A Weekend in Booktopia


Did any of you attend the recent Books on the Nightstand Readers’ Retreat in Manchester, Vt. (now dubbed “Booktopia”)?

I wish I had. The event brought together readers, authors, and editors for an early Spring weekend of casual conversations in Manchester, VT. There were several New Englandy gathering places, including a really inviting looking bookshop called The Northshire Bookstore (pictured above). In his account of the weekend, Robert Gray, a contributing editor at Shelf Awareness, an online newsletter for the book trade, said that he was still energized by the event a full two weeks after it was over.

Interestingly, most of the participants were introverts:

“Someone commented that most of us were probably introverts (true in my case), but how outgoing we were. My realization was that I don’t often know how to get involved in ‘small talk,’ but books I can talk about. So, if outside the retreat I talk to someone who doesn’t read much, we don’t have anything in common to generate the talk. At the retreat, we were like-minded and could discuss our passion.”

I hope to attend the next Booktopia event! Maybe you, too?

*This post is in place of the usual Friday series “What to Read This Weekend.” My family and I have just returned from a delicious week with my in-laws in Ann Arbor, and I didn’t have much time to read!



  1. Ann Kingman on 24.04.2011 at 19:08 (Reply)

    Susan, thank you so much for mentioned the Books on the Nightstand retreat on your blog. It was indeed a wonderful gathering of like-minded people, who also went out of their way to respect others’ desire to be alone at time, such as spending breakfast with a book instead of meeting new people.

    Not sure when the next “Booktopia” event will be, but I do hope you will consider joining us. In the meantime, our community (largely listeners of our weekly book-related podcast) gathers at Goodreads and Facebook to share recommendations, thoughts on what we are reading, etc. I won’t spam your comments with links to those groups, but links to all are available at Books on the Nightstand in the sidebar.

    I look forward to taking a look at your book.


  2. Susan Cain on 24.04.2011 at 21:10 (Reply)

    Thanks, Ann, great to hear from you! I don’t think it would be spamming AT ALL for you to include those links; i’m sure readers would love to have direct access to them.

    Look forward to meeting you.

  3. debbie stier on 26.04.2011 at 08:09 (Reply)

    This is my favorite bookstore in the whole wide world. It is a destination and a reason unto itself to travel to VT.

  4. Patricia on 27.04.2011 at 17:15 (Reply)

    Oh this sounds very fun indeed and to be in the East with all those bookie connections – although I understand Western Washington leads the world in per capita readers and I know we have lots of bookstores, amazon, and lots of readers at coffee shops! Thank you for sharing and the links

  5. […] it’s a fascinating book that has made Michael look at the world a little differently. (Susan blogged about last year’s Books on the Nightstand retreat, even before we knew that her book would be published by Crown, one of the Random House imprints. […]

  6. […] reading about last year’s BOTNS Retreat, Susan Cain blogged about it, saying she hoped to attend the next event. Lo and behold, it all worked out and we were […]

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