In a joint post honoring World Book Day, three leaders in the publishing industry — Maria Pallante, president and CEO of the Association of American Publishers (AAP); Mary Rasenberger, executive director of The Authors Guild (AG); and Allison Hill, CEO of the American Booksellers Association (ABA) — have come together to issue a rallying cry to readers, asking that they help America’s bookstores survive the COVID-19 crisis.
“Sadly, after a decade of recovery and growth that affirmed the importance of reading, writing, and publishing, bookstores are suddenly facing a moment of monumental crisis at the hands of the COVID-19 pandemic,” the three women write. “In some instances, these beloved institutions, which mean so much to so many communities, face the very real possibility that they will never open their doors again.
“We cannot let this happen because we need bookstores now more than ever. As award-winning poet and writer Jen Campbell wrote in her book The Bookshop Book, ‘Bookshops are dreams built of wood and paper. They are time travel and escape and knowledge and power. They are, simply put, the best of places.’”
The leaders end with a call to action, asking readers to buy books online through their local shop or donate to the Book Industry Charitable (Binc) Foundation.