Updated: Nov 13, 2020
I’m sitting in my house, at my desk, watching Nikabrik the bibliocat* explore the boxes I brought home with me.
I can’t tell you how exciting that is.
I’ve been at home for 4 days out of the last 63… and I get half of a day tomorrow, too!
This year has been absolutely bonkers. So many bad things happening to so many people: pandemics and shut-downs, executive orders and chaotic elections, civil unrest and the persecution that led to it, the dam failures in Michigan and an onslaught of hurricanes in Louisiana.
The fact that Carpe Librum has survived this tumultuous year has been so encouraging—and such hard work! I thought I would read everything in the house through quarantine, but instead we made thousands of bookmarks. I thought every show I signed up for would be shut down, but instead Vintage Market Days fought to meet local requirements around the country and keep a lot of their shows running.
We did open-air shows in 103° weather wearing masks, we put extra space in between every booth and added room to the aisles, we opened early nearly every day, we washed and sanitized until our hands cracked. A lot of people will still think that I was crazy to be at shows and around people, and I don’t disagree… but there weren’t many options. I could sign up for shows that exposed me to people but allowed me to keep my business, or I could shut it down and go get job at a grocery store or other essential business that exposed me to people anyway.
I have been so blessed. I have stayed healthy. I’ve met amazing people, from customers to show runners. I’ve built friendships with other vendors who travel like I do. I’ve had the opportunity to lead worship for Vendor Church each week (anyone who has a booth at these shows is welcome to drop in for music and prayer time on Sunday mornings). Carpe Librum as a business has grown in these crazy times, instead of died.
Thank you so much to all of you who have kept following us and getting your book swag from us in 2020. And thank you, too, to those of you who have just found us in 2020, and are joining Carpe Librum on this crazy ride! There will be a big sale coming on the website to help us say thank you, so watch for another email on Thanksgiving with details for that weekend!
We have some things in the works as we move forward from here. We really want Carpe Librum and BeAwesomeReadBooks.com to be a tool that helps you enjoy reading and encourage other readers. We want to help build a community, so we’ll be adding ways you can contribute to the website (and you get book swag for contributing!). We’re going to be honoring our book fairies in the coming year, so be thinking about the people around you who get other people reading, because we’re going to ask you to tell us about them. Class sets of discounted bookmarks will be added to the website in time for Christmas, so if you’re becoming a book fairy and need some bookmarks to hand out, let us know!
Here at Carpe Librum we say, “Be awesome. Read books,” because we truly believe that books make you more yourself—they help you become the best version of you. I think that books can make a hard time better, too, though. Whether your 2020 reading has helped you see the world differently or simply helped you escape some of the stress, I hope your books are a blessing to you.
*Bibliocat: a cat who loves books.