Mike Sterling is born



Posted above is the Twitter page for Mike Sterling’s Theopolis, MD bookstore, Thoth Spot. I haven’t decided if it will stay Thoth Spot or if I’ll make it Thoth’s Spot. Either way its going to be a tongue twister. Thoth is the Egyptian god of writing, amongst other things, and is often depicted as having the head of an Ibis, as shown in Mike’s profile pic. It kind of sounds like “soft spot.” I don’t have anything clever planned for that but who knows? Maybe something will come together. Like a baby’s skull. Fontanelle?

For my artifact, I want to build a website for Thoth(‘s) Spot, complete with online shopping and customer invoices. It will look like a page for an independent bookstore, but the real artifact will (hopefully) be under the surface, for the sufficiently clever and curious to discover. The website will say a little bit about the kind of guy Mike is, indirectly of course. It will feature a description of the bestsellers and what have you that are on offer at Thoth’s, but those won’t be for sale online because Mike realizes that he can’t compete with Amazon and other services for online shopping. The site will feature pictures of the place and the neighborhood, and advertisements for coffeehouse readings either sponsored by Thoth’s or held on-premises, and other such events. What will be for sale online will be Thoth’s rare book collection, with maybe one or two exceptions, items that are too valuable to even an unsentimental guy like Mike to sell. Maybe he has something that looks like the first appearance of Spiderman, Amazing Fantasy #15, that he suspects might be a second printing, but he’s keeping it anyway because it makes him happy. Anyway these rare books he’ll sell to collectors or whomever at a variable price, depending on the item and situation. There aren’t really MSRPs for these things anymore, and Mike finds an element of fairness in the negotiations sometimes, and it gives him something different to do. Anyway most of that is done via email, unless somebody is actually in the store, which will be reflected on the site, but is a little harder to quantify.

I’m starting to get a little sad this isn’t real life.


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