Indies First: Celebrate Your Community
This year, on Saturday, November 24th, nestled in between two of the ugliest days of the year—Black Friday and Cyber Monday—is a beautiful little day called Indies First. Have you heard of it? It’s a celebration of independent bookstores. It stands in complete defiance of everything that Black Friday and Cyber Monday have come to represent. It’s the day where you get to travel down to your local bookstore and peruse the shelves, shoulder-to-shoulder with other members of your community.
When you’re there, maybe you’ll strike up a conversation with someone about a book you are both eyeballing. Perhaps you’ll ask your bookseller for a recommendation for that person in your life that seems so hard to shop for. You might even see a local author helping behind the counter, along with other surprises on the most underrated holiday of the year.
Most importantly, you’ll get to show how making an intentional, conscious decision to spend your time and money at an independent bookstore makes a difference for so many reasons.
Indie bookstores make up the DNA of a community. They are miraculous little places where commerce and human connection comingle. When you support your local indie, you are affirming that you value your community by making an investment into it. And the return you get is not only a book, which would be more than enough, but the feeling you get when you realize that you are participating in the exchange of ideas, that you are doing something distinctly human, that there are others around you who feel the same way. The coffee is probably going to be pretty good, too.
So this year, instead of elbowing people at a mega store in the mall or clicking around for gifts on a website that some algorithm has drummed up for you (probably by mining your data), celebrate Indies First and make the trip to your local bookstore on November 24th. Buy a book. Participate in humanity.