Hundreds of booksellers have been evacuated from their homes due to the wildfires happening in California right now, at least a dozen bookstores are temporarily closed, and more are trying to stay open without power and only a few customers coming through the doors.
“The situation in Northern California for many indie booksellers can only be described as dire, with a number of NCIBA member stores being forced to close their doors–some since Saturday. Other stores are staying open, but only by overcoming huge obstacles in creative ways.” – Publishers Weekly
How You Can Help Booksellers Right Now
The Book Group (a New York-based literary agency) has just announced a $2000 match to help booksellers affected by the wildfires and power outages.
If you know a bookseller or comic retailer who may be in need of assistance, please encourage them to contact Binc.
How Binc Can Help Booksellers
If the store has to close or business is so slow (due to evacuations, fires, and/or loss of electricity) that you cannot pay the store rent or utilities, Binc may be able to pay rent and utility expenses on your behalf.
If a bookseller/retailer misses 50% of scheduled weekly work hours, Binc may be able to help with personal household expenses if this missed income causes financial hardship.
If a bookseller/retailer needs to relocate to temporary housing with power for emergency reasons (medical condition, elderly household members, infant, etc.), Binc may be able to help pay for temporary lodging and supplies.
Email Binc at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 866.733.9064. Kit, Pam, or Kate will talk you through the possible assistance options.
We are kicking off their annual spring fundraising drive on April 2. The Share the Good campaign will again promote becoming a monthly sustaining donor. The goal of the campaign is to encourage fifty booklovers from across the country to join the 222 booksellers, booklovers, and bookstores who are current monthly sustaining donors. “No amount is too small,” said executive director, Pam French. “Donations from $5 to $100 a month add up when we give together as a community to help booksellers in need.
“We depend on our sustaining donors to keep the bookseller’s safety net strong. As a community, current sustaining donors help two booksellers through medical emergencies and natural disasters every month of the year,” French said. “The aim of our Share the Good campaign is to be able to help more booksellers in need every month. We’ve already seen that the need for assistance is growing this year, which means the support for the booksellers’ safety net needs to grow too.”
The regional independent bookseller associations are all getting involved in the April campaign. Binc is offering a celebratory ice cream social to the region which has the most new sustaining donors who sign up in April. Those who are already sustaining donors can increase their monthly donation to help their region win the contest. It was a tough competition in 2018 with both NEIBA and SIBA earning the ice cream party at their fall trade show. NAIBA with their eye on the prize this year, has already begun promoting the campaign to its member stores. In a recent newsletter they wrote, “While [an ice cream social] is fun, it is more rewarding to know that any amount of money you donate each month adds up to life-saving help for a bookseller.”
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. We had hoped to match last year’s #givingtuesday donation total and you all quite nearly matched it TWO TIMES OVER. You also achieved our board’s $5000 match on the very first day of this campaign. Thank you to everyone who chose to donate yesterday, who helped us amplify our message, and who has told a bookseller in need about Binc.
Remember last year’s Shop Local Live Local campaign, where AdventureKEEN supported booksellers across the country by donating all of their profits from the month of June to Binc? We do! Because of AdventureKEEN’s donation, we were able to help four booksellers through one of the most trying years in the foundation’s history.
After the rousing success of Shop Local Live Local, AdventureKEEN is once again stepping up to help booksellers thrive. For 2018, AdventureKEEN is taking the Shop Local Live Local spirit and spreading it across the year with SHOP LOCAL LIVE LOCAL ALL YEAR LONG. This new campaign means AdventureKEEN is offering a three percent rebate to stores and a matching three percent donation to Binc based on 2018 purchases of all AdventureKEEN titles via PGW/IPS
One of the best parts about this offer is that AdventureKEEN is willing to count all sales from the beginning of 2018, but only for those store that sign up for the program before March 31, which is why we are taking to our humble blog in the hopes of getting the word out before it is too late.
If you’re not familiar with AdventureKEEN’s offerings, they make a great addition to your Local Interest section. AdventureKEEN provides region and state-specific titles to help people get the most out of the outdoors in their community, from hiking, stargazing and birdwatching guides to books to inspire a love of nature in young readers. Shop Local Live Local began with the idea of encouraging people to foster a deeper connection to their community through their local bookstore as well as their local parks, trails and backyards: we’re so excited to see it expand to a year-round mission.
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.
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.
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.
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.