Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The Problem is Borders Is Not a Goddamn Toy Store.

So if you read either Pimp My Novel or Editorial Ass (and come on, you should) you might be panicking a little bit for the well-being of Borders.

I know I am.

I'm no expert. I'm a girl who likes to buy books, and the nearest Borders to my house is a full ten minutes closer than the Barnes and Noble which means that, essentially, I'm a Borders-girl. (Guys, don't even talk to me about indies. If you have lived in Silver Spring, Maryland, you may chortle along with me here. Chortle chortle chortle.)

But I completely agree with Pimp My Novel--the problem with Borders is the damn toys.

This Borders Ink thing--have you seen this? It's a perfect symptom of a larger problem. basically, they're mixing teen merchandise in with the YA books.

So this means, in the current publishing climate, that you have to wade through three layers of Twilight lunch boxes to get to the YA books.

Show of hands of people who find this annoying, please.

I don't have a problem with Twilight. I haven't read the series, so I think it would be odd if I did. But correct me if I'm wrong, but apart from the moms who are buying the Twilight dildos, aren't most of Twilight's rabid fans relatively young girls? YA, maybe, but definitely on the younger end. People around my age like it, but I'm not sure many of them are enamored.

I'm not saying the books shouldn't be shelved in the YA section. As far as I can tell, they fit all the requirememnts of YA. The protagonists are the right age (or the one who isn't twenty billion is, at least) the pacing is tight, it has coming-of-age elements.

But can you really imagine anyone older than fourteen (or, God forbid, a BOY) carrying a Twilight lunchbox?

Reading the book and wanting to advertise that you are a groupie of the book are two different things. Completely.

FOR EXAMPLE. Do you remember about four years ago, when suddenly anybody who was anybody liked The Doors and ACDC? I swear ever fifteen year old girl I passed was wearing an ACDC shirt. (Except me. I had a Death Cab shirt because I am a BAMF.)

A music store frequented by those ancient, grungy, hardcore rockers would not be so stupid as to stock those sparkly t-shirts emblazoned with ACDC. It's the same band. It's a completely different market.

We don't go to Borders to buy Twilight lunchboxes.

We go to Borders to buy books.

Or maybe we'll start driving the extra ten minutes to Barnes and Noble.


Lunar Amyscope said...

*Sigh* I too remember the ACDC/Doors thing. I wore Cursive. This Twilight lunchbox thing boggles me. It boggles me as much as the fact that many girls my age claim that Twilight is their favorite fucking thing on the planet. But, hey. I havn't read it either. All I know is that if I was to buy a Twilight dildo I would pretend it was a Cedric Diggory dildo. Although I'm not gonna lie, I am more of a Severus Snape kind of girl.

Lucky for me, B&N is ten minutes away while Borders is, like, an hour and a half. Woo.

hannah said...

I would totally shell out for a Cedric Diggory dildo.

(Also, Cursive!!!)

Awriter said...

It's ridiculous, its like every book store, and I have read Twilight and I am a fan, the story is okay and the pacing is good and for its entertainment value it's good to. But it's not my favourite friggin' thing. Yes I am guilty of having two twilight posters, one of Edward (looked much better as Cedric Diggory). And one of Bella and Edward together just for laughs because people comment on how I look like Bella.

But really, its not even just the lunch boxes, its the t-shirts, the back packs, the messenger bags, trading cards, bracelets, door hangers, and everything else. It's kind of like you cant really get away from it. Now they did the same thing for Harry Potter (actually I don't even think it was that extreme for HP even).

But really, I agree I go to a bookstore to buy books, and maybe bookmarks if I'm there first to buy a book. I don't go there to buy t-shirts and other fandom stuff. Promotion is great and everything, but there is a line.

Kody Mekell Keplinger said...

I don't know anyone who still uses lunchboxes.
Though a friend of mine told me she'd cut herself to wear a Twilight band-aid. That is a whole seperate problem, however.

hannah said...

Hey, I carried a metal Charlie Brown lunchbox all through high school, and I was hella cool.

My school didn't have a cafeteria, so eeeveryone had a lunchbox. Or a bag.

Ami The Salami said...

Okay, last year my mom got really pissed at me for not eating lunch sometimes because I'm a vegetarian and they don't always have vegetarian lunches. So, she started making me bring lunch to school. *cough* I used a lunch box... It was from third grade so it had a unicorn on it...

But I swear I don't use it anymore.

Anyway, I'm an B&N girl, just 'cause it's closer and I can go there when I go to the movies with my friends cause it's right there. I go to Borders when B&N doesn't have what I want, but that's about it. (No indie's here...) But the whole Borders Ink thing is pissing me off. And the Twilight thing... I saw f***ing umbrellas! I have photo evidence.

Well, I think Twilight absolutely belongs in the YA section, 'cause I've read it (to see if it was really all that great) and it has some sex *coughbellasasexaddictcough* and cussing, so it doesn't realy belong in the children's section.

But, yeah. Twilight AND Borders are overdoing it. Please promise me you won't have Break band-aids ('cause that would totally fit) and skate boards and shit.

hannah said...

oh god, if someone offers to make BREAK band-aids and skateboards and shit, no WAY am I saying no! (not that it's up to me, though. **waves to Simon Pulse**)

Sissy said...

Followed you over from Nathan's site...

Thanks for the comments on the whole MG/YA thing. It really is hard to figure out what age group books are intended for when purchasing for the library. I sound really old when I say this, I know, but there are certainly some things that a 12 year old shouldn't be reading.

Twilight is a great example. The first two books are pretty mellow, and even though they are YA, Meyer writes cleanly enough that a 5th grader could read it. The problem comes in books three and four, where bedroom makeout scenes and a sexy honeymoon come into play. Maybe not so much for a 5th grader, when their parents haven't even discussed sex with most of them (very sheltered kids at my school.) I hate not shelving all of a series, so I have them all. Some parents have actually paperclipped some of the chapters together so the girls won't read those parts! Crazy, huh?

Every 12 year old can't wait to be 16, and they tend to read that way. They want the book AND the lunchbox, cause they're caught in the middle. Hence, the term 'middle school' I guess.

Ami The Salami said...

Excuse me, missy? I would never carry a Twilight lunch box! Maybe a unicorn. Maybe Powerpuff Girls. But TWILIGHT?

Okay, I guess you could get away with band-aids and skateboards, 'cause that's pretty damn cool. My little brother would totally buy the skateboard. But umbrellas? Come on!

Awriter said...

I agree with Ami, you could get away with band-aids and skateboards. I would totally get the bandaids, just because I'm accident prode and Break is cool.

Umbrellas? nope, cant see that one.

hannah said...

Sissy, thanks for the comment--I haven't read Twilight, so I have no clue if it'as appropriate by MG standards. I just know most of the girls I know who love it are 13/14--right on the cusp of MG and YA.

For the record, I DEFINITELY read books with sex in them when I was in middle school (YA books! not MG!) and, well, I turned out okay.

Anonymous said...

I'm Silver Spring born and raised. I feel your pain.

Also-- Twilight lunch boxes? Is this how far we've sunk?

hannah said...

have you been to the fenton street borders? it's EXACTLY how far we've sunk.