Bookstore Bliss

For someone who has a TBR pile numbering over 95 books (I say over now as I might have been shopping since I wrote this post here – shhh), the topic set by Fiction Writers Blog Hop host Julie for this month’s hop being BOOKSTORES is a dangerous thing indeed. Just imagine the “research” I could justify, doing it all in the name of a blog post!!books gilmore girls.gif

Oh, and where to take the topic? Bookstores in films? Famous bookstores around the world? The death of bricks & mortar bookstores debate? Oh me, oh my.

For me a bookstore is a sanctuary of hope and possibility, where I might discover my next favourite author, where I can get lost for hours looking at covers and reading blurbs, trying to limit myself to buying just one or two of the many I decide I simply MUST have.

My sister and I have had discussions (albeit not very serious ones), about opening a cupcake café/bookstore back in our home town on the coast, where we’d be surrounded by books and book people and would get paid to buy and read our favourite titles – every day! Let’s just ignore for the moment the obvious problem of sugary frosting being smeared between the pages of Austen, or sticky chocolate ganache gluing the sheets of a Game of Thrones volume together, and just imagine the joy of turning up to work each day. And once our cupcake/bookstore is up and running and I become an established author, I can get my author friends to come and run writing workshops. Cupcakes and books and writer workshops….I don’t know about you, but that’s my idea of paradise.

Of course, the fact I can’t convince my hubby to leave Sydney, and the fact my sister and I don’t have any start-up money, and the fact that neither of us has any retail experience, and the fact that this becoming-a-published-author caper is taking much longer than I thought…means this cupcake/bookstore dream might just be that – a dream.

Oh, but I won’t let that dishearten me. I’m a writer, right? And that means I can create any kind of world I like on the page and spend as much time as I like there. So, good friends, in my newest WIP I have a bookstore! It’s not a cupcake/bookstore (I kind of exhausted my cupcake quota in my last work OF CUPCAKES AND DANDELIONS), but it is a bookstore…with a café… on the beach! Snap! And over the next few months, I plan to spend a lot of time there. This is my inspiration board for my WIP. Collage insp boardOh yes. I’ll be spending lots of time in this world.

If you can’t make it happen in real life, make it happen in your books I say!

If you could create your dream bookstore, what would it look like?


Thanks for reading! To return to the FICTION WRITERS BLOG HOP on Julie Valerie’s website, click here:



27 thoughts on “Bookstore Bliss

  1. Pauline Wiles

    Ooh, do you have 95+ physical books waiting? I have a fair few on my Kindle and an unseemly number on Goodreads, but they don’t wag their fingers at me in quite the same way an actual pile does.
    As for cupcakes and books, a little frosting never hurt a good story and I have a feeling Jane Austen would thoroughly approve. So glad you can spend time in your fictional creation, if not the real thing.

  2. Jayne Denker

    LOVE stories with bookstores in them! They can such vivid characters in the story. I’ve spent quite a lot of time imagining my bookstore, not going to lie–it’d be small and cozy (some might say shabby but I prefer homey), with used and new books and fun reading-related products. Maybe coffee and pastries on a small scale, but yeah, frosting sounds alarming! Oh–and my store must have at least one cat. 🙂

  3. Jayne Denker

    LOVE stories with bookstores in them! They can be such vivid characters in the story. I’ve spent quite a lot of time imagining my bookstore, not going to lie–it’d be small and cozy (some might say shabby but I prefer homey), with used and new books and fun reading-related products. Maybe coffee and pastries on a small scale, but yeah, frosting sounds alarming! Oh–and my store must have at least one cat. 🙂

  4. Krystal Jane

    That’s what writing is for!! When you open this awesome cupcake/bookstore, I’ll fly out to AussieLand and visit! ^_^ I’ll have to. It’s calling to me already. 😀
    You’ll have to have a “no frosting” zone where the classics are kept.

  5. lolshelley

    Oh Sandie….my heart is melting….cupcakes….books….author talks….what more could I ever want<3 You MUST read The Teashop on the Corner by Milly Johnson. Just finished reading it and it left me in tears, with a physical ache in my heart. The Teashop not only sells cakes it also sells book memorabilia. Oh if only this place existed. Just like I wish your dream place existed.

    As for the overflowing TBR pile, as I said in a FB post, since April 22 this year I had bought 18 'real' books and 16 kindle books. Ummm….since then I bought 4 Milly Johnsons (including the Teashop one I had borrowed from a friend – just had to have my own copy) and then I went to the dentist on Monday…and whilst waiting for my appointment bought another 3 new books (one was a gift) – two were an Italian memoir and one was about people falling in love in a bookstore:-))…and then coming out of Coles on Tuesday night I walked past the newsagents and he had a book facing outwards 'The Villa' – about Italy (did I mention I was obsessed with all things Italian?) and it was only $6!!!!

    So that's 23 real books since April 22 and now 18 Kindle!! OMG I think I have a problem…but they are just tooooooo amazing.


    1. sandiedocker Post author

      No. It’s not a problem. IT’s a gift. At least that’s what I tell myself!

      But I will say you’re an enabler – encouraging me to buy MORE books. Naughty!

  6. lolshelley

    Oops I forgot the 1st Edition hardback I ordered from an antique bookseller in the US. It is of Catherine Woolley’s Ginnie & the Mystery Doll, the book that made me want to become an author. Thank God Ginnie was nowhere near as popular as Harry Potter or I would have had to mortgage the house!! So make that 24 ‘real’ books since April 22:-))

    1. sandiedocker Post author

      But it’s a special item, so we don’t have to count it. Hang on let’s run that…all books are special items, so none of them count toward our number…

  7. Wendy

    Hi Sandy.
    I adore your writing and look forward to the emails. You are very talented and I am confident that one day soon you will be recognised internationally.
    The bookstore concept is such an exciting dream. I have always loved books and would enjoy nothing more than to be lost in a bookstore without the interruption of everyday life.
    Love and best wishes to you and family.
    Wendy X

    1. sandiedocker Post author

      Thanks for stopping by Wendy. IF K and I ever get the cupcake/bookstore off the ground, do drop by – family discounts!

      And thanks for the encouragement. I hope to prove you right one day.

  8. Julie Valerie @Julie_Valerie

    So there’s a new bookstore in town that takes gently used books on consignment. My mom has been “gently” suggesting I let her take a few boxes of my books to this bookstore “to let other readers enjoy them.” And I’m like, no way. Not going to do it. Because every time I hold a book and consider giving it away I think . . . aw, I loved this book. And then I start flipping through its pages again, rereading it . . . and then I sit down with it, and before long, I’m starting the story all over again, and then I think: I can’t give this away – I’m still reading it!

    Lesson learned: If you’re always rereading, no one can take your books away from you.

    I’m not a book hoarder. Am I?

  9. writerwithdogs

    I love used books best. So my shop would have a section for gently used as well as new. I love seeing a dedication/inscription to someone in the front, hand written, and wonder if they loved the book. I hope there will always be charming independent shops that let you drink coffee and sit on a comfy chair to browse through books. Love the idea of cupcakes, too.

    1. sandiedocker Post author

      Cupcakes and big comfy chairs!!

      I love books with inscriptions. The writer in us I guess, wanting to know the story behind.

      P.S I’ve been trying to comment on your post, but it’s not working. I’ll try again in the morning. 🙂

    2. lolshelley

      writerwithdogs, I love your comment about seeing an inscription and wondering if they loved a book. It actually feels quite intimate reading a pre-loved book, wondering about the person who previously owned it, what their life was like. It’s the same with antique furniture or old homes. I adore all those English shows like Restoration Man where they restore old houses but also uncover their past residents. Truly intriguing.x

  10. lahowlett

    Love your bookstore/cupcake shop idea! As a customer, it might be a little tough to stick to a “I’ll just look at books today and have cupcakes another!”


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