Wow! Much has happened lately:
- The vending machine is gone. We've re-arranged the tables to offer a lovely outside view and put the soft chairs together for a cozy seating area near the front desk. Folks who need more space, or larger groups, are still welcome – we'll just pull extra tables and chairs from the storage room.
- Three more carts are on order. The post-vending-machine reconfiguration has opened up more space for books. We've therefore requisitioned three more library carts, each of which can hold 200 to 300 books, depending on their trim size. At this point, between the carts and the wall shelves, we think the bookstore will max out at somewhere around 3,000 volumes. Right now, we offer something like 900 volumes, but that will increase soon.
- Used-book sorting is almost complete. Cade has been working like a mad demon (well, between naps) to get the used books de-labeled, re-labled, inspected, and sorted. We're clustering used books by high-level genre, then sorted within the genre by alpha order by first author's last name.
- We're opening a distributor account. Although we're not focusing on new-trade titles, we can order whatever you want. We're in the process of launching a distributor relationship with Ingram Content Group. When that's done, we'll be happy to engineer your special orders, saving you the moral stain of relying on Amazon.
- Branding is largely complete. The black-and-white logo has gone over well, and both interior and exterior signage has been deployed. We've even developed a 4-inch-by-6-inch double-sided flyer to serve as a conversational propaganda piece (and shopping-bag stuffer).
- Street traffic is slowly trickling in. Every day we see between zero and three new customers walk in off the street, all thanks to Apple, Bing, or Google Maps records. And we haven't even done a lick of advertising yet!
- Marketing plan is will under way. Patrick the Intern™ is pulling together several mailing lists for us; one of them is already complete. These will serve as our gateway to introduction to other players in the literary scene – bookstores, libraries, writers' groups, small presses, etc.
- We've expanded our syrup line-up and added a milk frother. Now, you can choose from eight – yes, eight! – speciality Torani syrups for your lattes. And the milk-frothing process is much less noisy now that we've moved from the steamer to a dedicated electronic milk frother. Total prep time for a specialty latte is now four minutes or less, with options for a to-go cup or a large, luxurious Jason's-branded mug for in-store enjoyment.
This is all going better than we hoped it would. Thanks for your interest, and hope to see you in the store very soon!