Our third E-List is now available. Click on the link to see E-List #3, Another Miscellany of New Arrivals.
Our second e-list is now available! Click on the link to see E-List #2 - A Miscellany of New Arrivals
Our first e-list is now available! Click on the PDF icon to download E-List #1: Twentieth Century Art: Surrealism, Dadaism, Situationism, Avan-Garde, and Other Bits and Bobs
And we're back! After a successful, though rainy, fair at Rare Books L.A., and two days of chin wagging at the California Antiquarian Book Fair in Oakland the following weekend, we're finally back in the office. It was two fun, yet exhausting, weeks on the road, and now it's time to get things put back where they belong, and deal with all of the little fiddly details of bookselling. Paying California sales tax, registering for the next book fair this coming June in Portland, and finally getting around to applying to the ILAB mentorship program are all top priorities.
First, though, are some highlights of our trip. Pre-show sales in Pasadena were sufficient to allow us to not worry too much about additional sales during the weekend, which is always a relief, and offset the exorbitant price for a couple of bottles of Stella Artois at the Sheraton Inn's bar. Our first edition, two volume set of Uncle Tom's Cabin didn't last long, and neither did our signed copy of Five Modern No Plays by Yukio Mishima. We finally debuted the Black Oak Books broadsides, which sold reasonably well, and even bought some more literary broadsides at the end of the show. It was a delight sharing a booth with our good friend and colleague Kate Mitas, even if she did put us to shame with the feeding frenzy that her side of the booth became once she started setting up. Kate has an exceptional eye for material that I'm sure will make her a giant in the trade in years to come. She's also a damn good person, so I'm crossing my fingers that she won't forget us years from now when she's at the top of the trade.
There was also the small detail of a personal hero of mine stopping by the booth. Mr. Stephen Fry: actor, comic, novelist, director, TV show host, and all-around-amazing-human-being, spent a few minutes chatting with me and truly making the weekend one that I will never forget. Despite my initially getting very choked up, I was able to talk with him for a little bit. He then humored me by signing one of my business cards and even posed for a picture with Jessie and Oliver and I. The day now ranks up there with the day Jessie and I got married, and the days that our children were born.
We spent the rest of the week with Jessie's aunt and uncle in Santa Barbara, and received a personal tour of the library of the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History from her aunt, Terri Sheridan, who is the librarian there. It's a gorgeous library, so I highly recommend stopping in should you ever be in the area.
The following weekend was spent in Oakland at the California Antiquarian Book Fair. It has been altogether too long since I attended the California fair, the last time being the final year it was held in San Francisco. Jessie spent that Saturday visiting friends and family in Winters and Davis, while I spent the day at the fair seeing old friends and making new ones. I was also finally able to meet some colleagues that I've only ever spoken with at a distance, such as Simon Beattie. Sadly I was not able in advance to put my hands on a packet of custard creams to give him as thanks for all of the questions he has answered for me in recent months. On Sunday we were finally able to introduce Charlotte to Heather O'Donnell, who has been watching her grow up via Facebook for three years. Both Heather and Kenneth Karmiole gave her business cards, which she cherishes and keeps in the car so that her baby brother doesn't eat them. Ken suggested that if she ever wants to sell her books that he would like to hear from her. There may have been some tears later on when Charlotte panicked about the possibility of getting rid of her books, but we have talked through it, and Ken is just going to have to go elsewhere for new stock. So there.
Anyway, it's lovely to be back in Corvallis with our cats and our books and our own flooded Oregon sidewalks. Well, not so much the last one. A bit of sun wouldn't hurt.