malaprops_bookstore_2014James Patterson, a best-selling author, has begun making good on a pledge to give away $1 million of his own money to independent booksellers. Patterson recently sent out the first round of grants, which range from $2,000 to $15,000. Malaprop’s Bookstore in Asheville was one of the grantees. I asked a Malaprop’s rep via Twitter how much the store received and what they planned to use it for. The response:

We are replacing our worn carpeting, and possibly another renovation, depending on the cost. We’ll take before and after pics!

More from shelf-awareness.com:

Last summer, Patterson made an unannounced visit to Malaprop’s Bookstore/Café in Asheville, N.C., and introduced himself to staffers. When he’s back in town later this year to speak at the Literacy Council of Buncombe County’s annual fundraiser, he might notice that the store looks spiffier. A $7,500 grant to Malaprop’s is being used to restore parquet flooring and to replace carpeting in the children’s section, making it more inviting for the kids and parents who often sit on the floor.

“That amount of money is going to make a tangible difference here,” Linda Marie Barrett, general manager/senior buyer, said. “Getting a face lift in a big part of the store is so helpful, and not having to worry about scrimping in other ways to do it.”

Patterson sent out a total of $267,000 this week, according to Publisher’s Weekly:

A doer by nature, Patterson describes himself as “the anti-Congress. We just do stuff.” For him, that “stuff” concerns not just the future of bookstores, libraries, and publishers, but of the next generation of readers. “The future of books in America is at risk,” he said. “Bookstore traffic is down. Kids aren’t reading as many books. I want to really shine a light and draw attention to the fact that this is a tricky time. The government will protect the automobile industry and the banking industry, but not books.”

Acknowledging that he’s “a bit of a micromanager,” Patterson read through every one of the grant letters and formal proposals and personally approved each one. Book Revue of Huntington in Long Island, N.Y., will receive financial help after a “near apocalyptic winter.” Wrote co-owner Bob Klein, “We will use the money to keep valuable employees, pay our property tax, and do much needed repairs to our floor and roof.” Hicklebee’s in San Jose, Calif., will get help upgrading an outdated computer system, particularly worrisome to customers in tech-savvy Silicon Valley. And, like Klein and a number of other bookstores, a bonus for a beloved employee, in its case the store manager.

From NPR:

Each individual bookstore will receive up to $15,000 from Patterson, who places no limits on how they use that money. “It ranges from Andover Bookstore, where a son and daughter wrote and their father hadn’t had a raise since 1988. … Children’s Bookstore in Baltimore, they give books to schools and they want the kids to be able to keep the books. Book Passage out in California will do more book fairs with it. Little Shop of Stories down in Decatur, Ga., they’re buying a bookmobile.”

4 Comments

  1. This article indicates that Malaprops got $7,500! Well deserved! http://www.shelf-awareness.com/issue.html?issue=2191#m23231

  2. I enjoyed reading the article but missed part of the local info.

    How much grant money did Malaprop’s receive and how are they planning to use it?

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