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B3! Webinar: Bringing Used Books into the Mix for Higher Sales and Profit

Posted By Linda-Marie Barrett, Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Mark your calendars for Wed, October 16 at 2pm EST, to hear from four booksellers whose bookstores offer a profitable blend of new and used books. With higher profit margins and unique inventory possibilities, adding used and antiquarian books into your mix could be a way to bring in new customers, further meet the needs of existing ones, and improve your cash flow. And it can be fun! Highlighting used and collectible books on social media offers creative opportunities to share unusual jacket designs, hilariously dated subject matter, and ephemera left from a book’s previous owner. Unsaleable used inventory can be turned into journals, buttons, and literary confetti, as Underground Books has done so successfully. Join us to listen to four approaches to selling used books, and blending them into your new book inventory. Please rsvp to attend.

More about our Presenters:

Cathy Graham is co-owner (with Serena Wyckoff) of Copperfish Books in Punta Gorda, FL. They started their bookselling business 15 years ago in the garage, selling used books online. Now they have a full-service shop – almost 7 years open – and most of the books they sell are new.  Cathy’s background includes teaching high school, the US Air Force, a couple of corporate sales jobs, and a Benedictine monastery. She grew up in Orlando, spent many years in Maryland, and a few in Costa Rica. Besides reading, she enjoys cooking, music, wine, cats and goats (although she doesn't have any goats at the moment).

Shane Gottwals was born and raised in Macon, GA, attending Central Fellowship Christian Academy from kindergarten until graduation. He has a B.A. in English from Mercer University, spending a portion of his college years at Oxford University in England. He met his wife, Abbey, at Mercer University. They have four children and live in Warner Robins, GA. The couple opened Gottwals Books in 2007. Shane has extensive retail experience which has helped Gottwals Books (franchising nationwide as "Walls of Books") become one of the largest used/new bookstore chains in the United States. He currently serves on the boards of Covenant Care Adoption Services, Robins Regional Chamber of Commerce, Central Fellowship Christian Academy, and Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance.

Frank Reiss has been buying, selling and trading used, out-of-print and collectible books for over 35 years, first at Acorn Books in San Francisco and, since 1989, as the founder and owner of A Cappella Books in Atlanta, which has earned Hall-of-Fame status from "Atlanta Magazine" and is annually selected in "Creative Loafing's" "Best of Atlanta" issue. In the 1990s Frank served as president of the Georgia Antiquarian Booksellers Association. Since then A Cappella has focused more on new books and contemporary touring author signings, but carefully selected older books continue to shape the store's unique inventory.

Josh Niesse is the co-owner of two independent brick & mortar bookstores in west Georgia. Underground Books, opened in 2011, is an 1800 square foot bookstore that is literally underground, a few steps below street level off of the historic town square in Carrollton, Georgia, home of the University of West Georgia. Underground Books is primarily used & antiquarian, with about 20% new books. Hills & Hamlets Bookshop is a 600 square foot bookstore, dealing in about 80% new books, opened in 2016 in the progressive planned eco-community of Serenbe.  Niesse co-owns both stores with his wife and fellow bookseller Megan Bell. Niesse has a bachelor's degree in philosophy and worked as a literacy tutor and bartender before becoming a bookseller. 


Tags:  B3! Webinars  Used books 

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"Keeping Your Expenses on a Tight Leash" Webinar Recap

Posted By Linda-Marie Barrett, Monday, June 10, 2019

Jill Hendrix, owner of Fiction Addiction in Greenville, SC, and founder of Stress Less, a blog where she shares “tools and musings to reduce stress and increase joy,” presented her approach to “Keeping Your Expenses on a Tight Leash” in a recent SIBA webinar. The webinar was interactive throughout, with Jill asking booksellers to share about various financial topics, including financial stress, and goals.


Jill described her own journey from feeling great financial stress to getting her store’s finances on track and achieving a healthier work/life balance. She explained her path to a mindset shift and how this supported initiating positive changes in her business. Some topics covered:

  • Changing your attitude toward money, expenses, and profit

  • Sorting expenses into four “houses”: rainmaking, protection, productivity, consumption

  • Evaluating expenses to determine if they are achieving their goals

  • Involving community--employees, a working group of other business owners, your bookkeeper--in the process


Jill also offered quick wins, such as opening a new bank account and transferring 2% of every cash/check deposit into that account, and making a pruning date, by creating a repeating calendar entry “Prune My Expenses,” and allowing 3-4 hours for the process.


You can view the webinar here*
(you must be logged in to view)


To get Jill’s free Throttle Down to Go Big Workbook, sign up for her email list at:


To apply to beta-test her business coaching service, fill in the application at:


Books she mentioned in her presentation:

  • Profit First by Mike Michalowicz
  • The One Thing by Gary Keller
  • Essentialism by Greg McKeown


Here's a complete list of Jill’s recommended business books:

Tags:  B3! Webinars  Finance  Jill Hendrix 

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B3! Webinar: Life Admin for Booksellers: Do Less, Do Better, and Live More

Posted By Linda-Marie Barrett, Wednesday, May 22, 2019
Updated: Monday, May 20, 2019

Life Admin for Booksellers on Wednesday, August 7 at 2PM EST


Elizabeth Emens, author of Life Admin: How I Learned to Do Less, Do Better, and Live More, spoke about her book at EUREKAsiba, and her message was spot on for many in the audience. She discussed being overwhelmed by invisible labor outside of work and writing Life Admin because this invisible labor was consuming her. Desperate to survive and help others along the way, she conducted interviews and focus groups to gather favorite tips and tricks, admin confessions, and the secrets of admin-happy households.


With a bookseller audience in mind, Emens will share how we can avoid, reduce, and redistribute life admin whenever possible. Please RSVP to attend. 


As preparation for the webinar, SIBA's B3! Book Club is currently reading Life Admin and will discuss it on Wednesday, July 10 at 2PM EST. Booksellers are welcome to join in on SIBA's office hours zoom link. Need a copy of the book? Please email

Elizabeth Emens is Isidor and Seville Sulzbacher Professor of Law at Columbia Law School. She was educated at Yale and Cambridge, where she earned her PhD. She lives in New York City.

Tags:  B3! Webinars  Elizabeth Emens 

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Successful Podcasts: B3! Webinar Available to View

Posted By Nicki Leone, Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Featuring a panel of three presenters of book-centered podcasts. Annie Jones, owner of The Bookshelf and host of From the Front PorchMitchell Kaplan, owner of Books & Books and host of The Literary Life, and author Anne Bogel (AKA Modern Mrs. Darcy), host of What Should I Read Next? have developed very popular podcasts with a national audience. Booksellers looking to grow their store brands, reach more customers in their communities and beyond, and maybe even sell more books, will learn much listening to these experts share their best tips.


The discussion ranged from the very basic ("how I got started") to the more technical -- how long should a podcast be? (30 minutes to an hour for a long podcast, 7-10 minutes for short form). How much time does an episode take to produce? (Ann Bogel says it takes 2 hours to produce a seven minute show, 10-15 hours to produce a 1 hour show) Should you have a separate website for your podcast? (Yes! says Annie Jones), Do you hire production staff? ("Yes," says Mitchell Kaplan. "Absolutely," says Anne Bogel. "Well, eventually," says Annie Jones, "but I still learned how to do it on my own so I wouldn't be stuck if he moved on.") -- to the completely geeky: software and microphones, podcast hosting and broadcasting issues.

Click here to watch
(you must be a SIBA member bookseller to view)

Tags:  B3! Webinars 

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Publisher Picks: Fall Fiction

Posted By Linda-Marie Barrett, Monday, April 29, 2019


On Wednesday, June 26 at 2PM EST, SIBA is hosting “Fall Fiction” as part of our Publisher Picks: Best Bets for SIBA Booksellers series.  In this bi-monthly series, publishers, editors, marketing directors, and reps present their favorite frontlist titles via Zoom to booksellers. Besides forging important connections with publishers and their reps, attending booksellers will discover new titles to add to their store shelves and earn 10 B3! points. The following industry folks will present: Eric Svenson, sales representative for HarperCollins, Bob Werber, sales representative for IPS, Gavin Grant, publisher of Small Beer Press, and Doni Kay, sales representative for Penguin Young Readers. Please rsvp to attend. 


More info on our presenters:

Eric Svenson is the Southeast regional field sales representative for HarperCollins Publishers. He is the son of independent bookseller parents, a second generation publishers rep, and has traveled the South promoting books & reading for 30 years. He became a legend at the Discovery Show's "Rep Picks" events, breaking the fourth wall and walking out into the audience to support the books and authors he loves.
Bob Werber recently took over the IPS territory in the South (including PGW, IPS, and Two Rivers/Ingram Academic). He has been in the territory for the last 13 years with Dover and then Barrons; prior to that he worked in the Midwest and West, primarily with Random House.  Bob was also on the founding staff of Third Place Books in Seattle. Bob’s reading interests are quite varied but he is partial to literary fiction, regional, and nature writing—as well as non-fiction, especially history, politics, and sports.

Gavin J. Grant is the publisher of Small Beer Press, an independent press based in Massachusetts, whose books have been awarded the Philip K. Dick, Shirley Jackson, Hugo, and Locus Awards, as well as selected as the best of the year by NPR, Time Magazine, Salon, Booklist, Washington Post, and the San Francisco Chronicle, among others. Grant has worked in bookshops in Los Angeles and Boston and for the ABA's Since 1996 he has (with Kelly Link) edited and published Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet, a twice-yearly small press zine. Grant and Link have also co-edited eight anthologies together.

He lives with his family in Northampton, MA.

Doni Kay started her career in bookselling with Books & Books in Coral Gables, Florida in 1990. She was the children’s book buyer and ran the kid’s room, and also the bookfair division for 12 years. In 2002, thanks to Penguin Adult rep, Dave Kliegman, who told Doni that Penguin was looking for a kid’s rep in the Carolinas, she applied and was hired by Penguin Young Readers to cover the southeastern states! She has been in heaven ever since, doing what she loves most……putting books in kids’ hands and hearts.



Tags:  B3! Webinars  Bookseller education  buy  Publisher Picks 

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B3! Webinar: Keeping Your Expenses on a Tight Leash

Posted By Linda-Marie Barrett, Monday, April 29, 2019

Jill Hendrix, Owner of Fiction Addiction in Greenville, SC is highly respected for her bookselling business acumen. She'll discuss how every expense needs to tell you a story about how it fits into your business. Paying for Trello Gold or When I Work are productivity expenses, meant to let you do the same amount of work in less time. Your rent and most of your staffing expenses are hopefully bringing you direct income and thus are "rainmaking" expenses. Learn to catalog, analyze, and reduce your expenses in this interactive webinar. 

Jill Hendrix grew up in Greenville and graduated from Yale University. She worked briefly in the Editorial Department of  St. Martin's Press and then for a series of internet startups in New York City, including Juno Online Services. The startup bug proved contagious and she decided in 2001 to return home and open her own business, Fiction Addiction, which she has managed ever since.

In 2009, she launched the successful Book Your Lunch author event program, which has brought bestselling authors like Elin Hilderbrand and Dorothea Benton Frank to Greenville and introduced readers to debut novelists like Beth Hoffman. She has served as the Treasurer of the South Carolina Academy of Authors and as the president of the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance.

Please rsvp to attend the webinar.

Tags:  B3! Webinars  Bookseller education  Finance  Jill Hendrix 

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It's time to update your press kits!

Posted By Nicki Leone, Monday, April 29, 2019
Updated: Monday, April 22, 2019

With BookExpo on the horizon, now is the time for bookstores to be prepping to make the most of their trip. A little time spent now getting your ducks in a row will not only save you many headaches when you get to the show, it will also allow you to concentrate on your priorities and goals and make the most of the time you have with publisher reps and publicists.

The ABA has a nice checklist posted of things to do: Navigating BookExpo 2019: A Checklist

Last year, SIBA hosted a couple webinars with Maribeth Pelly on preparing store press kits and the art of pitching your store to publicists. Here's a link to the recorded webinars (you'll need to log in to view):

Press Kits for Bookstores

A Template and Checklist is also available at the above link,

Now is the time to update those press kits you worked so hard on last year:

  • Add in the events you've hosted since last spring
  • Include links or quotes from any news featuring your store
  • Double check your community resources and spaces to make sure the information is up to date.
  • Make sure your contact information is up to date, especially for specific staff contacts like event coordinators and buyers.

Tags:  B3! Webinars  Bookexpo  press kits 

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Publisher Picks Summer Reading for Kids a Big Success!

Posted By Linda-Marie Barrett, Monday, April 15, 2019

Last week’s B3! Webinar “Publisher Picks: Summer Reading for Kids” was a big success, notable for the diversity of titles presented, and the range of reading levels, from board books to YA. Michelle Cavalier of Cavalier House Books was thrilled with the selection, commenting, “I love that the focus here was on small presses!! Also, love that one of the books highlighted was a bilingual title - I feel like we are seeing more and more of these every season and they work SO WELL for us. Not only do they speak to our mission of inclusivity and making all feel welcome in our shop but our teacher and librarian partners go crazy for them as there is a definite need for these in our schools! Honestly, I appreciate the diversity of the entire list, just wanted to highlight that fact. :)” A big thank you to presenters Nadia Almahdi of Little Bee Books, John D’Esposito of IPG, Catherine Onder of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, and Becky Monds of HarperCollins Christian Publishing.


Summer Reading for Kids Edelweiss Collection

Publisher Presentations (Powerpoint)



Our next Publisher Picks webinars are listed below, with dates TBA. Stay tuned and please email Linda-Marie to rsvp for any of the webinars, or for more information and updates.

JUNE - Fall Fiction

AUGUST - Small Presses Present Fall & Winter Lists

OCTOBER - Sidelines for Holiday Sales & Beyond


Tags:  B3! Webinars  children's books 

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Cindy Dach's "Time Management 101 for Booksellers"

Posted By Linda-Marie Barrett, Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Cindy Dach's "Time Management 101 for Booksellers" 

Booksellers all across SIBA territory attended Cindy Dach’s “Time Management 101 for Booksellers B3! Webinar.” Cindy Dach is the co-owner of Changing Hands Bookstores and First Draft Bookbar in Tempe and  Phoenix, Arizona. In her presentation, she shared techniques for time management, planning, and organizing daily tasks, all with an eye toward completing big-picture projects. She voiced a frustration common to many retail managers and store owners--books on time management and organization don’t address well the needs of  frontline retail businesses, in which constant interruption, schedule juggling, and time-lining numerous programs from procedures manuals to bookfairs are common challenges. She did her own research and found tools that worked for her, her stores, and her employees. As she shared these tools with webinar attendees, she emphasized that everyone has to find what works for them, as no one tool works well for everyone or every store. In her stores she’s had to change tack from time to time when it became obvious that some personality types weren’t able to make good use of internal communication platforms or organizational tools. She’s also worked with employees to help them adjust to necessary changes and then witnessed their productivity and work/life balance increase dramatically. For those who missed out on Cindy’s presentation, or want to see it again and take more notes, here’s a link to view.

Tags:  B3! Webinars  time management 

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B3! Webinar: How to develop, grow, and run a successful podcast

Posted By Linda-Marie Barrett, Monday, April 1, 2019
Updated: Wednesday, February 27, 2019

B3! Webinar: How to develop, grow, and run a successful podcast

Join us on Wednesday, May 8 at 2PM to listen to three presenters of book-centered podcasts. Annie Jones, owner of The Bookshelf and host of From the Front Porch, Mitchell Kaplan, owner of Books & Books and host of The Literary Life, and author Anne Bogel (AKA Modern Mrs. Darcy), host of What Should I Read Next? have developed very popular podcasts with a national audience. Booksellers looking to grow their store brands, reach more customers in their communities and beyond, and maybe even sell more books, will learn much listening to these experts share their best tips. Please RSVP to attend.


Meet our presenters:

Annie Jones began living her Kathleen Kelly-dream in 2013, when she took over operations of The Bookshelf in downtown Thomasville, Georgia. Annie adores leading story time for local little ones and acting as the shop's very own Nancy Drew, determined to find just the right book for just the right person. Annie also co-hosts From the Front Porch, The Bookshelf's popular weekly podcast about books, small business, and life in the South. From the Front Porch hit its one millionth download in February 2019, and together, Annie and her co-host Chris have produced over 200 episodes. In 2016, Annie was featured as one of Southern Living magazine's 50 innovators changing the South, and in 2017, The Bookshelf was recognized as Small Business of the Year by the Thomasville-Thomas County Chamber of Commerce.

Anne Bogel is the creator of the very popular blog Modern Mrs. Darcy. Her book lists and reading guides have established her as a tastemaker among readers, authors, and publishers. Books are the foundation of her site, which has been affectionately dubbed “a lifestyle blog for nerds.” She’s the author of I’d Rather be Reading: The Delights and Dilemmas of the Reading Life and Reading People: How Seeing the World through the Lens of Personality Changes Everything. Her weekly podcast, What Should I Read Next? is devoted to book talk, reading recommendations, and literary matchmaking. She’s based in Louisville, Kentucky.


Mitchell Kaplan founded Books & Books in Coral Gables, Florida in 1982 and has since opened numerous locations including stores in Key West and the Cayman Islands. Books & Books was named Bookstore of the Year in 2015 by Publishers’ Weekly. Mitchell is a co-founder of the Miami Book Fair,  the former President of the American Booksellers Association (ABA) and served on the Board of ABFFE, the American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression. In 2011, Mitchell received the National Book Foundation’s prestigious “Literarian Award for Outstanding Service to the American Literary Community”  His podcast The Literary Life features candid conversations with Mitchell and his guests.



Tags:  B3! Webinars  podcasts 

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