I've never been good at asking for help. It is not in my nature. That isn't to say friends and family don't assist me when I need it, but I am just not comfortable asking. So perhaps you can imagine how difficult it's been for me over the last week after my friend and business partner and I posted our crowdfunding campaign online to help us open an independent bookstore on the South Shore of Long Island.
When I first learned about Kickstarter and IndieGoGo, I was stunned to discover that many businesses were getting the financial backing they needed simply by laying out their needs. So we researched it further, doing our due diligence, and thought, why not? Why not us?
You may recall my previous blog, "Who Tries to Open a Bookstore in this Day and Age?" I wrote it about six weeks ago, but it feels like six years with the ground we've covered in our efforts to make it happen. We met with bookstore owners, became members of the American Booksellers Association and New Atlantic Independent Booksellers Association, wrote a mission statement, came up with a name for the bookstore, (Turn of the Corkscrew, Books & Wine) and traipsed through the Javits Center last week for BookExpo meeting with distributors, publishers, and sideline vendors. And, oh, we made a video and created our IndieGoGo campaign.
Notice how I threw that in there?
One reason I believe why I'm hesitant to ask for help with this is that the funds we are requesting aren't going to cure any diseases or end poverty. Yet, I do believe that we have an important purpose, which is to bring a sense of community that both edifies and entertains, one that will hopefully create a ripple effect. And we are heartened to have gotten such positive responses from anyone who learns of our endeavor.
Now is a great time to open an independent bookstore, which was made all the more clear at BookExpo. Publishers are still publishing, writers still writing while our desire is to provide a welcoming place for workshops, story time, and author events, and to give more books an opportunity to be discovered. We need help, though, to get us started in order to succeed, and I'm learning to ask because I've come to the conclusion that the funds aren't just for my business partner and me, but for anyone who values a combination of independence and books, for anyone who thinks it benefits a community to have a bookstore where there's none. Therefore, if you please, kind people, visit us on IndieGoGo to learn more about our efforts to bring Turn of the Corkscrew, Books & Wine to the community.