October Event FAQ




If you have any questions, feel free to contact us.


We will explore:

Imagining a thriving future for bookstores and their community of stakeholders – employees, owners/ leaders, readers, writers, publishers, and partners.

How can we reimagine bookstores… to deepen literacy, strengthen our communities, and pay decent living wages to our employees?

Our aspiration is to reimagine and transform America’s bookstores into next-generation community bookstores, to help literary entrepreneurs open new bookstores in book deserts, and to help bookstores strengthen their place in the hearts of their communities as thriving centers for ideas and conversations.

What outcomes can you anticipate?

We hope you…

  • Discover and share new ideas and insights 
  • Develop new relationships and strengthen existing ones
  • Clarify opportunities and challenges 
  • Agree on what’s needed, what we can do together, and how we can help each other
  • Identify ways to get involved and stay involved
  • Expand the dream, identify the potential and coalesce a movement

Beyond that, you may well discover increased clarity and renewed energy for your own work, new and deeper friendships, new partners, and a greater appreciation for a landscape that we are all contributing to in which bookstores and community thrive together.

Guilt-Free Pre-Conference Conversations

You received an email pairing you with another of the participants for a conversation. The intent is to give us all a head start on generating ideas. We know you may be feeling a time crunch. Participate at whatever level works for you. Talk to or email each other. Or, in the spirit of guilt-free involvement, just look at the questions and bring your thoughts to the meeting. If you do connect, post some reflections. You can read each other’s reflections here.

The questions posed that can guide your conversation or your email responses are:

  1. Tell me about your work. What do you love about what you do? What’s the greatest strength that you bring to your work?
  1. Tell me a story of when you fell in love with bookstores. What was happening? Who was involved? What made it a powerful experience?
  1. What is it about bookstores that give them life, that keeps you coming back? What makes them vital to your community?
  1. Imagine it’s five years from today – 2026. Bookstores are thriving everywhere, notably in your community.  Describe what’s happening. Now think back to what sparked the change. What has changed? What actions did we take following our gathering that contributed to this change?


The 600 registrants reflect a broad range of voices and a wide variety of roles in the bookstore ecosystem. About 60% of us identify as bookstore owners/ leaders/ employees, 20% authors, 16% publishers and 4% others including journalists, partners, donors and foundations.


Got something you want others to see or have? 

We have been posting resources on our website. If you have something you wish to share, please send it to evan@reimaginingbookstores.org.


If your computer audio is not working, here are back up phone numbers to dial in. Know that some of the event functionality will be lost in an audio only environment.

Meeting ID: 938 055 1583
One tap mobile
+16699006833,,9380551583# US (San Jose)
+13462487799,,9380551583# US (Houston)

Dial by your location
        +1 669 900 6833 US (San Jose)
        +1 346 248 7799 US (Houston)
        +1 253 215 8782 US (Tacoma)
        +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)
        +1 929 436 2866 US (New York)
        +1 301 715 8592 US (Washington DC)
Meeting ID: 938 055 1583
Find your local number: https://zoom.us/u/acsCA4bs0z


Take a look at the program. In brief…

On Monday, you (that’s right, you, and everyone else in the room) set the topics to be discussed in the breakout sessions. We’ll be using Open Space Technology, a process that supports people to self-organize around issues that matter to them. Guided by our conference theme — How can we reimagine bookstores… to deepen literacy, strengthen our communities, and pay decent living wages to our employees?there can be as many topics as you wish that are as wide ranging as you want.  

On Tuesday, once again, you’ll set the agenda to pursue your topics of choice. We’ll end the day, we come together to reflect. And we’ll invite you to create a post-event bulletin board of sessions to move from questions to actions. 

Remember, there are no panel discussions in which you can listen with one ear and attend on automatic pilot. This is a place for conversation, ideas, and dialogue. So bring the questions on your own learning edge.


Read about the mission and history of Reimagining Bookstores, the people behind this first gathering and allies in the movement.