Hello, and welcome to a slightly different newsletter this week. This is our State of the Bookstore report. 

As of this week, Pierce County is still under Phase 1 lockdown as per Governor Inslee's coronavirus recovery plan, which allows us to do pick-up service and mail order. We are not open for walk-in customers. We are not taking used books. 

The bookstore is going to be okay. Evelyn applied for all the relief loans and hot-air balloon drops that were offered, and we've managed to get some of those, which means we're not in immediate danger of having to shutter the business. 

In fact, we're kinda busy right now. We're working hard every day to fulfill customer orders that are coming in through phone calls, emails, and Facebook Messenger. It's been so lovely to receive all of your love and attention, as well as hearing about the books you want to read. It's not as fun as being able to visit and chat about books, but we are still able to get books to readers. That makes us very happy. 

As for orders, our distributor's attention to safe warehouse policies means they're only shipping three times a week. We might not be able to get your book by the next day, but it is likely we can have it in a few days. Preorders for books coming out in the next few weeks are awesome, by the way. Publishers have cut back their print runs, and we encourage you to pre-order a book you want. This will allow us to ensure that we have a copy for you when the book comes out. 

If you want to contact us, you can find quick links to all the ways to do so here: CONTACT US

Fundamentally, we believe that this bookstore should always be your comfortable, friendly, and safe space. How we engage with our community is something we take very seriously, and as such, we're going to err on the side of safety and compassion when it comes to operating within CDC guidelines. We like you and we want to see you for many years. 

That is our long-term goal, in fact: being your bookstore for many years to come. 

You may have seen Emily Powell's note the other day about re-opening Powell's. She mentions how bookstores are meant to be places where you can gather, linger, and lovingly browse books. She and her staff aren't sure how they can safely do that in the current environment, and we have been wrestling with those same thoughts. How can you can maintain social distancing while navigating a bookstore aisle? What happens after someone picks up a book, looks at it, and then puts it back? Are we supposed to follow behind them and sanitize each book? Are we supposed to put all those books in a box for 48 hours? How can you browse books without touching them? Trying to figure out answers to these questions is a lot of what we're talking about, all day long. 

Right now, we are looking at mid to late June before we reopen to limited in-store shopping. We will likely have to restrict the number of people that can be in the store at a given time, simply due to the nature of the aisles and shelves. We are asking our staff to wear masks when they interact with customers, and we are going to expect the same of you. We can't all be perfectly self-contained bubbles, but we can do what we can to keep each other safe. 

We will probably start taking used books again at that time, but we will have new policies and procedures in place. We need to make sure that we can process books safely and efficiently. Please don't drop off books at our back door. 

In the meantime, we're open for pick-up business (at the back door only, please!). Reach out to us through phone, email, or messenger and we'll get you books or puzzles or whatever you need. 

And speaking of things you need, have you ever bought one of our blind date books? Or one of our Random Things in a Box boxes? They've been a lot of fun (it's not just about books, you know). We're expanding the program to be a bespoke Blind Date box. You can get whatever you want in the box! Just use this form

We'll ask a bunch of questions about what you want in the box, and then we'll put it together for you. Naturally, because the store critters are involved, it'll have snark and a random thing. 

We're putting up pictures of new stock on Facebook nearly every day. Be sure to keep an eye out for these posts as books and puzzles go fast! 


COLBY: Are all the woodland friend zone markers in place? 

ROLLO: Eep. 

COLBY: Excellent. Okay, Hodge: You're a customer who is interested in purchasing a western, a romantic thriller, and a graphic novel. Do you know your zone markers?

HODGE: I do. Westerns are in Bunny. Thrillers are in Porcupine. Graphic Novels are in Cuddly Bear. 

COLBY: Okay, go! Yes, yes. Good. Excellent weave around the puzzle table. 

HODGE: I'm in Happy Possum. Oh, he's so cute!

COLBY: Don't get distracted. Remember which zone you should be in. 

HODGE: I'm in Fox now. I see Bunny!

COLBY: Okay, now, Podge. You want a cozy mystery, a western, and some historical fiction. 

PODGE: What about poetry? I might like some poetry.

COLBY: Nope. You can't change your mind. Cozy, western, historical fiction. Go!

PODGE: Wait? What are my zones? I don't know my zones! 


COLBY: No, Podge! Happy Possum. Fox. You can't go to Butterfly. Maintain your distances! 


PODGE: I'm maintaining! I'm maintaining!

COLBY: You're drifting, Podge! Get into Fox!

PODGE: I'm in Fox!

HODGE: No, you're in my zone. You're over the line. I'm in Bunny. You can't be in Bunny the same time I am!  

PODGE: But I need to get to Bunny. That's where the westerns are.

HODGE: You have to stay there until I'm done. And then I'm going to Cuddly Bear.

PODGE: But you have to go through Small Deer to get to Cuddly Bear, and I'm going to be in Small Deer.

HODGE: You're not in Small Deer. You're in Fox. 

PODGE: But I want to be in Bunny. 

HODGE: And I have to get to Cuddly Bear. Go around! Small Deer, Raccoon, Butterfly. 

PODGE: That's so far. Why would I go Small Deer, Raccoon, Butterfly? I can go Fox, Bunny.  

HODGE: But I'm still in Bunny!


COLBY: <sigh> Yeah, zone shopping needs a little work yet. 


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A Good Book · 1014 Main Street · Sumner, WA 98390 · USA

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