[Editor's Note: This article was originally published in Feb. 2013.]
They say many hands make light work, and that held somewhat true this weekend as volunteers from the local community pitched in to help the owners of Written Words Bookstore move the business from White Hills to River Road.
"They showed up in their pickup trucks and there wasn't a single complaint anywhere. It was incredible, truly a labor of love. They put in hours upon hours of work," owner Dorothy Sim-Broder said. "It was really interesting because none of us are pros but we got it all done."
She said in addition to personal friends and customers of the store, many of those who came out to help are small business owners themselves, "so they knew what this entails and how much work was involved."
Volunteers got down and dirty scraping walls, painting, fixing lighting and ceilings and putting in carpet. The move also required them to pack up all the books into boxes and transport them down Route 110 to the new location on River Road within the Oakdale storage facility -- a space that is barely half the size of the original store. Because some merchandise has been purged to accommodate the new digs, Sim-Broder said she will definitely start advertising special order services.
"Classic literature, history, biography, inspiration, religion -- the core genres are all definitely here," she said. "People need to remember that our turnaround time for special orders is pretty fast, and we have the option of shipping books directly from our warehouse."
Although the new store is smaller, so far customers don't seem to mind.
"People say it actually has the feel and look of a bookstore more than the other place. Over there it had the feel of a chain because it was large, but over here I think it’s cozy, warmer. Now it looks like a true mom and pop shop," Sim-Broder said.
She also said she's excited the storefront will finally be facing the road. Written Words was previously tucked into White Hills plaza but now has a bit more visibility.
"I had a guy pull up the other day and tell me 'it’s about time some culture came to the south side of Shelton'," Sim-Broder said.
While Written Words is in a state of transition, it is still very much open for business and Sim-Broder will continue to run special events and groups. There is a book discussion this week and all scheduled author signings are still a go. Stop by the new store and check it out yourself!