1) Are you going to keep the name?

Yes – we are going to continue the bookstore as “Bookpeople of Moscow” – we have a signed agreement with Bob that will transfer the rights to the name to us and we will keep the Bookpeople tradition alive!

2) What kind of bookstore are you planning to be?

No matter what you have heard, we will remain a full-fledged independent bookstore.  We will focus on many of the same things as Bookpeople has in the past (like local and regional authors, native American studies, books on the Inland Northwest, and travel books), but we will put a new emphasis on a number of sections that we think are essential for the function of the store.  We will have an expanded children’s and young adult reader section that highlights many of the classic kids’ books as well as the new series that kids love to read these days.  We will also have an updated food and cooking section that will address everyone’s needs – from basic cooking to regional cuisine and specialty diets.  Most importantly, we plan to create a community space / meeting room in the back that will be able to accommodate book clubs, discussion groups, small classes, or other social gatherings.  While we still have to figure out how this is going to be managed and scheduled, we are very excited about the possibilities that a space like that will afford.

3) Are you going to be closed at all after you take over the store?

To improve the Bookpeople experience we are going to partially remodel and renovate the historic building that has been Bookpeople’s home for the last eleven years.  Unfortunately the store will have to be closed for part of this time – starting on December 29th.  We hope to be fully operational again at the beginning of February, but we might be able to open in a limited fashion prior to that date.  Check back here for updates our our plans, pictures of the ongoing activities, and estimated re-opening date.

4) Are you going to sell eBooks?

Yes! We are fully embracing eBooks, and we will be joining other indie booksellers by selling Google eBooks – more than 3,000,000 titles last time I checked.  They work on iPads, Nooks, and all kinds of other devices (iPhones, laptops, Android tablets, etc.).  However, they DO NOT work on Kindles – Kindles are the evil weapon of Amazon that doesn’t allow any other content to be used on it (and you thought Apple was exclusive?). So – if you have plans to purchase an eReader or gift one over the holidays and are trying to decide between a Kindle and any other device – go for the other one! Actually, tell anyone to return their Kindle and get another reader in exchange 😉  Once we have indieCommerce and access to Google eBooks installed we will provide you with information on how to support local bookstores even when buying electronic books.

5) Will you sell used or new books or both?

We will have both used and new books but we will concentrate mostly on new books. There are a couple reasons for this. We want to be able to offer the excellent values that you can find with used books, but while there are a couple very well-established used book stores in the area, there is no other family-oriented locally-owned independent bookstore in the area that will carry all the new books that you simply must read as soon as you hear about them, and that won’t show up in used book  stores for another six to eight months, like the new Christopher Paolini release Inheritance that my son is begging for for Christmas. Also, certain great books are hard to find used – have you tried to get all the Terry Pratchett titles used, for instance? Or a gift-quality copy of Julia’s two volume set Mastering the Art of French Cooking? We also look forward to introducing you to wonderful authors and series that are perhaps not so well known and are really only available new.

How we will obtain our used books is something we haven’t yet decided. We’ll keep you posted on this.

6) Who is going to work at the store?

We are going to have a great team of book-lovers working at the store! Carol Spurling is going to be the full-time manager. Jesica DeHart will be the part-time assistant manager. We will add our staff bios to this space as they are readied for the public eye, and here are the first three!

Jonah Mix: Following his move from Seattle as a seven year-old, Jonah is now the sixth generation of the Mix family to live in Moscow. He primarily enjoys reading, but can also be found watching 80’s action movies and listening to obscure Midwestern punk bands. Anything from south of the border is guaranteed a spot in his pantheon of greatest novels ever, but otherwise he has a deep admiration of American minimalism and anything surreal, nihilistic, or silly – preferably all three. Raymond Carver, Franz Kafka, Hubert Selby Jr, and Kathy Acker fight for the title of Jonah’s favorite author, but J. G. Ballard, Kurt Vonnegut, and Julio Cortazar are in the running as well. Anyone with questions about novels that explore the weirder side of life, as well as any American classics, LGBT literature, or political science shouldn’t hesitate to ask him for recommendations!

Jesica DeHart: Jesica grew up in a log cabin in the Pacific Northwest that was hand built by her family.  For many years they didn’t have electricity or running water and nights were spent huddled around the kerosene lantern reading piles of beautiful books checked out from the library or from their wall to wall bookshelves.  In college she studied environmental and adventure education and then intrigued by the beauty, creativity and integrity of Waldorf Education, she went on to get her M.Ed. with a specialty in Waldorf.  She has taught in Waldorf Schools throughout the country, helped to found new schools and worked as a mentor for pioneering schools.  She loves sharing her love of books with her children Emmit and Asher and some of their favorite books are the ones that come from Europe or a bit more obscure like Tal: His Marvelous Adventures with Noom-Zor-Noom, anything by Barbara Berger, the Tip Toe Lightly Books, The Moomins and most recently the Wombles series.  In addition to her specialty in children’s books she also is well versed in cook books (especially those that specialize in food allergies), contemporary fiction, parenting, crafts of all kinds and nature writing.  Her husband Dennis’s job as a professor in the art department at WSU brought the family from Orcas Island to Moscow where they enjoy working in their garden, finding treasures at thrift stores, traveling and laughing a lot with each other and their friends.

Carol Price Spurling: Carol was that kid who spent summers reading, going back and forth between the library and her home with a paper grocery bag full of books every week until she’d read almost everything appropriate for her age group and some that wasn’t. She realizes now she lost out on a lot of reading time by watching too many cartoons on t.v. on Saturday mornings, but on the other hand, she was exposed to a lot of great classical music thanks to Looney Tunes. She majored in English and Literature in college and graduate school and then worked at a library before getting her dream job at Old Harbor Books in Sitka, Alaska, where she learned the book business. She learned the used book business at Brused Books in Pullman before branching out into freelance writing, and then outreach and education at the Moscow Food Co-op. Carol’s reading habits go through phases, and she has at various times in her life been obsessed with 1) classic science fiction, 2) cheesy teen romances, 3) the classics, 4) contemporary fiction, 5) travel writing, 6) food writing, 7) cookbooks, 8 ) sustainability and simple living, 9) mysteries, and 10) anything to do with France and French culture. The latter obsession has lasted the longest, now going on 20 years, and she even went back to school to get a degree in French and graduated in May 2011 from the University of Idaho. Carol is a staunch advocate of local, independent businesses of all kinds. Unfailingly excellent customer service and providing a wonderful shopping experience for all are her first priorities as manager of Bookpeople of Moscow.

7) What about book clubs?

Oh, gosh, do we love book clubs. If you’re in a book club please get in touch with Carol as soon as you can. We plan on offering a special discount for book club reading selections ordered through us, making our cozy meeting area in the back available to you for your meetings if you like, creating a special labeled shelf for each book club right by our service counter so it is easy for your members to find your books and also for other customers to see what great stuff you’re reading, bending over backwards to get reading guides and other doodads from publishers for you, and there might be more perks that we can dream up once we have time to really think about it. Want to form a book club but aren’t sure? Talk to us and we can help.

8) Will you still carry the New York Times?

Yes! We have made arrangements with the New York Times to continue selling it at Bookpeople, and we’ve even made sure the service will be uninterrupted: as soon as Bookpeople closes for renovations beginning Dec. 29th, the New York Times will be temporarily relocated to One World Cafe’, just a few doors down. You can buy your copy there until further notice. We’ll post information about delivery times at both Bookpeople and OWC once we know when deliveries are likely to be made; since OWC opens early in the morning it is possible that the paper will be available earlier in the morning than 9 am. Once the store is reopened, we’ll bring the NYT back to Bookpeople for good, and determine how customers who would like to prepay for their papers for a month or several months in advance can do that.

If you have been a NYT “subscriber” through Bookpeople, please get in touch with Carol. We are not aware of any prepaid subscriptions that go beyond the end of December 2011. And with a touch of bad timing that is uncharacteristic of the NYT, they announced in November that the cover price for the weekday papers would go from $2 to $2.50 starting on Jan. 2, 2012. This price increase comes along at just the right moment to make it appear as if the new owners of Bookpeople have raised the paper’s price, but of course everybody all over the country will be affected, not just us. So we’re trying not to take this too personally and hope you won’t either.

9) What about events?


Thank you for considering BookPeople of Moscow bookstore as a place to host your event. We support authors and speakers and take pride in their success. Because event space in the community is in high demand, we must request proposals for our meeting room use. In addition to our special events, we host author signings. Over the course of a year, we select a couple of Saturdays to host a variety of authors throughout the day at signing tables. If you believe your book would be better suited for a signing only, please indicate this in your proposal.

BookPeople of Moscow has been in business for almost 40 years but is now under new ownership and management. To help us determine if your event and book would be a good match for our community and our store, please provide the following information along with a copy of your book, if you are requesting a book signing:

For an adult or children’s fiction or nonfiction book, provide a short summary of the book.

For a lecture and/or workshop, please provide a one-page proposal that includes the following information. What is the title/theme? What will be discussed or conducted as a workshop? Who is the intended audience? Why is this event suitable for BookPeople of Moscow?

Please include any information regarding past publicity and events.

Include a bio that relates your experience with your proposal/book. Include references we can contact.

Do you have a local following that you believe will attend this event?

If you have self-published your book or published through a print-on-demand service, you will need to supply books for the event/signing.

If we agree to host your event, we will charge you a $75 event fee for advertising, publicity, and space rental. With this $75 event package, we adopt aggressive marketing tactics including written and e-mailed pitches to our extensive list of media contacts. If the media is interested in an interview, we will help coordinate the schedule. While media coverage is not guaranteed, there are some strategies to help garner publicity: * Does your event or book have a local angle? * Is your event or book timely? * Is your event or book newsworthy, and if so, how? When submitting your proposal, please refer to the above bullet points.

We write a press release for your event and send it to all local and regional media. In certain cases, we may publish and distribute a poster. We publish your event information in our calendar and on our Facebook page. We report book sales to Nielsen BookScan, the ABA, the PNBA, and Above the Treeline. We also help coordinate cross-promotion practices with other organizations. The $75 fee includes the use of our events room for the talk and signing. Events intended for children may receive a reduced fee.

The fee for author signings is $20. We will provide a table and chair in the store for a two hour period. The fee includes a press release and publicity for the signing, just as for events.

If you wish to charge a fee for a workshop or lecture, BookPeople of Moscow receives 30% of the total ticket sales in addition to the $75 event fee. We provide your attendees the ability to pay through our point-of-sale system by check, credit card, debit card or cash.

Additional fees may be charged for events taking place outside of our regular store hours. Refreshments can be provided, and beer/wine are available as a hosted or no-host bar; additional fees apply.

We will review your submission and contact you within 30 days. If you are working with a non-profit organization or plan to donate a portion of your proceeds, we will take this into account.

Drop off or send materials to BookPeople of Moscow bookstore, Event Proposal, 521 S. Main, Moscow, Idaho 83843, bookpeople@moscow.com. We are a busy store so please do not phone to discuss your proposal, email works much better.

Fees do not apply to co-sponsored events with the UI Department of English and MFA in Creative Writing program, book groups, or foreign language conversation groups; space is provided as available, but please reserve ahead. We also rent our meeting room space for private meetings that do not require publicity; please discuss your needs with us. We reserve the right to modify fees and policies at any time. Thank you!

2 comments on “FAQs

  1. Hi,
    I’m thrilled to see all the work being done with the new store. We’re lucky, indeed, that Bookpeople will remain a dynamic, independent bookstore. As Director of the MFA Writing Program at U of Idaho, I’d love to get together for a coffee to see how we might work together.


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