Here are some of the questions I have heard roughly one billion seven hundred and twenty-nine times in the past two weeks, give or take a billion.
What happens to all the leftover books?
Waddya mean, ALL the leftover books? We sold about 80% of what we put out, by the most pessimistic computation.
Okay okay, what happens to the leftover books?
Some approved charities come in to take what they can use. The rest have been presold to someone who will take them and see what luck they have selling them. We do NOT, as some people tell the story, give them all to the Salvation Army (that was 20 years ago), the Christian industrial League (15 years ago), or offer them as a lump on eBay (3 years ago.) We DO set some of the collectibles aside for next year.
So, you’re going on vacation now, right? There’s nothing for you to do, since you’ve sold it all and no one’s going to bring in any books in August, right?
No, blueberry chutney, no. First of all, we had people donating books during the sale. Some brought them in the front door and left them with the greeters. Anyway, August is my time to get the ball rolling for next year. For a brief space of days, I can arrange things and brace myself for the next person who calls and says, “My Aunt Booney died and she had a house full of books….”
How in the name of all that’s pretty did you make so much money this year?
People bought more stuff.
Can you be more specific?
Not specially. We had good books, good weather, good publicity (it took only 25 years for the media to find us), good customers, and good volunteers.
What will you do next year if: a) you don’t make as much money b) you make more money c) people don’t come d) even more people come e) it rains f) it’s over 100 degrees g) Aaaaaaah!
We will sell books, chocolate croquette. It’s what we do: sell books. When people stop buying books, maybe we’ll organize toe-counting contests. But I’m not designing the trophies for that at this point.