More from Amanda

The Washington Convention Center is bustling this morning as publishers arrive to set up their booths, and booksellers take place in educational programs arranged through the American Booksellers Association. I spent an interesting hour listening to a panel on “Shop Local: Forming Business Alliances in your Community.” It’s a topic that we at Harvard Book Store are particularly interested in because of our involvement in Cambridge Local First, an organization of locally-owned Cambridge businesses trying to raise awareness in our community about the economic and social impact of spending money at independent businesses rather than chains.
The most persuasive speaker, from my perspective, was Stacy Mitchell, author of The Home Town Advantage and the forthcoming Big Box Swindle: The True Cost of Mega-Retailers and the Fight for America’s Independent Businesses, coming out this November from Beacon Press. I hope we can get her to come to Harvard Book Store — this is such an important issue in our community. Many people think that Cambridge is the last place that independents should have to worry, but Wordsworth’s closing in 2004 and the recent troubles of the Brattle Theatre were a big wake-up call. Overall, the panelists felt positive though, and I was reminded of how happy and excited we are about the Grolier’s and Globe Corner Bookshop’s recent reopenings.
Off to another panel!