When Angela Shores (’01, ’06 M.A.) observed her community of Morganton, NC, she realized that there was a perfect space in the rapidly growing downtown area for an independent bookstore to flourish. Almost exactly a year ago, in June 2018, Shores and her family opened the doors of Adventure Bound Books, a space for the community to enjoy that Shore describes as “a boutique-style independent bookstore” that hosts children’s story hour, book signings, and writing workshops.
Now, a year later, Shores gets to enjoy her bookstore, accomplishing a dream to open her own business she has held since her time as an undergraduate religion major. “Every day is a challenge and I learn something new about myself and about being a business owner. Increasing awareness within our community that we once again have an independent bookstore is a primary challenge I face daily. There have also been some changes within the industry of bookselling that have created new challenges to overcome. I’m reminded with each challenge how well prepared I am to adapt and think creatively,” Shores said.
Shores admits she struggled with self-confidence before
transferring to Campbell from a larger state university, but that through her professors in the religion department, her work as a student in the President’s Office, and her interactions with members of the Campbell community both in and out of the classroom she learned to pursue her dreams. “Campbell offered a safe space full of supportive professors and staff members who encouraged me in ways I had not experienced in the time I spent at a state school prior to transferring to Campbell. My in-class, formal education as well as the out-of-class, co-curricular educational opportunities I had available to be at Campbell allowed me to discover more of who I was (and am), offered moment after moment for me to grow in confidence and courage, and taught me to be a critical thinker in and out of the classroom. Without that, I don’t know that I would have had the courage to pursue opening my own business,” she said.
Now Shores has her eyes set on a lofty aspiration. “The goal is to change the world,” she said. “I grew up believing that I could, and my time at Campbell further encouraged me in that belief. I want to challenge people to think in new ways, I want to offer people a safe place in their community to come to discuss and explore ideas. I strive to honor the rich diversity I want to see in the world through events and programming and through the books I curate for the shelves. The bookstore aims to be a place where action begins, where ideas are supported, and where lives are changed.”
Shores is a member of the Office of Alumni Engagement’s newest alumni recognition program, Orange Owned, which strives to encourage a network of Campbell alumni owned businesses. “I believe the Orange Owned program will help us increase awareness that we’re in our community, with a reach far greater than where we are. I believe that the Campbell community will be a source of encouragement and support for the goal to change the world but I’m not yet sure what and how that will happen. I just know that God moves in many ways and the Orange Owned program and Campbell community will be part of that. I believe that the bookstore will offer opportunities to alumni to think in new ways, will be a safe place for alumni to discuss and explore ideas, and will be a platform for alumni to change their worlds in different ways. I believe it will allow me, in some way, to connect with and support alumni everywhere, not just those geographically close to the bookstore. And because of that, it is exciting and humbling to be a part of Orange Owned.”
Adventure Bound Books is still relatively new, meaning they have some exciting ventures in their future. Shores hints towards coming plans, saying, “We are in the process of working with a new vendor to power our e-commerce program in order to offer individuals the chance to buy products from us online and support us from anywhere they are. We hope to have the new shopping website available in early July and appreciate the patience of folks who wish to support us in that way. In the meantime, we do offer online writing contests to encourage writers of all ages who aspire to take their writing journey to the next level. We would love to connect with published writers who are Campbell alums and help them promote their books through author events at the bookstore.”
“While I did start my college career at a large state university, and while I did earn my PhD from a large state university, when people ask me who my alma mater is, I always tell them Campbell,” Shores said. “I am immensely proud of the education I received from Campbell and the opportunity at Campbell to know myself better and to grow in many ways that have brought me to this time in my life. Go Camels!”