World Book Night 2013 Bookstore Sign-up Begins

This week a crucial first step opened for indie bookstores wishing to take part in World Book Night U.S.’s (WBN) second annual celebration of reading, giving, and community. Bookstores are being asked to complete a 2013 Host Store Marketing Agreement that affirms their commitment to be a site for individual book givers to both meet and pick up their books, as well as their commitment to be an active promoter of World Book Night in their communities.

During World Book Night, on April 23, 25,000 book givers in the U.S. will each give away 20 copies of specially printed, not-for-resale WBN editions to light or non-readers who are not likely to have the means for or access to printed books.

“The indies came through big-time in year one — I mean huge!” said Carl Lennertz, World Book Night U.S. Executive Director. “We couldn’t have done it without you. And still, as much as we did together to get a half million books to 25,000 volunteers, with great press coverage and online buzz, we know we can do even better in year two. We know we here at WBN can do better with materials, communication, and a website (a new one is in final design now).

“Booksellers will be very pleased by a number of big announcements coming in late October, as well as by the book selection, in the works, which will have a slightly more accessible, commercial tilt, but with the diversity of voice and surprise that we know you and the givers want and expect. You’ll see in the host store agreement and the news in this article that big things are expected of us and all participants, and that big plans are afoot for year two. I’m so excited I can hardly stand it. Thank you for all you did in our launch year, and for what is ahead.”

“World Book Night is an incredible opportunity for booksellers to promote books and reading in their local communities, as well as on a worldwide stage, and we encourage all ABA member stores to sign up as soon as possible to take part in the 2013 celebration,” said ABA CEO Oren Teicher, a member of World Book Night Board. “Stores that took part in the first celebration received great publicity, built goodwill as well as sales, and most important of all, helped spread the joy of reading. Now plans are in the works to make World Book Night 2013 even better. ”

The Bookstore Marketing Agreement, available now on, asks booksellers to actively commit to ensuring that World Book Night U.S. 2013 is even more successful than in its inaugural year. The agreement calls for stores to host a pre-WBN reception for givers, promote WBN via social media and to the local press, set up prominent WBN title displays, and more. The agreement also lays out key dates so that booksellers can begin planning events.

The deadline for Bookstore Marketing Agreements to be returned to WBN is December 1, 2012.

A number of improvements are planned for World Book Night 2013, including: announcement of the WBN titles in early November, at which time the giver application process will open; an easier application process for booksellers who also want to be givers (instead of filling out the online application, they’ll be able to sign-up by sending an Excel spreadsheet to Lennertz); and expanded national and local press coverage, including a $2 million pro bono ad campaign.

Questions about WBN should be sent to Lennertz at

Key Dates for World Book Night Stores

  • Week of March 25, 2013: Bookstores will receive their book givers’ contact information.
  • Week of April 8, 2013: WBN book boxes will arrive via UPS at stores chosen by givers as their pick-up points; stores will check and store boxes. Bookstores will e-mail or call givers to let them know their box has arrived AND invite them to a reception planned for the following week (see below) to pick up their box, get materials, and meet other givers.
  • Week of April 15, 2013: Bookstore pick-up locations will hold a reception to welcome book givers and members of the local media. 
  • Week of April 22, 2013:  Booksellers prepare for last-minute box pick up on Monday, April 22, and Tuesday, April 23. Stores will also continue to promote and encourage givers sharing their stories with you and online.  World Book Night is Tuesday, April 23.