facebook friends have wound their way into my soul with news of illness, travel, pictures of children and observations on life, wrapping around my mind and heart, burrowing deep.  My day is and will be full of words.

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith (HarperPerenniel) my next book club read, sits and taunts me with its 491 pages of classic elegance.  I would like to slip into it right now,  free and spontaneous, but I find I must take it one button at a time,  about 24.5 pages or 2.7 chapters  per day in order to wear it proudly to the next meeting.

Blind Your Ponies by Stanley Gordon West (Algonquin) sits alone on the cold seat of my car waiting for the next road trip to finish being read aloud to my husband.  Simple Church by Thom S. Rainer and Eric Geiger (B&H Publishing Group)  recommended by a friend, is another layer I’m wearing  and The Good and Beautiful Community by James Bryan Smith (IVP) already gave me this quote from Augustine to wrap around me:  “In essentials, unity; in doubtful matters, liberty, in all things, charity”.  Mmmmm.  Cozy yet practical.

Then there is that other Word speaking truth to our world, unable to be contained within any leather cover.   He came to communicate – oh, how I love that!

When I get to work, there will be piles of words, stacks of words, a feast of words.  There will be words in books, words on bills, words on the computer screen and words that haven’t yet seen the light of day.   It sometimes feels like an overflowing closet!    As a bookseller, my whole life is warmly wrapped in words.  Winter is coming, but I’ll never be cold.

(Image above was borrowed from Barbara Vey’s blog, Beyond Her Book.  You can read her blog here )



Published in: on October 19, 2010 at 4:25 pm  Leave a Comment  

So Many Books, So Little Time

I just returned from the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association tradeshow in Portland. I’ve spent four days listening to authors speak, standing in line to receive a signed copy of their latest book, figuring out what to pick up and what to leave on the publisher’s tables. I’m plumb tuckered, but full of anticipation. I’m most excited about reading Blind Your Ponies by Stanley Gordon West (Algonquin) a “tender story of love and courage and grit”, River House, a memoir by Sarahlee Lawrence (Tin House) which has been endorsed by William Kittredge, Crossing the Heart of Africa by Julian Smith (Harper Perennial) “an odyssey of love and adventure”. Then there is A Householder’s Guide to the Universe by Harriet Fasenfest (Tin House) which she calls a Monthly Guide on How to Get Back to Basics and Change the World! To the Woods, Sinking Roots, Living Lightly and finding True Home by Evelyn Searle Hess (OSU Press), a gracious woman who sat near me at mealtime. West of Here by Jonathan Evison (Algonquin). Jonathan is being called “a major new voice in American fiction”. Based in a fictional town called Port Bonita on Washington’s rugged coast and combining two eras, 1890 and 2006. Then there is Nancy Pearl’s newest, Book Lust To Go (Sasquatch) with the subtitle: Recommended Reading for Travelers, Vagabonds and Dreamers. No one does more to make me keep compiling by reading list than Nancy Pearl. One thing is sure – I’ll never run out of books! There are many new picture books, as well, including one stunning volume that will be on my coffee table this fall, Mr. M The Exploring Dreamer by Solzick Meister and Kallie George (Red Leaf).

My mind is full of great things I learned from other booksellers and in workshops. I always feel that if I can bring two ideas back that I can implement to make Inklings a better place, the trip was successful. And as for the books I listed, I first need to finish These is My Words for TUESDAY NIGHT’S BOOK GROUP! EEK! Then, I can decide what will be next. Most of these books will be out later this fall or early 2011 and then I can do that thing we booksellers do – tell my eager customers about my favorites.


Garth Stein, Naseem Rakha, Sarahlee Lawrence, Jamie Ford and Heidi Durrow at an evening reception by Terra Communications



Jonathan Evison, talking about his book, West of Here


David Shannon up close and crazy. Now you know where he gets his illustration ideas! By the way, he once saw a UFO in Yakima. His new book is It's Christmas, David.

Ivan Doig talking about the sequel to Whistling Season, Work Song.

If you could sit down this afternoon and read anything you wanted for several hours straight, which author would it be or what genre book would it be?

Published in: on October 11, 2010 at 12:26 am  Comments (3)  

These is My Words

Hold  on before you sic the grammar police on me.  The name of the book I’m reading is

These is my Words:

The Diary of Sarah Agnes Prine, 1881-1901 (P.S.)

by Nancy E. Turner (Harper Perennial).  I’m reading it for my book club next week and I’ve got a heap o’readin’ to do before then.  I wish I had thought of this title for my blog.  Wouldn’t it be great?

Heading to the Pacific Northwest Bookseller Association trade show this week.  Before that I need to do a month’s worth of work at the store, so reading is on the back burner for this behind bookseller.  I can’t wait to go and meet old friends, talk books for hours at a time and find out the booksy news.   We’ll hear authors talk about their newest books and we will bring home some signed copies.  And the stack grows taller.  I’m a happy woman.

Published in: on October 5, 2010 at 5:02 am  Leave a Comment