It can be hard to forge your place in a new town; harder, I think, to own a business, to replace a town favorite and make her store your own.
When I took over the shop two years ago, Katie was in the middle of her second pregnancy. She showed me the ropes, and then she let me have them. She had been a formative part of Thomasville's first-ever One Book celebration, and now I had to not only fill her shoes at the shop; I had to fill her spot on the committee.
Here is what I believe about small town living: It only works if you find your place. Otherwise, a small town can be just as lonely as any big city.
Through One Book, I found my place in Thomasville.
Every year, I sit on that committee and help pick a book for our entire community to read and discuss together. First, we read The Time Keeper and welcomed Mitch Albom to town. Last year, I was so pleased to introduce Thomasville to Picking Cotton, a memoir by Jennifer Cannino-Thompson and Ronald Cotton, both who traveled to Thomasville and discussed the book with us.
This year, we're tackling The Happiness Project with New York Times bestselling author Gretchen Rubin.
Can I just tell you how awesome that news is? How incredible it is to be able to be on the team that brings bestselling authors to our small, Southern town?
The whole she-bang launches this Friday, October 2. We're helping host a flash mob downtown. (Lord, help us.) Please come and laugh and join in the fun; the first 50 customers to buy a copy of The Happiness Project that night will get a swag bag full of Thomasville and book-ish goodies.
I want everyone I know -- and even people I don't -- to read along with us this year. Even if The Happiness Project isn't your kind of book, isn't it pretty incredible to read alongside your neighbors, the people you grocery shop with and sit in a church pew with? Isn't it awesome to have the gift of reading, and to share with your children and friends?
That's what One Book is all about, and I am thrilled to play even a small part in the magic every year.