Day 8 Readings Bookstore, Lygon Street, Carlton
This afternoon, we met with Emily Gale at Readings Bookstore in Lygon Street Carlton.
Readings is an independent bookstore with six retail shops in Melbourne. They have a real literary scene going on as they regularly host a ‘calendar of events’ including book launches, authors-in-conversation, panels, signings and performances. Their website and blog is very snappy too, free shipping for books bought on-line and great book reviews on their blog.
Anyway, Emily is a Children’s and Young Adult Specialist at Readings. She knows a lot about book selling and tried to give us an idea about how it works. There’s a section in the Children’s Books area that’s set up for new titles and it covers four levels. The top level is for new books and the other books on the lower levels are books that Readings sell at least once a week.
The shelf life of a book does vary but four months is about average. Some distributors have certain conditions; such as the bookseller only has a year to sell them before they stop accepting returns.
To remain in the bookstore, to remain in Readings, a book needs to sell at least one per month.
Thankfully, I found my book from One Day Hill Publishing. It went into paperback at Christmas; so I was relieved and happy to see it there.
Emily spoke about writers coming in and saying ‘hello’ and how much they enjoyed this, and that this sort of was promotion was still a good way to get your book into a bookstore.
Heather asked a very valid question, how could we get our books reviewed by Readings? Just ask, they said and all books would be considered. Yay!
Emily also gave us the heads up on what sort of children’s books people are asking for:
- Decent Mother’s Day books that are not pink and fluffy and full of perfect women.
- Toilet training books that don’t mention the word ‘potty’
- Junior/Middle Grade fiction is always popular.
Then we found out that Emily is a published author herself (this is her first YA book launched in Australia, she’s from London) and it’s the ‘book of the month’ at Readings.
It’s called ‘Steal my Sunshine’ and it’s published by Woolshed Press (Random House). This is Emily’s very cool website and there’s a sample chapter on there to read! www.emilygale.co.uk
Readings is an awesome bookstore, thank you Emily for your advice and expertise on Children’s books and thank you Readings for supporting emerging writers.