Celebrate Independents Week with independent businesses across the country—and around the world as the movement grows. Shopping at local independent businesses pays wages to people in your area—who can then afford to buy books: maybe even yours!
Check out the American Independent Business Alliance for more information. In celebration of Independents Week, visit your local bookshop—remember most books are still bought at brick and mortar bookshops. Even chosing to buy one or two more books per year locally will make a difference to the viability of your local bookstore.
We all shape our towns by choosing which stores to shop at: we hope you will choose your local indie bookshop!
If you don’t have a great local indie, then here are a few suggestions from our ever-expanding list of favorites (use indiebound.org to find more near you):
Starting in Massachusetts (since that’s where we are) in Boston there’s the Brookline Booksmith, Harvard Bookstore, Porter Square Books, the Brookline Village Children’s Bookshop. Farther out there’s Back Pages in Waltham and Storybook Cove in Hanover. In Western Mass., we like Broadside Books (Northampton), Odyssey Books (South Hadley), Amherst Books (Amherst), as well as the utterly unique Bookmill in Montague (converted from an old mill, and gorgeous).
Down south of us in New York City there are fantastic general and specialty bookshops including St. Mark’s Bookshop, McNally Jackson, Shakespeare & Co., Hue-Man Books & Cafe, and (especially irresistible with its cupcake cafe!) Books of Wonder, as well as the Drama Book Shop, Asia Store, Idlewild, and Kitchen Arts and Letters—and don’t miss Word and Greenlight in Brooklyn. Upstate we recommend the Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza and the Spotty Dog in Hudson—dear to our hearts as they also serve beer.
Since we’ve already run out of space on this page before we left the northeast (and what about RiverRun in Portsmouth, NH, or all those lovely shops in Vermont?) we obviously can’t list every bookshop we’ve enjoyed visiting here (even those above are heavily edited) so please add your favorite bookshops in the comments.
And if you’re in D.C. don’t miss Politics & Prose. Or Quail Ridge in Raleigh, N.C., Skylight in L.A., Powell’s (or Murder by the Book or Reading Frenzy) in the other Portland . . . you get the idea Keep it indie this week, and every week!
Originally published in A Working Writer’s Daily Planner 2011.