benefits does PNBA offer authors?
kind of resources does PNBA offer?
do I to start and how do I find and approach
How to Talk to a Bookseller: A 10-Step Guide for Authors (from ABA's Bookselling This Week)
Melissa Lion, events coordinator at DIESEL, A Bookstore in Oakland, California, and author of Swollen (Laurel Leaf) and Upstream (Wendy Lamb Books), offers fellow authors tips for dealing with her fellow booksellers
should I contact?
terms are typical?
will my book be stocked?
I propose a reading/signing to a bookstore?
Are you a good or bad self-publisher? Take the quiz!
do I include in a press kit?
authors responsible for promoting their own
shouldn't I do?
else can I find support and information on selling my book?
The Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association is one of
ten regional non-profit trade associations promoting
literacy, free speech and independent bookselling in the
United States. The PNBA represents booksellers in Alaska,
Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington.
benefits does PNBA offer
Our member benefits for authors include:
o Annual tradeshow (free attendance and discounted exhibiting fees for members)
o Annual membership directory with contact info for all
o Mailing list rental (with discounts for members)
o Monthly newsletter
o Advertising opportunities in our Holiday Catalog, newsletter, tradeshow program, membership directory, and on our website with the Northwest New Title Preview program
o Book awards for NW authors
o NW Independent Bestseller List e-mailed weekly
kind of resources does PNBA
PNBA provides resources to help you promote your books. A PNBA membership is worthwhile for an author if you want to attend or exhibit at our tradeshow and market your book(s) to the independent bookstores of the five Northwest states in our region. The member directory and handbook is helpful in doing that, as are the discounted mailing lists and the networking opportunities that present themselves at the shows.
do I start and how do I find and approach
PNBA has more than 150 independent bookstore members in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana and Alaska, all with distinct personalities and communities of readers. Many stores have specialties in areas such as travel, children's or Northwest books. With that in mind, research stores before you approach them. If you can, visit a store and note where your book might be shelved and if it's a strong section in the store.
Every bookstore has at least one book buyer, and your
first step is to identify this person. A phone call is
usually all it takes. Ask for the book buyer and be prepared
to briefly describe your book and the section(s) where it
might fit. Most stores require that you make an appointment.
When you meet with booksellers, they'll want to know if
you're doing any promotion and how the book is being
distributed. Is the book stocked at a national wholesaler
such as Ingram or Baker & Taylor or a regional
wholesaler, such as Partners/West? This information can be
printed on a sell sheet, which can be mailed or faxed to the
If you're distributing the book yourself, most
bookstores will ask about consignment. You have a much
greater chance of having your book stocked if you agree to
leave copies on consignment. Some stores have consignment
forms, but it's good to bring your own. If your book is
print-on-demand only, keep in mind that bookstores won't
order many because POD books can't be returned. A 60-40
split on the sale of the book is common (you get 60
percent), but some stores have different policies. Also, you
will probably be asked to check back with the store about
sales, usually in 3-6 months.
will your book be
The book's placement in the store should be left to the
bookstore's discretion. Not every book can be faced out or
displayed at the front of the store.
do I propose a reading/signing to a
Book event etiquette applies whether you're nationally
or regionally recognized, a bestselling or a first-time
author. Our stores like to bring interesting authors to
their customers and to provide authors with an enjoyable,
productive venue in their hometown or stop on their tour. In
scheduling an in-store signing, speaking and/or reading
event, first call the store to find out how its event
manager prefers to receive proposals for events. You might
be asked to fax, mail or e-mail a press packet.
should I include in a press
o publicity contact, name, phone, and fax
o book press release that includes title, isbn, price
publisher and a brief description
o a brief biography
o a copy of the book and/or a book jacket
o a publicity photo of yourself
o book reviews or excerpts from reviews
o event proposal & date ideas
o your target market and marketing ideas
o info on how the book is being promoted
o if a signing or reading is scheduled, provide the store
with a list of friends and family who will be likely attend
authors responsible for promoting their own
These days, authors are more involved than ever in
marketing their books. Just ask Craig Joseph Danner, author
of the PNBA-award winning Himalayan Dhaba, which Danner
self-published and was later bought by Dutton/Penguin
Putnam. "Everything good that happened to Himalayan Dhaba
can be traced directly to the independent booksellers at the
PNBA show," Danner says."I don't know why more authors don't
take advantage of this
more about Craig's success.
o Overwhelm the booksellers with too much paper.
o Ask the bookseller to surf the web to find the information
on your website.
else can I find support and information on selling my
Join one of the following author/publishers groups.
Learn marketing tips. Network with other authors and small
publishers. Find out how to approach an agent or what a
publicist can offer. Many of these groups have informative
newsletters and web sites, monthly meetings and annual
conferences. The following list is just a small sample of
groups in our five-state region.
Association of the
of Authors and
Writing the West