Saturday, June 23, 2018

Molly, The Dog With Diabetes

"Last fall, I was walking to work when I ran into my neighbor Sue Powers and her dog Molly," said Kevin Coolidge, owner of From My Shelf Books and Gifts in Wellsboro. Powers told him Molly had diabetes and might make a good children’s book.

“As I walked on, I began thinking Sue might be right. My dad had adult onset diabetes and I had a good friend who died at 40 of diabetes. At the bookstore, I asked Jen Colson what she thought. She has diabetes. "Great idea," she said. Customers who came to the store that day agreed.”

"Four years ago at Christmastime, Molly began urinating constantly so I took her to our veterinarian thinking she had a urinary tract infection," said Powers. Molly’s urine test showed she was diabetic.

“Every morning, I test Molly's urine to determine her glucose level. Based on her blood sugar results, she gets injections of animal insulin two times a day, is on prescription dog food that has less carbohydrates to keep her weight down and her blood sugar in check, and goes for a daily walk. She gets half of a small dog bone as a treat and also likes raw carrots,” said Powers.

“If Molly’s blood sugar dips too low, she has a hypoglycemic episode, just like people do. If she goes limp, I give her honey and that brings her around in a couple of minutes.”

“When we are on a walk, Molly is always excited to see Kevin. One day, out of the blue, I said to him, ‘I have a great idea for a children’s book – Molly, the dog with diabetes.’ ‘I’ll add that to my list,’ he told me.”

Later that same day, Kevin called and told Powers he had brought up the idea of doing a children’s book about a diabetic dog to people who worked at the bookstore as well as customers. “He said each person he talked to was either diabetic, had a family member that was or knew a child with diabetes,” said Powers.

“I felt that writing about what a dog with diabetes goes through would show children they can live a normal life if they take care of themselves,” Powers said. “The two of us began chatting about the parallels between diabetic dogs and people. I told Kevin that Molly goes on vacation with us and has children and dogs that come to play with her. He talked about ideas he had. We both began to get really excited about this book," said Powers.

“That’s where my inspiration came from to do a day in Molly’s life,” Coolidge said. “It’s a feel good book about how happy and healthy Molly is as she lives with diabetes.”

Kevin wrote most of "Molly, the Dog with Diabetes" last November and added finishing touches in January.

The next step was to raise funds to pay an illustrator and a formatter. Coolidge opened an online Kickstarter account. He hit his $1,000 goal on May 12. Those who contributed $10 will get a free autographed copy. “The illustrations will be finished by the end of June and the book formatted and printed by the end of July.

"We are planning a book release party on First Friday, Aug. 3 from 5 to 7 p.m. at the bookstore," Coolidge said. "Sue and Molly will be there." Those who want to pre-order the book can call From My Shelf Books and Gifts at 570-724-5793.

Molly is the center of attention for Kevin Coolidge and owner Sue Powers. The seven-year-old dachshund mix has diabetes and is the star of Coolidge's soon to be released children's book.
Photo by John Eaton

Friday, June 22, 2018

Not a Mistake... an Opportunity!

"Beautiful Oops!" is an inspirational, interactive book to encourage kids (and their adults!) to create -- to let go of their perfectionism, to stop throwing away "mistakes" made during the creative process (and perhaps in other areas of life?), and to make an "oops!" into something fun.

Filled with flaps, pop-outs, overlays, see-through-the-hole pictures, bright colors, and tons of imagination, this book is a great gift. There's even a journal/sketchbook to complement the original book: "My Book of Beautiful Oops!: A Scribble It, Smear It, Fold It, Tear It Journal for Young Artists". (Think of Keri Smith's 'Wreck This Journal' series, but with brighter colors, for the younger set.)

We are looking forward to sharing these with our young and young-at-heart folks wishing to be creative!

Monday, May 28, 2018

Do You Love Jokes?

Kids, do you love jokes? Would you like your favorite joke to appear in a book? Kevin, author of The Totally Ninja Raccoon series, is putting together a Totally Ninja Raccoon joke book. If you'd like a chance for your favorite joke to appear, just send him your favorite joke on a stamped postcard to:

From My Shelf Books
Att: Kevin
7 East Ave
Wellsboro PA 16901

Or come in a tell him yourself.

Grown-ups, you can enter too, just remember these jokes are for kids. So, must be clean...fart jokes are acceptable.

Remember, it does not have to be a joke you created, but it is fine if it is.

Jokes must be post marked by September 1, 2018

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

What's Going On at FROM MY SHELF: FAQ for Spring 2018

Lots of rumors, news, questions, stories, and concerns swirling around in the ether about From My Shelf Books & Gifts lately! We've answered a lot of questions in face-to-face discussions these last couple of months, so we thought we'd post some of the most-frequently-asked questions and answers here, for your reference. :)

1. QUESTION: I heard you were having a contest to give away the bookstore?

ANSWER: We WERE running an essay contest, where those wishing to participate sent us a $75 contest entry fee along with their short essay addressing this question: "Why is a bookstore important to a community?" IF we received 4,000 entries, a committee of judges would have chosen a winner. The contest entry deadline was March 31, 2018. We didn't receive enough entries to go forward with passing ownership on to a winner. Checks are being sent back to those who entered, along with our gratitude for folks who love bookstores and believe they are essential to a community. We'll be publishing some of their answers on the blog, so check in again!

2. QUESTION: Are you closing the bookstore?!?

ANSWER: No! Nope! Not true! From My Shelf Books & Gifts will continue forward, with your hosts Kevin & Kasey, bookstore cats Huck & Finn, and a couple of familiar faces on staff! We will be making some changes over the next few months, as we RE-organize, RE-boot, RE-birth, and RE-new the structure of the bookstore to meet the current market and our community's needs. Thank you all for expressing your love and concern for our staying here and staying at the helm.

3. QUESTION: Are you going to become a bookstore just for children's books?

ANSWER: We will be focusing more, BUT NOT EXCLUSIVELY, on books and gifts for children. We're excited to expand our inventory for babies through young adult. If you know us, however, you know that each person on staff has their own favorite authors and genres, so we will continue to stock those, continue to have great personal recommendations for you and yours, and continue to introduce you to great new reads.

4. QUESTION: I'm a member: when can I start bringing in my trade-ins again?

ANSWER: We're not currently taking trade-ins. We love being able to offer new and used books, and we love the way real books recycle. It finally happened, though: WE RAN OUT OF ROOM. We've been having all kinds of HUGE sales over the last year to try to open the pressure valve, so to speak, on our storage capacities, but we've finally gotten to the point where we need to sell off and reorganize all the inventory we've accumulated over the last 12 years. A lot of that inventory comes from our generous trade-in program. So, for now, enjoy big sales. Later -- if summer ever gets here -- we can take trades again!

5. QUESTION: I'm a new author: will you buy my book/carry my book in your store/host me for an event?

ANSWER: Please email us at from_my_shelf (at) to sign up for this year's 10th Annual BookFest in October! This is a great way for regional authors to get their name out to folks in our area, get a ton of publicity, and get started selling books in our community.

6. QUESTION: I'm an author who has books with you that you agreed to sell on consignment. Are you selling those off in your 50% off sales?

ANSWER: No, at present, your books are NOT included in our 50% off sales. They are being sold at the agreed-on price. I do, however, strongly encourage you to contact us right away, because when we get ready to move a lot of inventory around here -- and the time is fast approaching -- we will expect you to take whatever books of yours are remaining. We cannot store them any more. We'll absolutely need to have fewer copies of your books. Please email ASAP.

7. QUESTION: Are all these great sale prices just for bookstore members?

ANSWER: Not all of the BIG sales are exclusive to members, but many of them are, and will continue to be. We do have sales that are available to EVERYONE, and we are currently changing the sales on a regular basis, so check in often. Don't be afraid to ask! Stop in to see what we have!

8. QUESTION: Can I still do custom orders with you, even if you're focusing more on kids' books/even if your physical store gets smaller?

ANSWER: OF COURSE!! We really enjoy helping you get the books you want. New books are almost always in our Chambersburg, PA, warehouse and can be here in 1-2 business days! People who custom order with us are often surprised that we get things in, regularly, faster than even Amazon or Barnes & Noble. Plus, if you prepay, we can offer you some fantastic discounts. If you haven't done custom ordering with us before, ask us what we can do for you. If you have had us custom order for you in the past, don't worry: that's not changing! We've got you covered!

Now, let us know what other questions you might have. Thanks for sticking with us, bookstore friends; we are sticking with you!

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Molly, The Dog With Diabetes

Molly, the Dog With Diabetes, is a true story about a dachshund mix dog, and her journey with diabetes.

Molly is my next door neighbor's dog, and I see her most mornings when I walk in to work. I didn't know she was diabetic until my neighbor mentioned it.

My neighbor is a former educator, and she thought Molly's story would make a great book. I agree!

I contacted agents, and one was interested, but had glaucoma surgery. She referred me to other agents....all thought it was too niche.

They're wrong. At its heart, Molly's story is not only a dog story--and who doesn't love a dog story?--but the story of living a happy and healthy life with diabetes.

Does anyone NOT know someone with diabetes? I have several friends with diabetes. Sadly, a good friend of mine passed from complications of the illness at 40. My father had adult onset diabetes in his senior years. This book is needed.

With your help, I'm going to bring this much-needed book into the hands of children and dog lovers everywhere.


Monday, February 26, 2018

Will You Vote For Wellsboro?

by Kevin Coolidge

My family goes back several generations in Wellsboro, and I was born at Soldiers and Sailors hospital, right in Wellsboro. We've mostly been blue collar workers, farmers and factory workers and truck drivers. It's not always an easy way to make a living. I remember when the local glass plant went from Corning Inc., to GTE, to Osram-Sylvania to closed.

A lot of my family worked there. I worked there myself for five years. Factory work can be hard on the body, but it was a job that put me through school. I moved away from Wellsboro for that schooling, but moved back, because I love my hometown.

That's why I nominated Wellsboro for the Main Street Pennsylvania contest. If Wellsboro wins, the $25,000 will go to the local Wellsboro Chamber of Commerce. I don't know what the money will be used for. $25,000 doesn't go as far as it used to. I'm hoping it will go to a shop local campaign, or maybe used to attract a company that can put Wellsboro and Tioga County back to work.

Sure, I have a vested interest in the area. I have a business that I approach with the same working class ethic I was born to. I work every day, if the bookstore isn't open, I'm working on my writing. My books are set in Wellsboro and Tioga County. The first rule of writing is write what you know. I also write where I know.

One of my goals with my books is to put Wellsboro into the national spotlight. Wellsboro already does so much right with the Laurel Festival, and Dickens of a Christmas, and has that feeling that just says home. I want to continue on the hard work of those who came before, that milked the cows, that picked the cullet, that promoted the Pennsylvania Grand Canyon.

So, vote for Wellsboro. It's easy. Just click on the photo of Wellsboro and you can vote once every 24 hours until April 23rd. Then we get to see if Wellsboro moves to the next round, but most importantly, vote for Wellsboro in other ways.

Buy your shoes in town if you can, or your underwear. If you buy a book, buy it from my store, From My Shelf Books & Gifts. I put that money right back into the community like my family has been doing for generations. Don't do it for me, or your neighbor, or yourself. Do it for everyone. Do it for Wellsboro and Tioga County.



Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Wellsboro is going to get what it deserves!

Wellsboro is going to get what it deserves!

You asked, and we listened. You asked us to stay and we are! From My Shelf Books & Gifts is going to continue to be run by Kasey and Kevin, but we're going to make some changes.

First, we are downsizing to give Kevin the freedom to do more author events. That means big sales for our members.

Everything in the store is 50% off! Everything except the cats, Huck & Finn are staying in the book business.

We are going to concentrate on being advocates for children's literacy, and mostly focus on children's books, but we are still going to be able to custom order and give you the same great service we always have.

Wellsboro deserves a bookstore, and Wellsboro is going to get what it deserves

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Local author "Ghost Write" a Valentine's Day Poem

Local author "Ghost Writes" a Valentine's Day poem or customized greeting for your significant other.

Writing to the beloved is never easy, so why settle for some "Hallmark" greeting card to say the things you long to say to her or him. This Valentine's Day get the right words on paper with the help of a published poet and author.

Declan Synott is available now for crafting the Valentine's Day greeting that she will treasure for a lifetime. In the tradition of Cyrano DeBergerac, there is no shame in getting a little help in the romance department.

The process is easy and fun:

Fill out a simple two page survey that helps describe your significant other, Synot will contact you to determine what additional content or intent you have for the poem or greeting.

Then he will deftly write the best poem for the occasion--filled with the love and gratitude you hold for her or him.

For only $10 per poem or greeting, you will be a partner in a process that evolves into a carefully crafted message of love and romance. We provide Valentine themed stationary and an email version to back up the hard copy.

Orders are being taken now at From My Shelf Books & Gifts, 7 East Avenue, Wellsboro. Stop by today. She will thanks you in so many ways when she reads her customized verse.

Friday, February 2, 2018

How to Win a Bookstore |

How to Win a Bookstore | It’s a bibliophile’s dream. A chance to win a whole bookshop. Now, thanks to a rare opportunity, you could win a bookstore by writing a short essay stating why bookstores are important to the community.