An Update From ABA President Becky Anderson

Happy Leap Year, Buds in Books!

Becky Anderson

Just think an extra day to add to our bottom line! We don’t care that Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow; we’re almost through winter, heading off of a gangbuster holiday season, and for many of us that trend is continuing to some degree into the New Year.  BookScan numbers were up for indies in January and are carrying over into February. IndieCommerce sales, both e-book and print, continue to grow.

If any of you saw Ann Patchett on The Colbert Report  this past Monday night, she was so right about us being that place of redemption. Indie bookstores are where readers and book buyers can find the smart people whom you can talk to face to face. We’re not heading back into our holes for the winter; we are out there putting eyeballs on books in countless ways — building community book by book.

Last month’s Winter Institute in New Orleans was a huge spirit lifter and a boost for all who attended, from the brilliant opening keynote by Ann Patchett to the closing Small Press Author Reception.  Seeing old friends and making new ones, sharing best practices and educating ourselves and each other about what a community of like-minded colleagues can accomplish together, this was a gathering to remember. We would like to extend another huge thank you to Wi7’s lead sponsor, the Ingram Content Group, and to all of the publisher sponsors for making this institute a great one.

So, on that note of community, collaboration, and collegiality, I would like to encourage all of you to attend one of 10 ABA Spring Forums (listed below) from March 8 – April 25. This is a great chance to get together and share your enthusiasm, ideas, concerns, and suggestions. ABA needs your input to be the best partner and advocate possible. All of us are so busy in our stores, but if you can find the time, please attend — we need to hear your voice. ABA relies on what you have to say to guide our programs and initiatives, and we need your input now more than ever to keep pace with this fast-changing world.

The forum program will also feature highlights from Wi7’s educational offerings. “The Best of Winter Institute 7’s Best Practices Sessions” will present a roundup of booksellers’ tips on finances, relationship building, children’s bookselling, technology, and more. So, if you missed Wi7, or want a refresher course, we hope you can make it to one of the upcoming programs. See you there!

Here’s to a renewed 2012! A year in which we change the conversation to really show the value and worth of what we do for books, for readers, for publishers, for authors, and for our communities.

All the best,

Becky Anderson, ABA President
Anderson’s Bookshops
Naperville, Illinois

2012 ABA Spring Forum/Education Program

Thursday, March 8: Collegeville, Pennsylvania
In conjunction with the New Atlantic Independent Booksellers Association; at the Towne Book Center & CaféLearn more

Tuesday, March 13: Nashville, Tennessee
In conjunction the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance; at the Green Hills Branch Library and Parnassus BooksLearn more

 Friday, March 16: Atlanta, Georgia
*Education program only, in conjunction with the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance; at the Great American Bargain Book Show at the Cobb Galleria Centre — Learn more.

Thursday, March 22: Wichita, Kansas
In conjunction with the Midwest Independent Booksellers Association; at Watermark BooksLearn more.

Friday, March 23: Denver, Colorado
In conjunction with the Mountains & Plains Independent Booksellers Association; at Tattered Cover Book Sore (LoDo location)Learn more.

Sunday, March 25: San Francisco, California
In conjunction with the Northern California Independent Booksellers Association; at the Presidio National Park — Details to come.

Tuesday, March 27: Long Beach, California
In conjunction with the Southern California Independent Booksellers Association; at the Hilton Long Beach Hotel — Details to come.

Wednesday, March 28: Portland, Oregon
In conjunction with the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association; at O’Connor’s near Annie Bloom’s Books — Details to come.

Tuesday, April 17: New York City
In conjunction with New Atlantic Independent Booksellers Association; at the Old School near McNally Jackson — Details to come.

Friday, April 20: Naperville, Illinois
In conjunction with the Great Lakes and Midwest independent booksellers associations; at the Downtown Naperville Alliance followed by a reception at Anderson’s Bookshop — Details to come.

Wednesday, April 25: Medford, Massachusetts
In conjunction with the New England Independent Booksellers Association; at Springstep — Details to come.