We had the good fortune of connecting with Kelsey Black and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Kelsey, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
I think I always knew this day would come – me, owning a small business. I started by selling Lemonade to my neighbors as a kid, hand-made jewelry as a teenager, bandanas in college, Insurance in my early 20s, and now books. Books are by far my favorite thing to sell. I am a fan of the title “Bookseller”. Yes, I am technically an “entrepreneur” or a “Small-Business Owner”. While I am both of those things, my favorite part of my job is the bookselling part. Being able to see the light in people’s eyes when they are excited about a new book. It’s not just a story or bound paper. Every book leaves you with something and being able to help people find their next adventure is my dream job. Bookseller is a vastly underrated title for my preferred title, “Adventure Dealer In Charge”. Being able to match the right person, with the right book, at the right moment. To send them on an adventure that helps them grow and see the world in a new light.

Image description

Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
My parents raised my younger sister and I to ask questions, to stand up for ourselves and hold our own, to be our own people, and when to sass appropriately. God bless ‘em. Stories were a big part of my childhood. My mother retired from teaching to homeschool me and my sister and would read to us every day. I had an Uncle that was a librarian. Books were and are a huge part of my life. Now I get to sell them????? Dream come true!!!!! The Biggest hurdle I have faced in my entrepreneurial journey has been understanding I am not alone in this weird journey we call life. I am a recovering Risk-Taker. What a luxury to be able to afford to take risks in this economy! I don’t have any room for risks in my life. After rent, payroll, inventory, and Credit Card fees, my bookstore makes 0.5% – 1% if at all. Which, by the way, Lawmakers are doing nothing about these outrageous Credit Card fees! The annual amount I pay in Credit Card Fees is over Three times (3x, over 300%) the amount I can take home to be able to save for the future. I can’t build generational wealth and live The American Dream™ if credit card companies steal my earnings as a business owner. Oh by the way, lawmakers are about to vote on this issue. Call your senator and tell them to VOTE YES on the Credit Card Competition Act.

We value authenticity and we don’t take ourselves too seriously. For example, our core values can be summarized with the acronym GAY BEAR, which stands for:
Geek out
Ask for help
You are the only you

Be Mindful of Others
Embrace Your Weird
Always Growing
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

When in doubt, just remember the GAY BEAR. But also integrity. Integrity is important too.

Image description

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
First and foremost I would show my friend all of the bookstores in my area starting with my bookstore. It also depends on what my friend is into as we have a bunch of specialty shops in my area. I live near Austin so I would show them Barton Springs Pool, the other bookstores in the area, The Capitol Building, depending on the time of year I may take them to see the bats under the S. Congress bridge, Austin City Limits Music Festival or SXSW. When I first moved to Austin I was told “If you are bored in Austin you are doing it wrong” – I couldn’t agree more.

Image description

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I dedicate this to all those who don’t think they can do it, and then do it anyways.

And to the most important factor behind my success: My support system. I would not be where I am today without my Partner Corbin, my family, my friends – They all hold me up. Behind every successful looking person is an unsung mass of people holding them up. My support system makes me look amazing because they remind me to take care of myself, drink water, eat real food, and keep me accountable.

Website: https://www.thebookburrowbookstore.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thebookburrowtx

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thebookburrowtexas

Other: https://linktr.ee/thebookburrow

Image description

Image description

Image Credits
Kelsey Black for all photos and credit for the Photo of Kelsey Black goes to the Book Burrow Team

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutDFW is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.