It’s not unusual for bibliophiles to daydream about chucking it all and opening their own bookshop. Now, Airbnb, Scotland’s National Book Town, and The Open Book bookstore are making it possible—if only for a week. Situated in the southwest Scottish village of Wigtown, The Open Book is a small, indie bookshop with a one-bedroom upstairs flat. For the modest fee of £150 per week —with the expectation of daily work in the bookshop—renters get a fully-equipped apartment and the chance to live out a fantasy. Here’s a clip from the Airbnb listing:
The first ever bookshop holiday / residency experience, Scotland’s National Book Town welcomes you to play-bookshop for a week or two. We’ll give you your very own bookshop, and apartment above, supported by a team of friendly volunteers and bookshop sellers to make your trip as lovely as possible. Set up by The Wigtown Festival Company, the bookshop residency’s aim is to celebrate bookshops, encourage education in running independent bookshops and welcome people around the world to Scotland’s National Book Town. The fee for your stay is low because we are a non-profit. It covers the running costs of the holiday but that is all. A laptop and WiFi are provided, plus bicycles for those who like to explore the bucolic countryside on two wheels!
The Open Book, formerly known as the Book Corner, is owned and operated by the Wigtown Festival Company, which runs the annual book festival and organizes marketing for the Book Town’s twenty or so book related businesses. Last year I covered the situation which led to the shop’s take-over and an early scheme to offer bookshop residencies for booksellers in a post called “Welcome to Wigtown”.