My Book Store Game Plan

“One day I will find the right words and they will be simple”. -Jack Kerouac

(City Lights Bookstore in San Francisco CA. A Literary Landmark)

Nooks and Kindles could never actually replace an actual book. For me, I just feel more connected to the book and the author when I have it in my hand turning the pages. Don’t get me wrong. I buy books online too. It’s a necessity living in Monterrey. There are only a few small bookstores in malls that I have found, and really small English sections. But when I’m back in the states, I can easily idle away hours roaming the book aisles. It’s my happy place. I’m sure a lot of book nerds have a master plan for navigating the bookstore. Here is mine.

  1. First is my list. I go to the bookstore with a list of books that are all candidates for that days purchase.
  2. Do a quick scan of displays as soon as I walk through the doors. See if anything pops out at me.
  3. Locate and pick up the books on my list. This is important to do first thing because if I wait until I’m ready to leave, I have often forgotten all about those books.
  4. Go to the New York Times bestsellers section. This is to simply to look at the newer popular books. I normally do not purchase these because they are hard covers. I’m a gal on a budget!
  5. Now I go to the new books in paperback. These are the books that have recently been put into soft cover from hardcover. Now we’re talkin…
  6. Next, I check out the New Writers section and the Staff Recommendation section.
  7. Meander through the rest of the aisles: Literature, Poetry, Self Help, Cookbooks, Classics, etc.
  8. At this point, it’s been an hour or two and I will have an armful of books. I go through them and reevaluate which books to purchase. I can usually get it to around 5 books, but the ones I leave behind will haunt me throughout the rest of my visit.
  9. On to the discount books. Here is where I will pick up any last minute books which will in turn cause me to have to reevaluate my purchases again.
  10. After this, I walk through the miscellaneous area of journals, bookmarks, calendars, etc. I rarely buy from this section, but I always walk through it anyway.
  11. Now I’m finished and the next stop is the cashier. This is when I pause, relook at my books, consider the ones I left behind, and make the decision: Should I go back for the book/s I left behind?
  12.  Lastly, I get in line and buy.
  13. Often when I’m driving home thinking about the books I bought, I will realize I forgot to give the cashier the coupon I had.


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