May Brings Picnic And Party For Publishers

Seattle area small press publishers and bookmakers are holding a potluck in a park. Join them for BOOKLUCK! on Sunday, May 15, 3:30pm to 7:30pm at Ravenna Park Picnic Shelter #1. More info and RSVP at bit.ly/bookluck. Masks and proof of vaccination are required for attendance.

Participants are encouraged to bring their favorite picnic food and drink, picnic blankets, and their extra zines, books, comics, pamphlets, or other print stuff that you want to trade or give away to a new home.

The evening before, show up for a Zine Pop-Up (with wine!) at Seattle’s only wineshop/bookshop, Drink Books. Join them on Saturday, May 14, from 1pm to 4pm for a meet the maker zine event. The store is hosting ANEMONE Studio, as well as selections from other local zine artists. Grab a copy of the Eat Books zine too. Zines will be available for purchase all week, but the Saturday event includes a special wine tasting ($14) and book recommendations! 

Submissions Open for PNBA Book Awards

Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association’s Book Awards Committee is now taking submissions from publishers for the 2023 Book Award. The Committee is comprised of booksellers from independent bookstores throughout the Pacific Northwest.

To be eligible for consideration, the author(s) must currently reside full-time in the Pacific Northwest—Washington, Oregon, Montana, Idaho, Alaska or British Columbia. Books must be published between Oct 1, 2021 and Sep 30, 2022.

Anyone who would like to nominate a book for a 2023 Book Award should send an email to awards@pnba.org.

Be sure to include the AUTHOR, PLACE OF RESIDENCE, TITLE, PUBLISHER’S NAME, ADDRESS and LEAD CONTACT. An automated reply will include complete instructions and mailing addresses for the Book Award committee members.

Deadline for receipt of nominated books by the committee is September 30, 2022.

The Committee will select a short-list in November that PNBA’s member stores will promote during the Christmas season. The winners will be announced in January 2023.

The Committee receives over 400 submissions a year so the sooner they receive your book, the more chance it has of getting a full reading!

Humanities Montana Grants Awarded

Writers, publishers, and literary groups in Montana benefit from Humanities Montana’s support through a variety of grant programs. In March, the organization will take “opportunity grant” applications for funding up to $1,000. Then, in April, Humanities Montana will accept regular grant applications for requests above $1,000. All grant information can be found on the website, www.humanitiesmontana.org.

Humanities Montana announced the following grants awarded in February:

  • James Welch Native American Literature Festival, Aasaisstto Language Society, East Glacier, $10,000. The James Welch Native American Literature Festival will be a three-day event celebrating the work of the internationally acclaimed writer James Welch and featuring contemporary Native American writers.
  • Philosophy Symposia Series, Merlin CCC, Helena, $3,750. The Philosophy Symposia Series will focus on military life and the ethics of war, freedom of speech, and our relationship with nature.
  • Blackfeet Ethnoecology Mapping Project, Blackfeet Tribal Historic Preservation Office, Browning, $6,100. The project will develop an Indigenous science database informed by the Blackfoot knowledge system to disseminate traditional landscape stewardship principles about ecosystem connectivity and the role and responsibility of Blackfoot people in protecting cultural and natural resources.
  • Talk Series: Language Reclamation and Beyond, University of Montana Linguistics Department, Missoula, $5,000. An international conference co-hosted by Chief Dull Knife College and featuring a series of plenary talks on Indigenous language documentation and reclamation.
  • Story of Butte, Butte Citizens for Preservation and Revitalization, Butte, $7,500. Support for curated articles about the history of Butte on a website and mobile app.
  • First Voices, Thresh, Inc., New York, New York, $2,000. Contemporary multidisciplinary interpretations of Indigenous stories for the digital platform working with tribal elders and high school students.
  • Buckskin and Cloth Dresses, April Martin, Busby, $4,000. Research fellowship on the evolution of women’s buckskin and cloth dresses with an emphasis on the Cheyenne Nation.
  • Romey Stuckart Essay and Talk, Missoula Art Museum, Missoula, $1,000. Independent curator and author Ben Mitchell will write an essay about the artist Romey Stuckart for a 16-page exhibition catalog and a live presentation.
  • Annual Youth Concert, Helena Symphony, Helena, $1,000. An educational performance for 2,000 fourth and fifth graders from across the Helena region featuring the acclaimed Classical Kids Live Symphony program Beethoven Lives Upstairs.
  • MPN Playwrights Conference 2022: From Page to Stage, Montana Playwrights Network, Helena, $1,000. A two-day conference examining the sometimes obscure process a new play script follows in its journey from page to stage, with expert presenters and panelists offering analysis and discussion of original plays by Montana playwrights.
  • Teen Book Boxes Extension Program, Billings Public Library, Billings, $1,000 BPL, in partnership with Tumbleweed Runaway Services, will offer free books and supplemental materials to teenagers and young adults. 
  • Nadia Bolz-Weber Lecture Event, Rocky Mountain College, Billings, $1,000. Support for the Wheatley Lecture this year featuring theologian Nadia Bolz-Weber.
  • Mullan Road Conference 2022, River and Plains Society, Fort Benton, $10,000. Support for this national conference commemorating the completion of the Mullan Military Wagon Road in 1860 between Fort Benton and Fort Walla Walla, Washington.

Draft2Digital and Smashwords Merge March 1

For indie publishers, especially those who are publishing primarily ebooks, the big news of February was the announced merger of Draft2Digital and Smashwords.

The acquisition unites two pioneers in ebook publishing and distribution platforms. Both also provide print-on-demand services. Under the Draft2Digital name, the company will be headquartered in Oklahoma City. Kris Austin, co-founder and CEO of Draft2Digital, will lead the combined company as CEO. Mark Coker, founder and former CEO of Smashwords, will join the Draft2Digital management team as Chief Strategy Officer and board member.

The acquisition is expected to close on March 1, 2022. To minimize workflow disruption for authors, publishers, and sales partners, Draft2Digital promises changes “in gradual and incremental steps.”

As the new company ramps up, Draft2Digital says that they are looking for more employees. Currently job openings are listed for OK, TX, KS, CO, CA, or WA. Check the company’s website for more information at draft2digital.com/careers.

A Q&A with Draft2Digital’s Kris Austin and Smashwords’ founder Mark Coker about how the merger will work.

Publishing Scholarship Available For Booksellers

Booksellers who want to learn the publishing side of the book businesss are encouraged to apply for Denver Publishing Institute’s 2022 scholarship.

The Book Industry Charitable Foundation (Binc), in collaboration with Sourcebooks and the Denver Publishing Institute, is sponsoring a summer scholarship—worth up to $7000—to attend the Denver Publishing Institute. Applications will be accepted through February 24, 2022. This scholarship includes tuition, meal plan, housing, and up to $2000 to cover travel and lost wages.

The Denver Publishing Institute (DPI) is a 4-week-long summer program (July 10–,August 5, 2022) at the University of Denver. Participants can choose to attend in person or as a remote student in 2022. DPI is taught by industry professionals who work for trade, university, textbook, and independent publishers throughout the country. Course and lecture topics will include book marketing, manuscript editing, copyediting and proofreading, digital marketing strategies, the role of the bookstore, and other publishing specific courses.

Jill Smith, director of the Denver Publishing Institute said, “We are delighted to be able to join Binc and Sourcebooks to support another bookseller’s attendance at the 2022 Denver Publishing Institute. Booksellers are vitally important to the publishing community because of their direct relationships with readers. Our goal is to help them grow in their careers, whether they continue to grow their roles in retail or move into different positions within book publishing.”
 
The application process is open to booksellers who are currently employed (full- or part-time) at a brick and mortar bookstore, with a tenure of at least 90 days, and are employed by the bookstore at the time of the program.
 
The applications must be made by February 24 through the Denver Publishing Institute’s application portal. Booksellers can find out more details and apply here: https://gradadmissions.du.edu/apply/

Find out more about the Denver Publishing Institute at https://liberalarts.du.edu/publishing

So What Do People Do In Publishing?

Many conventions moved online last year and several panels ended up being Zoom chats with international audiences. Now these organizations are republishing this content. Check out the following on the job duties of various people during the publishing of a book (clicking on picture will take viewers to Dream Foundry’s video channel):

A discussion of the journey from pitched to published, discussing what happens every step of the way and the professionals that contribute to the process with:

Author/Editor/Publisher, Mythic Delirium Books Two-time World Fantasy Award finalist Mike Allen edits and publishes the Mythic Delirium Books imprint.

Laura Blackwell is a freelance copyeditor and a Pushcart-nominated writer of speculative fiction. Her stories have appeared in magazines and anthologies.

Jill Roberts has been the managing editor at Tachyon Publications since 2002. She is the editor of award-winning Tachyon books, and a columnist for Books to Watch Out For and the Thirteenth Moon. Roberts was a consultant at Streetside Stories, which teaches storytelling through writing.

Moderator Rosemary Jones is the author of several media tie-in novels: The Deadly Grimoire (Arkham Horror), Mask of Silver (Arkham Horror), City of the Dead (D&D Forgotten Realms), and Crypt of the Moaning Diamond (D&D Forgotten Realms). She has worked in publishing and communications for many years, including several years of running meetings and events for Book Publishers Northwest.

IBPA Offers Early Bird Discounts For Pub U

The Independent Book Publishers Association released its 15% early bird discount for the 2022 Publishing University. Regional publishers can also receive an additional 15% off if members of an IBPA affiliate association using the promo code PubU-Regional during checkout. Registration must occur before January 15, 2022, to receive both discounts and can be done at publishingu.org.

The 2022 Publishing University will include both virtual and in person events. Two days of virtual programming will be made available on April 20-21, 2022, with most of these virtual sessions recorded for attendees to view for one month following the conference. The IBPA Benjamin Franklin Award ceremony, workshops, and other gatherings will take place in person at the Renaissance Orlando in Florida on April 29-30, 2022.  Organizers also are planning full day of field trips for Sunday, May 1, 2022. All in-person events will follow the most current Florida public health guidelines. 

A preliminary schedule of events is now available on the Publishing University website.

PNW Publishers Future Tense and Wave Make PNBA 2022 Awards List

Since 1965, the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association (PNBA) have given annual Book Awards to recognize Northwest writers. Past awardees include such luminaries as Ivan Doig, Ursula K. Le Guin, David James Duncan, and Cheryl Strayed. For most, while writing in the Northwest, they were published by one of the large NY publishers.

While this year’s nominees include several titles published by NY corporations, the local presses were represented in the 2022 short list by:

Funeral for Flaca: Essays by Emilly Prado, published by Future Tense Books (Portland, OR)
Guard the Mysteries by Cedar Sigo, published by Wave Books (Seattle, WA)

The complete list of 2022 nominees can be seen at pnba.org.

Nine volunteer booksellers from throughout the Pacific Northwest select the finalists. This year’s committee considered more than 400 nominated titles published during 2021 for the 2022 award, according to an announcement from PNBA.



Holiday Shopping At Indie Bookstores

With all the moaning about empty shelves due to shipping delays, anyone who has wandered into an independent bookstore knows that the shelves are well-stocked. Most also have a variety of stocking stuffers to go with the books too.

There’s a new bookstore opening for the holidays, and one old favorite on the move, in Seattle. So grab your shopping bag and prepare to visit for Small Business Saturday or any day of the week.

DRINK BOOKS

The wonderfully named Drink Books, which just opened in Seattle at 5817 Phinney Avenue North, invites readers to pair their favorite novel with just the right red or white. In short, you can buy a book and a bottle of wine. That’s the perfect gift right there! The store was recently featured in Seattle Met.

OPEN BOOKS

Seattle’s poem emporium is on the hunt for a new location. After many years at 2414 N. 45th Street, the store has received notice that they have to move. Help them keep the boxes to the minimum by adding a little poetry to your holiday haul. Open Books will not be open on Black Friday, but their regular hours are posted on their website.

MORE STORES

Need to find a bookstore? NW Book Lovers has a great listing of independent bookstores in the Pacific Northwest. Find out more at their website.

PNBA Reports Trade Show Success

Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association reported that their masked and vaccinated Fall Trade Show was a success. In a recent letter to members, they said attendance at the October event included “170 booksellers and librarians from 83 member entities, 150 exhibitors from 60 companies holding down 94 booths and tables, 70+ authors at the mic, signing table and on the floor, and 20 PNBA staff members and volunteers. We masked up and we mixed it up. The community was amazing!”

The association works to connect independent booksellers with publishers and authors year round through a variety of marketing programs. To find out more, check pnba.org.

Trade show attendees had an opportunity to communicate with dots. Photo courtesy of PNBA.