While the summer started out gangbusters at the bookstore, those of us who work part shifts got fewer and fewer hours as the heat poured on. By the time I left on my vacation as July turned into August, I was working perhaps one evening a week, and for the two weeks after my return (before taking Rachael to college), I had no hours at all. Which means that when I came in to work, it was strictly cashiering, with the occasional stint in Kids. And never any Nook time.
Most of you who have visited a B&N over the past several months know that each store features, prominently, a Nook area, and additional staff were hired to man these sections. In our store, a full-time position was added, at 40 hours a week, and when Jeff wasn't there, other staff took up the slack with official Nook hours. I was not among them, and other than watching a Nook video or two when they were first introduced, and playing with one occasionally during breaks, I remained a Nook virgin. Last week, though, I asked for some training so I wouldn't stand around like a boob when somebody asked me about the device.
In the last few weeks several employees moved on, so hours are on the increase - at least temporarily, although I hope permanently (I'd prefer TPTB utilize part-time staff more rather than hiring on tons of new full-timers, but nobody's asked me). On Friday night, before I left the store close at midnight, I asked to check one out, and yesterday morning I learned the basics of Nook. Good thing too, because when I went into work in the afternoon, I was assigned an hour of Nook duty. Had I not set about learning it earlier in the day, I'd have been screwed.
I showed several customers the ins and outs during my hour, and sold a husband and wife one shortly after my shift ended last evening. It was a tremendous rush, and my knowledge of the Kindle helped tremendously in doing comparisons, but the last several shifts have all been a rush in that the store has been slammed by customers. Hooray!!! I'd been doing terrifically well selling memberships - and while in some ways I hate that we've added educational toys to our inventory (I came to sell books, not toys, after all, or electronics for that matter), it's hard to argue with $50 toys and $200 Nooks - but yesterday was a great hand-selling day. I sold seven books while at cash-wrap as add-ons, and talked up Clockwork Angel to other customers. Here is what I sold:
- Two copies of Soulless
- One copy of Blameless
- One copy of Any Given Doomsday
- Two Beverly Jenkins books
- One copy of Naked in Death (to a reader who'd picked up Salvation in Death in Bargain although she'd never read the earlier books in the series...we put the bargain book away and I asked that a copy of Naked be brought up instead)
So far thirteen copies of Changeless have walked out the door as well - 35 remain left to sell. I've not yet had time to read the book, and part of the reason why I've not made time is that I know
the hero and heroine don't get back together until the end of the book. I assume Carrington did that to stretch out the action into additional installments of the series, and while I love the entirety of the world the author created, I can't help but long for more h/h face time. Even though the parts I've read are hilarious, I need to settle down and deal with my disappointment before actually reading Changeless.
I work a very abbreviated shift tonight and then during Tuesday and Wednesday afternoons this week. I'll be bringing my loaner Nook back when I head in this evening and now that I've got a real sale under my belt - and boy, did I work for it! - I'm confident about future Nook duty.