American Booksellers Association

International Indie Booksellers Look to Americans for Strategy
January 24, 2014

Independent bookstores in America are flying high and many are reporting, at least anecdotally, that 2013 was their best year yet. Several have seen gains of 15% or more over the December, according to anecdotal conversations at this year's Winter Institute. the annual convention for indie bookstores organized by the American Booksellers Association (ABA), which was held in Seattle this week.

The fifth iteration of the Winter Institute was the biggest yet, drawing some 500 booksellers from across the United States. It was also the first year where the international community was invited,

Authors and Booksellers Unite on Small Business Saturday
November 13, 2013

Big chains like B&N aren't the only booksellers looking forward to a post-Thanksgiving splurge. Independent bookstores look for a good showing on November 30th, dubbed Small Business Saturday, and have enlisted hundreds of authors to up foot traffic in their stores.

Indie Bookstores on the Rise
September 26, 2013

The number of members of the American Booksellers' Association is slowly creeping up, a welcome sign after a steep decline from 5500 members in 1995 to 2191 in 2002. ABA is comprised of indie booksellers, and though the dominant narrative has it that the indies were slaughtered by Amazon, the numbers suggest that the decline had more to do with the rise of the big-box chain-stores (ironically, these are dead [Borders] or dying [B&N] and were almost certainly killed by Amazon).

To Stay Afloat, Bookstores Turn to Web Donors
August 12, 2013

For years, independent bookstores have taken creative steps to fight off challenges from Amazon and the superstores by building in-house espresso bars, hosting members-only lunches with authors and selling birthday cards, toys and trinkets. In 2013, it has come to this: Asking their customers for donations. Crowdfunding is sweeping through the bookstore business, the latest tactic for survival in a market that is dominated by Amazon, with its rock-bottom prices, and Barnes & Noble, with its dizzying in-store selection. It's hardly a sustainable business model; but it buys some time,

Is Amazon asking independent bookstores to sell Kindles?
June 5, 2013

Is Amazon contacting independent bookstores and asking them if they want to sell Kindles?

Considering the animosity that some booksellers feel toward Amazon, it’s a strange idea, and Amazon isn’t commenting. But a handful of independent bookstores are reporting that they’ve received calls from someone claiming to be representing Amazon. According to the indie staffers, the caller asked if they’d be interested in working with the company to sell the e-readers.

As reported by independent bookstore newsletter Shelf Awareness, Los Angeles bookstore Skylight Books wrote a post on their Tumblr…

BEA 2013: Macmillan CEO John Sargent and 'The Whole Damn Thing'
May 30, 2013

In an opening session intended to be provocative, Macmillan CEO John Sargent and outgoing American Booksellers Association president Becky Anderson, co-owner of Anderson's Bookshops in Naperville, Ill., may not have necessarily covered "Publishing, Bookselling, and the Whole Damn Thing," but they definitely got the conversation going, which was Sargent's goal.
"We need to talk. We need to have a relationship where we can talk with our partners so we can understand," he told booksellers during an hourlong q&a, Talking, he said, and overcoming "the victim effect," where "everybody in the industry is afraid of the Department of Justice or legal

U.S. Senate Passes Sales Tax Fairness Legislation
May 7, 2013

On Monday, May 6, the U.S. Senate passed the Marketplace Fairness Act of 2013 by a vote of 69 to 27. The legislation would give states the authority to require remote sellers to collect and remit sales tax in the state, so long as the seller does $1 million or more in remote gross sales annually. The bill now moves to the U.S. House of Representatives, where it is expected to face a tough fight.

“We are grateful that the U.S. Senate has done the right thing …” said ABA CEO Oren Teicher,

Bringing the Growing Mexican Book Market to New York
April 26, 2013

BEA officials have today announced that BEA's annual Global Market Forum will focus on Mexico. The Global Market Forum, which honors countries from around the world by providing educational panels and cultural exchange opportunities, has become a cornerstone of BEA’s international outreach.

Volunteers to Give Away a Half Million Free Books on Tuesday, April 23rd
April 23, 2013

From Kodiak to Key West, Concord to Carlsbad, Grand Forks to Galveston, in 6,200 towns and cities across America, more than 25,000 World Book Night U.S. volunteers will go out and personally hand out a half million free books to new or light readers on one day: April 23, 2013.

The novel resurgence of independent bookstores
March 17, 2013

Last October, when superstorm Sandy ripped through Connecticut, it flooded Bank Square Books in Mystic. Owner Annie Philbrick recalls walking inside to the smell of the ocean and a soaking wet carpet.

She and her staff had moved everything as high as they could before the storm, but water and paper are a disastrous combination. With no power to turn on pumps or fans, Ms. Philbrick was in danger of losing her stock of more than 30,000 books.