We hope February has been kind. This month, we reveal our custom campaign artwork and bookseller opportunities for CIBD 2024, share interviews, and more.

Settled in? Coffee in hand? Let’s go!


We can’t wait to celebrate indies across the country on April 27!

In January, we shared that we were working with talented artist and illustrator Cornelia Li to design this year’s campaign artwork. We’re delighted to reveal Cornelia’s illustration below, a bright and dynamic ode to the way indies foster inclusive and diverse communities. 

We asked Cornelia to share some behind-the-scenes insights about her approach. Read the interview here.

Our graphic designer used Cornelia’s artwork to create campaign resources including digital graphics for posters, web banners, and social media images. These graphics will be made available to members in March.

In the meantime, you can download our Save the Date here. We'll be posting this on social media tomorrow!


Since September, we’ve worked with publishers and partners on initiatives that will help drive customers to indie bookstores on April 27 (in addition to our popular Contest for Book Lovers). 

To help bookstores plan, we have put together a guide outlining the opportunities available. The guide outlines partner-led initiatives like giveaways and product exclusives. It also details a brand new advertising support program and provides a plethora of activity ideas for inspiration. Members can access the guide now in the Member Portal.

IMPORTANT: The deadline to sign up for giveaways is March 8. The link to sign up can be found in the guide.

Happy planning!

Ask the Bookseller: Browser Friendly Children’s Sections
Tuesday, February 27
4pm PT, 5pm MT, 6pm CT, 7pm ET, 8pm AT, 8:30pm Newfoundland

Children’s books can bring joy (and eager customers) into any generalized bookstore but designing a children’s section can be a lot of work. Unlike a specialized store, you may not have the shelf space to showcase all the books that a customer might want to buy. So how do you decide which books to stock? What are some creative ways you can display books when you don’t have a lot of space? Join our panel as they discuss this and more!

Host: Hannah Berry from Munro’s Books
Presenters: Laura Ash from Another Story Bookshop, Cole Davidson from The Spaniel’s Tale, and Norine McGinn from Westminster Bookmark

CIBA Coffee Break: Share Your Feedback on Supplier Relations 
Tuesday, March 5
10am PT, 11am MT, 12pm CT, 1pm ET, 2pm AT, 2:30pm Newfoundland

The Supplier Relations Committee meets with major suppliers to negotiate improved terms of trade for indies. To ensure the committee's priorities align with member needs, we invite you to attend this session and share your recent experiences, feedback, and ongoing needs. Your voice is important to ensuring that the committee can work on effecting systemic change. 

Host: Laura Carter, Executive Director of CIBA

Email Marketing for Bookstores: Tips for Success 
Tuesday, March 26
4pm PT, 5pm MT, 6pm CT, 7pm ET, 8pm AT, 8:30pm Newfoundland 

Demystify the power of email marketing and building a mailing list in this beginner-friendly workshop. Learn how to choose a platform, create an optimized mailing list, and devise a content plan that will drive engagement and sales for your business. Whether you're just starting out or want to revamp your current e-newsletter, Ariel Hudnall—a seasoned marketer in the book publishing industry—will take you through all the steps required to get up and running and communicating with your customers in new and exciting ways!

Host: Ariel Hudnall, Managing Director of Zg Stories

Ask the Bookseller: Organizing and Categorizing Your Stock

History, Science Fiction, Mystery, Cooking, Romance—there are many ways to organize, categorize, and display the books in your store. Whether you’re new to bookselling or a seasoned professional, it pays to take a step back and analyze the status quo. Our panel of booksellers share their insights, discoveries, successes, and failures in this must-see discussion.

This event recording is now available in the Member Portal

Not a CIBA member? Join now to access a range of benefits, including access to live events, recordings, and other business resources. 

There are many ways that a bookstore extends its services beyond those of other retailers, whether it be supporting local organizations, maintaining good relationships with schools, or hosting events. CIBA reached out to three experienced booksellers for their insights.

“Indies have a role to play as ‘third places,’ as hubs of social and informational interaction. There are opportunities to lead, to set examples, and to show that even small actions can have impacts.”

– Erin Dalton, Huckleberry Books (Cranbrook, BC)

Visit the Member Blog for insights from Erin as well as Julie Hillier-Vrolyk from The Book Keeper (Sarnia, ON), and Lucy Hoblyn from Brome Lake Books (Knowlton, QC).

River Bee Books is the newest indie in Medicine Hat, AB. This store officially opened on April 29, 2023 (Canadian Independent Bookstore Day!). We spoke with owner Bridget Neigum about her approach to curation, what customers can expect, and what she loves about being an independent bookseller.

“What I love the most—and what has genuinely surprised me the most—is how much this bookstore means to people within the community. I knew an independent bookstore was needed in Medicine Hat, but the outpouring of support and enthusiasm has humbled me beyond words.” 

Read the article here.

Members: If you haven't yet done so, please fill out our 2024 member survey!

Member input is integral for our work. Your responses to this survey will guide our efforts and ensure we are allocating our resources—human and otherwise—appropriately to serve member needs and priorities. This is your opportunity to make your voice heard as a CIBA member. 

It is vital that every member fill out this survey. It will take approximately 20 minutes to complete. Click here to access the survey


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