Seminar at BEA Aims to Help Prospective Booksellers

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The American Booksellers Association is offering a free, one-day "Introduction to Retail Bookselling" Seminar, facilitated by the Bookstore Training Group of Paz & Associates, on Monday, May 24, at New York's Javits Convention Center, just prior to the Day of Education and BookExpo America. The seminar is geared toward people interested in opening a bookstore, and registration is open to ABA provisional members and employees of regular member stores.

The full-day program will help prospective booksellers understand how much it will cost to open, why margins are tight, how much they can earn, what indicators can help predict whether a community can support an indie bookstore, and what it takes to compete in today’s retail marketplace. Participants can also attend ABA's Tuesday, May 25, Day of Education, sponsored by Ingram, and they're eligible to receive a free badge to the BEA trade show.

Registration for the Introduction to Retail Bookselling Seminar is via an electronic form on Prospective booksellers who are not currently members of ABA can join and participate in all three events.

Here's a look at the Introduction to Retail Bookselling Seminar schedule:

Morning -- Dollars and Sense

  • Introduction to the Book Industry: An overview, including an examination of who buys books (9:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.)
  • Community Dynamics: Can yours support a bookstore? (10:00 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.)
  • Break (10:30 a.m. - 10:45 a.m.)
  • Opening Costs (10:45 a.m. - 11:15 a.m.)
  • A Timeline for Opening (11:15 a.m. - 11:35 a.m.)
  • Question & Answer Session (11:35 a.m. - Noon)

Lunch (Bring your own bag lunch)

  • Group Exercise: How will you compete? (Noon - 1:15 p.m.)

Afternoon -- What to Expect

  • How to Compete in Today’s Marketplace (1:15 p.m. - 1:35 p.m.)
  • Learning From a Guest Bookseller (1:35 p.m. - 2:15 p.m.)
  • Exercise: Skills Assessment (2:15 p.m. -2:30 p.m.)
  • Financial Dynamics (2:30 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.)
  • Break (3:30 p.m. - 3:45 p.m.)
  • How Much You Can Earn (3:45 p.m. - 4:15 p.m.)
  • Video: What a Great Bookstore (4:15 p.m. - 4:25 p.m.)
  • Trade Show Highlights/Question & Answer Session (4:25 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.)

Questions about the seminar program should be addressed to ABA Education Manager Lisa Winn; questions about ABA membership should be directed to Membership and Marketing Officer Meg Smith.