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An Interview with Angel Schroeder, owner of Sunrise Books in High Point, NC

Posted By Linda-Marie Barrett, Tuesday, November 27, 2018
An Interview with Angel Schroeder, owner of Sunrise Books in High Point, NC
Angel Schroeder
Store and location: 
Sunrise Books, High Point NC 
Social Media Stats:
Instagram about 450 followers; FB likes about 700; Twitter is 230. Our email list/Frequent Buyer Club is about 500.
Link to your store’s press kit:
Sadly, we do not have one. I have some graphic arts background, so it’s all in my head and on my laptop. I realize this is a poor excuse!
Events and buyer contact info:
Number of years as a bookseller
Best part about being a bookseller?:
Reading new books and talking about books with other book lovers.


What book(s) are you reading?:
I just finished The Dream Peddler by Martine Fournier Watson (4/2019 release) and am re-reading Treeborne for our upcoming book club and author visit with Caleb Johnson. 


Favorite handsell of 2018:
Southernmost by Silas House. I mean, who wouldn’t love that book? I plan to blanket the landscape with it when it comes out in paperback.
Best thing you did this year at your store:
Move to a larger location with better visibility and parking. We now have a back room for events, so we don’t have to rearrange the whole store for every author visit.
What are some ways you work with your community?
We regularly donate books to a local literacy organization, High Point LEAP, which helps kids stay in school. I also discount books that are being donated to other organizations. We have donated countless books, gift cards, and gifts for various fundraising events, and we are always open to hosting nonprofit groups. We say yes anytime we can to our local public library. We also volunteer and donate to Greensboro Bound, Guilford County’s literary festival, which was founded in 2018.
Do you have any community partners you work with regularly?
High Point LEAP, Southwest Renewal Foundation, St. Mary’s Episcopal Church, High Point Public Library, Cover the City, Backpack Beginnings
Do you have passions that carry over into your bookselling life?
Of course! We have far more birding titles and field guides than is strictly necessary. I am also a bit of a church nerd, so I carry a lot of religion, theology, and philosophy for a store our size. As the wife of an urban planner, I’ve always been intensely interested in the direction of our city, even before I became a business owner. The store recently bought season tickets for our new baseball team’s inaugural season.
Top priority for 2018:
Expand our customer base to include more of High Point, not just our immediate neighbors.
Favorite SIBA programming benefit:
Fall conference. I hated to miss it this year, but it was in the middle of our move. I always discover great books and meet authors that I want to have in the store.





Tags:  bookseller interview 

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A Great Start to the Holiday Season for Many SIBA Stores

Posted By Linda-Marie Barrett, Tuesday, November 27, 2018

A Great Start to the Holiday Season for Many SIBA Stores

It was a big weekend for booksellers across the country. In SIBA territory, the reports coming in are exuberant! I volunteered on Saturday at Avid Bookshop’s Five Points location in Athens, GA, where customers were greeted personally and guided to books they wanted and some they didn’t know they wanted! Avid’s sideline selection is stunning--by turns hilarious and honoring of all things literary and unique. I purchased a lovely hand-felted angel ornament for a friend, and a birthday card from Red Caps Press. I intend to pick up a set of “Journals for the Middle Child” on a future visit. A gift to myself :)

I worked with John and Christy, both on Avid’s events team, and with Janet, the store’s owner. This is the first year of The Avid Bookshop Bash (TABB), five days of celebration centered around the weekend after Thanksgiving. After each purchase, Avid booksellers offered customers prizes ranging from gift cards to commemorative bookmarks. As I wrapped gifts, I overheard so many customers praising the store and staff and making plans to come back before TABB ended on Giving Tuesday.

More reports from SIBA stores about their weekend sales:

Kimberly Daniels Taws, The Country Bookshop, Southern Pines, NC:

“Small Business Saturday was a big day for us. We gave everyone 10% off (something new for us) and we were up 42% over last year! This is really interesting and I think driven by our "spend $50 and get a gift" because we only had 8 more transactions than last year but sold 121 more units. The incentive of a gift at that price point, just higher than a hard cover and a paperback caused people to really increase their units per purchase. We saw a GREAT many out-of-towners, and locals who are discovering the bookshop for the first time, or making an annual pilgrimage.

We sold a lot of the staff picks, big books (Obama, Sparks, Jeff Kinney), and saw a real drive for autographed books. We also sold A LOT of The Broken Ornament. The Invisible Ink little books by Lee Publications are at very low price point and have sold very well for us.”

Jamie Rogers Southern, Bookmarks, Winston-Salem, NC:

“We had a great weekend! Because of our nonprofit status, we cannot flat out do "shop small" promotions so ours is more of a quiet attack. We had board members in to provide free gift wrapping throughout the weekend and our board president offered to match all purchases as a donation to our Book Build initiative during her shift. She ended up donating $1,400!

We were up 33% on the weekend and top selling items were: Becoming, We Should All Be Feminists, Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows, Wimpy Kid Meltdown, and Shade. Some of these titles were because we have our staff picks of 2018 reading up and people heavily shop off of them at the holidays. We did not do much programming this year, just our regular storytime and book art by a local artist on Saturday afternoon.

I loved seeing so many of our regular customers and volunteers bring in family and friends who were visiting from out of town and overhearing them talk about the bookstore as theirs!”

Stephanie Crowe, Page & Palette, Fairhope, Alabama: “Page & Palette had a busy day on Saturday, which included author visits by Karyn Tunks, author of Mardi Gras in Mobile and Michael and Sarah Hewes, authors of The Tempestuous Trial of Maybelline Meriweather.”


Pictured below from left to right are the authors visiting Page & Palette, a scene from Bookmarks, and the front and back sides of Avid's commemorative TABB bookmarks.




Tags:  booksellers  small business saturday 

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Posted By Nicki Leone, Monday, November 26, 2018


Submitted this week on Edelweiss+ using the "send to SIBA" option. Thanks to Avid Bookshop, Bookmarks, Fiction Addiction, Flyleaf Books, Fountain Bookstore, Inkwood Books, Malaprop's, Quail Ridge Books, Sunrise Books, The Country Bookshop, and Underground Books

9780062875655 No Exit 1/15/2019
"Thanks to Taylor Adams, I will think twice before turning in to a rest stop ever again."

9781616206772 The Current 1/22/2019
"I inhaled this book like a warm cup of soup on a cold day."

9780062358202 The Last Romantics 2/5/2019
"I'm here to say it, even if you don't like the term: this is a Great American Novel. "

9780812998955 American Spy 2/12/2019
"a great recommendation for people who enjoy books about espionage but are intimidated by typical thrillers"

9781683319443 The Psychology of Time Travel 2/12/2019
"What an incredible, intricate puzzle of a novel!"

9780062662811 The Poet X 3/19/2019
"Acevedo weaves a world where you are the confidant, and you want nothing more than for her to keep talking."

9780310766438 We Were Beautiful 4/2/2019
" a lovely story about how we all have things we're struggling with and perhaps if we learn to open up and rely on others a bit more, things can be a lot more bearable."

More bookseller reviews

If your store does not have an Edelweiss+ account and need help setting one up, contact Linda-Marie

Tags:  Edelweiss 

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Are you a reporting store?

Posted By Wanda Jewell, Thursday, November 15, 2018

Are you a reporting store?

Tis' the season to report your sales.  Are you sure your store sales are getting the attention they should?  Check in that sales are getting reported every week. And if you don't report sales, here's how to do it:

Reporting to the Indie Bestseller List and SIBA Indie Bestseller List

Gathered every week by the ABA, the Indie Bestseller list aggregates sales figures for ABA’s member bookstores throughout the country. A print-ready version of this list is available on ABA’s IndieBound page to download and post in your store. Those figures are further divided into regional lists, and we email that list to SIBA members weekly and also post it on our website.

Reporting is both easy and confidential. Just follow the steps below:

  1. Choose one of the three ways to report:
    • ABA manual entry
    • ABA file upload
    • To BookScan via your POS.
    You can review the reporting options here. The vast majority of stores choose the BookScan reporting method because:
    • It’s nearly automatic and drawn directly from your POS
    • You also contribute to BookScan’s important sales data, which drives publishing decisions.
    The BookScan compatible POS systems include Anthology, Basil, Book Manager, Books-In-Store, BookLog, Computac, IBID/IBIDie, Square One/iMerchant, Word Stock, and UBIC. However, as long as the system is capable of creating the report in the necessary format, BookScan can also use indepedent and other point of sale systems. Contact Ajantha Jesuraj at directly for instructions and to receive the appropriate software bridge. 

  2. If reporting via the ABA manual entry or file upload methods, create a login and password for the ABA reporting area on If your store doesn’t have a account, you can create one here. (You will need an ABA ID number to create the account, so if you’re not yet an ABA member, please join ABA.) 

  3. Your report should include sales that week beginning 12:01 am Sunday through midnight Saturday. 

  4. If reporting via BookScan, transmit the weekly report no later than 10 pm each Monday. 

  5. If reporting via one of the ABA methods, transmit the weekly report no later than 3 am EST each Tuesday via the ABA reporting site. The reporting site opens each week at midnight Saturday.

For questions, visit the ABA Indie Bestseller FAQ page. For technical support, contact Peter Reynolds at

Reporting to The New York Times Bestseller List

The New York Times Bestseller List, released every Sunday in the paper’s Book Review, reflects sales reported by vendors offering a wide range of general interest titles. The sales venues for print books include independent book retailers; national, regional and local chains; online and multimedia entertainment retailers; supermarkets, university, gift and discount department stores; and newsstands.

It’s increasingly important for independent booksellers to make their voices heard on a national level. Please, demonstrate the importance of the indie sales channel by reporting your sales to this important national outlet for book news.

To report your sales to The New York Times, please fill out this online request form

  • Every Tuesday, you’ll receive an email letting you know what titles are in the Book Review that weekend, giving you advance notice to order these titles for your loyal readers.
  • You’ll also receive the Times Digest with the pdf containing the Best Sellers Lists a week and a half before it hits the printed edition.
  • You’ll also receive a complimentary copy of the printed Book Review sent directly to your store.

For more detailed information, visit the Best Sellers List reporting site.

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Celebrating Avid's Bookshop Bash!

Posted By Linda-Marie Barrett, Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Celebrating Avid's Bookshop Bash!

I’m readying my gift-wrapping and handselling skills for a volunteer shift at Avid Bookshop in Athens, GA on Small Business Saturday/Indies First. This special day is just one of a five-day celebration called The Avid Bookshop Bash (TABB). John Farina, the events coordinator for Avid Bookshop, revealed what’s in store for readers and gift-buyers in their community. 

TABB is a series of events taking place 11/23-11/27 to celebrate another year of open doors and loyal customers.

  •  11/23- Book Friday (Black Friday in a really comfy sweater)
  • 11/24- Small Business Saturday

  • 11/25- Celebration Sunday

  • 11/26- Cider Monday

  • 11/27-Giving Tuesday


Though the other days are celebrated by indie bookstores nationally, Celebration Sunday is specific to Avid, celebrating the anniversaries of their newest location and the original Avid Bookshop.

To thank customers for their support, every purchase during TABB earns a prize. Prizes, drawn by the customer at the time of purchase, include commemorative bookmarks, a subscription, and a $50 Avid Bookshop Gift Card. To keep customers coming back during TABB, Avid will offer TABB Punch Cards that are hole-punched every time a customer makes a purchase.  (Customers receive an extra hole punch if they shop at Avid on Book Friday). Customers will receive “Bash Cash” coupons in $5 increments, in line with the number of holes punched.

Avid will also take donations throughout TABB for a local nonprofit, Books for Keepsand send them the proceeds on Giving Tuesday.

Avid Bookshop will be posting about The Avid Bookshop Bash leading up to the event and throughout. Be inspired and maybe do your own variation! I’ll report back in after Small Business Saturday with a recap. Happy Thanksgiving and Holiday Bookselling!

Tags:  Avid Bookshop  Indies First  small business saturday 

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Posted By Nicki Leone, Wednesday, November 14, 2018


Submitted this week on Edelweiss+ using the "send to SIBA" option. Thanks to Avid Bookshop, Bookmarks, Fiction Addiction, Flyleaf Books, Fountain Bookstore, Inkwood Books, Malaprop's, Quail Ridge Books, Sunrise Books, The Country Bookshop, and Underground Books

9780385543897 Southern Lady Code 4/16/2019
"It's sharper than a shattered Christmas ornament.You might cut yourself, but you'll laugh about it."

9781524766689 Button and Bundle 2/19/2019
"the perfect book to share with friends who might be separated due to a move, going to a different school, or even summer vacation"

9780525535539 The Good Detective 3/19/2019
"one of the best stories with a southern setting that I have read since I read the last Greg Isles"

9781616206215 Sugar Run 1/8/2019
"an Orange is the New Black meets modern-day Faulkner and David Joy."

9781501146060 Hark 1/15/2019
"Sam Lipsyte's satirical take on modern society, the human condition and how to "deal with it all" is miserably hilarious and charming, emotional and beautiful"

9780670012107 SHOUT 3/12/2019
"If you want to be told like it is...let her tell it."

9780811219099 Birthday 2/26/2019
"Since entering adulthood, no author has challenged my idea of what literature can be (or maybe should be) like Cesar Aira."

More bookseller reviews

If your store does not have an Edelweiss+ account and need help setting one up, contact Linda-Marie

Tags:  Edelweiss 

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Southern Book Prize Voting Continues

Posted By Wanda Jewell, Friday, November 9, 2018

Southern Book Prize Voting Continues

I hope you are excited about the ongoing Southern Book Prize promotion with your customers.Publishers want to share the love and promote your website to their social media accounts but we need you to get the badge and link up so your customer and new customers can VOTE!

Follow these three steps:

1. Place this image on your website:

Southern Book Prize
(right-click to save the image or click here )

2. Link the image to the ballot:

3. Let us know it’s up and running asap by emailing and we will send publishers a link to your website for their social network purposes! Let’s do this.

SBP FlyerStores running the ballot badge:



4. Don't forget your in-store displays!

Posters | Postcard Ballot | Checklist | Press Release

5. And share share share with your customers on social media:

facebook image | instagram image | #southernbookprize #VoiceYourChoice


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Question Plus Answer from Discovery Show

Posted By Wanda Jewell, Friday, November 9, 2018

Q&A from #SIBA18 Discovery Show

Q - I would like to know the number of stores that constitute a chain.

A - SIBA does not identify store by chain, but by standing.  Our definition for a core member bookstore is: Independent, privately held, brick & mortar, commercially zoned bookstores with a retail storefront and physical headquarters, in our region will constitute the core members.  Our main differentiation between and "indie" and a "corporate" store is whether or not they are a public or private company, as in sold on the stock market or not.  As long as a store/stores are privately held, they qualify for SIBA core membership.

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Highlights from the Art of Gathering webinar with Priya Parker

Posted By Linda-Marie Barrett, Friday, November 9, 2018

Highlights from the Art of Gathering B!3 webinar with Priya Parker

SIBA booksellers recently spent time via a B!3 webinar with Priya Parker, author of The Art of Gathering: How We Meet and Why It Matters. Ms. Parker is a master facilitator and the founder of Thrive Labs, at which she helps activists, elected officials, corporate executives, educators, and philanthropists create transformative gatherings. 

Describing her craft as group dynamics, Ms. Parker offered many creative ways to change-up bookstore events to put the emphasis back on meaningful purpose, rather than on familiar formats and logistics. She said, “Bookstores are going through a purpose crisis.” She suggested that a “more animating purpose than selling books,” which is something Amazon and so many other places can do as well, is to inspire reading and connect people who might not otherwise not connect through text. If your events are meaningful, people will return in droves.

She recommended bookstores internally develop a set of ethos and values, and come up with five things (formats, setting, promotions, etc.) that created successful events in the past. Then communicate this information to publicists. Once an event is scheduled, booksellers can use this time, what Parker calls “moments of influence,” to help publicists and authors learn how to be part of the store's unique gathering, to "prime" them. When the author arrives for the event, make sure the person greeting the author repeats what was sent in the emails, sharing not only logistics, but a sense of what is great about the bookstore, to give them courage about what works in your store.


She suggested a number of fun variations on the traditional author reading. She said, "Every gathering is a temporary alternative world. You have the opportunity to create a world for participants." She added, "Every book event has the opportunity to embody the principles of the book."  Because people disproportionately remember the first and last five percent of a gathering, she advised staying away from opening with logistics about cell phones and parking. Instead, communicate that information differently, perhaps giving people as they enter a card with logistics and a prompt that connects people to each other. You could even make one side a name tag. Or begin the event with a “cold open” in which you meaningfully connect the audience to your store, the sense of purpose you’ve created around this event, and to each other before you get into event logistics. Some of her format variations:


  • Rather than have the author read their book, have ten guests read a paragraph or page from the author’s work.
  • Set out chairs in concentric circles rather than rows.
  • Begin and end the event with a ritual.
  • Invite audience members to speak to each other for the first few minutes of the gathering (perhaps primed with questions about the book, your community, etc.).
  • Host events in different neighborhoods.
  • Use mysterious language in promotions to build intrigue. For example,"Someone's going to wind up in a bathtub."

When asked by a bookseller, “How do you keep from burning yourself out?” when trying to make every event meaningful, Ms. Parker responded that the process of creating meaningful gatherings will be energizing rather than being on autopilot, which can be exhausting. She said, “When you create organic meaningful gatherings . . . you get fuel back from feedback. It creates its own virtuous cycle.” She also emphasized that "meaningful gatherings don’t have to be expensive; part of the freedom of moving away from traditional formats is that we can take five to ten minutes to think up a simple human hack that changes the dynamics of things."


Ms. Parker was also asked how to prime “guests” for an event when you don’t know who they are in advance. She recommended thinking very deeply about the language, image, and content of the invitation or promotional materials. Instead of calling author events “events,” choose subcategories like hootenanny, salon, saloon, even funeral, if it works for the book; throw people off scripts to build intrigue. She advised, “Don’t be afraid to play around with rules. Passionate communities are built when people create purposeful, specific, disputable gatherings and enforce the norms around them.”


 To hear the many ways Ms. Parker suggests reformatting author events, including book festivals, listen to the webinar and prepare to be hugely inspired to shake things up!

Tags:  B3! Webinars  Priya Parker. events 

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Watch for your Southern Book Prize Ballots!

Posted By Nicki Leone, Thursday, November 8, 2018


ballotAll SIBA member stores have been shipped a set of postage-paid postcard ballots for the 2019 Southern Book Prize. They should be arriving for the start of the Love Your Bookstore Challenge week. Hand them out to your customers and get them involved in the excitement of choosing the best Southern books of the year.

  • Downloadable posters promoting all the Southern Book Prize finalists are available here for you to post with your store displays.

  • Ballots can also be submitted online at

  • Baker & Taylor is offering a special 45% discount offer on all the Southern Book Prize finalists, through December 1st. No promo code is required. Click here for a sell sheet

We've had a few questions about the new format, so here are some of the more common ones:

Can books still be nominated for the Southern Book Prize?
Nominations for this year's SBP (books published in 2018) have closed, but nominations for the next year's (books publishing in 2019) are open.

Can customers vote?
Voting on the finalists is open to the general public. We want stores to involve their customers. The ballots have a place for the person to write in their local bookstore and the ballot is invalid without this information. There is also an online ballot that will be active on 11/10. Submitted ballots are entered into a drawing to win a complete set of the Southern Book Prize Finalists.

What happened to the "long list" and the "short list"?
SIBA has eliminated the step of voting on the "long list" of nominated titles to come up with the "short list" of finalists. Instead, the finalists were selected from the books that received the most nominations.

Will you have booksellers judging the finalists this year?
No. Judging by booksellers has been replaced by the current ballot, which is open to all SIBA members and their customers.

Tags:  southern book prize 

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