So you're passing away. Time to start asking yourself the really important questions such as, 'What is going to happen to my library?' In this episode Ken shares tips and tricks for ensuring that your books don't become a burden to your loved ones after your demise. Plus, how do you care for your books well enough so they outlive you in the first place? There's not much that we can do to prevent our bodies from crumbling into dust but, given the right conditions, your books can still be in great shape hundreds of years from now. As John Updike said (in a book), 'All around us we are outlasted.'
On this episode Ken talks about haggling: are his shop’s prices flexible? Yes! Should you ask for a lower price on the book you're thinking of buying? Sometimes! What's the secret to talking your way into a great bargain? Be subtle, be nice, and, ideally, be a child whose early love of reading will later catapult you to the heights of success in a literary field. Plus, why Ken might pay you more for your books if you live on the first floor.
From baseball tragedy to book shop treasure, we’re taking a look at the journey of Casey at the Bat. The poem, first printed in the San Francisco Examiner in 1888, was popularized in vaudeville, and, in 1901, published in the very valuable first edition here in the studio with us today. It has since been reprinted hundreds of times, and remains enduringly popular with collectors of both literature and baseball memorabilia. Ken talks about this and a variety of other home-run hits of baseball literature.
So you want to start a book shop. Good! Ken’s not afraid of the competition; he’ll even encourage you. He wishes every building on his street would house a different independent book shop. He’s a proponent of idiosyncratic small businesses as an antidote to the bland, big-box sameness that plagues most American cities. So what advice would Kenneth Gloss, with his years of experience, impart to the neophyte bookseller? It’s simple: just be in great physical shape, and know everything.
The past is a nightmare, we can’t erase it. It’s important to preserve historical documents, to make them available, and to let them teach us the terrible lessons of history. But, as a bookseller, what do you do when the contents of these documents are truly vile? Is it ethical to make a profit by selling a photograph of the victims of Nazi concentration camps? Or to keep a book on bomb making in circulation? And should you eschew the controversial novels of today when they tend to become the classics of tomorrow? Join us for an exploration of these thorny issues on this week’s #brattlecast.