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Walter Vennen, Co-Owner of the bookshop Schmetz am Dom in Aachen

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Videoscript Walter Vennen

Hello, dear book fair, happy 75th birthday! My name is Walter Vennen, I am the co-owner of the Schmetz am Dom bookshop in Aachen – and we have had the pleasure to visit Frankfurter Buchmesse again and again over many years. 

Of course, we don’t go alone. We usually take a whole bus full of people with an interest in literature with us. We then give them a nice bag full of surprises for the trip to Frankfurter Buchmesse. There are literary delicacies in it, there are vouchers, there is a bit of food in it so that they can get through the day at the fair.

Actually, the visitors are well looked after. And yet we have lost people wandering through the book fair and had to search for quite a long time to be able to collect them for our return home.

That was exciting, fun. But it was a bit of an extra-literary experience.

The other experience, was when I really regressed to being a young bookseller despite being a seasoned professional. We went to the Suhrkamp stand and there was an author standing there and I said: Wow!

I ran to the then publisher's representative Rita Dräger and said, Rita, I absolutely have to have a book. And she put Tristan Egolf's book „Monument to John Kaltenbrunner“ in my hand. And I got a signature from John Kaltenbrunner. I was completely thrilled. That day I floated home from the book fair.

I wish for many many more beautiful, exciting book fairs.