Mandy Eve-Barnett's Blog for Readers & Writers

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Bibliophile’s Collective Tuesday – Love a Local Bookstore – Sherwood Park Bookworm

April 26, 2022
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It is my pleasure to promote this bookstore and interview it’s owner, Leanne. She is very knowledgeable and will find ‘that’ book for you! I will be at the store this coming Saturday 30th April (1:30 – 2:30 pm) for Independent Bookstore Day. Come and say “Hello” to me & Leanne.

What made you buy a bricks & mortar bookstore?

1. I grew up loving to read, and of course don’t we all want to be our own boss. So when I discovered that the owners of The Bookworm were going to close the store I decided I would buy it and hopefully save it for other bibliophiles to enjoy.

Has the store always been in its current location?

2. The Sherwood Park Bookworm, formally The Bookworm is currently in its fourth location. The store has now been in business for about 34 years and I am the fourth owner. The previous locations were on Athabaskan Ave.  and I moved the store to Wye Rd, three and a half years ago. I love our new spot.

Do you have a special place to read?

3. I love to read, and don’t really have a favourite genre. Owning a bookstore means I need to step out of my comfort zone and read a broader book genre. But, when I want something easy it is usually romantic suspense or cozy mysteries. I don’t really have a favourite spot to read, but I do have two very comfy chairs at the store that get the warm bright sun in the afternoons. And sometimes I can sit for a bit and enjoy some reading time.

Which book began your reading journey as a child?

5. My book journey began so long ago I don’t really remember which book would have started it all. But I do remember devouring Little House on the Prairie. As well as the Trixie Beldon and The Bobbsey Twin series.

What are your plans for the future of the store?

6. I don’t know what the future of the store will be. I am always looking at ways to help it grow. I recently hired a very talented and ambitious lady to help me with all things technology related. So we have created a new website with and E- Commerce store. And she has really stepped up my social media presence.

We are also looking at creating a Bibliophile Boutique! Which will feature locally sourced book lover gifts.

What is your view of print versus digital books?

7. The age old argument of print vs. digital books is an interesting one. Both versions or reading each have a special place or purpose. Traveling with a device definitely has advantages, you can take many more books with you. So it saves space, and weighs far less. But, you are at the mercy of technology. Will it run out of battery, what do I do with it at the beach. Will it work, or leave you stranded without something to read. On the other hand a great print book is always there for you, but you may only be able to pack 3-4 or more, if you put some in your spouses suit case…

Printed books though are here to stay. People like the feel and texture. Some say they like the smell of ink and paper. Publishers have also reported an increase in sale of printed materials. Though I don’t know the exact reasons why, perhaps people thought digital books should cost substantially less. But, are disappointed that many cost the same as a printed book.

Regardless The SHPK Bookworm is thriving, despite the two year pandemic and digital devices.

What makes the Sherwood Park Bookworm unique?

8. The Sherwood Park Bookworm is a local gem. We have an amazing selection of paperback fiction in all of the genres. Many of them older or out of print. But that doesn’t affect the quality. We try very hard to have only the best condition of books available. And best of all if you aren’t a book hoarder, we offer you credit for the books you bring in to exchange for your next enjoyable reads.

We also carry a small assortment of local authors that may, or may not, be available in larger bookstores. We offer book signings as well as book launches. 

Can you tell us about the Independent Bookstore event?

9. Canadian Independent Bookstore Day, is an annual day celebrating readers, writers, illustrators, publishers as well as other industry supporters to celebrate Indie Bookstores. Check out CIBA books.ca for even more details. The SHPK Bookworm has been participating in CIBD for at least the last five years. It is a great day to be an indie bookstore, and I look forward to planning this event every year. And each year gets better and better.

How can book lovers find you?

10. Book lovers can find us on most social media. 

Facebook and Instagram @parkbookworm  The Sherwood Park Bookworm

Website parkbookworm.ca 

Yelp, and of course good old Google.

Is there a message you would like to relay about the store?

11. The Bookworm is a wonderful place to visit, the selection is great, and the company is inviting. Great conversations happen between strangers drawn together by their love of books. We even host a monthly Book Club and everyone is welcome.

Independent Bookstore Day 30th April

Bibliophile’s Collective Tuesday – Love a Local Bookstore – Daisy Chain Book Co.

March 8, 2022
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1.     How did you start your journey into a bricks & mortar bookstore?

I began by resurrecting and researching an idea that had been brewing in my mind for many years: a mobile used bookshop. In time, and with a lot of work, the book mobile became a reality. I enjoyed connecting with readers, but realized I was leaving them behind when I traveled to other communities. That was the impetus to open a bookstore.

2.     What was your motivation for owing a store?

To create a community space where readers can gather, creating a literary hub for the neighborhood

3.     Will your book van still be touring at some point?

No, the van was decommissioned just after the store opened – a side effect of the pandemic

4.     What is your view of print versus digital books?

There will always be room for both, and there are dedicated readers of both eBooks and tree books. Paper books (or tree books) are still a relaxing respite from screens which we desperately need. eBooks do not support independent bookstores, so I am a biased fan of tree books!

5.     You are obviously a reader – do you have favorite genres? If so which ones?

I prefer contemporary fiction, and I especially like books with strong characters that tell a story that makes me FEEL something. A book that makes me cry gets extra points.

6.     Do you have a special place to read?

Although I do have a very cushy corner of my sofa, I don’t get to sit there as often as I’d like. So, I guess I don’t really have a favorite place to read. I am on the move a lot and one thing I love is that my books can adjust to wherever I am and make any place I sit down cozy and satisfying. 

7.     Which book began your reading journey as a child?

The Ringmaster’s Secret by Carolyn Keene

8.     What are your plans for the future of the store?

To develop a strong community and always make newcomers curious about their next great read. I have many ideas about future plans, but you’ll have to stay tuned to find out what’s happening next!

9.     What makes the Daisy Chain Co unique?

No two indie bookstores are the same, they each reflect the passions and character of its owner. DCBC is very much like me, so it’s hard to answer that without talking about myself. I guess you’d have to ask someone in our reading community this question!

10.  Can you tell us about the programs and events you offer?

It’s best to go to our calendar for all the current events.

11.  How can book lovers find you?

Social media, website, Google, and walking by. Address: 12525 102 Ave, Edmonton, AB T5N 0M4

12.  Is there a message you would like to relay about the store?

Choosing to support your local indie bookstore keeps your community vibrant. I would encourage readers to cease the “Add to Cart” habit and instead choose to get books from a local bookstore that is dedicated to your community and cares about you. There is nothing quite as magical as an indie bookstore, and if we want to keep them around, we have to be supporting them. I am so grateful for the remarkable readers who support us!

Connect with Daisy Chain:

Instagram: daisychainbookco

Facebook: @daisychainbookco 

Wordsmith’s Collective Thursday – A Holiday Book Themed Project and Writing Time

December 23, 2021
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I found a holiday project to do in the week between Christmas and New Year. A small model of a library (although the label says Sam’s Study). I, of course, opened it when it arrived with excitement, but this was short lived when I realized each component – shelves, cabinets, etc. – were not separated, but all mixed together! So my first job was to find the pieces for each item and put them together. The other ‘surprise’ was how fiddly this is going to be! Oh my goodness – frustration beckons, I do believe. Maybe it will not be the relaxing little craft project after all. Time will tell.

I have not planned a word count for the holiday’s, but will utilize some time to continuing writing the second book in my detective trilogy, The Tainted Search. I have over 50,000 words from NaNoWriMo already so another twenty or so is achievable without full time work getting in the way.

What are your writing plans for the holiday?

Photo by Pavel Danilyuk on Pexels.com

Bibliophile’s Collective Tuesday – Choosing A Book to Read

December 7, 2021
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As readers the greatest gift we can receive are books or gift cards to buy books! It was by chance that I received two bookstore gift cards and as a veracious reader was, of course delighted. Then comes the problem – which books do I buy? With so many to choose from with multiple shelves packed with all manner of titles, authors, and genres, we have a couple of options. We can choose a favorite author, a specific genre or try something new.

Photo by mentatdgt on Pexels.com

As you know by now, I love stories with a reincarnation theme. I wrote my novel The Twesome Loop I like it so much! The bookstore helper, I encountered, was able to guide me to two books when I described the type of story I was looking for reincarnation. She recommended The Midnight Library and The Golem and the Jinni. I am currently reading the former and love the characters and the central idea of the story. It allows the author to explore many options for her character. I’ll stop there so I don’t spoilt it for you, if you choose to read it.

As I like to support local, I also went to a wonderful bookstore called The Sherwood Park Bookworm. I know the owner and she helped me find a couple of books with another topic I wanted to delve into: bookstore tales. There is something special about delving into our secret (sometimes not so secret wish) to own a bookstore. As we read these narratives we imagine ourselves within that environment. To be surrounded with books all day – what a treat that would be. Two more books were added to my cache. As you can see from the image below. These are all wonderful additions to my TBR pile.

What does your current TBR pile look like? What are the titles? How did you choose the books?

Bibliophile’s Collective Tuesday – Writing Retreat Bookstore Finds and a Book Review

August 17, 2021
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This last weekend, I enjoyed a delightful writing retreat in a private lakeside cabin. The cabin was perfect with every amenity you could wish for. Sammie and I walked across the fields, and lounged on the deck. Watching the water fowl, gulls and other birds and the ever changing moods of the lake, were especially inspiring. One night, I witnessed two shooting stars in a dark sky populated with millions of stars. This tranquility was accompanied with a virtual writers conference, When Words Collide. Where I was a panelist discussing writing groups and a co-presenter for a publishing session.

Where have you visited this summer? What inspired you?

On the trip home, we discovered a small bookstore in Castor and of course, had to explore. I found a book to add to my TBR pile, which has ghosts in it. As you know I have my own experiences in that area.

When Robins Appear by Densie Webb

A remarkable tale of a mother and daughter dealing with love and loss, joy and pain. Their relationship ebbs and flows, as we ‘see’ each of their inner thoughts and turmoil. A story that brings real life into sharp focus. I enjoyed it immensely.

What are you currently reading?

(Always leave a review – just a short sentence will do!)

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