Getting Creative: Binc supporters help in unique ways

One of the best parts about working to provide a safety net for booksellers is the immense amount of creativity in the book industry. Book lovers and businesses don’t just offer their financial assistance, they think of new and creative ways to leverage their skills to best help Binc help booksellers.

In the past few weeks, we have experienced an outpouring of creative support from companies and individuals across the book industry.

Ingram Content Group offered Binc a burst of support and awareness with their #IngramForIndies campaign during the week leading up to Independent Bookstore Day. The campaign quickly surpassed its goal of more than 40 shares and retweets well before the Bookstore Day deadline and Binc received a $4,500 donation and increased visibility as a result. To top it off, Ingram hosted a raffle benefiting Binc on Bookstore Day at Parnassus Books in Nashville.

#IngramForIndies combined digital awareness, fundraising and a swell soiree (Courtesy Photo/Ingram Content Group)

Ingram isn’t alone in providing creative corporate support for the bookseller safety net. Take Basil Software, for example. The company has been long-time Binc supporters. But this year Basil found a creative way to help Binc even more. Basil is offering a one-time donation for every one of their customer stores who joins as a $20/month sustaining donor during our Campaign to Sustain.

Creative giving doesn’t stop with corporate supporters. Binc Ambassador Ann Patchett has offered an autographed copy of her latest award-winning novel Commonwealth to anyone who becomes a minimum $20/month sustaining donor.

The first 80 people to join Binc as a $20/month sustaining donor during Campaign to Sustain will receive an autographed copy of Ann Patchett’s latest novel!

Bookstores can also partner with Binc to help spread awareness and raise funds. Bank Square Books and Savoy Bookshop and Café recently provided Binc with several copies of Neil Gaiman’s latest book, Norse Mythology. Current sustaining donors who successfully encourage their friends and family to join during Campaign to Sustain will be entered for a chance to win one of five copies.

Bank Square Books and Savoy Bookshop and Cafe donated fabulous prizes for existing sustaining donors who encourage friends and family members to join during Campaign to Sustain.

Binc’s partnerships extend beyond help with our annual donor drive. Looking forward, we are planning a June collaboration with AdventureKEEN with the help of Ingram and edelweiss. The campaign is called “Shop Local, Live Local,” and will direct the company’s profits from June sales of regional AdventureKEEN books to support Binc. Booksellers and store owners interested in participating in the event can find more information here.

The people who care about booksellers are some of the most creative and generous people in the world. We want to hear from you because we know you have great ideas. Call us. Email us. Message us on social media. We want to work with you to strengthen the bookseller safety net.

2016 in Review – Co-Ambassadors Join the Binc Team

Welcome to Part 2 of Binc’s 2016 year in review. You can read Part 1 here.

Co-Ambassadors Come On-board

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In August we received the best 20th anniversary present we could have ever asked for. Board member, and HarperCollins sales rep, Kate McCune worked her magic and brought author, and Parnassus Books co-owner Ann Patchett on board as Binc’s Ambassador. Ann, in turn, asked her friend and colleague author James Patterson to act as Co-ambassador and he accepted! With their combined support, our Co-Ambassadors continue to introduce Binc and our mission to book industry professionals across the country. By increasing awareness of Binc and our mission, our Co-Ambassadors have gotten us on the radar of even more booksellers in need across the country leading to an increase in assistance requests, grants awarded and using their influence, to help generate philanthropic revenue for the Foundation. We are beyond thrilled to have Ann Patchett and James Patterson support our mission to help booksellers in need.

#BankonBooksellers Piggy Bank Auction

In September, Ambassador Patchett’s bookstore, Parnassus Books, held a fundraiser to support their bookseller, Stephanie. Stephanie had been diagnosed with breast cancer forcing her to stop working at the store to undergo treatment. The employees of Parnassus wanted to do something to help Stephanie through treatment, to give her time to heal and financial resources to pay her bills. They reached out to many of their famous friends with an idea to decorate piggy banks and sell them as a fundraiser for Steph, and got back more than 100 piggy banks decorated by authors, artists and celebrities! The BankOnBooksellers auction was off and running! The fundraiser was going so well, that Stephanie wanted to give to other booksellers in need, so Parnassus decided to donate part of the proceeds to Binc! Ambassador Patchett sent us this video, announcing that we would be receiving part of the proceeds

We were beyond grateful at the generosity not only of the Parnassus staff but of the authors, artists and celebrities who created the works of art for the auction! Thank you all! Book People are the Best People.

Regional Fall Trade Show Travel

As the piggy bank auction ended, the Binc staff and board were busy traveling to the Regional Fall trade shows across the country. We started at SIBA in Savannah, GA. Next it was NEIBA in Providence, RI. We then traveled to PNBA in Tacoma, WA. Heartland Fall Forum took us to Minneapolis, MN. In Denver, Co we attended the MPIBA show. Next we went to the NAIBA show in Baltimore, MD. The SCIBA show was held in North Hollywood. Last, but not least, NCIBA wrapped up the season in San Francisco, CA.

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The fall regional trade shows are all packed full of great author talks, conversations with booksellers, store owners, publishers and distributors. We love seeing old friends and meeting new ones. We can’t thank the Executive Directors of the regional bookseller’s associations enough for welcoming us at the shows and for supporting us through the year. We appreciate everything you do to help!

Borders Reunion – Party with a Purpose

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During our 20th year we wanted to make sure we celebrated and thanked all of our supporters including those who helped to create the Foundation. On October 23rd, Borders alumni, former Borders Group Foundation members and current Binc supporters gathered for an afternoon to catch up, reminisce, and write notes to Foundation friends past and present. Binc’s #1 volunteer, Toni McGinn checked everyone’s badges at the door, just like old times. Bill Edwards and Judy Banker performed on stage for everyone and there was a silent auction for baskets filled with Borders memorabilia, independent bookstore goodies and other book swag. A great time was had by all and attendees wrote over 100 notes to Binc supporters. Many thanks to our volunteer event planning committee Jennifer Hawkins, Judey Kalchik, Mark Brown, Jeanne Joesten and Barbara Kinzer for their time and effort in coordinating and running the celebration!

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Bluffton Book Festival

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Throughout 2016, Binc Board of Directors member, and Rock Inked, Inc. founder, Rockelle Henderson, worked diligently to create a book festival in her hometown of Bluffton, SC. On November 18th and 19th, the Inaugural Bluffton Book Festival was held to benefit the community and all the book lovers in the Bluffton area. The event featured author talks, book signings, food, drinks, live music, read-alouds for children, raffles and more. Part of the proceeds of this fun event were donated to Binc! Kudos to Rockelle and the BBF event volunteers for your hard work in getting this fantastic event off the ground! We’re looking forward to next year!

Bluffton Book Festival

Kit Steinaway with BBF Founder Rockelle Henderson and Literacy Center ED, Pam Wall.

YEA Fundraising goal met!

The Binc Foundation continues to move toward becoming an industry sustained organization helping booksellers in need. Thanks to many industry partners, bookstores, and individuals for helping us exceed our fundraising goal for 2016. Our goal was to reach $100,000 – thanks to you we raised $125,000!

Some highlights and special thank you’s go to our Co-ambassadors Ann Patchett and James Patterson. Their work is raising the awareness of Binc and this is good for all booksellers.

Also, notable was the $10,000 gift we received from Ingram Content Group in honor of their business clients. This was a remarkable gift!

Sourcebooks generously offered to match their employees donations for the second year.

We were provided with not one but two matching gift challenges to boost our year end “Think Binc” campaign. Thanks to all of our board members for giving a little “extra gift”.  Our second matching gift challenge “Pay it Forward” was created by a very grateful past grant recipient and her partner. They wanted to give back and pat it forward so other booksellers could be helped. Both challenges helped to raise over $14,000!

Thank You!

Thank you to everyone that made 2016 such a successful year for Binc. From our board to our donors or our industry supporters to the booksellers that we are here to help, we are not able to fully express our sincere gratitude for your support and effort in helping us fulfill our mission to make the book industry stronger. We can’t wait to see what exciting things 2017 will bring and we are inspired and ready to work even harder to help book people.

2016 In Review – Celebrating our 20th Anniversary

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What a year 2016 was for Binc! When we sat down to think about all the things that we did in 2016 we were blown away by our accomplishments and by the huge amount of support we received from across the book industry!

We invite you to enjoy Part One of our 2016 accomplishments! Part Two is coming soon!

Higher Education Scholarship Program

In 2016, Binc awarded 27 higher education scholarships to bookstore employees, bookstore owners or their dependents for a total of $109,000 in assistance! These scholarships will help booksellers, and their family members, achieve their dreams of becoming doctors, lawyers, authors, career booksellers, teachers and social workers. We couldn’t be more proud of our recipients and love receiving thank you notes from them.

            “I honestly can’t say enough how grateful I am for Binc. With the Foundation’s tremendous support, I am able to continue my college education without as much stress on my financial situation as I have in the past. The scholarship means even more to my parents who work so hard as independent bookstore owners.”
– Nicole Hillard, scholarship recipient

 

You can learn more about our winners here.

The 2017 Higher Education Scholarship Program begins accepting applications on January 16th. Check the scholarship page for more information and to apply.

We Turned 20 years old!

On February 20, 2016 Binc celebrated our 20th anniversary! We have spent the whole year gratefully reflecting on everyone who helped us along the way! From the original group of Borders employees that started the Foundation as a way to help their fellow employees in need, to the board members that worked to forge the transition and created the Book Industry Charitable Foundation, to our current board, staff and supporters.  Many people have worked to make sure the original mission of helping booksellers in need will endure.

You can read our 20th anniversary blog post here!

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To kick off the 20th anniversary celebration, we worked with our good friends at Shelf Awareness to create a dedicated issue to chronicle the history of The Foundation and to thank our many supporters – old and new. It was an “enlightening” and exciting endeavor for us!

Winter Institute – Denver, CO

Pam and Kit attended ABA’s Winter Institute in sunny Denver. Their time was action-packed from the opening reception held at the iconic Tattered Cover Bookstore to welcoming the Binc Scholarship recipients* to meetings at their Consultation Station.

A highlight was getting to meet the 2016 scholarship recipients. Binc board members, committee members and scholarship recipients come together for dinner on Sunday evening. And of course, the topic most discussed….book recommendations! Unfortunately, a snowstorm kept David Bradley from attending, but now we have a reason to visit the Research Triangle Park area of NC.

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As always, the education sessions were informative and useful. The New Localism session outlined the importance of maintaining local business for healthy and sustainable communities. And keynote speaker Kwame Alexander passed a few of his secrets to success – “Always smile and say yes”.

 * Binc’s WI Scholarship Winners
Andrea Jones of Galaxy Bookshop in Hardwick, VT
James Crossley of Island Books in Mercer Island, WA
David Bradley of Letters Bookshop in Durham, NC
Veronica Brooks-Sigler of Octavia Books in New Orleans, LA
Christopher Hsiang of Compass Books in San Francisco, CA

 

 First In-person Board of Directors Meeting

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Another high point of our 20th year celebration was to gather our board of directors for the first in-person board meeting preceding BEA in Chicago. Our board members are spread across different parts of the country and many had never met in person before. It was so beneficial for everyone to meet face to face and to get to know each other between sessions. Discussing topics that ranged from past accomplishments and successes to creating our strategic road map for future planning and goal setting, the board came away energized about Binc’s future.

We also had cake!

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Book Expo America

After our board meeting we were ready to go to Book Expo America. We visited with lots of old friends from across the book industry, on the trade show floor! From publishers to authors to booksellers the book industry mixed and mingled. We also had the chance to meet many new booksellers who were attending BEA for the first time because of the new Chicago location. After the tradeshow floor closed, Binc staff and board members hosted a 20th anniversary “Drinks with Binc” party. We had a great turn out with Binc fans from all facets of the book industry having a great time catching up with friends and colleagues.

For a third time, Binc was the designated charity for the very popular Publishers Group West party! This was PGW’s 40th anniversary party and their guests generously donated almost $1,300 to Binc to help booksellers. The great Mavis Staples and her band put on a tremendous show and had everyone cheering for more!

 Kathy Bartson joins Binc as Development Director

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Not long after returning from BEA, Binc became a staff of 4. Kathy Bartson joined Binc as Development Director and hit the ground running. Our goal of ensuring the financial security of the Foundation is being achieved everyday as Kathy helps to spread the message of how Binc helps the book industry. Kathy is focused on continuing the Foundation’s work with individuals, publishers, authors and many others toward becoming an industry-sustained organization.

Binc’s First Children’s Institute

Children’s book buyers from across the country met in Orlando in June for the ABA’s Children’s Institute. Binc was please to be included as part of the Consultation Station and was warmly received by the booksellers and authors attending. This conference gave Binc the opportunity to get our message to a new group of booksellers, many of whom have not attended other nation bookseller events, leading to several booksellers in need applying for financial assistance. There is no substitute for talking to bookstore owners and booksellers face to face – wherever they are meeting! You can read a summary blog from Program Committee member Hannah Lee who attended Children’s Institute.

 

Stay tuned for Part Two of our 2016 Review!

 

The Best of NEIBA’s Fall Show

I attended NEIBA’s Fall Trade Show in Providence, RI September 20th – 22nd. Great author talks, conversations with booksellers, store owners, publishers and distributors were too numerous to mention them all, so here are my top 10:

  • Meeting Binc scholarship winners Liz & Russ DeFonce from Moose Maple Books  in Saranac Lake, NY. We started talking books, but wandered off into gardening, birds and furniture making. (Check out the gorgeous furniture Russ creates as Bookman Designs)

NEIBA's Fall Trade Show Liz-and-Russ

  • Andrea Beaty’s presentation of the many “secrets” hidden in the illustrations to her new book, Ada Twist Scientist. It is like a scavenger hunt for fans of her books!
  • Having booksellers, stores and publishers find their names on our giant donor banner. Everyone likes to see their name in print. Getting to thank our donors in person and fill them in on what their donations have accomplished is something we love to do.

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  • Listening to those not on the list say “Our name should be there.” I was happy to explain all the donation options to ensure that next time around, their name will be listed!
  • Seeing our Binc magnets and bookmarks on the table at the HarperCollins booth! I’m not sure who in their group put them out, but THANK YOU!
  • Talking to a variety of people about joining our committees and adding their knowledge and enthusiasm to the Foundation. There is a real interest in helping Binc continue to help book people.
  • Staying at the Providence Biltmore, a gem of a hotel, built in the 1920’s. The ballroom was an amazing venue for the Awards Dinner!
  • Listening Elizabeth Strout after receiving the President’s Award. I am a real fan of Olive Kitteridge and My Name is Lucy Barton.
  • Meeting so many great new-to-me authors and adding too many books to my to-be-read pile. In full disclosure; this happens at all of the trade shows, it isn’t unique to NEIBA.
  • Enjoying a lovely back road drive down from Boston and visiting An Unlikely Story, Annie’s Book Stop and Ugly Dog Books along the way. Bookstore to bookstore is my favorite way to travel.

Thank You NEIBA!

A big thank you to Steve Fischer, Nan Sorenson and the NEIBA board for including Binc in NEIBA’s fall trade show again this year. I always look forward to the chance we have at the regional shows to address the membership and update booksellers on the state of their Foundation.

Next stop . . . Tacoma!

Kit

Hannah Lee Reports from Children’s Institute 4

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Hannah Lee from Main Point Books is a member of Binc’s Program Committee and serves as a member of the Diversity Task Force. The goal of the Diversity Task Force is to draw more people of diverse backgrounds into bookselling and to help those already in the industry to stay and excel.

Hannah attended Children’s Institute 4 in Orlando and presented on a panel on children’s nonfiction that was well attended. Here is Hannah’s report from the conference.

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Booksellers Are Ready for Anything

Expect the unexpected.At the NAIBA Discovery Show in Washington D.C. last weekend, I had a chance to sit in on a very informative and entertaining session titled “Prepare for the Unexpected and Worst-Case Scenarios”. The session was led by Robin Bell from Chesapeake & Hudson and Susan McAnelly from Browseabout Books. These two brought insights from both outside and inside the store. It reminded me that the unexpected happens daily in stores and is not always catastrophic, as is the case with the unexpected events Binc deals with, but can be equally as disruptive to the business at hand. Their presentations and the audience participation that followed reminded everyone that anything can (and often does) happen in a bookstore.

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Binc Provides Professional Scholarships to Booksellers

profdev_treeAs part of Binc’s commitment to strengthening the book industry, this year the Foundation offered Professional Scholarships to all eight of the regional IBAs to help encourage booksellers to attend the regional Discovery Shows and other educational events. Each IBA chose how the funds were to be distributed in the method that best served their membership. We at Binc, were very impressed with the thoughtful ways they chose to distribute the funds. The variety of scholarship criteria emphasizes the unique personalities of each IBA.

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