Video shot and porduced by James Matthews.

Terence McCoy founded St Mark’s Bookshop with five friends in 1977. The group met while working together in other bookstores and decided to “pool their meagre resources” to launch their own venture.

“With a lot of sweat equity we opened our store on St Mark’s Place,” McCoy said.

McCoy states the key to a local bookstore is to know your audience: “There are a number of best-selling authors we don’t carry at all."

According to McCoy, the bookstore was able to “catch a moment” in the East Village/Lower East Side and catered specifically to the neighborhood – art galleries, the Super 8 film scene, innovative musical expressions such as punk rock and new wave, as well as a flourishing community of poets.

Today St Mark’s Bookshop continues to showcase volumes by small publishing houses and university presses. “We still have one of the best selections of poetry in town,” McCoy said.

For more on St Mark's Bookshop watch the video above.

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