Thursday, November 20, 2008

A Holiday Wish....

I miss Phyllis Whitney. I know many of you do too. After all, her books were the first grown up suspense books most of us read and we continued to read them for many years. In fact, many generations have enjoyed reading her wonderful books.

I must admit that all of us at Mystery Lovers Bookshop miss her for another reason. She was a good friend and great customer for many of her 104 years. We loved when her beautiful script appeared on a thick, fine envelope in the day's mail containing a new order for a box of books. This woman was a world traveler, prodigious writer and a fabulous reader of all kinds of books...cozy and harder boiled mysteries, romantic suspense, celebrity biography, espionage, travel and writing books. All the while she was reading widely, she worked on writing her biography which we all are anxious to read.

Bon Voyage, dear Phyllis.

Now, with my bookseller hat on, I have to say I miss her practical, financial support greatly. An author who buys 200 books from an independent bookseller is all too rare these days. I know it is easy to order online when you work at your computer or walk into a big B in the neighborhood. Maybe your publicist thinks the Amazon link is the only way to go. Think about it, every stroke and step is at the expense of the independent bookseller.

Last year when a big California indy was closing, I read a news story with mournful words from neighboring authors who were so sad. When I looked up their websites, only 2 had a link to the struggling indy now forced to close.

Mystery Lovers Bookshop is so thankful for the dozen or more writers who buy books here, who link to our website to channel sales, who arrange virtual signings and just shop for Holiday and Birthday gifts, personal stock of their titles, writing books, travel books and research titles for the book underway. Bless you as you all are a reason we are here after 18 years.

What about you? If writers would buy all the books they need in the next three months from an indy, it could make all the difference. Why not become the resident author of the mystery book store near you? Order your books for your stock there and invite them to sell at your local events. They will certainly keep large stock of all you books signed for anyone who requests one from you. If they are nearby, you can inscribe any book too. Mention this special service on your website, link to the mystery bookstores and above all else, do all your shopping there. Remember, special orders don't upset us.

Happy Holidays and thank you to all.

Richard Goldman & Mary Alice Gorman
Mystery Lovers Bookshop
514 Allegheny River Boulevard
Oakmont, PA 15139


Julie Kramer said...

I also loved Phyllis A. Whitney. I grew up on a farm and would wait for the bookmobile to bring me a new novel. "The Haunted Pool" was my favorite.

BousMama said...

She will definately be missed.

Great thoughts re: indie book sellers.

FIONA said...

She will be missed.

Thanks for the plug for the Indies. I was at Magers and Quinn today.

I was able to get a little holiday shopping crossed off the list, and add to my TBR pile.

Cynde L. Hammond said...

Hi there!

I normally buy books from my favorite bookshops here in Upstate New York, where I live, but your article has pulled at my heartstrings.

Now I'm going to make a special point of ordering some books from my neighbors in Pennsylvania at Mystery Lovers Bookshop.

I think it's important that we all support each other in this business. I would hate to see the independent bookstores disappear, making it necessary for us to have to buy all our books online. Those of us that love to read understand the joy of going to a bookshop, searching through all those books, and finding a book that looks interesting enough to buy and take home to read. It's almost like finding buried treasure!

If bookshops are ever taken away from us, then you can be sure that the printed word will be sure to follow, leaving only the ebook available. That would be horrible! I shudder at the thought of not being able to hold a real book in my hands, to read it from that wonderful stock that it was printed on.

So yes, I'll order some books from Mystery Lovers Bookshop. We've all got to stick together!

My two favorite Phyllis A. Whitney books are "Mystery of the Stranger Traveller" and "Mystery of the Haunted Pool." She sure was a gem and will certainly be missed, I am sure.

Cynde L. Hammond