Today we’d like to introduce you to Kristi Pihl.
Kristi, we appreciate you taking the time to share your story with us today. Where does your story begin?
Books are a grounding force in my life. Whether that was the little girl hiding in a treehouse with a flashlight in Iowa, or the young professional flipping the pages of a novel on airplanes each week, or even the struggling working mother who still found time to read with her baby every day. Reading-and not just reading anything but reading a book-is a way to quiet all the noise and connect with ourselves and the world around us.
2020 challenged me in ways I could never have imagined. Grief, pain, and fear lingered around every corner. My core belief that the future would be brighter than the past wavered. I was a mess. And I got sick. Really sick. I spent weeks quarantined from my husband and three-year-old son.
For far from the first time in my life, my books kept me company, and they kept me sane. It’s not just the stories within them that make books matter; it’s the books themselves. It’s holding that book in your hands and letting it transport you to another time, another place, another perspective. Books are totemic. They are transformative.
I am a reader. It is as critical a part of my identity as words like mother, wife, sister, friend, engineer. I have other interests and hobbies but nothing comes close to my love of getting lost in a good book.
I had had this idea for a book rental service knocking around in my head for years, and during my battle with COVID it came roaring to the surface. What would happen if I put everything I learned from years working in tech toward a mission core to my identity? Well, I can now tell you: Twigge will happen.
I surrounded myself with a team of incredible people and, together, we are finding purpose in our mission to improve access to books. We launched to friends and family around Thanksgiving 2020. Since then we’ve tripled our inventory and grown to serve thousands of readers nationwide.
Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
I would question anyone who claims that building a new business is a smooth road with no struggles! Launching a business in the middle of a pandemic as a mother with unreliable child care has certainly been an unforeseen challenge but with the help of our wonderful community here in Denver and a great team we’ve found ways to band together to overcome those hurdles. Another early challenge for us was helping our customers get comfortable with a new and different way to read real books. Our team has really done a great job explaining our rental home delivery program and people are growing more and more comfortable every day ordering things online and finding new ways to re-use and reduce clutter by ‘renting’ versus buying.
Great, so let’s talk business. Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
We are a book rental home delivery service. At Twigge, we embrace the book as a cherished object and are committed to our mission of improving access and affordability for readers everywhere. No e-books or audiobooks allowed. We are here for folks who favor reuse and love to flip real pages. Think of Twigge like the old days of Netflix on DVD. Rent a book online and we’ll ship it to you. Read it and send it back.
Why should readers get books from Twigge? Stay Home → A two-way delivery service eliminates the need for trips to the library or bookstore. Save Money → Buying all of the new books on a reading list can quickly add up. Reduce Clutter → New ‘stuff’ piles up quickly, especially with voracious little readers. Discover Books → Our collections are highly curated with every title hand-picked by our team of bibliophiles. No Subscription → Read what you want, when you want. No auto-renewing monthly bill required.
Neuroscience tells us that “when we read, we hone and strengthen several different cognitive muscles, so to speak, that are the root of the EQ.” [Harvard Business Review]. And we know that “a high EQ helps individuals to communicate better, reduce their anxiety and stress, defuse conflicts, improve relationships, empathize with others, and effectively overcome life’s challenges.” [PsychCentral]
Our mission is to make reading a real book more accessible and more affordable. We believe it’s not just the stories within them that make books matter; it’s the books themselves. It’s holding that book in your hands and letting it transport you to another time, another place, another perspective. The experience simply cannot be replicated on a screen.
We want to help people re-discover the magic of flipping real pages and spend more time reading and less time tweeting. And we believe that has the power to heal people. And when you heal people you heal societies.
What was your favorite childhood memory?
Staying up way, way too late reading Harry Potter for the first time. Sitting in the quiet of the night completely unaware of how much time had lapsed while my heart raced as I devoured that book. That experience laid the foundation for my love affair with real books that will last a lifetime.
- All our book rentals last 6 weeks.
- Shipping is always free, both ways.
- We charge $6.99 for paperbacks.
- We charge $8.99 for hardcovers.
- Options to extend or purchase a book rental are also available.
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: https://twiggebooks.com/
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/twiggebooks/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/twiggebooks/