Night and Day

My first book industry job was at a chain bookstore, 6 years ago. At first, I was so excited to be working in a bookstore. I had no awareness of independent businesses; I didn’t care where I shopped. It wasn’t until I started to feel like a mere cog in the workings rather than an appreciated employee that I began to take notice of indies.

After nearly two years, I got a job at Village Books in Bellingham, WA, and that’s when my indie world was blown open. Input in the displays? Opinions mattering? Genuine appreciation of a job well done? Was this for real? Bellingham is a town full with independent businesses and a strong focus on their importance. I love that attitude. I love the respect for their customers and patrons that independents have. I loved telling people where I worked and hearing the response, “I adore that bookstore.” I never heard that when I worked at a chain.

Seeing a resurgence of independent-minded shopping is fantastic and exciting. I’m so glad I’ve been able to experience both sides of the coin—it's made me fully aware of the importance and personality of independent businesses.

Lindsey McGuirk
Marketing & Promotions Coordinator
Algonquin Books
Chapel Hill, NC