What writer doesn't love bookshops, or hasn't been influenced or inspired by visiting bricks-and-mortar bookstores from an early age? Independent Booksellers' Week in the UK seems a good time to announce that as part of ALLi's #Authors4Bookstores campaign, we're planning two new writing projects that will celebrate bricks-and-mortar booksellers, and we're inviting ALLi members to take part.
New ALLi Handbook for Authors
First, a new practical handbook: How to Sell Your Books Through Bookstores. This will very much expand on Chapter 4 in Opening Up to Indie Authors, which gave a quick summary of how to build a better relationship with local booksellers. It will include practical tools to help you do that. such as templates for book information sheets, feedback from a wide range of bookshops, and shared experiences of ALLi author members. It will also include some inspiring anecdotes from leading indie authors around the world, including Piers Alexander, who at the launch of #Authors4Bookstores spoke so evocatively of his own childhood enjoyment of bookshops.
Here's how you can be involved:
- If you have already have a good relationship with one or more bookstores and would like to give them a shout-out in the book, please email me a brief description of how supportive they have been to you, or leave a comment with details at the end of this post.
- If you have a particular favourite tactic that works for you in placing your books in bricks-and-mortar stores, I'd love to share it in the book – again, please email me or leave a comment.
- If you have a treasured memory or an interesting anecdote about how bookshops have inspired you in any way, please email me up to 500 words describing your experience – we'll be including a selection of these in the book.
We're planning to launch this book in the autumn, so the deadline for submissions is 31st July 2015.
New Fiction Anthology about Bookshops
Secondly, more for fun than practicality, I'll be compiling an anthology of short stories inspired by bookshops and booksellers. To allow as many as practical to be included, I'm asking for a maximum of 2,000 words per story. All submissions must of course be original and your own work, and only ALLi members are eligible to contribute to the book. (Now there's a good reason to join ALLi, if you're not already a member!) If your story has already been published elsewhere, that's fine, provided you own the copyright and give us your permission to reprint it. You will of course retain the copyright to your story.
This isn't exactly a competition, but depending on the quantity and quality of entries, we cannot guarantee to include all those we receive. Our plan is to end up with a volume of terrific stories by indie authors that will be a smart way of demonstrating to bookshops not just how much we love them but also the quality of self-published work. Gifting a copy to the manager of your neighbourhood bookstore could be a great starting point for conversation or, if you're already established there, a memorable way to express your thanks for their support.
We plan to launch this book early in 2016, so the deadline for entries is 31st October 2015. Please email your entries giving full details of your name (and pen-name if different), with your story embedded in the body of your email, to debbie [at] allianceindependentauthors.org. I'm happy to receive these as soon as you are ready, so please don't wait till the last minute to send them in.
I look forward to reading your contributions to both of these exciting projects.Invitation to take part in two exciting new book projects for #Authors4Bookstores Click To Tweet