By Judith Ashley
Jacobsen’s Books and More is a family-owned and operated independent book store located on Main Street in downtown Hillsboro, OR. I had the opportunity to talk to the owner, Tina Jacobsen, about the importance of independent books stores and their relationships with authors and customers.
Tina sees part of her mission is connecting authors to readers and readers to authors. Getting to know local authors and her customers is important. She’s found that many of her customers are community members who want to support local authors and businesses.
“It’s important to create a personal relationship with my customers and local authors,” Tina said after helping a customer look for a specific book. Ordering books she doesn't have on hand, recommending books in a genre or on a topic a customer is checking out are all part of the personal touch Jacobsen’s prides itself on.
Another way Jacobsen’s Books and More creates that personal touch is by promoting authors at the Hillsboro Farmer’s Market held Saturdays from May through October. She’s found that two authors work best. She sets up the tent and puts out a table and chairs. It is up to the author to engage passersby, talk about their books, and hopefully sell them.
While independent authors would love to sell at the Farmer’s Market, only those authors who work through Tina are able to take advantage of this opportunity. Jacobsen’s has partnered with the Hillsboro Farmer’s Market to offer this opportunity.
May 23, Don Reichardt will be at the Farmer’s Market. His book Camp Free in the Mt. Hood National Forest is an excellent resource.
May 30, Anna Brentwood, author of The Songbird With Sapphire Eyes and The Mermaid's Treasure; Mercer Addison, author of Even Nectar is Poison, Five O’Clock Whistle and A Deceitful Bait. Both authors have short stories in the Windtree Press Anthology Gifts From The Heart.
Partnerships are two-way streets. Tina is active in the Chamber of Commerce and other organizations that support the businesses on Main Street, Hillsboro, OR.
If you are in the area, stop by, especially on a Saturday between May and the end of October so you can meet local authors as well as check out the racks of books Jacobsen’s has available.
And, if you live outside the area, check out a local independent book store, see who your local authors are and show your support for a small business and your local economy.
Judith Ashley is the author of The Sacred Women's Circle series, romantic fiction that honors spiritual traditions that nourish the soul. She is also a co-founder of Romancing The Genres.