If you plan to be away from the bookstore for Winter Institute or any other extended period of time, it's a good idea to schedule an auto-reply message for any emails that arrive while you're out.
Even if you plan to check your inbox while you're away, go ahead and set up a message anyway. That way you'll build in a little grace period before you have to reply.
Go ahead and tell your recipient that you're at a conference just for booksellers and you're so excited about the ideas and energy you'll bring back to the store.
Go ahead and tell them about the authors you're hoping to meet.
Go ahead and tell them about the book you started reading that nearly made you miss breakfast completely.
Bookselling is personal. There's no reason your auto-reply shouldn't be, too.
If you need inspiration, here you go: [The Brilliance of the Auto-Reply Message]