A: Actually, I have another career also, but it was serendipity that I bought this store and my name was part of that serendipity.
I had been thinking about doing something different in my career and I told a friend, I just want to make coffee and work in a bookstore. Then I learned the bookstore was for sale and I learned it was more achievable than I thought, and so, then, since my last name is Read, I guessed it was meant to be and it was serendipity.
I bought the bookstore in December 2006. Read is my married name and the name of my ex-husband but also the name of my kids.
Q: Would you change your name if you could, and why or why not?
A: No. Not right now because of my kids and because of the bookstore.
Q: If you could choose another career, what would it be?
A: Funny, I sort of glanced at that question (in the paper) and since I already had two careers I couldn't imagine having another one. But I actually really love what I do in both of my jobs. Sometimes I wish I would not have to work quite so hard.
My other job is I'm an environmental statistician. I'm self-employed in that career, too, and work as a private consultant and work out of my house. The job involves lots of data analysis. It's very analytical and mathematical. My specialty is contaminated sediments, but I also deal in fish populations, landslides and seabirds and amphibians, so there's quite a breadth to my job, lots of diversity, and I make my own hours.
Q: How do you know when someone has picked up on the fact that your name is an aptonym?
A: Their face sort of lights up and they sort of smile and nod. It's a facial thing. And then they might say something when I have to explain how to spell it because people want to spell it in many other ways. Like Reed or Reid are very common. And I say, “No, it's Read, like read a book.” Then they might say, “I suppose you were destined to own a bookstore,” and I say, “Yes, I was.”
Q: How do people react to the combination of your name and job? Do they get it? Any funny stories as a result?
A: I wanted to name the bookstore “Read Books” if it hadn't already had a name.
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