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February 17, 2011 (El Cajon) – Closing a chapter for local book lovers, the Borders Group has announced plans to close 200 Borders bookstores nationwide, including stores at Parkway Plaza in El Cajon and in the Gaslamp district downtown.


The company filed for bankruptcy reorganization after running up over a billion dollars in debt. Three San Diego County stores will remain at Mission Valley, Carmel Mountain Ranch and National City.

Craig Maxwell, owner of Maxwell House of Books in La Mesa, observed that books are more available than ever before in both physical and digital formats, Yet he wrote in an e-mail to ECM, “Ironically, the popularity of reading (real literature) is at an all time low. I would suggest that the causes of this decline consist primarily of cultural (i.e., religious, moral and educational) factors that run beneath--deeper--than economic explanations.”

Others have cited the rise in electronic media as a factor in the younger generation’s declining interest in books amid an era where information on revolutions is texted and Twittered, while video games and surfing the Internet fill those idle hours once occupied by reading books.

CEO Scott Henry has said the company's strategy going forward will include enhancing its customer loyalty program, aggressively expanding and its e-book market share, offering more non-book items, cutting costs and improving customer service. Another 75 stores may need to be closed, he said, according to the Associated Press.

Although Borders was a competitor in the book-vending business, Maxwell laments the demise. “I don't see how the loss of a bookstore can be interpreted as anything but a sad commentary on society,” he said, “especially one that purports to be self-governing. How can a democracy run by illiterates work?”


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Barnes & Noble - Grossmont "Authors Event"

Was not aware of Linda Loegel's payment issues and experience with Borders, until yesterday, which is why the upcoming "Authors Event" on April 9th at Barnes & Noble - Grossmont is so important. One of the scheduled authors for the Barnes & Noble event, Joshua Graham, had a similar experience with the Borders' store as did Linga Loegel. Also, Cheri Seymour, the author of "The Last Circle," whom I had arranged for a book signing at the Borders' store, had some problems with the store.


It is sad to see the Borders in El Cajon close. One of the highlights of my life was the booksigning I had there on December 7th. However, I have yet to receive my check from Borders even though it's been nearly four months. Attempting to call Borders' headquarters just gets you tangled in a phone tree loop. So I continue to wait. To go somewhere else and not pay a fee to the store for my books sold would be a pleasure.

Barnes & Noble - Grossmont "Authors Event"

It is truly unfortunate, the closing of Borders, as I had earlier arranged for book signings there for authors that I had written book reviews for, Linda Loegel, Joshua Graham, Cheri Seymour and Iolanda Scripca. I have followed that up with arranging an Authors Event at Barnes & Noble - Grossmont, on April 9th, in which the same Joshua Graham is scheduled to discuss how to get published, along with TJ Johnson and Max Sturman. This is a uniQue event, which is the brainchild of the Community Relations Manager at Barnes & Noble, designed to bring in other aspiring authors to give them tips from published authors on how to get published, while affording the authors participating an opportunity to sell their bigs. It is these types of inventive techniques that, perhaps, could have saved stores like Borders.