Well, I've been through the closing of another bookstore. This was an incarnation of BookNation which has been in existence since 1991, at various locations in the southwest corner block of The Crossroads of American in downtown Terre Haute, IN.
I saw the first BookNation on our very first day in Terre Haute in 1991 and it made me very happy to see an independent bookstore. (I, of course, had just said farewell to a most marvelous independent, Books & Books in Coral Gables. )
BookNation was closed that day, but I made sure it was one of the first places I visited in Terre Haute later that week. In 1996, BookNation moved to a larger store around the corner, and Todd Nation, Tim Kelley and I started Wabash River Books (for used books) in the old location. (If you're really a fan of bookstore closing posts, you can read about WRB by clicking the link in my profile on the sidebar.)
The current late incarnation of the shop moved into 675 Wabash three years ago, and I began clerking a couple of days a week and gradually added my books to the mix over these years. It was fun working with Todd and the store was a nice place to sit and be with people and books. Occasionally we sold a few.
This last month or so, we sold a LOT. And that's because we went from 20% off everything, to 40%, to 60%. And last Monday, we went to 80% off and wound up with a great big bargain extravaganza, 80% off or fill a beer box for $20.
By Saturday evening, we were looking at many empty shelves and pages and pages of sales.
I'm taking what's left of my stock in the shop to my church, for a book sale fundraiser the church is doing at the end of the month. I packed up 12 boxes Saturday night and have more to pack up on Monday. I had way more books in the store than I realized.
Both Todd and I are ready to wind down bookselling and the first step was letting go of the bricks and mortar shop. We'll both be selling a bit online, I think, until...well, until we're really finished.
And since this is a collage picture of what just one area of my book storage looks like at home, I cannot even guess when "finished with the bookselling" is actually going to be for me.
And, of course, I want to keep in mind that there is always the option of truly letting it all go. Packing up all the books and letting them all go. I think I'm going to spend a little time envisioning what that might be like...