Tuesday, August 19, 2008

fading flowers

My favorite local bookstore is closing. (sigh) This has happened before. I found a bookstore. Liked it. Shopped there. Got used to it. Then it closed.

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Today I sat in shock as a friend spoke of the erosion of traditional publishing. He also said that when Guttenberg invented his press, that people were afraid of losing oral dialog. (We didn't totally lose it, but I doubt that people today can tell oral stories as well as they did before.) Canadian Marshal McLuhan said, "We shape our tools and afterwards our tools shape us.

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What's next? How do we roll with these changes? How do you purchase and read books? Do you buy online or at a brick and mortar store? Do you borrow from the library or buy your own. Do you read books cover to cover or skim? How much does Google or Wikipedia change the way you get your information? Have you tried new technologies like Kindle?

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In other words, do you think this flower is fading, and what do you suppose we'll see blooming next?

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By the way, we had some major glare off of that storefront's window, but a polarizing filter made it disappear.

10 comments:

Llama Momma said...

Ah, yes. I used to shop there, too. Though not often. I'm an amazon girl all the way. It's just so convenient -- one click and a few days later, there's the book! (Or books, plural. Gotta combine orders to get the free shipping...)

And before I order, I always check the library. :-)

lime said...

i am all about brick and mortar. and i tend to prefer mom and pop operations to big chains though i must say the allure of borders has ensnared me since we got our first one a few months ago. (i will also say i refused to patronize the local mom and pop after the owner, who was surly for years, could manage to do nothing but complain about how his inventory was drenched when the fire department SAVED his building [and prevented the fire from spreading to adjacent connected buildings...no small feat]...i figure if my husband can get up in the middle of the night to rush into your burning building the last thing you should be doing is complaining about wet books. if you persist in ingratitude you don't need my business.....thus ends the rant of lime.)

i'm also a big fan of libraries. informed populace being the cornerstone of democracy etc...

my dad recently got a kindle and i have to say that's a pretty nifty little doodad.

mommanator said...

wow could that pic get any louder? I buy,rent, & go to Library. Actaully love to go to the Library and just get absorbed in the quiet and books!
I am not an avid reader, but do do books on tape/cd (yeh I know that isnt reading, but if I didnt do it that way with my schedule of driving I would never have any new thoughts in my mind) REALLY makes driving tolerable!

dot said...

First, I love the picture! The flowers are pretty and the back ground is just as colorful.
I don't buy many books. I can get most of what I want at the library. If not then I search ebay or Amazon.
I hate those big book stores like Barnes and Noble. (don't tell anyone I said that)
I have no idea what Kindle is but I do know what GOOGLE is! lol

NaNcY said...

i like our local powell's book store. i can check on line if they have the book and pick it up at one of their stores.
the main store in downtown portland is a great place to book hunt.

i also use the city library. we live just outside of the city limits and pay the yearly charge out of pocket instead in our taxes.
well worth the 80 bucks a year.
also the library card file is now computerized and on line, so i can check on a book and even place it on hold to be delivered to a selected library in the system.

then there is amazon if i can not find it at the first two places.

i like real books. i like to hold them in my hands and flip the pages. but, for travel i have used book on ipod for my daughter for a 13 hour flight and books are too heavy to tote.

i have at times listened audio books. the readers are usually very well selected. but still, i like to be able to read a book.

a good verbal story teller is a real treasure. there are not many of those.

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Mary said...

We tend to use Amazon more than anything. Between free shipping after spending $25 and never paying full retail price for the books, we've saved literally hundreds of dollars over the years. While we love visiting bookstores, we just can't always justify spending more than we need to if we know we can get it for cheaper and it will only take a few more days before it's in our hands. The only time we buy from an actual store is if Wes needed a book right away for a class and shipping would take to long, or if I have a coupon (I'm a member of Borders Rewards and get 20%-40% off coupons in my email). But in spite of this, I don't think brick & mortar bookstores are heading out, I think it's more that specialty bookstores are the ones struggling when they have massive corporations to compete against. I see many Christian book retailers struggling and sometimes closing when they're up against places like Borders, Barnes & Noble...and even LifeWay, all three of which are now offering their customers incentive programs to continue shopping there.

As far as story telling goes, one of our favorite activities at Disney World is to hop over to the Animal Kingdom Lodge for a yummy dinner, and then to sit by the big firepit and listen to a native African share folklore from his or her country. It's so awesome!! :)

Craver Vii said...

Llama Momma, did you ever shop at the Berean store on 59? I liked that one. We used to do daddy/daughter dates, where I would take her there for an "American Girl Club" and then we'd go to brunch afterwards. They had a cool Bible section in the heart of the store with a nice selection.

Lime, I love the selection and ambiance of bigger stores, but knowing the difficult struggle of mom & pop shops, I think it is good to shop there when I can. Those can be rewarding experiences with their personalities and relationships.

The rant was reasonable; I'm on your side for this one.

Mommanator, I wish it could get even louder if it would help their business. There are things I like that I would not buy, except for an in-store shopping experience... like my new pen that has a tripped-out texture from some kind of woven material. I love it though. My buddy Ted has repeatedly talked about an audio Bible he regularly listens to, and I hope that someday I can start using something like that.

Craver Vii said...

Dot, Kindle is an electronic book reader. It doesn't look like my cup of tea, but lots of books are being converted to electronic format, for use on products such as this. The concept of having a portable library should entice me, but I still prefer paper and ink.

NaNcY, I don't take advantage of our local library nearly enough, but I'm getting a little better at it. I LOVE how I can take my sweet time with a book conveniently renew it online. It's great that we can get books shipped to our library from other places... I've had a couple opportunities to be blessed by that already.

Some people are gifted at telling oral stories. I'm not, but I'm working on it. Moody published a book called The Art of Storytelling. Now if I could only find where I put it...

Thanks for visiting, Mário. I'll check it out.

Mary, there is a Senegalese proverb that says, "When an old man dies, a library burns." That African folklore experience sounds like a real treat!

Jules~ said...

Makes me think of that movie You've Got Mail with her bookstore "The Little Shop Around The Corner" losing in competition to "Fox Books". Guess I have watched it a few times to readily know those titles.
I love books. I love to own books but I don't let myself buy them as much as I would like to because I think of the money. I find that I scour the Goodwill shelves for those hardback bargains that I do have. I tend to not do a lot of library usage simply because I don't like the pressure of due dates. Of course, when I read a book I obess about it and finish it in a couple of days so the due date shouldn't matter. It is jsut a mental thing that I rebel from.