WAR ON BOOKS is a pop-up, mobile bookstore and micro-press focusing on independent, radical literature. We strive to bring new, underground, and underrepresented books and ideas to the public with a curated selection of small press publications, avant-garde writing, books on art, political philosophy, progressive psychology, restorative agriculture, race, gender, spirituality, and more.
What that means for us is that we must be ready to go. Reliable transportation is necessary for us to handle not only the retail side of things but also our societal commitments as well.
In our efforts to bring books, workshops, poetry readings, and other events to all corners of Southwest Virginia that do not have access to literary spaces and resources, a mid-sized, reliable cargo van is needed to expand both our radius throughout the valley and also the amount of inventory we can transport.
As of now, Isobel and I are operating out of our house, using our hatchback to travel to and from events. This limits what we can transport and where we can go. With a company van, War On Books can travel farther and to more locations such as outdoor markets, holiday events, protests, festivals... you name it.
In addition to the commercial side of things, we also want to participate in positive community action. Extending our time and efforts to work side-by-side with organizations such as the Appalachian Prison Book Program (by bringing books from estate sales and redistributing them through the federal prison system), Lions International (by collecting reading glasses and frames to bring to low income families), the Roanoke Prevention Alliance (to provide access to free Naloxone and overdose training to the public), Food Not Bombs (transporting food and supplies to shelters and encampments), and other groups like the Roanoke People's Power Network and the Roanoke Skatepark Initiative, is something that is important to us and to the future of the bookstore. For that to happen, a larger, more efficient vehicle is needed to pick up, transport, and deliver goods and services for these community projects.
We'd like to purchase a pre-owned, mid-sized Ford Transit. The average price for one with less than 100,000 miles is about $20,000 USD, and the cost of initial inspection and tune-ups, as well as branding, will be an additional estimated $5,000.
If we can come anywhere close to this, the benefits would be exponential.
This is why we need your help.
— Angelo Colavita & Isobel O'Hare