Article on Independent Bookstores in The Times

Independent bookstores, write Julie Bosman and Matt Richtel in yesterday’s New York Times are increasingly charging admission for author events. This trend is discussed, at length, in a great and fascinating piece.

It made me wonder — how do I feel about this? My ideas about this are mixed. I think it’s such a competitive environment for independent booksellers, these days — and so I applaud any new revenue source that they can come up with. Of course there’s something wonderful about being able to wander into Powell’s any night and stumble across a great, free reading. I spend so many nights that way (although, to be honest, the number has decreased in the past year with the babies.)

And — I wonder — who will pay to see lower tier writers read? So — perhaps there should be a Times Bestseller stipulation in the fee/no-fee equation?

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