We had a splendid evening with Nicola Beauman (here she is, signing a copy of A Very Great Profession). The shop was full of (mostly) women who seemed to have read most of Persephone's books between them. Nicola Beauman spoke very passionately about her list of authors and I thought how great it would be to borrow her for the shop occasionally - her enthusiasm is so infectious.
Just to continue my musing about the prospects for independents - someone came in this morning and asked for a paperback of the new William Trevor. I said it wasn't in paperback yet. 'Yes it is, I bought it from Waterstones in Witney the other day.' What can you say? An export edition? She looked at me closely - 'But YOU can't get it?' No, I said. 'And you can't compete on price either, they do these 3 for 2.'
The next customer bounced in a few minutes later saying cheerily, 'I see you put Borders out of business: well done!'
It doesn't do to take any of this too personally.