Last year, we did not produce newsletters between February and June. This year, there are no gatherings or in-person author events scheduled for March and April. We are still living in pandemic times. At this anniversary of the onset of the global crisis named CoViD-19, we are different people. I am grateful that our staff and bookstore have remained uninfected. Our masks, sanitization and distancing measures are designed to keep it that way.
After weeks of selling books from behind closed doors we are happy to welcome you back into our bookstore.
This is the first newsletter we’ve produced since the world was changed by pandemic earlier this year and writing it was not easy. Our culture is stretched with conflict, insecurity and division and I have lost faith in national and local leaders and the ability of American institutions to steward us sanely through this turmoil.
I couldn’t resist coining a term for the mountain of second-hand books we’ve been excavating since late last year: libermount.
Last year I was motivated by assignment and delivered Eight Tips for Getting More from Reading and Books to City Weekly and the Weller Book Works Textblock. During the year, I copied these tips for several persons. They’re still good so I offer them again for 2020 without my former elaborations.
Here are eight ways to improve one’s relationships with books:
Ask the most impressive persons you know which books are most influential in their lives and read those books.
Read every day.
It is hard to believe that we are two decades into this new millennium. And I only barely became able to think of “the teens,” as the 2010s, the reference is so long associated with World War I, Edgar Rice Burroughs and Dada of the 20th century.
Happy Holidays readers. You are synthesizers of culture, voices of reason and creative vectors. Let your civility and wisdom envelope your community. We are mirrors and lenses. Human experience is vast. Position the facets of reading correctly and cast joyous prisms of light.
The History of a Family Bookstore
The culture shifts that parallel our 90-year bookselling journey are quite dramatic. Founder Gustav Weller would hardly recognize the contemporary environment of our industry. His era of bookselling occurred after the industrial/capitalist revolution permitted the growth of an educated middle class, after we discovered how to make cheaper wood-pulp paper from trees with machines and long after we automated the printing press, but before television had mesmerized and dulled our senses. Despite these luxuries, Gustav’s term was burdened by the Great Depression. Sam and Lila Weller would have different experiences.
by Tony Weller
My father Sam Weller’s methods of teaching were momentary. He was a man of action and I took as much knowledge from him as he offered me. I had assisted him with house calls to buy book collections since childhood and one day in the late 1980s, without fanfare, he said, ‘I think you’re ready to make book deals without my help now.’ Wow, did persons who know so little really get to do this stuff?