Blog

Spontaneous Trip to the Bookstore ft Thoughts on Being the Only Black Girl

So lately I’ve been having an itch to write stories again. Yes, when I was younger I used to enjoy
writing short stories. I sort of have an idea for the one that I want to write but I feel like my writing
skills need a little touching up before I just dive in. So I’ve been wanting to purchase a book with
some prompts to spark my creativity. I was going to just order one online but class was almost over,
I didn’t have to be up early the next day, and I was itching to take a little adventure.
If you guys didn’t know I live in Queens, NY so first I looked up bookstores in Queens that I could’ve
went to but all of them were going to close before I would be able to get to them so I decided to just
go to The Strand in Manhattan but I quickly realized that I wasn’t up for that long ride on R train and
the constant delays on the F, so I decided to look up some bookstores in Brooklyn. Two hours later I
found myself at Greenlight Bookstore on Fulton Street near Downtown Brooklyn I believe. (not from
Brooklyn guys, correct me if I am wrong lol). It was unexpectedly, a very small bookstore; honestly
if I would have known it was so small I would have chose a different one to go to because I like 
having a lot of options.
There was an event going on when I first arrived and at first glance I thought I couldn’t go inside
because of it, but after looking through the window like a doof for about a minute, I tried the door
and lo and behold it was unlocked, I proceeded straight to the register. The energy in the room was 
focused, I looked at expressions on everyone’s faces, they looked annoyed. I could be wrong, but then
again I would be pretty annoyed if I came out to enjoy an intimate book club meeting and people
kept coming in and out of what was supposed to be a quiet and peaceful environment to analyze
a book I enjoyed reading. But anyways, I asked the girl if I was still allowed to walk around and 
browse while the event was going on, she said yes and then I proceeded to ask where the books about
writing were. She showed me one shelf of books, so no, there was not a lot of selection when it came
to the books about writing styles and things of that nature. I was unimpressed but I did decide on one 
book named Writing Down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg. I plan to use this book as a workbook/
handbook to improve my creative writing skills. I will probably get back to you guys on how it’s 
working for me in a separate post or maybe I’ll just pop up with my finished short story and you guys
can tell me what you think about my skills! lol
Now like I stated in the beginning I only went to the bookstore to get a book that was going
to help me improve my creative writing skills, but of course, after I picked up what I came for I still
browsed around to see what else I could find.
I came across two books, one was named Praise Song for the Butterflies and the other, named Half of
a Yellow Sun. At first I was trying to decide between buying these two books but then I remembered
that the author of Half of a Yellow Sun (Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie) has another book that I was 
going to purchase a few months back named Americanah. I asked another girl working in the store
(She and I were the only black girls in the store by the way, I always find instances like these
interesting because I wonder if I, or we, are the only people who realize this) if they had that book
and they did. The girl began going on about great the book is, she basically started telling me the
whole story! She was definitely convincing because I decided on Americanah instead of Half of a
Yellow Sun. When she saw that I decided on Americanah she began raving about the book again
and then she went on tell me about another Nigerian author she was reading a juicy novel by, which
she then proceeded to rave about that book as well. Her enthusiasm and personality was refreshing,
and I couldn’t help but think “Yeah, I see why you got the job here.”
I wanted to ask her questions about what she thought about being the only black girl working there 
that night, what was it like, was she the only black girl working there at all, have there been any racist
instances in the area? I wondered. Maybe I should have just asked her. Maybe I will ask some 
questions on my next solo adventure or maybe I will just go back there and ask her one of these days.
xoxo

Previous Post Next Post

You Might Also Like

No Comments

Leave a Reply