Winter Institute 2020 Program

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Sessions marked with this symbol require pre-registration.
Tuesday, January 21, 2020  

7:30 am to 7:00 pm

Pick up your badge, the official Wi15 welcome bag from W.G. Ellerkamp, and a full schedule of Institute events from ABA’s membership team. Also on hand to greet you will be representatives from NAIBA, Binc and Arcadia Publishing.

This year the book drive will support a Baltimore literacy organization. More details to be announced!

7:45 am to 4:00 pm

Pre-registration required; $25 fee per person; space is limited; registration will open October 29.

The bus will leave the Hilton Baltimore at 7:45 am. The symposium will begin in Washington D.C. at 10:00 am at The Rayburn House Office Building and will end at 12:00 pm. Coffee will be served and the cafeteria is available for lunch. The bus will depart Washington D.C. at 2:00 pm so you have time to attend any law-maker meetings you may have scheduled.

Over the past year, regulators and lawmakers have begun to investigate the business practices of Big Tech (Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google) to determine if any of these companies might be in violation of antitrust laws. On Tuesday, January 21, booksellers attending the Winter Institute will have the opportunity to be part of a special symposium in Washington, D.C., on growing monopoly power in the retailing and tech sector, with a focus on the extraordinary market dominance of Amazon. Among other speakers, the panel will feature:

  • Matt Stoller, author of Goliath: The 100-Year War Between Monopoly Power and Democracy (Simon & Schuster)
  • Barry Lynn, Executive Director of Open Market Institutes and author of Cornered: The New Monopoly Capitalism and the Economics of Destruction (Wiley)
  • Stacy Mitchell, co-director of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance

8:00 am to 8:30 am

8:00 am to 2:00 pm

Sign-up for the half-day tours will open on October 29. Buses will be provided for the one-hour ride to and from Westminster.

(Booksellers who work with Westminster-based sales reps: the morning tour, which leaves the hotel at 8:00 a.m., will include a meet-and-greet with your reps.)

9:00 am to 1:00 pm

Pre-registration required; $59 fee per person; space is limited; attendance at Winter Institute is not required. Registration will open October 29.

The IndieCommerce Institute is an interactive, classroom-style workshop for users of ABA’s e-commerce platforms. IndieCommerce Institute 2020 will feature two seminars: an IndieCommerce seminar for members using our IndieCommerce platform and an IndieLite seminar for members using our IndieLite platform. Each seminar will include step-by-step instructions for the topics covered. Each participant will be assigned their own test site to use and follow along with during the seminars.

See the complete IndieCommerce Seminar schedule here.

Pre-registration required; $59 fee per person; space is limited; attendance at Winter Institute is not required. Registration will open October 29.

The IndieCommerce Institute is an interactive, classroom-style workshop for users of ABA’s e-commerce platforms. IndieCommerce Institute 2020 will feature two seminars: an IndieCommerce seminar for members using our IndieCommerce platform and an IndieLite seminar for members using our IndieLite platform. Each seminar will include step-by-step instructions for the topics covered. Each participant will be assigned their own test site to use and follow along with during the seminars.

See the complete IndieLite Seminar schedule here.

9:00 am to 5:00 pm

The New Atlantic Independent Booksellers Association (NAIBA) is pleased to host the Hospitality Suite at this year’s Winter Institute. Stop by for a chance to decompress, grab a beverage, and refuel before heading back out to join your colleagues. Open to booksellers from all regions.

The Quiet Room is intended to provide a quiet, calm space where attendees can spend time away from noise, light, and other stimuli of conference spaces. The quiet room is not available for conversations or meetings.

9:00 am to 4:00 pm

Pre-registration required; $129 fee per person; space is limited and lunch is provided. Registration will open October 29.

This is a one-day seminar for anyone interested in opening a bookstore. Students will receive a crash course on the essentials of opening a new bookstore or buying an existing one. The workshop is open to ABA Provisional members and employees of Regular member stores, and is limited to three booksellers per ABA member company. Admission to Winter Institute is optional but guaranteed; a separate registration fee applies. The workshop will be facilitated by Donna Paz Kaufman and Mark Kaufman of Paz & Associates’ Bookstore Training Group (Fernandina Beach, FL).

9:30 am to 4:15 pm

Ingram invites all Winter Institute attendees to relax and chat with independent booksellers and publishers from around the country and the globe in a cozy corner of the hotel overlooking the famed Camden Yards ballpark. With more than 25 presses represented at Winter Institute and over 600 independent publishers under its wing, Ingram has much to offer booksellers. Come see why buyers consider Ingram such a rich resource, chat with publishers and editors, enjoy a cup of coffee, and browse an array of books.

This new programming initiative will allow booksellers to sign up for 15-minute slots to meet with participating publishers of their choice. Registered booksellers will be provided with a link to an online appointment calendar for more than 15 participating publishers. Registration will open October 29.

10:00 am to 3:00 pm

Pre-registration required; $30 fee per person; space is limited; registration will open October 29.

This bookstore tour for our international friends offers a chance to experience U.S. independent bookstores in and around the city of Baltimore. Join your international colleagues for a day of exploring and learning about the proud literary tradition in Baltimore, Maryland. Lunch will not be provided but will be available for purchase. (Bookstore tours for U.S. booksellers are scheduled for Friday, January 24.)

12:00 pm to 4:30 pm

Sign-up for the half-day tours will open on October 29. Buses will be provided for the one-hour ride to and from Westminster.

(Booksellers who work with Westminster-based sales reps: the morning tour, which leaves the hotel at 8:00 a.m., will include a meet-and-greet with your reps.)

1:00 pm to 2:00 pm

If you lost an important resource when Baker and Taylor left the indie community, this is a session you will not want to miss. The panelists will review the benefits of ordering direct from publishers and tips for organizing your resulting paperwork. Also on the panel will be booksellers who have accounts with wholesalers who can discuss those vendors' services for small stores.

2:00 pm to 5:00 pm

IndieCommerce and IndieLite are ABA’s online platforms for marketing events and author appearances as well as selling books and other merchandise. Both users and non-users of IndieCommerce and IndieLite are invited to schedule one-on-one time with a program specialist from the IndieCommerce team. Space is limited, but walk-ins are welcome. Registration will open in December. Attendees may schedule their appointment by completing the form here.

2:00 pm to 3:30 pm

Every title on the bookstore shelf goes through a similar cycle: author, agent, editor, and publisher activities that include editing, jacket design, sales and marketing, and all the things involved in promoting bookstore sales. This session will feature industry professionals discussing each aspect of the life cycle of the book and will give attendees a larger perspective on their part in the process.

2:00 pm to 4:00 pm

Pre-registration required; space is limited; registration will open October 29.

Discuss the art of selling used and rare books with fellow booksellers. Topics will include merchandising policies, inventory acquisition, events, displays, remainders, online sales, store layout, and more. Hear from veterans and newbies alike about the unique world of used books.

4:15 pm to 5:15 pm

First time at Winter Institute? Don’t panic! Join us before the Welcome Reception to get the scoop on Winter Institute and meet other attendees new to the event. Together, we will assist you in making the perfect game plan that ensures you get the most out of your Wi15 experience. If you requested a mentor, now is also the time to meet them so that you can connect throughout the conference.

5:30 pm to 7:30 pm

ABA’s 2020 Winter Institute Welcome Reception and Anniversary Celebration is your welcome to Baltimore and an opportunity to enjoy cocktails, snacks, and the company of your colleagues from around the world.

10:00 pm to 11:00 pm

ABA invites Wi15 attendees to join in honoring and toasting outgoing ABA CEO Oren Teicher.

Wednesday, January 22, 2020  

6:45 am to 7:45 am

7:00 am to 6:00 pm

Pick up your badge, the official Wi15 welcome bag from W.G. Ellerkamp, and a full schedule of Institute events from ABA’s membership team.

7:45 am to 9:00 am

9:00 am to 11:55 am

IndieCommerce and IndieLite are ABA’s online platforms for marketing events and author appearances as well as selling books and other merchandise. Both users and non-users of IndieCommerce and IndieLite are invited to schedule one-on-one time with a program specialist from the IndieCommerce team. Space is limited, but walk-ins are welcome. Registration will open in December. Attendees may schedule their appointment by completing the form here.

9:00 am to 2:00 pm

The always-popular Galley Room is filled with ARCs of upcoming titles from Wi15 sponsors. A limited supply of book totes will be on hand. The PartnerShip/FedEx Shipping Desk will also be open to assist in shipping your galleys back to your bookstores.

9:00 am to 4:30 pm

The New Atlantic Independent Booksellers Association (NAIBA) is pleased to host the Hospitality Suite at this year’s Winter Institute. Stop by for a chance to decompress, grab a beverage, and refuel before heading back out to join your peers. Open to booksellers from all regions.

9:00 am to 5:00 pm

The Quiet Room is intended to provide a quiet, calm space where attendees can spend time away from noise, light, and other stimuli of conference spaces. The quiet room is not available for conversations or meetings.

9:20 am to 10:20 am

Booksellers will gather with colleagues to talk about issues raised by the breakfast keynote speaker as part of discussions led by ABA Board members. Group and room assignments are printed on attendee badges.

Enjoy a session with your publishing colleagues. More details to come.

10:40 am to 11:40 am

The children’s department is typically one of the most profitable departments in any bookstore, but it can be a daunting place for general booksellers if they are not familiar with the material. In this session, seasoned children’s booksellers will be offering advice to general booksellers on how to dip their toes into the ocean of children’s literature so that they can hand-sell children’s books with confidence to customers of all ages.

Pre-registration required; space is limited; registration will open October 29.

Workplaces that go beyond inclusive policies to truly cultivate climates of inclusion are a win-win for employers and employees, as they capitalize on the focus and energy that comes from people bringing their full selves to work. An educator from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation will present data on how to make your business a more inclusive place and will provide an environment for reflection and discussion on how to make positive changes in your workplace culture.

This meeting space will be open and available to booksellers throughout the course of the event. The agenda is yours! Enjoy a space set aside for one-on-one discussions or larger group conversations. A number of flip-charts will be available for use.

ABACUS is the financial benchmarking survey that provides actionable, store-specific financial data as well as overall data on the financial health of independent bookstores for those who submit to the survey. Whether or not you submit, you will find this session full of helpful guidelines and suggestions for increasing store profitability. Not sure what ABACUS is or if it’s applicable to you? This is the perfect place to find your answers.

The backlist titles you choose to carry help create the culture of your store and can showcase your store values. The rise of the #DisruptTexts movement has brought this into higher relief and has started a conversation challenging the classic backlist canon sold in bookstores and taught in schools. This session will provide insight on how to go beyond the classics and highlight tactics for working with students and adults of all abilities and cultures to promote a broader experience of humanity in literature.

Batch for Books is a new electronic invoicing system created for booksellers and publishers in the U.S. The software-assisted service, based on the version used in the U.K., helps initiate payments between vendors and bookstore retailers at no cost to bookstores. CEO Fraser Tanner will moderate a panel of U.S. booksellers who have been part of the U.S. Batch for Books beta test.

12:00 pm to 2:00 pm

International guests are invited to join their colleagues from around the world for an informative discussion about the current state of the American book business. Lunch will be served.

Enjoy lunch with publisher sales reps and learn about great upcoming titles from the Winter Institute’s publisher sponsors. Seats are assigned; table numbers are printed on bookseller badges.

2:15 pm to 3:15 pm

3:30 pm to 5:00 pm

IndieCommerce and IndieLite are ABA’s online platforms for marketing events and author appearances as well as selling books and other merchandise. Both users and non-users of IndieCommerce and IndieLite are invited to schedule one-on-one time with a program specialist from the IndieCommerce team. Space is limited, but walk-ins are welcome. Registration will open in December. Attendees may schedule their appointment by completing the form here.

3:30 pm to 4:30 pm

This meeting space will be open and available to booksellers throughout the course of the event. The agenda is yours! Enjoy a space set aside for one-on-one discussions or larger group conversations. A number of flip-charts will be available for use.

Publisher reps can be a bookstore’s advocate, cheerleader, and access point for important publisher resources. By effectively working with their reps, booksellers can play an important role in communicating the unique needs of their diverse communities. Moderated by an experienced buyer, this panel conversation features a field rep, a commission rep, and a phone rep. Together, they will offer an inside perspective on how booksellers and publishers can work together for combined success.

Bookstore cafés can bring in new customers, increase overall sales, and boost profitability. But there can be many stumbling blocks between that first cup of coffee and a fully integrated and profitable enterprise. This session will focus on financial operations for stores that run their own cafés and serve limited menus (excluding alcohol). If you are looking for more information on bookstore café finances, this is the session for you.

Bookstores are important fixtures in every community. They serve as places to gather, to find and research new ideas, to explore new worlds, and to find refuge. Your store’s hiring practices can help to sustain your store and your place in the community, or it can hinder it. In this session, an HR leader will offer important concepts in hiring and retaining staff for retail stores in our diverse world, review the impact staff has within the store and on the greater community, and identify how to find and retain great bookstore employee candidates.

“Green retailing” is a term used to describe a retail business that emphasizes caring for the environment by building eco-friendly processes into store operations, from offering reusable bags to installing solar panels or auditing energy usage and more. With top brands like REI and Lush offering both sustainable products as well as shopping experiences, consumers are more aware than ever of retailers who make sustainability a key part of their business. Panelists will review ways that they have moved into the green retailing space through both store operations and discussions and conversations with publishers regarding the supply chain.

E-commerce is too expensive, complicated, and time consuming for small or micro store, right? Wrong! If you have a micro store with yourself as the sole proprietor or with only a few staff, this session is for you. IndieCommerce Senior Manager Geetha Nathan will moderate a panel of booksellers from small stores who will walk attendees through their decision to include e-commerce, how they used the opportunity to expand their brand, and the resulting impact to both their customer base and bottom line.

4:50 pm to 6:20 pm

If you’d like to share questions, feedback, and ideas about your POS system with representatives of your system, plan on attending one of the POS User Groups. These group discussions are an opportunity for users to ask questions and gain insight into maximizing the use of their current POS system.

The Publisher and Bookseller Focus Groups are intended to be an opportunity for publishers and distributors to discuss with booksellers issues of mutual concern and importance, leading to productive and practical ways to improve sales. Each publisher will have their own agenda and booksellers will be advised of a range of topics likely to be covered. This 90-minute event will be split into two 45-minute shifts with booksellers assigned to only one 45-minute shift, leaving all booksellers with 45 minutes of free time. Shift assignments will be printed on bookseller badges.

6:30 pm to 7:30 pm

Wi15 lead sponsor Ingram hosts an open reception to close day one of the Institute. Join your colleagues for drinks and nibbles.

9:30 pm to 11:45 pm

Enjoy drinks and desserts at the Scholastic Meet and Treat Afterparty!

Thursday, January 23, 2020  

6:45 am to 7:15 am

7:30 am to 5:00 pm

Pick up your badge, the official Wi15 welcome bag from W.G. Ellerkamp, and a full schedule of Institute events from ABA’s membership team.

7:45 am to 9:00 am

9:00 am to 12:00 pm

The Consultation Station offers booksellers the opportunity to meet with representatives from ABA’s business solution partners, POS vendors, and other service providers. Check BookWeb often for the full list of Consultation Station participants and a chance to make appointments in the coming months.

IndieCommerce and IndieLite are ABA’s online platforms for marketing events and author appearances as well as selling books and other merchandise. Both users and non-users of IndieCommerce and IndieLite are invited to schedule one-on-one time with a program specialist from the IndieCommerce team. Space is limited, but walk-ins are welcome. Registration will open in December. Attendees may schedule their appointment by completing the form here.

9:00 am to 7:00 pm

The always-popular Galley Room is filled with ARCs of upcoming titles from Wi15 sponsors. A limited supply of book totes will be on hand. The PartnerShip/FedEx Shipping Desk will also be open to assist in shipping your galleys back to your bookstores.

9:00 am to 5:00 pm

The New Atlantic Independent Booksellers Association (NAIBA) is pleased to host the Hospitality Suite at this year’s Winter Institute. Stop by for a chance to decompress, grab a beverage, and refuel before heading back out to join your peers. Open to booksellers from all regions.

The Quiet Room is intended to provide a quiet, calm space where attendees can spend time away from noise, light, and other stimuli of conference spaces. The quiet room is not available for conversations or meetings.

9:20 am to 12:30 pm

For attending Wi15 authors: Join your fellow authors on a tour of three Baltimore independent bookstores. Publishers can register authors online through the ABA Publisher Dashboard. There is a $30 fee per person. The tour will depart from the Hilton Hotel at 9:20 am on Thursday, January 23, and will stop at Greedy Reads, The Ivy Bookshop, and Red Emma’s Bookstore. Boarding begins 30 minutes prior to departure; the tour will return to the hotel by 12:45 pm. (Bookstore tours for U.S. booksellers are scheduled for Friday, January 24.)

9:20 am to 10:20 am

This meeting space will be open and available to booksellers throughout the course of the event. The agenda is yours! Enjoy a space set aside for one-on-one discussions or larger group conversations. A number of flip-charts will be available for use.

If you want to boost your sales numbers, this is the session for you! Genre titles include a broad category of topics, including fantasy, science fiction, western, romance, horror, mystery, dystopia, and more. And readers of these genres are often heavily invested in purchasing these titles and participating in the fandom through events, cosplay, and more. Bookseller panelists will discuss how and why they increased genre titles in their stores and the financial and community impact of those choices.

Being an independent bookstore in today’s retail environment means working tirelessly to stay connected and relevant to your customers in the store and online, while simultaneously participating in your greater community by advocating for independent retail as a key to downtown economic stability. It’s a big job! And all independent retailers, not just booksellers, are meeting this challenge in various ways. Come to this session to hear from Baltimore’s diverse and unique independent retailer stars, ask questions, and discover ideas to apply to your bookstore.

Podcasting has become an increasingly popular way to supplement your store’s programming, boost sales, and generate interest in your store among the literary community and beyond. In this session, we will discuss how to decide if a podcast makes sense for your store, different philosophies regarding the creation of content, the best recording equipment and editing software, different publishing platforms, and how to work with publishers and authors to promote their work and yours. Jason Jefferies, general manager of Quail Ridge Books, host of the store’s podcast, Bookin', and co-director of the North Carolina Book Festival, will moderate this panel.

This is an opportunity for booksellers to come together to discuss meaningful and often difficult topics. The goal for this conversation is not to find a solution or to provide active take-away steps, but to practice active listening, contributing, and considering other points of view on complex issues facing our industry and society. This session will focus on the politics of curation. What social or economic factors do you consider when you buy, merchandise, hand-sell, and cultivate specific author and publisher relationships? Do you choose to exclude certain titles or authors from your inventory? This conversation will be facilitated by a professional moderator.

10:40 am to 12:00 pm

Indies Introduce is about what independent booksellers do best: Discovering exciting debut authors and sharing the best with readers across the country. You will hear about the title selection process from the bookseller panelists who curated the Winter/Spring 2020 Indies Introduce list, which, according to Destenie Fafard of Cellar Door Books (Riverside, CA), provides panelists with “the privilege of reading debut authors’ work and giving a spotlight to those who perhaps wouldn’t be seen without our platform.” Many of the Winter/Spring 2020 Indies Introduce debut authors will be present to read a short passage and answer a question posed by one of the panelists. Authors will be available to sign copies of their debut books following the presentation.

12:00 pm to 2:00 pm

International guests are invited to lunch with their colleagues and participate in an informal discussion about bookselling developments and trends from around the world. Take a break, relax, and enjoy an informal discussion with other international bookselling colleagues.

Enjoy lunch with publisher sales reps and learn about great upcoming titles from the Winter Institute’s publisher sponsors. Seats are assigned; table numbers are printed on bookseller badges.

1:00 pm to 2:00 pm

Developed for author guests at Winter Institute, this lunch panel features booksellers who have formulated best practices for creating events that benefits both store and author. This session will cover a number of issues, from author publicity to dealing with pre-event nerves.

2:00 pm to 5:00 pm

The Consultation Station offers booksellers the opportunity to meet with representatives from ABA’s business solution partners, POS vendors, and other service providers. Check BookWeb often for the full list of Consultation Station participants and a chance to make appointments in the coming months.

IndieCommerce and IndieLite are ABA’s online platforms for marketing events and author appearances as well as selling books and other merchandise. Both users and non-users of IndieCommerce and IndieLite are invited to schedule one-on-one time with a program specialist from the IndieCommerce team. Space is limited, but walk-ins are welcome. Registration will open in December. Attendees may schedule their appointment by completing the form here.

2:20 pm to 3:20 pm

The Town Hall is an opportunity for open discussion about industry and association issues. ABA Board Jamie Fiocco (Flyleaf Books, Chapel Hill, NC) and Vice President Bradley Graham (Politics and Prose Bookstore in Washington, D.C.) will facilitate the meeting. The full ABA Board will respond to questions and comments from all booksellers; booksellers who would like to send questions in advance can e-mail townhall@bookweb.org.

3:40 pm to 4:40 pm

It has been more than a year since ABA and the Pre-Order Task Force began a dedicated push to help booksellers better capitalize on this important yet underutilized option for sales. Since then, many participating booksellers have witnessed increased sales both from targeted pre-order campaigns and overall sales of popular titles. In this session, publishers that have worked with ABA will review pre-order campaigns from their perspective and provide additional data and best practices for booksellers to capitalize further on pre-sales.

5:15 pm to 6:45 pm

Thanks to the generosity of ABA’s publisher sponsors, dozens of authors and illustrators will be on hand to chat with booksellers and autograph new and forthcoming titles at the Author Reception. Hors d’oeuvres and refreshments will be served.

Friday, January 24, 2020  

6:45 am to 7:15 am

7:30 am to 3:00 pm

Pick up your badge, the official Wi15 welcome bag from W.G. Ellerkamp, and a full schedule of Institute events from ABA’s membership team.

7:30 am to 8:00 pm

The always-popular Galley Room is filled with ARCs of upcoming titles from Wi15 sponsors. A limited supply of book totes will be on hand. The PartnerShip/FedEx Shipping Desk will also be open to assist in shipping your galleys back to your bookstores.

7:45 am to 9:15 am

Enjoy breakfast while hearing about great upcoming titles from more of Winter Institute’s publisher sponsors. Seating is unassigned for this breakfast.

9:15 am to 5:00 pm

IndieCommerce and IndieLite are ABA’s online platforms for marketing events and author appearances as well as selling books and other merchandise. Both users and non-users of IndieCommerce and IndieLite are invited to schedule one-on-one time with a program specialist from the IndieCommerce team. Space is limited, but walk-ins are welcome. Registration will open in December. Attendees may schedule their appointment by completing the form here.

The New Atlantic Independent Booksellers Association (NAIBA) is pleased to host the Hospitality Suite at this year’s Winter Institute. Stop by for a chance to decompress, grab a beverage, and refuel before heading back out to join your peers. Open to booksellers from all regions.

The Quiet Room is intended to provide a quiet, calm space where attendees can spend time away from noise, light, and other stimuli of conference spaces. The quiet room is not available for conversations or meetings.

9:15 am to 12:00 pm

The Consultation Station offers booksellers the opportunity to meet with representatives from ABA’s business solution partners, POS vendors, and other service providers. Check BookWeb often for the full list of Consultation Station participants and a chance to make appointments in the coming months.

Booksellers have the opportunity to meet with small and mid-size publishers for informal conversations. These publishers, many of which are first-time ABA event sponsors, will have sample copies of their books, as well as additional copies for giveaways at their discretion.

9:15 am to 10:45 am

Immediately following their breakfast presentations, reps from participating publisher sponsors will be available to meet with interested booksellers for further discussion.

9:30 am to 10:30 am

Pre-registration required; space is limited; registration will open October 29.

In 2019, the World Health Organization (WHO) included burnout in the eleventh revision of the International Classification of Diseases. It is now classified as an occupational phenomenon and characterized as “...feelings of energy depletion or exhaustion; increased mental distance from one’s job, or feelings of negativism or cynicism related to one’s job; and reduced professional efficacy.” Burnout is real; it often impacts individuals from minority groups at higher rates, and if not addressed it can lead to more severe health consequences. While there is no one solution for this syndrome, there are changes that can be put in place, whether you are a store owner, a manager, or a frontline bookseller. A professional in this field will lead a session to help all attendees identify workplace stressors in their environments and consider possible solutions.

This meeting space will be open and available to booksellers throughout the course of the event. The agenda is yours! Enjoy a space set aside for one-on-one discussions or larger group conversations. A number of flip-charts will be available for use.

Board games are a hot trend and a growing business that capitalize on popular TV and streaming shows and pop-culture moments. And they all have something in common: face-to-face social interaction, which is a key component of successful independent bookstores. Come hear from booksellers who have integrated board games and play nights into their sales and events. An independent board game seller joins the panel to discuss the aspects of her business and how booksellers can bring games — and customers — into the bookstore. After the session, come to the Winter Institute Board Game Playroom to sample games with colleagues or game reps, review discounts, and place orders. If you are looking for new non-book inventory, this may be an opportunity for you.

In our highly charged and increasingly challenging political landscape, author visits and even authorless events can become a flash point. Managing and pre-planning for potential event disruptions by fully understanding your community, your audience, and your guests can go a long way toward creating solutions. This panel will offer suggestions from booksellers who have experienced store boycotts and both peaceful and not-so-peaceful protestors.

One minute of planning can save you 10 minutes in execution. But when you are one of the only booksellers on staff, finding that one minute can be tough. Panelists will provide useful tools for fighting distraction and tracking time so you can create those efficiencies that lead to improved productivity.

10:45 am to 11:45 am

12:00 pm to 1:30 pm

Enjoy lunch and meet an additional lineup of authors and illustrators from Winter Institute’s sponsors, who will be on hand to chat with booksellers and autograph their new and forthcoming titles.

1:30 pm to 5:00 pm

The Consultation Station offers booksellers the opportunity to meet with representatives from ABA’s business solution partners, POS vendors, and other service providers. Check BookWeb often for the full list of Consultation Station participants and a chance to make appointments in the coming months.

1:45 pm to 5:00 pm

Welcome to the Winter Institute Board Game Playroom! This is your opportunity to sample games with colleagues or game reps, review discounts, and place orders. If you are looking for new non-book inventory, this may be an opportunity for you.

Pre-registration required. Space is limited. Booksellers are encouraged to attend the seminar in its entirety. Registration will open October 29.

Attention frontline booksellers! ABA is offering this in-depth, interactive seminar to help you learn more about the industry and become better booksellers.

The subjects for the afternoon include:

  • Personal Finance: Because finances make your life work! Tina Hay, author of Napkin Finance (HarperCollins), will present “Napkins for the Frontline Bookseller.” Tina developed this visual way of understanding financial concepts and managing money while attending Harvard Business School. Her visual learning strategy uses sketches and infographics that helped her succeed in her studies and master even the most complex financial topics.
  • When Hand-selling is Difficult : Maybe you’re not into kids’ books or history or cooking, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have a competent and meaningful exchange on the topic and help guide a customer to the best choice.
  • Career Management: Take some time to focus on your future. A panel composed of booksellers and publishers will share insights on their career trajectories and tips for creating a career plan for future success. You won’t want to miss this conversation.

This meeting space will be open and available to booksellers throughout the course of the event. The agenda is yours! Enjoy a space set aside for one-on-one discussions or larger group conversations. A number of flip-charts will be available for use.

Pre-registration required. Space is limited. Booksellers are encouraged to attend the seminar in its entirety. Registration opens October 29.

An employee manual is the documentation for your store’s policies and procedures, as well as for employees’ legal rights and obligations. But it is more than that. This document provides a window into the unique workplace vision and culture that you have built — or that you want to build. The workshop will cover the following sections for your employee manual:

  • Workplace culture, including store values and mission statement
  • General employment information
  • Code of conduct
  • Benefits
  • Disciplinary procedures and grounds for termination
  • Employee manual disclaimer

1:45 pm to 2:45 pm

Welcome to ABA’s live Marketing Meetup! Marketing is more than social media, newsletters, or placing ads. While all of these tasks are vital to marketing, it is important not to overlook search engine optimization, or SEO. In this session, you’ll learn what SEO is, why it matters, and some best practices for implementation.

1:45 pm to 3:00 pm

This is an opportunity for booksellers to come together to discuss meaningful and often difficult topics. The goal is not to find a solution or to provide active takeaway steps, but to practice active listening, contributing, and considering other points of view on complex issues facing our industry. Watch Bookselling This Week for more details on this session.

2:00 pm to 4:45 pm

Pre-registration required; $30 fee per person; space is limited; registration will open October 29.

Bookstore Tours departs from the Hilton Hotel at 2:00 pm on Friday, January 24, and will stop at Atomic Books, Red Emma's Bookstore, and Black Classic Press. Boarding begins 30 minutes prior to departure; the tour will return to the hotel by 4:45 pm.

2:55 pm to 3:55 pm

Independent Bookstore Day (IBD) has grown from a handful of bookstores in California to a national celebration involving more than 575 stores and, in some cases, citywide celebrations. Participating bookstores see an increase in sales, increased foot traffic, and increased brand awareness. This session will offer attendees an overview of the program and tips from booksellers who have figured out how to make the most of IBD. Panelists will offer information on how to order and make the most of the IBD exclusive merchandise, how to organize and publicize your store’s party to bring people into your store, and how to use social media strategically to increase sales and community participation.

These informal yet informative talks are designed to provide a relaxed atmosphere for inspiring and educational conversations. Each chat will feature a less-experienced bookseller interviewing a more-experienced bookseller. Conversations this hour will include:

  • Managing as a First Time Manager
  • So You Are Thinking of Running for Office...

3:10 pm to 3:55 pm

This forty-five minute long session offers attendees three TEDx style talks from booksellers who have had game-changing aha! moments in the past year. Presentations will be short — 10 minutes or less — and will focus on concepts that have saved money, improved operations, created a new efficiency, or increased sales. From major shakeups to a better system for ordering store supplies, innovative ideas come in all sizes but can make a big impact.

4:05 pm to 5:00 pm

More than 50% of Generation Z (people between the ages of 13 and 20) identify as a member of the LGBTQ+ community, and a recent survey by the Human Rights Campaign shows that many of them have anxiety regarding their personal safety. In this session, booksellers will have the chance to share ideas, programs, and actions they have taken to make their store an inclusive, welcoming, and safe environment for today’s LGBTQ+ youth.

Congratulations on making it through Winter Institute 2020! What are you taking away from this conference? What has excited or inspired you? If you attended the Bookseller Discussion Groups on Wednesday, you will find your moderator ready to guide your group through this debrief discussion. If you are attending on a day pass, you are welcome to join any table with a “Day Pass” stanchion. Your moderator will be a member of the ABA Booksellers Advisory Council or ABC Advisory Council.

5:00 pm to 6:00 pm

6:00 pm to 7:00 pm

About ABA

The American Booksellers Association, a national not-for-profit trade organization, works with booksellers and industry partners to ensure the success and profitability of independently owned book retailers, and to assist in expanding the community of the book.

Independent bookstores act as community anchors; they serve a unique role in promoting the open exchange of ideas, enriching the cultural life of communities, and creating economically vibrant neighborhoods.

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