Today is the day!
Or was the day…whatever. The point is the store is open!
So a reader expressed interest in me recording the process in getting the store up and running, as well as what it takes afterward. So here you go…entry number one in my Bookstore Chronicles.
When buying a used bookstore, expect to encounter 4 main things
- Lots and lots of books
- Back pain
I initially purchased the stock, cash register and pretty much everything she wanted to leave (includes chairs, tables and shelves) from the previous bookstore owner. The overall paperwork to get everything legal was the easy portion. Sign a few papers with the landlord, get insurance on the place, signed the business agreement with the previous owner, and get the business license; all of that took like two days. The lengthy portions were as follows:
- Getting the credit card machine company to transfer the machine over to my name
- Get AT&T to transfer the Wi-fi service to my name
- Cleaning and organizing the store
So the credit card machine thing wasn’t that hard, however due to some misinformation we didn’t do all of the things we needed so the machine was down most of the week. Intuit is a pain in the ass to try and get in touch with, but overall not too much work. AT&T was a pain in the @$$ though. They transferred us like five times and every person had a different way of doing the same thing and then FINALLY everything was transferred over. So yay, I have internet!
Cleaning and organizing the store is the most difficult portion of the whole ordeal. I cleaned up the back room as much as I could and then I started on the shelves out in the main part of the store. I initially had hoped to do an inventory of the most of the store during this time…and then my laptop died and that was the end of that idea.
This is what the store looked like during the organization…except it was everywhere. I’m going to be honest I hated books during this. Seriously…I loathed them. I probably threw more books on the ground in anger than I ever have in my entire life. Luckily I’m pretty good at it, so no books were harmed in the making of the disaster.
So now it looks much nicer in the front! Previously she had books doubled up on the shelves as much as possible and some were hidden in odd places, but NOW it’s all organized according to OCD Michelle’s standards. I kept the genres where she had them before to help lessen the confusion when a previous customer walked in.
I’ll be honest and say it wasn’t necessary to rearrange and straighten things up, but it honestly bothers me to see an unorganized shelf. Plus I had to relieve the claustrophobia I get from having floor to (almost) ceiling of book clutter. It took me the entire week that the store was closed to get it to look like this. There were hundreds of books that I had to remove due to having no space, and they all ended up in the back room where they are still being organized.
Now on to the back pain…you don’t realize how much of a work out moving books around really is until you have to do it for thousands. It’s really easy to get them off of the shelves, but getting them organize and put away is always ten times worse. At first you have a nice rhythm and it goes quickly…but around the third shelf you start to realize it’s not fun. In fact you’re no longer sure why you thought it was to begin with. Your back is in pain, you have a weird knot in your neck from leaning over and looking up, and you’ve managed to break pretty much every nail on your hand (by break I mean almost tear off the nail bed resulting you bleeding and having a sore finger for two weeks). That doesn’t even seem appealing anymore. But you can’t leave them on the floor, right?
So that’s part one of the bookstore chronicles! I’ll update some more as I take more pictures. If you have any questions let me know and I’ll answer them or include them in the next part!