BTW News Briefs

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ABFFE Survey Seeks Banned Books Week Suggestions

As preparations begin for 2012’s 30th anniversary celebration of Banned Books Week, the American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression is asking booksellers to complete a brief online survey whose goal is to help ABFFE and the other event sponsors improve next year’s celebration.


“Most people have no idea that there are hundreds of challenges to books in schools and libraries every year,” said ABFFE President Chris Finan. “We want to hear from booksellers to ensure that they have the tools they need to explain to their customers the importance of the fight for free speech.”

Access the survey here. 

Washington Post Features 2011 Indie City Index

On October 18, the Washington Post’s “Capital Business” featured the 25 best cities for independent businesses as ranked by the 2011 Indie City Index, compiled by Civic Economics and commissioned by the American Booksellers Association for this past January’s Advocates for Independent Retail (AIR) National Leadership Summit.

Along with a photo and a brief description of a unique quality of each city, the Washington Post feature noted, “Locally-owned businesses are at the heart of the American economy. They create jobs, boost local economies and add vibrancy to nearby communities — and that is particularly true in the 25 cities on our list. These metropolitan areas, which range from bustling New York City to towns in central Oregon, are hotbeds for small businesses and local entrepreneurs.”

Google eBook™ Store Launches in Canada

This week, Google launched a Google eBook online store in Canada “that will compete for readers against established giants Amazon and Kobo,” as reported by CBC Radio-Canada. As with Google eBooks in the U.S., purchased titles will be stored online and will be accessible on a variety of devices, including Android and Apple tablets as well as smartphones, PCs and compatible e-readers including the Kobo, Barnes & Noble’s Nook, and Sony’s Reader, but not Amazon’s Kindle.

Google’s eBook store “boasts partnerships with publishers including Penguin, Random House, HarperCollins, House of Anansi, Dundurn, and McGill-Queen’s University Press,” said CBC Radio-Canada. In addition, the company has teamed with Winnipeg’s McNally Robinson and Campus eBookstore, based in Kingston, Ontario, to allow customers to buy e-books from their retail websites instead of Google.

SBA to Host Disaster-Preparedness Webinar on November 15

On Tuesday, November 15, from 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. ET, Agility Recovery Solutions and the U.S. Small Business Administration will host a free online webinar focusing on how disaster-preparedness affects a company’s bottom line. Agility President and CEO Bob Boyd will review the far-reaching financial impact of having a plan in place to recover after a disaster. Space for the webinar is limited and registration is required.  (Register here.)

SBA has partnered with Agility to offer business continuity strategies via its “PrepareMyBusiness” website, where visitors can access past webinars and get additional preparedness tips.

The SBA provides disaster recovery assistance in the form of low-interest loans to homeowners, renters, private nonprofits and businesses of all sizes. To learn more, visit

HarperCollins in Deal to Buy Thomas Nelson

In a deal that is expected to be completed by the end of this year, HarperCollins is buying religious publisher Thomas Nelson, Inc., which is headquartered in Nashville, Tennessee. HarperCollins President and CEO Brian Murray said the company’s “broad inspirational appeal” would be a good complement to Zondervan, HarperCollins’ other religious imprint, “which will continue to publish books consistent with its mission.”

Last week, HarperCollins bought Newmarket Press, the publisher of film and entertainment titles. The Newmarket Press name is becoming part of HarperCollins’ It Books imprint, and its founder Esther Margolis is joining It as an executive editor.