The Jigsaw, Paint-by-Number and Sticker people have been great and have been helping to keep us in the last few weeks – probably because they know a good deal when they see it and realise we are much better value than most of the competition in town!
We have a full and exceedingly large spinner chocablock full of paint-by-numbers and scraper foils! and we have deals on them, you buy 2 and the price is less!
We have a brand new and full sticker stand and a lot of the stickers on it are 3 for £1 – these include disney, pooh, dora the explorer, transformers and lots more!
and we have had a whole range of new season designs in the Jigsaws. From Paul Lamond – some stunning Gothic and Fantasy Images on them! From JR a load of steam trains and rural/wwII scenes in! and lots more from about 3 or 4 different brands, and we have a whole slew of kiddy jigsaws as well as Jig Rolls at a really great price. Well worth looking at.
OK theres lots of new stuff coming in almost daily – and some of the Greetings Cards we now have in are really good as well and at a cracking price for the style and quality of them too! Come take a look some time soon! Just don’t get the minions too excited as they get uncontrollable then and I end up having to calm them down with coffee and chocolate! oh or wait a minute is that me I end up having to calm down with Coffee and Chocolate (remember you are always welcome to come for coffee and a chat but just remember to bring me a Caramelatte from Nero’s or a Caramel Machiatto from Starbucks when you come!)
Hey, so anyway we now have the most common sizes of Candles in stock! yes that includes fluted base, Votives – Stick & Cased, Sanctuary Lights, Baptism (3 sorts) and Wedding candles! and we have had to re-order twice as well!
So yes we have candles – don’t forget to pick up one of our spanky full colour Candle and Church Supply brochures when you are in – it even has a section on the back for you to fill in what size candles you normally have – if you don’t do the candle buying then please pass it on to someone that does.
We also have Communion Wafers in ( and yes they have had to be re-ordered and topped up as well!), so thats Priests Crucifix, Peoples Crucifix, Priests Plain and Peoples Plain and yes Gluten Free ones as well!
Yes we have Baptism Certificates, Confirmation Certificates and SGA Packs in stock.
Yes we have Daily Reading Notes and Sunday School Material and yes please do place them on standing order with us, it makes re-ordering so much easier for me to do!
Yes we have Bibles, Books and everything else you can think of – Don’t forget to take a postcard for the church/community noticeboard!!
No we are not fully stocked up yet, but we are getting there! but as it’s all coming out my own pocket it will take a little time – and:
NO DON’T say when you come in – and I offer to order it for you – ‘No thanks I will get it off the Internet’!!
I mean you can get it off the internet if you want (heck I shop the internet too!) but don’t actually say it to me, or the minions, when out of my own pocket and at the sacrifice of my own wage I am struggling to kit out a Christian Bookshop so that you have the books and candles on hand! It is rather like Marie Antoinette saying about the poor, ‘let them eat cake’! its just not really very well thought out, a bit like salt in a wound or a stab in the back!
Just say – ‘No thanks that’s ok’. That we can live with much easier as we can fool ourselves you won’t buy it off the internet and will come back in after you have looked around other shops and not found it!
But let me just point out – when I offer to order it for you it will usually be in stock within 3-7 days – you don’t often get it from amazon etc any quicker, heck ask some of my customers and you will realise that in a lot of cases it comes in within 2 days depending on day of the week and suppliers! and when I order it for you from new you don’t then have to pay a carriage charge for the item! so yes even if amazon or whoever are offering a bit of a discount add in the carriage charge and you may well find its actually no cheaper! and just think when you order it from me thats the money I need to buy the stock to make sure that the next time you come in needing that Nicky Gumbel book or Margaret Silf book its there on the shelf!
Ok whining done – rant over on that one. (and no we don’t sell alcoholic communion wine – we can arrange to have it despatched to you but we don’t actually stock or sell it as we are not allowed to because of Licensing Laws).
To all the gen book Unicorn Tree’rs I have who have done or are contemplating doing this! – Don’t ask me, or the minions, to look stuff up on the computer because Waterstones, WHSmith etc, won’t, can’t… if you are not actually going to buy anything from us and are then going to come back in the shop and tell me you got the book whose title you had me look up for you on Fantastic Fiction.com last week from the competition! especially when its a book I have in stock and on the shelf when you come in clutching your gains!!
Please understand neither I nor the minions mind looking stuff up (unless you can see we are really busy- but then leave us what you want looking up and ordering on a note with a contact number and we will do it and get back to you after we have finished being busy!) we like playing on the computer! but please understand it is a service we offer to our customers and to be a customer you actually have to purchase something!! otherwise you are not a customer but at best a browser, and though we don’t mind browsers in the shop we really want them to become and be customers that browse the shelves.
Let me make clear I don’t mind if we look something up and you then don’t get it due to price, timing of delivery etc etc or any of the other really legit reasons there may be – I just object when you are using us as an information service with no intention of supporting us! lets face it, it’s like getting on a bus for a ride out to view the scenery and then not paying the fare!
Also – sort of tangential to the last one, please do not moan at me and my minions when you bring me the books that you purchased from the competition for credit and I only give you a 25p or 50p credit on them! after all how much credit do the competition actually give you on your secondhand books?? and Yes by all means do give it/them/the books to a Charity Shop instead of to us – we support and believe in charitable giving and charity – and this statement is just annoying really, especially when prefaced with ‘I might just as well take them to a Charity Shop then! I would be just as well off!’ as I am pretty sure they dont give you a credit at all in the Charity shop either.
(Oh and by the way this shop financial year – since September 07 – I (Unicorn Tree) with our customers help have given over £265 to our sponsored charities – yes you can check this out on our justgiving.com charity pages to make sure what I am saying is legit! I only give through justgiving so that it can be tracked and you all can be assured our charitable giving is a legitimate fact and not just something we say! – £215 to GOSHH and £50 Christmas appeal to Habitat for Humanity – so actually you know what, when you give your books to us and I give you a credit you are supporting charity as well – as I have made a commitment that I keep at my own expense to tithe a percentage of my shops profits to charity – when you donate stuff that percentage gets higher! how much of the actual money from some charity shops actually goes to charity?? I know for a fact the answer in at least one case is, well that would be about 0.01p a year! but thats another story.)
So please don’t moan at me when you do not get much back on the competitions books, buy our books and leave our stickers on so I, and the minions, know they are ours and you might get a little more.
Oh yes and the reason you get more back on the secondhand books than on new books is because the secondhand books cost me less to buy so I can afford to give you more, (but then think about this before you start saying how much money I make on them – you bring me a book and I give you a 50p credit on it, so it cost me 50p to buy, I then put it out at £2.00 – lots of profit you say?? only if i sell it in the first place! but saying I do, the purchaser pays £2.00 and then brings that book back and I then give them a £1.00 credit on it as its one of our secondhanders and you get a 50% Credit – so actually all I made on that book is 50p! Not much profit there at all really! especially if you then only buy a book that costs the value of that credit!).
If we gave you 50% on the new books we would be giving you more than we make on the book in the first place, in fact i would then be paying you to buy the book from me in the first instance! and if I was going to do that I might as well just leave the till open and say help yourself!
So OK I really do understand you all want the best return or best deal on things you can get (so do I, it’s natural!) – but you know what I bust my back trying to give that best return and deal to you in the first place, I am not looking to get rich merely to make a decent living doing what I love- selling books.
My books are generally cheaper – often a lot cheaper that the competition – yes even most of the newest books!
Margaret Dickinson’s new book – ‘Sing As We Go’ is full price in all the competition shops – £5.99 and it is only £5.75 with me – that 75p instead of 99p is pretty much true on all the brand new fiction – thats my pocket that comes out of – and I do not begrudge doing this as I want you to have good fiction at good prices, but please then think about it when you come in and don’t then expect the unreasonable along with the reasonable.
Ask me and the minions nicely and we will happily try to explain all this, but please do not be rude and objectionable. Please think a little on what you say and how that effects me and the minions. After all when you ask us to do the work like looking up books but then you buy them elsewhere – well in time thats a minion less working, and then there won’t be anyone with the time to look up the books for you!
On the secondhand side of it – well at least you are getting something back on the books you buy, and please don’t just buy up to the value of the credit note you are given – especially when you keep coming in with other peoples books to make up that credit note – after all if you do that often enough I won’t be here anymore as I don’t get a government subsidy like the lending library does and essentially thats all I am if you keep buying off others and getting credits off me and just topping up the books to the value of the credit note! At least a few times a month can you actually buy something off me please, it doesn’t have to be a full price brand new book, a cheap secondhand will do rather than just swapping books or using our knowledge and systems?
I want to be here to serve you all for a long time – and I want the minions to be here to serve me for a long time! – so please buy some stuff off us occasionally and not just use us!
Okay nother rant over.
Anyway thats me done for the night, see you in the shop in the morning – its a minion free day so feel free to bring the coffee!
Posted in books, candles, charity, church supplies, paint by numbers, requisites. | Tagged: bibles, books, candles, charity, christmas, church supplies, computers, customers, dvd, fiction, gifts, giving, jigsaws, minions, New Product, paint by numbers, promotions, requisites., steam trains, stickers, true life, wafers | Leave a Comment »
Posted by unicorntreebooksboss on 12 December, 2007
A clip of Pinky & The Brain from a Christmas special that perfectly sums up how the unicorntreebooksboss felt doing the bookcase boogie just before the Lincoln Christmas Market.
So apt on so many fronts in fact!! except the spellchecker given to Pinky should really be given to the minions!
Posted in christmas, dvd, fantasy, News | Tagged: christmas, customers, diy, dvd, fantasy, fiction, giving, minions, New Product, News, Pinky and The Brain, recycling, true life, video, Youtube | Leave a Comment »
Posted by unicorntreebooksboss on 12 December, 2007
Those of you that visited before the manic Christmas Market weekend, and indeed even in the week before will have noticed that the bookcase shifting boogie had been an ongoing process of near completion!
That is to say Secondhand was shuffled and has come out straight and bay like with no nasty walls and hidden hiding places, instead the bookshop is now light and airy and tidy and easily viewable from all places, and it looks good!
Alright so for a few days it looked like a bombsite, but now it is beautiful and it is alphabetical again! We also have wonderful flat tables for display purposes and its just nice, nice, nice – you will all have to come in and visit.
It got done last week when I had to forfeit my day off – even though I was very sick with nasty minion germs – and come in, well it was quiet ( until I started moving things of course that is!), I was feeling ill so I thought I would re-arrange all the furniture again to make the minion germs sweat it out and leave (works on real minions, give them lots of hard work to do and they often seem to make like invisible, all the while saying it is not so but they have other tasks I have tasked them with! so it might have worked with minion germs!) but they germs did not leave, but the job did get done! then on the following day once all the hard labour was done minion one returned to work just in time to alphabetacise (thats a bit like aerobacizing but slower!). And so it was done in time for Christmas Market.
Christmas Market time was as ever fun and filled with strange people wearing santa and elf hats ( bah humbug we repeat!) however we did also on the sunday have a visit from Darth Vader – lightsabre included! that caused a little stir for a while and was good fun too – shame the minions were absent that day as I am sure they could have swapped some awesome tales of the darkside with the darklord!
So anyway come visit the new look shop – it looks good, and other customers have said so too, the number of customers who have said they didn’t realise we were so big is quite good (though quite concerning too in a strange way) and the number who now just wander in to secondhand without saying ‘is it ok to come in’ is also very good! – many favourable comments, though it seems some people can’t help but to also say ‘oh no where are the books now’!! like we have hidden them! when in point of fact they are now much easier to see – when what they really mean is where is the one author I am reading/collecting at the minute, however as today minion one put up posters with arrows and diagrams, and as I can now stand at the till or computer and go , THERE just to the LEFT, turn slightly RIGHT bend down 27degrees perpendicular to the FLOOR and YES, THERE is that Kathy Reichs you wanted! all whilst still serving the queueing customers ( I multi-task you know), means it all seems to be working out to the good.
Anyway if you are after calenders or diaries you better get in fast as they are ripping out at a wicked rate and all we have left is what is out on the shelves now!
Same goes with Nativity Sets, Boxed Book Sets, DVD’s on warplanes and steam trains, and believe it or not Communion Wafers! all that prepping up for that Christmas Eve/Day lark.
I mean come on top christmas topics and gift stories – no Nintendo DS in stock, You can’t get a Wii and the GPS Sat Navs keep getting people lost – one would almost think there was a religious meaning to this season, no room in an in, surrounded by donkeys and asses in a stable with no indoor plumbing to speak off and the supposedly wise men being guided by a star in the end after ending up in the wrong kings palace! Cool Yule thats what I say.
So anyway drop by and see the new look shop, and feel free to bring me some festive cheer – I quite like Hot Chocolate laced with baileys or brandy for my cheer and as a cure to a red nose!
See you in the shop tomorrow!
Posted in books, Christian Books, christmas, church supplies, News | Tagged: bibles, bodgitt and scarper, books, Christian Books, christmas, church supplies, computers, customers, diy, Illness, Kathy Reichs, minions, nativity, News, thrillers, true life | Leave a Comment »
Posted by unicorntreebooksboss on 1 December, 2007
Ha! Tis the season to be giving!
That did not mean for the minions to be giving me the snuffley nose and sore throats they have been suffering with this last week!
Anyway winter aches and frosty fevers aside – though minion one remains out on sickly leave with no voice (ahh bliss I hear the voices echo inside my head! peace at last after tumultous days of orders to be more minion like and less boss like!) – all is still well with the shop and tomorrow we have smiley minion in to share the day with – perhaps I can share the snuffle and scratch along, pass it on as it were, after all a trouble shared and all that lark!
Today we pretty much sold out of Advent Candles, though we still have Advent Calenders in. We also had a delivery of Christmas Colouring books and indeed general Colouring books, large print wordsearch came in at last as well and lots of secondhand books were returned – but then they would be as I was alone and trying to rearrange the shelves again!
Military history, Historical fiction (of the not boddice romance ripping kind) and Spy books got shifted out the flipside of the wall by science fiction and True Crime got a centre court place where the spy fiction used to be.
Lots more calenders got put out and I just generally tried to fill in and tidy up displays.
I put an order in for lots more books which should arrive early next week, as were getting a tad low on James Patterson, Colin Forbes, Maureen Lee and Meg Hutchinson. So by mid week we should be chocker block full again.
I am hoping to send in an order for some more Revell and Airfix model kits this week, along with Doctor Who stuff, as we have had a made run on both of those this last few weeks, but then they do make good presents! As do the Jigsaws and Jigrolls to store the Jigsaws on!
So anyway life is sniffley but all good fun, just lots of work to be done and do.
Come by and visit and don’t forget to bring the sympathy and I will then think about providing the Tea! Though if you really care about a poor beleagured bookshopboss, make mine a starbucks latte with a shot of almond syrup, or if you are going into Nero’s then it’s a caramelatte!
See you in the shop tomorrow.
Posted in christmas, paint by numbers | Tagged: Airfix, christmas, customers, doctor who, fiction, Illness, James Patterson, magazines, Meg Hutchinson, Model Kits, paint by numbers, puzzle books, Revell, sci-fi, tardis, time lords, wordsearch | Leave a Comment »
Posted by unicorntreebooksboss on 27 November, 2007
There really are some days the dragon wins, and there are some days it just doesn’t win but it chews you up, spits you out and then flame roasts you to top it off! and today was one of those days.
First of all everyone is suffering cold symptoms thus making the day feel full of fun from the start, then its Christmas decoration time (Bah humbug – can we say carbon emmission protocols! what’s with the lights and electricity overuse!) so lights are going up and thats a lot of work for the minions to do – though they seemed to be enjoying it and after decorating one space wanted to continue on! maybe i should get them some elf ears to go with the red noses from the cold symptoms??
So anyway thats all going on and customers are coming in ( that we like) and we are getting on with the serving when in the middle of trying to do one thing, I am expected to multitask another job. so not fair and the day goes on.
Anyway suffice to say slightly later on we have a minion meltdown – probably caused by an excess of christmas lights and cold symptoms – but one of the minions has a dosey of a meltdown and goes home. Lets hope it all blows over soon and they are back at work as normal in due course as life without minions is so unfulfilling at times.
Anyway life goes on after minion, and I begin to re-enter the order that the computer ate on Saturday – I kid you not, saturday was a busting day – very christmas shopper busy – lots of Military and Steam Engine DVD’s whizzing out the store, along with books, jigsaws and Paint by Numbers and to top it off I had a spinner and four massive boxes of Velvet Arts delivered – very nice designs of Playboy Bunnies being Exterminated by Daleks whilst Betty Boop stands and screams and Homer Simpson wonders whats going on! hey whizzed out the shop too, well at £1.25 or 5 for £5 they are just too good a bargain to stay still!
So anyway they came in and i had 2 bumper boxes of Fairway Christian Books to get on the system and out, so i duly batch them through like a trojan, all scanned found and entered, and then shelved – I then whizzed on to putting out the 186 secondhand books that were sitting on the counters waiting to be stickered and shelved – did that just to have a woman bring in 56 Josephine Cox books that then have to be dealt with – and I do, but then someone else comes in with 27 various sci-fi authors, I tell you it was never ending! but by the end of the day it was all done! yahhoo!
However today i go to do stock re-ordering and find that the fairway books that have been sold are showing as not on the system!!! so i dig deeper as that cannot be right! and sure enough it isn’t right, they are on the system – they are there, i did not dream entering 37 lines oh no – I did indeed enter them but in the wrong darn database! it would seem that there are 2 databases on the system and that on saturday the wrong one was opened for some reason and all the days work was entered onto the old dead database and not the nice new live one! and can they be transferred? no they have to be re-input!
Still at least it explains why the database seems to sometimes eat titles we know we have had in! They are there in the wrong database! so what causes the wrong database to open occasionally – well on that one we do not have a clue, but at least we now know to check the database first thing in the morning so we can rectify any future fiasco’s like this.
Talking of dragons!
Anne and Todd McCaffrey’s latest dragons of Pern book is now on the shelves, both American and UK covers are in!
It’s called Dragon’s Fire (ISBN: 978-0345480293) and is priced at £6.99 and is an absolutely brilliant book for Pern fans, what is so brilliant about it for me though is that one of the main characters in it is disabled, he cannot speak, and this really adds some extra dimension to the story. So anyway this is a really good book and well worth a read – I must admit to liking the collaborative books between ms McCaffrey and her son in the pern-verse and this one is good – pop in and get it ( oh and the US cover is much more colourful than the UK edition!).
So anyway that was the fun today, being a bookshopboss is sometimes a lot like work! see you in the shop tomorrow.
Posted in Christian Books, christmas, paint by numbers | Tagged: art, Book Reviews, carbon footprint, Christian Books, christmas, computers, customers, dr who, dragons, minions, paint by numbers, pern | Leave a Comment »