I’m very excited to have a guest post from a blogger who I know to be just as much of a love in real life as she is onscreen. It’s Caroline – formerly Scribbling Mum – now Letters from Your Mum, writing about her vair vair exciting new adventure.
‘Books! Books! Get your luverly children’s books here. Two for a tenner £11.98’
I’ve finally done it. What started as a chat with my best friend’s husband 18 months ago is now an actual thing, an actual brand, and an actual online children’s bookshop. It’s open. It’s real. We have bookmarks and everything.
Back then our working name was ‘Books and shit’ but I decided that might not work for everyone so – after many lists, polls and opinion surveys – The Green Door Bookshop was born. Please, no Shakin’ Stevens jokes.
I tell you, naming a business is as tricky as picking a name for your children. Everyone has an opinion. Words mean different things to different people. To me The Bookshop Under the Stairs meant a hidden world full of excitement. For others it meant a journey into a dark place, a disfigured crazy waiting in the shadows with an axe.
I’m excited to be starting a business. Less excited about juggling it with the day job, kids and there only being 24 hours in one day but I’m not complaining.
I blame blogging. Blogging taught me that there is great power to be harnessed by an online community and it got me wondering whether the same could be true of book people.
There are some brilliant children’s books out there being produced by ‘small’ publishing houses, even some that are self-published. And I knew from research that the options for selling some of these books were fairly limited; set up your own website and drive traffic there yourself, approach booksellers directly to stock your title or whack it on Amazon (*boo hiss*) and be lost in the search results.
So we’ve handpicked the best books and built them a pretty home to live in.
It was important to me that we gave people the best possible feel for each book. Buying books can be hard online – where physically feeling and looking is very important – so we’ve spent lots of time photographing each book and writing a plain English write up of what to expect under the covers.
But the most fun has been getting my friends’ kids and our two girls to review the books. My four year old daughter told me her favourite part of one book was ‘the picture of the dog sniffing a poo’, whilst another said quite simply ‘the petrol tank is best ‘cos it’s special’. Can’t say fairer than that.
If nothing else then I can safely say I love it. I love our shop. And I hope you do too. Come away in, we’re always open.
twitter – @greendoorbooks