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help bring Sower Books to life

Help Tory open a welcoming, affirming, community-driven bookstore in Lincoln, NE!

$5,005
pledged of$50,000 goal
27
12Days Left
Fund it
Campaign Ends on May 31, 2024

Project Description

Hey friends! I'm Tory (she/her), and you might know me from Booktok, where I've been nerding out about books since 2021 under the banner of Chapters Books & Gifts in Seward, Nebraska. I've been lucky enough to spend the past SEVEN years learning the ropes of bookselling and running a bookstore, which is why I'm more excited than nervous to tell you... I'm going to be leaving Chapters to OPEN MY OWN BOOKSTORE!

Sower Books will be located in my adoptive hometown of Lincoln, Nebraska. Our name is both a nod to the iconic Sower sculpture on top of the Nebraska Capitol and an homage to Octavia Butler's "Parable of the Sower" -- a book about community care and building the better world you want to see.

 

What I envision at Sower Books is a spot where we're building that better world together. A place where:

  • diverse and marginalized voices are uplifted and celebrated; 
  • small, local creators and makers have a place to showcase and sell their wares (think stickers, jewelry, bookmarks, buttons, etc.)
  • there's room for friends, parents + kids, book clubs, crafters, etc. to meet up and hang out; 
  • everyone feels seen, valued, and welcome (unless they're a jerk. No jerks allowed!);
  • there's always someone around with whom to NERD OUT about books!

You might also know that I'm an enthusiastic cat lady. (Has it come up once or twice?) To that end, I'm planning a partnership with local animal rescues to offer "Reading to Rescues," allowing kids a chance to practice their read-aloud fluency to adoptable cats and the cats a chance to socialize before being adopted out, and new cats brought in. As my husband Spencer refers to it, "a kitten library!" (No worries, those with allergies -- our planned Read with Rescues area will be enclosed.)

Krieg and Stella (my at-home cats, not store cats)


A short digression: I grew up military. "Friends are the family you choose for yourself" was our motto in a childhood spent far from blood relations. I'm not religious, but I'll easily use the term "blessed" to describe the chosen family I've made of my friends: both the ones I know from the "real" world and the ones I've made in the book world. All y'all make my life richer and more beautiful on the daily, which is what I hope Sower Books will do for all y'all (and the community, and the world, and the universe etc. etc.).

people I'd never intentionally ignore, a.k.a. The Bookstore Squad + Crow-sauce-kah

Bookselling and bookstores are a passion-based business. They CAN make money, and the end goal is to operate Sower Books in the black, but I don't want to "get rich" from this store. I want to put good books in the hands of people who need them; to make my customers and (eventual) employees feel loved and appreciated; to be a safe, welcoming, comfortable space.

It would mean the world to me if you want to chip in as I bring Sower Books to the world.  And the universe, etc. etc. <3

 

Updates

The Campaign FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions:

  • None so far! Lmk what you want to know!

 

 

Jolynn Gardiner
01/31/2024
"Partial Owner*" sticker
$60
01/21/2024
Pick an even bigger perk
$1,000
Rachel
01/16/2024
Pick your perk
$250
Bex
01/10/2024
Pick your bigger perk
$500
12/25/2023
Pick an even bigger perk
$1,000
Theresa Crum
12/05/2023
Sower Books logo sticker
$30
Jessi Colgrove
12/05/2023
"Partial Owner*" sticker
$60
Maria
11/08/2023
"Partial Owner*" sticker
$60
Dee H.
10/28/2023
Monetary Contribution
$100
Bob
10/20/2023
Monetary Contribution
$25
Monetary Contribution

You know me. I'm always going to appreciate you and show my appreciation.

5 Supporters
Select this reward
30.00 USD
Sower Books logo sticker

When Sower Books has a logo (I'm working on it!), you'll get a dope vinyl sticker of it. It's gonna be great. Probably like, 3x3 or thereabouts. And a thank you note! Obviously!

3 Supporters
Select this reward
60.00 USD
"Partial Owner*" sticker

You'll get a vinyl sticker with Sower Books' logo (once it exists) and a banner declaring you a PARTIAL OWNER* of the store! (Note: "partial ownership" confers no benefits outside of a dope sticker that people will ask you about -- "you're a partial owner of a bookstore?! That's so cool!" and then they'll give you their number. Guaranteed.*)

 

 

(*not guaranteed)

9 Supporters
Select this reward
100.00 USD
an even better "Partial Owner*" sticker

THIS vinyl sticker will be bigger and it'll announce that others should "Ask This Attractive Person About Their Bookstore". Maybe it'll be holographic? We'll see.

 

(Note: "partial ownership" confers no benefits outside of a dope sticker that people will ask you about -- "you're a partial owner of a bookstore?! That's so cool!" and then they'll give you their number. Guaranteed.*)

 

 

(*not guaranteed)

3 Supporters
Select this reward
250.00 USD
Pick your perk

Do you want a shirt? a tote bag? a bumper sticker? We can make it work, dawg. I love you and I love that you want this store to happen. Ooh, what about a book sleeve with our logo and dino-print fabric?! (K now I need one too)

3 Supporters
Select this reward
500.00 USD
Pick your bigger perk

I love you, buddy. Free shipping for a year? Idk, maybe? Shirt, tote, ballcap? Beanie? A zip-up or hoodie? My mama Jeanne has an embroidery machine. I'm sure she can make you something cool. We'll be in touch. 

2 Supporters
Select this reward
1,000.00 USD
Pick an even bigger perk

Friendo. You'll get a custom piece of merch AND we'll name a bookshelf after you! Put your picture + name on the wall! Create a throw rug in your likeness! Or whatever else makes you feel valued and loved. Again, we'll talk! Whatever you want, we can dicker out the details. I appreciate you more than words can describe. And that's the TRUTH: I have the English degree to back it up factually. TM TM TM

2 Supporters
Select this reward
2,000.00 USD
Let's be honest, we're being silly here

(we're being silly but no less earnest about THANK YOU ETC, I CAN'T BELIEVE YOU ARE WILLING TO HELP SOWER BOOKS HAPPEN!) Tell me whatever you want and we'll probably figure out a way to make it happen.*

 

*no death, dismemberment, disembowelment, beating up of children (unless they're jerks), etc. Owner's decision is final.

0 Supporters
Select this reward

About the Entrepreneur

Lincoln, NE
Created 1 Campaign
Social Good

Rewards

Monetary Contribution

You know me. I'm always going to appreciate you and show my appreciation.

5 Supporters
Select this reward
30.00 USD
Sower Books logo sticker

When Sower Books has a logo (I'm working on it!), you'll get a dope vinyl sticker of it. It's gonna be great. Probably like, 3x3 or thereabouts. And a thank you note! Obviously!

3 Supporters
Select this reward
60.00 USD
"Partial Owner*" sticker

You'll get a vinyl sticker with Sower Books' logo (once it exists) and a banner declaring you a PARTIAL OWNER* of the store! (Note: "partial ownership" confers no benefits outside of a dope sticker that people will ask you about -- "you're a partial owner of a bookstore?! That's so cool!" and then they'll give you their number. Guaranteed.*)

 

 

(*not guaranteed)

9 Supporters
Select this reward
100.00 USD
an even better "Partial Owner*" sticker

THIS vinyl sticker will be bigger and it'll announce that others should "Ask This Attractive Person About Their Bookstore". Maybe it'll be holographic? We'll see.

 

(Note: "partial ownership" confers no benefits outside of a dope sticker that people will ask you about -- "you're a partial owner of a bookstore?! That's so cool!" and then they'll give you their number. Guaranteed.*)

 

 

(*not guaranteed)

3 Supporters
Select this reward
250.00 USD
Pick your perk

Do you want a shirt? a tote bag? a bumper sticker? We can make it work, dawg. I love you and I love that you want this store to happen. Ooh, what about a book sleeve with our logo and dino-print fabric?! (K now I need one too)

3 Supporters
Select this reward
500.00 USD
Pick your bigger perk

I love you, buddy. Free shipping for a year? Idk, maybe? Shirt, tote, ballcap? Beanie? A zip-up or hoodie? My mama Jeanne has an embroidery machine. I'm sure she can make you something cool. We'll be in touch. 

2 Supporters
Select this reward
1,000.00 USD
Pick an even bigger perk

Friendo. You'll get a custom piece of merch AND we'll name a bookshelf after you! Put your picture + name on the wall! Create a throw rug in your likeness! Or whatever else makes you feel valued and loved. Again, we'll talk! Whatever you want, we can dicker out the details. I appreciate you more than words can describe. And that's the TRUTH: I have the English degree to back it up factually. TM TM TM

2 Supporters
Select this reward
2,000.00 USD
Let's be honest, we're being silly here

(we're being silly but no less earnest about THANK YOU ETC, I CAN'T BELIEVE YOU ARE WILLING TO HELP SOWER BOOKS HAPPEN!) Tell me whatever you want and we'll probably figure out a way to make it happen.*

 

*no death, dismemberment, disembowelment, beating up of children (unless they're jerks), etc. Owner's decision is final.

0 Supporters
Select this reward