lilacs in bucket

lilacs in bucket

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Wake Up Barnes & Noble!!!

So disappointed today when I walked into Barnes & Noble and discovered all the big, comfy, reading chairs interspersed throughout the store have been replaced with a single row of uncomfortable wooden chairs placed under the big picture window...oh boy. Once I would have burrowed into one of those big chairs cradling the next best book in my arms and I would have whiled some time away, absorbing a new book, and maybe even listening to some great music, which B&N used to sell as well. I wish they still did. I remember buying Keb Mo's latest CD because I heard it playing, for the first time, on B&N's overhead. I mean, suggestive selling, of course, but it worked. No music at B&N now.

Come on now.

Today, to add insult to injury, a squirrel (maybe) caused a transformer to blow just before opening time, causing B&N to run on emergency power, which meant flickering lights, no cash register, no Starbucks; only that awful steel nook pod in the middle of the store seemed to be lit and even that was sort of a low, gloomy light.

One of the sales people who seemed to recognize me as a constant haunt, stopped me almost as soon as I entered the store, explaining and apologizing in her broken English, and just wanted me to know what was going on, and how it was all beyond their control but the whole situation was being worked on.

I located JK Rowling's latest novel, sat down in one of those wooden chairs and read several chapters. Good book; I want to read more but not in a wooden chair, thank you very much.

Okay, well, I can't fault B&N for the transformer blast but I can say to B&N: do you really think wooden chairs are sufficient for book lovers??? Do you really mean to invite genuine readers into your store with these things here, these spartan Puritan Sunday-go-to-meeting-ramrod straight-butt cramping chairs??? Who would sit THERE to read for pleasure? I mean, is there an answer to that?

I remember Walden, the Heritage, J. Dalton, Borders (of course), and a host of other bookstores that have fallen to B&N, and I know in business these things are bound to happen; however, B&N, do you see the wolf at the door, that wolf called Amazon??? Get with it, please. Competition in the marketplace is crucial to the entruenership that America was founded on. If you don't get up and fight, none of us who write and want to be recognized for writing have a screaming chance!

What is your perspective on Barnes & Noble? Do they need to change their strategy, their selling points, their "look?"

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