Hello everyone,

This month, we’ve put together a collection of articles and resources that will help take your mind off the August heat – including member interviews, CIBA updates, sneak peeks at upcoming events, and more!

Read on to see what we have in store as we celebrate the end of summer and usher in the beginning of autumn.

Each month, CIBA is working hard to advance the interests of Canadian independent booksellers. Here is a brief snapshot of some things we’ve been working on lately:

  • Work has begun on Canadian Independent Bookstore Day 2022. We recently released an Info Guide for Publishers & Partners outlining ways for the industry to get involved in activities that require significant lead time (including the development of product exclusives). Mark your calendars for April 30, 2022! We can’t wait to celebrate with you.
  • CIBA is developing a fall marketing campaign that will drive sales to independent bookstores in the lead up to the holidays. We’ll share more details in our September newsletter. Watch this space!
  • Thank you to all the Bookseller members who filled out our first CIBA Supplier Relations Survey. Based on your feedback, we are working to compile a report on indie booksellers’ relationships with key suppliers. This will help CIBA assess where advocacy might be needed.
  • As previously announced, CIBA has developed a suite of indie bookseller logos that are now available for members’ business use. You might choose to add the logos to your website, use them on social media, print them as stickers for your titles, or use them for in-store displays.
  • The Lectures & Labs team has been planning events and resources to support members throughout the fall. We know you’re busy, so we're working hard to make professional development initiatives focused, timely, and of direct benefit to your business, giving you time to concentrate on what you do best – getting books into the hands of readers!

These are a few highlights of the work we’re doing on your behalf. As you know, CIBA is a membership-driven association. If there’s something we can do to help champion or support indie booksellers, please let us know!

“We have customers who have been with us for a long time – some whose peccadillos are part of the fabric of our store.”

Since taking over in 2007, Michael and Wendy Bumsted have grown Whodunit Bookshop in Winnipeg, MB into the beloved community store it is today. In this profile, they shared with us how they connect with their customers, their approach to curation, and the books they return to over and over again.

Read the article here.

LECTURES & LABS: Effective and timely ordering and reordering strategies for the fall and holiday seasons

With continued printing difficulties and other uncertainties in parts of the book supply chain, planning effective and appropriate orders has become more important than ever. Join Penguin Random House Canada's Mary Giuliano to learn how to harness your business savvy to get around these delays and be ready and well-stocked come the busy season. In addition to sharing strategies for ordering correct quantities and thinking smarter when it comes to orders, Mary will also preview a handful of key titles from PRHC's fall catalogue that you should be paying particular attention to.

Tuesday, August 24
12pm PST, 1pm MST, 2pm CST, 3pm EST, 4pm AST, 4:30pm Newfoundland

LECTURES & LABS: Increasing revenue through gifts and sidelines

Join Raincoast to learn the best ways to leverage gifts and sidelines to increase sales and get their top product picks for the holiday season. Using examples from how stores across North America are selling non-book products, Raincoast will cover the best retail practices as well as provide an overview of trends. All registrants who join us for the session (or watch the recording and submit their info to CIBA) will be entered to win a credit of $200 retail for gift items of their choosing from Raincoast.

Tuesday, September 14
4pm PST, 5pm MST, 6pm CST, 7pm EST, 8pm AST, 8:30pm Newfoundland

DISCUSSION FORUM (children's booksellers): Create new readers for life

Please see below for more information about CIBA Discussion Forums. This session is aimed specifically at booksellers focusing exclusively or in part on books for young people. 

For this session, the discussion will focus on creating new readers for life. It will begin with a 10-minute informal presentation on recommending the right book at the right time, with expert tips for handselling children's books to increase sales. The presentation will be followed by a group discussion for questions and idea-sharing among peers.

Presenter: Eleanor LeFave, Mabel's Fables Bookstore (Toronto, ON)

Wednesday, September 15
12pm PST, 1pm MST, 2pm CST, 3pm EST, 4pm AST, 4:30pm Newfoundland

CIBA Discussion Forums – a chance to share and learn from your peers!

The Discussion Forum for Booksellers is a semi-regular opportunity to connect with industry peers, share ideas and discuss the issues that affect your business. There are two streams: one for booksellers generally and one for children's booksellers. CIBA bookseller members are welcome to attend any session that corresponds to their business needs. 

Each forum begins with a short, informal presentation or discussion on a specific topic. The floor then opens to a group discussion. Participants are asked to turn on their cameras and participate actively to generate discussion and crowd-source answers to common issues and challenges. 

Stay tuned for announcements of dates and topics for this fall (in addition to the children’s event on September 15). If you'd like to suggest a discussion topic, please email Laura and/or Danielle. 

The Lectures & Labs series is expanding! Recognizing that the fall is a busy season for booksellers but that there's always room for professional development, the series is expanding into short daytime sessions – perfect for a lunch or coffee break for any employee with the expertise or interest in the selected topic. 

This season, let fellow booksellers take the guesswork out of curating and stocking various sections of your store as we explore a variety of themes and genres, in addition to diverse voices and cultural perspectives. Learn from expert peers as they suggest which books to stock to drive sales in the 5-5-5 format: 5 essentials they love to handsell, 5 upcoming books with buzz, 5 minutes for questions. 

Short, quick, and designed to help you save time, three 30-minute events will take place September 23, October 7, and October 21 at 12pm ET. Specific presenters and topics will be announced shortly. 

“It was like we discovered parallel worlds, especially in Canadian and Québécois fiction, that we could now explore as readers. It was life-changing for us.”

Librairie Saga Bookstore
store began operations in January 2020 and opened their physical location in December. We spoke to co-owners Ilya Razykov and Mathieu Lauzon-Dicso about their experience, the response to their fully bilingual model, and about their hopes for the future of their store.

Read the interview in our member blog. Not a CIBA member? Join us today!

When you join CIBA, you’re able to access member-only content on our website, including CIBA’s Professional Forum. This forum is the place to share ideas, initiatives, and opportunities with peers.

Here is a recent opportunity posted to the forum on behalf of LPG:

Indie booksellers are invited to the first LPG #LitMatch Fall Preview!

This fall, the Literary Press Group of Canada's Sales Collective invites independent Canadian booksellers to participate in our first LPG #LitMatch Fall Preview. There will be swag and prizes as we celebrate our mutual love for indie-published Canadian books in a fun and fast-paced virtual event. 

Our publishers have carefully selected 20 titles from the upcoming season to highlight. Based on your answers to a few easy questions, our bookish matchmakers will hand-pick your #LitMatch. Click here to start #LitMatching

Join us on Zoom for the BIG REVEAL of our #LitMatches, a one-hour event on the afternoon of September 14, 2021. You can RSVP for the Fall Preview event by emailing Tan Light at sales@lpg.ca.

Members: access more information about the above opportunity here. And make sure to subscribe to the Professional Forum so you don't miss a post!

Not a member yet? Join CIBA today and access the member portal as a benefit of your membership.

Do you have a burning bookselling question?

Need to crowdsource an answer from your peers?

Do you have a wealth of industry knowledge that you’d be willing to share with other booksellers?

The Member Support – Ask and Answer Forum is the place to receive support and mentorship from fellow CIBA members.

Members can access the forum here. Not a member yet? Join CIBA today and access this space for insight and support.

Subscribe to the forum today so you never miss a chance to help your Canadian independent bookseller peers succeed!


BookNet Canada continues to provide important research and content on the Canadian book industry. This month, you can:


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