The Uncensored Diary of a Bookseller

The Graveyard of Irish Books

Posted by Wally O Neill on

“It was written I should be loyal to the nightmare of my choice.”- Heart of Darkness (Joseph Conrad) In the mountains of the south, wedged between inbreeding and agriculture, lays the Graveyard of Irish Books. This is where your unwanted paperbacks come to await final verdict. The purgatory of the printed word. Where did you imagine all the books you donated to charity shops ended up? Where did you think your deceased fathers book collection, which he painstakingly assembled over decades, relocate to after you callously called in the house clearance crew? Where do the countless unsold local histories, vanity...

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The Uncensored Diary of a Bookseller

Posted by Wally O Neill on

I have this strange fascination with books about bookshops. Maybe I think I’m going to learn some long-hidden trade secret which will keep me out of the clutches of financial dissolution for another few weeks, or maybe I’m trying to harmonise the romantic notions of bookselling presented in these guides with the real-world fight-or-flight state of the industry. Then I caught Covid and decided to record my own bookselling diary. An uncensored diary.Because, as much as I adore memoirs from notable booksellers like Shaun Bythell and Richard Booth, something about them seems to miss the wider meaning of what I...

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