People often ask me why I am so adamant about buying books from independent booksellers. The answer is simple: because they are owned by our neighbors and they invest in our communities. But the next time someone asks me to elaborate on this, I’m going to tell the story of how my seventh children’s book was scheduled to publish in the spring of 2020, how I’d lined up three months of book launch events—at my local libraries, local wildlife sanctuaries, local science centers, and local bookstores—and how every single one of those events was (rightly) cancelled because of a global pandemic. I’ll explain how I wrote to my local independent bookseller, Rich Collins at Root and Press, LLC in Worcester, MA, to cancel my event in his store. And then I’ll tell them how Rich helped me design a plan to give my book a special launch day, pandemic and all.
This, my friends, is why I believe, heart and soul, in indie booksellers. They are here for us, with books and inspiration and, when necessary, moral support. That other online bookseller you hear about constantly? Not so much.
Root & Press has created a bookshelf for my book, YOU’RE INVITED TO A MOTH BALL, on Bookshop.org, an online bookstore that shares its profits with community bookstores. Like the ones in my community. Like the one in your community.
Look, I know there are more important things going on in the world today than the release of my children’s books about moths. But I also know that we are going to get through this pandemic by supporting one another, and the way Root & Press has committed to support me, and I them, is one small and beautiful example of that.
Nature heals. I believe this. And I’ve written a book—illustrated with absolutely stunning photographs by my talented collaborator, Ellen Harasimowicz—that we hope will inspire kids to get outside and look around. At moths, of all things! But we believe this looking can be, in its small way, a healing.
So, tomorrow, April 7, our new children’s book will be released into this world. I’m immensely excited to share it with you, despite everything. If you decide you’d like a copy—for yourself, for a kid you know, for a library you love—I hope you’ll buy it from Rich at Root & Press, using the link below. If you feel inclined to share my love of independent booksellers, please share the link with your friends.
EDITED TO ADD: If you are local to Worcester, MA, you can order directly from Root & Press by calling (978) 870-5429. They are offering curbside pickup at 623 Chandler Street in Worcester, MA, and will even deliver to local addresses!