Sunday, January 22, 2012

A Book for a Bookstore

Mandy's Pages is back after a very long break; too long a break that I have actually forgotten what it is like to check out writers' pages and plan who I'd like to feature or which channel needs more of my attention.  While the lazy Christmas-New Year feeling kept tugging at me, to laze around even more saying "Forget it... the post can wait", I had to boost my brain to come up with fresh ideas.

But as luck would have it, I didn't have to look far.  For just when I was about to do a search for hot topics of the week, she announced the launch of her book; hot off the presses. I snatched the opportunity and immediately bought her book, liked what I read... and now recommend it to all of you.

Heart Songs
Janet Wyatt Hunt
This week I'd like to feature a writer named Janet Wyatt Hunt.  Honestly, I do not know anything or much about her.  But then of course, like I said, I read some of her work and think its 'Lovely'.  Digging a little deeper into her background, Janet Hunt is a freelance writing professional specializing in business and finance. She has published articles for such online publication sites as Demand Studios, Associated Content, and various other online publishing sites. She also has a job in insurance marketing and received her Bachelor of Business Administration Degree from the University of Phoenix. Setting aside her 'business and finance' ideas, Janet has just recently written and published 'Heart Songs' which is a book on poetry and available at Lulu.com.

In Janet's own words...  "I have always enjoyed writing poetry. I began at an early age, about 7 or 8 years of age. Poetry is an expression of the heart. A way to express feelings that we don't always understand."

Here is an excerpt from her poem 'The Road to Tomorrow'


Where have all my yesterdays gone? 
They are no longer mine to hold 
Left behind they all remain 
Down a long ago taken road 
Winding pathways brought me through 
A journey to today ...

Profound, poetic and with elegance - that's how I'd like to sum-up her 'first' book on poetry.  Way to go, Janet!

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Moving on... what's the use of all these books being published or read, if there isn't a bookstore around the corner?  So many of us have piles of books accumulated over the years.  I remember, when I moved to Oman 3 1/2 years ago, I packed a whole carton of books for the kids (leaving behind a whole lot more)... and someone commented "Why do you want to cart all these books on an international flight and pay for the excess weight?  You can get books online or even at book stores there.  Besides, the kids will grow out of these."  Truth be told, I didn't have the heart to leave these books behind... and fortunately, although I had nearly 20 kgs of excess luggage weight, the airlines didn't charge me for it.  But then again, I still need space for more books that have been bought since that time.

Robin Tidwell


Dennis Tidwell


This is where I'd like to feature Robin Tidwell.   Yes, most of us in our Helium circle know her... but for those who don't, Robin and her husband Dennis have turned their collection of books into a profitable business and are already planning expansions in no less than four months since the launch of their book store. That's right... Robin and Dennis Tidwell own 'All on the Same Page Bookstore', located in Missouri.  Here's Robin's story behind the making and undertaking of their bookstore.



"Back near the end of July, my husband and I were sitting in our office talking about who-knows-what; during a lull, he glanced around the room at my overflowing bookshelves and said, “We should open a bookstore.” Conveniently ignoring his slight sarcasm, I said that sounded like a great idea – I ticked off all the reasons this could work and told him that I was going to start working on a business plan right away.


After dinner, I stuck my head out of the office and hollered: “So, when do you think we could, you know, realistically open our doors?” 


And he said, “I don’t know, October 1st?”


So I made a website and announced our grand opening. It was October 1st.


All on the Same Page Bookstore is located in a suburb of St. Louis County, Missouri; we’re open five days a week. We carry mostly used books, but our new stock is growing and we also have a few greeting cards, calendars, journals, pens, booklights, etc. And a friend supplies us with Baer’s Pure products, an awesome skin care line that’s organic and all-natural. We promote local authors, independently published authors, and local businesses. We also have online ordering for new books, textbooks, and textbook rentals, and we just opened our used stock to Amazon ordering.


I think we bring a unique balance to bookstore ownership – Dennis has been in retail all his life, and me, well, I’m a writer. Even though I haven’t published recently, I try to keep my hand in play; I also really enjoy mentoring new writers and helping them market their work. You could call me a de facto agent, although it’s certainly not a full-time career. There’s a lot less time to write now, unless it’s a press release or ad copy; the dream of sitting in a bookstore with a pad and pen or my laptop is somewhat farfetched, especially since we’re planning an expansion the first of March."

That pretty much wraps up the post for today.  I don't know how Robin and Dennis have been able to pull it off well, but hat's off to them on a smooth launch into the world of bookstores. And here's best wishes for the expansion plans.  For a more detailed review of 'All On The Same Page Bookstore', check out the St. Louis Bookstore Review

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A week ago I came across another writer... and this time one who has just recently published her book in Oman; a Children's Book in English.    I tell you, its a lovely, lovely book. But I'll save that for another review. In the meantime, I am trying to obtain details of the writer and the inspiration behind the writing that has made its way so poignantly to the front cover of the book.  I loved it as soon as I saw it.  But.... that's for another day.  

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Amanda Dcosta - Writer, Helium.com