News you can use from the Land of SIBA, May 14, 2020
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From the Land of SIBA A message from SIBA to its membership

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First Things First...

May 14 at 4 pm: Reader Meet Writer, Okra Pick with Susan Beckham Zurenda
May 15 at 3 pm: Reader Meet Writer, Southern Edition, with Kristin Arnett
May 19 at 3 pm: Reader Meet Writer, Southern Edition, with Mary Alice Monroe
May 20 at 3 pm: Reader Meet Writer, Okra Pick with Carter Sickels
May 21 at 3 pm: Reader Meet Writer, Okra Pick with Yaffa S. Santos
May 26 at 5 pm: Reader Meet Writer, Okra Pick with Genevieve Hudson
May 27 at 3 pm: Reader Meet Writer, Southern Edition, with Edward Farmer

May 26-June1: Bookexpo Online
June 11: ABA Virtual Town Hall

COVID-19 Resources for Booksellers: BINC | ABA | SIBA
PW's List of Book Publication Date Changes

SIBA Office Hours on Zoom:

Mondays & Wednesdays from 1:00 - 2:00 PM EST
803-994-9530 |

In the Land of SIBA Blog


SIBA’s Fall Show Goes Virtual for 2020

In a time of uncertainty, one thing’s certain: The SIBA Fall Discovery Show will go on! SIBA is taking advantage of this unique opportunity to innovate, partner, and create knock-your-socks-off programming not possible at an in-person show. Publishers and other industry partners, authors, and booksellers will be brought together in both intimate and larger virtual rooms devoted to a wide variety of interests. The show will feature a fresh format spanning five days, crafted with care to answer the community’s call for shared spaces, networking, the discovery of new titles and bookselling best practices, and plain old fun!  More details soon!

Registration for #SIBA20 has been temporarily closed while the show is reconfigured to its new format. Attendees who have already registered will be contacted by SIBA to convert their registration to the new platform.

A new format means new opportunities!

SIBA is currently seeking input from booksellers, publishers, and authors who are interested in the show.  They are looking for new and creative ideas about programming, and want to hear any concerns or questions about the challenges a virtual show will present. Please contact or enter your comments here

Visit for up to date information as it is confirmed.

Reader Meet Writer: Kristy Woodson Harvey, Marie Benedict videos now available

Reader Meet Writer

Join this list of bookstores and choose from this list of events to present to your customers.  Stores are handling the events as they would handle their own virtual events -- it is left up to the stor. Some are selling the book as the ticket to attend.  Some are selling tickets for a flat rate that can then be used as a credit towards the book or any purchase from the store. Each store determines how they want to use the events to assist in selling more books. It is our hope that we are offering stores an easy way to sell books without the headache of managing a new tool.

The RMW Kristy Woodson Harvey (Feels Like Falling) and RMW Marie Benedict (The Other Einstein) events are now available to view online. All SIBA member stores are invited to link, post, or embed them on your websites, in your newsletters, or your social media feeds, and to include your own store branding and purchase links:

Reader Meet Writer: Marie Benedict
Reader Meet Writer: Kristy Woodson Harvey

You can also link to the Reader Meet Writer playlist

Paricipating stores, have you completed the events survey? This is a really important final step.  We need the data to carry this program forward.  Please complete this form for each event. 

May 14 at 4 pm: Susan Beckham Zurenda, Bells for Eli
May 15 at 3 pm: Kristin Arnett
, Mostly Dead Things
May 19 at 3 pm: Mary Alice Monroe, On Ocean Boulevard
May 20 at 3 pm: Carter Sickels, The Prettiest Star
May 21 at 3 pm: Yaffa S. Santos, A Taste of Sage
May 26 at 5 pm: Genevieve Hudson, The Boys of Alabama
May 27 at 3 pm: Edward Farmer, Pale


It is SIBA's goal to continue Reader Meet Writer after a two week break from June 15-July 1.  Half of the books that have been featured on Reader Meet Writer have made the Southern Indie Bestseller List the week following their appearance.  That bodes well for the program if that keeps up, and we need to hear from stores who are participating. These virtual events have been well received by booksellers, publishers, and authors alike.

Beginning in July, SIBA is going to offer two virtual events a week, one in the afternoon on Tuesdays and in the evenings on Thursdays.  We have confirmed Kristen Harmel on July 21st, and Odie Lindsey on August 7th.  We will fill in the remaining dates over the next few weeks and keep the calendar updated at the Reader Meet Writer site for booksellers.

All SIBA member bookstores are invited to participate, and join this list of participating bookstores. Just email to be added to the list.

Read more | Email Wanda to become a Reader Meet Writer Store

Indie Bookstores' "Go The Distance" Social Media Campaign

SIBA is hoping to test and share the kind of aspirational content we think might serve our communities virtually. It's a a good time to uniformly share a message we can all agree on. It's a challenge, but we're going the distance while we socially distance.

We are really excited that a few bookstores were able to contribute to this short video we put together to share throughout social media. Snail On The Wall, Bookmarks, E. Shaver, Story on the Square, Copperfish Books and Hub City Bookshop all shared some short video of the new "day-in-the-life" of bookstore operations.

Downloading the video is easy! You can preview and download the video in social media friendly formats here:

  • "SIBA_Main" is for Twitter and Facebook posting
  • "SIBA_Square" is for grid on Instagram posting
  • "SIBA_Vertical" is for Instagram Stories posting

Our plan is to share the video on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter at 2:00 PM EDT on Friday, May 15, and we're planning to amplify this positive message by providing all member bookstores with the file to share at the same time. We want to highlight just how resourceful and flexible indie bookstores are. The more everyone posts this, the more this will be seen by publishers, authors, and loyal customers; put smiles on their faces; and remind them that indie bookstores are here for them.

indie books stores go the distance

Here is the ask:

Post the video to your Instagram stories and grid on Friday at 2:00 PM EDT. Find a suggested caption for underneath your Instagram post here (copy and paste, it's easy!):

Southern Indie Bookstores go the distance. Follow @siba_books to hear about ways to support, collaborate, and partner with the bookstore community and check out what @storyonthesquare @hubcitywriters @copperfishbooks @e.shaver_bookseller and @snailbooks are doing to ensure customers safely receive books. #gothedistance #SIBA20 #indiebookstores

We'll post the video at 2:00 PM EDT on Friday and you can simply share it from there. When you share we encourage you to write:

Southern Indie Bookstores go the distance. #gothedistance #SIBA20 #indiebookstores

Post video to your Twitter account on Friday at 2:00 PM EDT. When you share we encourage you to write:

Southern Indie Bookstores go the distance. #gothedistance #SIBA20 #indiebookstores

Okra Picks

THIS!: Using Zapier to make life easier

What if every time you added an event to your calendar, it created a post for your facebook page?  What if every time a customer ordered a book on your website, a shipping label was generated in you shipping account?  Angela Trigg from The Haunted Bookshop demonstrates how to use Zapier -- an app that connects apps to each other -- to automate tasks and streamline your workflow.

THIS! Using Zapier

In Brief: Bookexpo, ABA Town Hall

Bookexpo Webinar Getting the Most Out of Your Display Fixtures (5/19 at 2 pm EST):
Lisa Uhrik, co-owner of Franklin Fixtures, will lead a webinar supported by Book Expo as one of a five-part series titles "Supercharging the Suspension." This event will take place 5/19 from 2-2:40pm Eastern. Visit for more details.

ABA Virtual Town Hall Set for June 11
The American Booksellers Association will hold a virtual version of its Annual Membership Meeting on Thursday, June 11, from 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. ET. The Annual Meeting will be followed by the Town Hall, from 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET, which provides booksellers with the opportunity to express their opinions and concerns and to share ideas with ABA Board members and staff in a less formal setting. Read the guidelines

This week on Lady Banks Pick of the Week:

Read more about SIBA's Circle of Sites Program (aka the "banner for dues" program) and find out whether your store is eligible to participate and receive free membership dues.

Read This! Highest Rated Reviews from SIBA Booksellers

Reviewed by Booksellers

Some of the reviews submitted this week on Edelweiss+ from your fellow SIBA booksellers. SIBA members earn B3! points for every review if they join the SIBA community on Edelweiss. Email to be added.

Empires of the SkyEmpires of the Sky by Alexander Rose
May, 2020

Reviewed by Erin Cox, E. Parnassus Books, Nashville, TN
On Edelweiss

If you’ve seen footage of the Hindenburg crash, it’s hard to imagine a time when anyone thought those giant balloons of hydrogen were a good idea. But for decades, they were the much safer and more comfortable alternative to their deathtrap cousin, the airplane. The race for air travel supremacy between Zeppelin and Pan Am Airways makes for fascinating history; this is a nonfiction read that flies.

The Incredibly Dead Pets of Rex Dexter The Incredibly Dead pets of Rex Dexter by Aaron Reynolds, May, 2020
Reviewed by Melissa Taylor, E. Shaver Books, Savannah, GA
On Edelweiss

This was so much fun! I laughed out loud so many times reading this. It reminded me of the Timmy Failure series, Rex is a similar sort of narrator. I think this would be especially fun read aloud. Psyched that this is the first in a series!

Clap When You LandClap When You Land by Elizabeth Acevedo, May, 2020
Reviewed by Beth Suefer Buess, Bookmarks, Winston-Salem, NC
On Edelweiss

CLAP WHEN YOU LAND strikes deeply and powerfully, even more so because of Acevedo's beautifully crafted prose. In mourning their father's sudden loss, two half sisters separated by an ocean learn of each other and their family's connected past. Deep and moving, with crossover appeal for adults.

More bookseller reviews

This month on Lady Banks Bookshelf:

lady banks bookshelf

The Southern Independent Bestseller List

southern bestseller list

Online/Printable versions for your store displays & websites:
 Hardcover | Paperback | Children's

For the week ending 5/10/2020.


1. The Book of Longings Sue Monk Kidd, Viking, $28, 9780525429760
2. Camino Winds
John Grisham, Doubleday, $28.95, 9780385545938
3. All Adults Here
Emma Straub, Riverhead Books, $27, 9781594634697
4. The Dutch House
Ann Patchett, Harper, $27.99, 9780062963673
5. The Nickel Boys
Colson Whitehead, Doubleday, $24.95, 9780385537070


1. Untamed Glennon Doyle, The Dial Press, $28, 9781984801258
2. The Splendid and the Vile
Erik Larson, Crown, $32, 9780385348713
3. What It's Like to Be a Bird
David Allen Sibley, Knopf, $35, 9780307957894
4. The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse
Charlie Mackesy, HarperOne, $22.99, 9780062976581
5. Educated
Tara Westover, Random House, $28, 9780399590504

See what's special to the Southern List!

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Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance
Supporting independent bookstores in the South
SIBA | 51 Pleasant Ridge Drive | Asheville, NC 28805

Useful Links
SIBA Office Hours on Zoom:
Mondays & Wednesdays 1:00-2:00 PM EST
Available during regular business hours at 803-994-9530, or anytime at

In the Land of SIBA Blog
Southern Indie Bestsellers (HC | PB | Kids)
The Booksellers' WaterCooler | Ongoing publisher promotions
In the last issue: Keplers and the Future of the Independent Bookstore

Thank you for your interest in SIBA,
Nicki Leone



SIBA | 51 Pleasant Ridge Drive | Asheville, NC 28805
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