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Edinburgh’s Radical Bookshop

Home of Word power Books

FAQs

Hello! And welcome to our Frequently Asked Question page! (Still a work in progress!)

We are (luckily, woop!) a very busy bookshop and our booksellers try to focus on readers physically in the bookshop so this is a wee cheat sheet we’ve drawn up so you can get quick answers all in one place about JOBS, STOCK (books & zines), EVENTS, COLLABORATIONS & more general stuff. (Accessibility info is available HERE)

THANK YOU for taking the time to read, and if you have further questions do drop by the bookshop or give us a ring.

What are your opening hours?

Mon-Sat: 10am-8pm Sun: 11:30am - 5pm (These hours are subject to change in August and December, but updated hours will always be listed on our website)

What sort of bookshop is Lighthouse?

We are a radical, intersectional feminist bookshop. This means that we aim to be a truly inclusive safe space for all who need it, and we stock a large selection of books on feminism, LBGT+ writing and politics. We also keep a good general selection of fiction, poetry and various non-fiction categories.

BOOKS & STOCK SELECTION

Can you order me a book if you don’t have it?

Absolutely! Apart from the odd exception, we can order any book that’s in print in the UK (and some that aren’t) and get it within 1-10 days (depending on title availability). Many titles can be delivered within just 24 hours. To order you can email

I’ve written a book, would you be interested in stocking it?

We urge all authors to read the Booksellers Association’s guide to getting your books stocked in high street shops, available HERE.

Because of our limited shelf space, we have to be extremely selective when choosing which books to stock. If your book fits with Lighthouse’s particular stock profile (e.g. feminist, LBGT+, political and/or poetry) then we invite you to email us outlining the specifics of the title and the terms of supply and distribution (all detailed in the BA link above). Please do not send us Amazon links. We will endeavour to reply to you swiftly but sadly we’re not always able to do this.

My book is published by Amaz*n, would you be interested in stocking it?

No thank you. As a business committed to paying fair wages and supporting social justice we have an active boycott of amazon and all their products so we would not be in a position to stock your book. Amaz*n business practices pose an existential threat to the high street, and to bookshops in particular

Can I stock my zine/pamphlet with you? We LOVE zines, though to be honest we never have enough space for zines. If you would like us to consider your zine please shoot us an email detailing what the zine is about, how much it sells to the public for & how much it would cost the bookshop (we usually take 25-30% of the retail price). If you have images of the insides of the zines you can add as an attachment that is particularly helpful.

The zines we do best with retail between £3 and £6, are A5 or smaller, and are feminist/queer/antiracist/personal/anticapitalist/green or some combination of those.

If we think we have an audience for your zine we usually take 3copies sale or return and try them on the shelf for 1-3months depending on our agreement. If they do not sell in that time you can collect them and find them a better home. If they do then we let you know, get you paid and order more!

EMPLOYMENT / WORK PLACEMENTS

I’m looking for a job, are you hiring just now?

We don’t recruit very often, and we receive so many unsolicited but brilliant CVs & cover letters that when a spot does open up we usually go back through those applications first and, so far, have always found great booksellers that way.

So do feel free to send us your CV by email (we don’t accept paper CVs) and tell us why you’d like to work for Lighthouse, what hours you are looking for/general availability and what you like to read.

We are particularly interested in hearing from candidates who are habitually underrepresented in the book trade, notably working class, BAME and queer book lovers.

Unfortunately we can’t respond to all such emails, but we will keep them on file.

Do you offer holiday/ seasonal work?

We’re afraid not - it takes a wee while to get into the swing of things as a bookseller so we prefer all our booksellers to be with us for a few years at a time.

EVENTS, COLLABORATIONS & the Bookshop as a VENUE

Do you do events?

Yes, hosting events forms a big part of the shop’s mission, and we usually have at least two on every week. These range from author talks to discussion groups, lectures and workshops. For more information and tickets, please see our Eventbrite page or ask a bookseller in store.

Can you tell me more about your book clubs?

Certainly. We host five regular book clubs, themed respectively around Women in STEM, LGBT+ writing, Women in Translation, Science Fiction and left-wing politics. If you would like more info about upcoming meetings and the books for discussion, please visit our Eventbrite page or ask a bookseller in store. We also offer a 10% discount on titles if they are being bought for book club.

I’d like to do an event with you, are you interested?

If you want us to host an event based around a particular book or theme that fits the shop’s ethos, feel free to send us an email outlining the specifics. (Author, Book, Possible dates)

Please also be aware that our events schedule usually fills up a couple of months in advance, so bear this in mind when contacting us. Our events are usually 1 hour long, from 7.30-8.30pm Tuesday-Friday, though some events suit a Saturday morning coffee-morning type format.

We cannot host additional events during August or from mid-December to mid-January.