Whatnot: October 23, 2015

Another Truth Fact from kindofnormal.com. It might not be true, but it certainly feels true.


Not quite two weeks ago, I attended the Patti Smith event hosted by The Book Table in Oak Park, IL. During the Q & A, an audience member told Smith that she had some items that belonged to her and wanted to return them to Smith, which the audience member did, during the event.

Rachel Weaver, co-owner of The Book Table, told me that NPR’s All Things Considered contacted Dominican University–where the event was held–who passed the show on to Weaver. The story had already been covered by The Chicago Tribune and Rolling Stonebut All Things Considered was able to include audio from the actual event. Weaver’s friend, Jennifer Solheim, had posted a video on YouTube, and she gave NPR permission to use audio from it.

I’m not sure if I find the audio piece more compelling because I was there and it allows me to relive the moment, or if audio just adds another sensory experience. Maybe you can help me decide. If you haven’t heard it, here’s the piece that aired on All Things Considered.

Penguin Random House has a backlist initiative called “There’s a Book for That” where they pair backlist (and sometimes frontlist) with current events. It’s put together by a handful of salespeople who work on it and post weekly to Tumblr. We link to an edelweiss collection in every post. Recent posts have been on Banned Books, The Pope, Refugees and Migrants, etc. And here is a link their latest: Haunted Reads.

If you have writing groups that meet at your store, you might want to share with them this recent piece from Seth Godin: Simple Questions for Writers.

And finally, here’s a little piece from NPR for those who judge books by their covers. (Or the blurbs on the covers.)

Forget the book. Have you read this irresistible story on blurbs?

Beth Golay

Beth is a reader, writer, marketer and Books & Whatnot founder. Even though she knows better, she's a sucker for a good book cover and will positively swoon if a book is set in appropriate type. @BethGolay