BookExpo 2017: For Authors–Working with Indie Bookstores

Below is an article from the recent Book Expo in New York …
“We try to cater each event to that author and treat the event as if it’s really, really, super important because it is important,” said Susan Hans O’Connor of Penguin Bookshop in Sewickley, Pa., during the education session “For Authors: Working with Indie Bookstores,” which also featured Valerie Koehler of Blue Willow Bookshop in Houston, Tex., and Pete Mulvihill of Green Apple Books in San Francisco, Calif.
O’Connor, who worked for a New York publisher before becoming a bookstore owner, noted that “it is all about building relationships. Whether you’re an established author, an independently published author, or being published by a big house, it’s all about one-on-one relationships with booksellers, bookstore owners, other authors, etc. We always tell authors that when they come to our store, no matter how many people show up, it’s worth your time because you’ve built a relationship with the store.”
Although Green Apple offers visiting authors substantial outreach through social media and its e-mail newsletter, Mulvihill said that “we do really rely on authors to help with that effort” before, during and after the event. “We try to reach out beyond the walls of our store to get people in, which is a big reason that we do events at all. We think even if you have an event where only 10 or 12 people come and only sell three or four books, in some ways that’s a win. I got 10 people in the door and they have a positive association with this place.”
While discussing how authors might contact a bookstore directly about hosting an event, Mulvihill said, “It depends a little bit. If the author does live in our community, and especially in our neighborhood, we love to meet them directly. But if the person who deals with events is unavailable, don’t take that as an insult. We all juggle 80 things each day, like everybody else in this world. You could just ask for the person’s name and how best to get in touch with him or her.”
Koehler cautioned that if authors are “going to approach us directly without some intermediary, like a PR firm or publicist, I would like them to understand what we’re all about. So my suggestion is to do some research first. I’m shocked how many people don’t do that research before they approach us…. We can’t possibly take everything and we would like that fit to be a good fit for our customers.”
O’Connor noted that “we do feel that our role is to support our community, which means supporting local authors as well as bringing in different voices. We may not sell a lot of their books on a regular basis, but if it’s an opportunity for someone to come in and we feel that they can do excellent outreach and that we can work in a successful partnership, we are pretty much open to any kind of book, within reason.”
And sometimes, indie booksellers even approach independent authors: “We’ve found some of our best small press books by what we’re reading,” said Koehler, who recalled noticing a local news item about Goodnight Houston, “which is a little picture book. And they didn’t approach us. I called them and said this might be a good fit. So remember that we are looking for something to sell in our store that we think is a good fit and that we are going to make money on.”
“Chasing Understanding in the Jungles of Vietnam” three-peats as Sunbury Press bestseller for May

“Chasing Understanding in the Jungles of Vietnam” three-peats as Sunbury Press bestseller for May

MECHANICSBURG, Pa. —  Sunbury Press has released the bestsellers list for May. Doug Beed’s Chasing Understanding in the Jungles of Vietnam: My Year as a Black Scarf took the top spot for the third month in a row. The Bronze Dagger by Marie Sontag was runner up.

SUNBURY PRESS – Bestsellers for May, 2017 (by Revenue)
Rank Last Month Title Author Category
1 1 Chasing Understanding in the Jungles of Vietnam Doug Beed Military Memoir
2 The Bronze Dagger Marie Sontag YA Historical Fiction
3 3 Dead of Spring Sherry Knowlton Thriller Fiction
4 6 American Berserk Bill Morris Memoir
5 4 Amelia Earhart: The Truth at Last, 2nd Ed. Mike Campbell History
6 17 Embattled Freedom Jim Remsen History
7 From Blue Ground Joe Harvey Historical Fiction
8 Call Sign Dracula Joe Fair Military Memoir
9 27 Seinsoth Steven k Wagner Sports Biography
10 Where Elephants Fought Bridget Smith Historical Fiction
11 In the Field Joanne Risso Children’s Fiction
12 My Mom Is an Alien Joanne Risso Children’s Fiction
13 Over the Sea Joanne Risso Children’s Fiction
14 2 Living in the Afterlife Michele Livingston Spirituality
15 Patchtown Jolene Busher Historical Fiction
16 24 The Wolf of Britannia Part I Jess Steven Hughes Historical Fiction
17 37 Jesus the Phoenician Karim El Koussa History
18 14 Winter of the Metal People Dennis Herrick Historical Fiction
19 23 Freemasons at Gettysburg Sheldon Munn History
20 28 Miss Feesenschneezen Is Ill David Parmalee Middle Grade Fiction
21 Indian Villages and Place Names in PA James Donehoo History
22 22 Planet Jesus #1: Flesh & Blood Doug & Shaun Brode Supernatural Fiction
23 Hatched Robert Barsky Literary Fiction
24 50 Lost in the Shadow of Fame William Lemanski History
25 Raising Monarchs Sue Fox McGovern Nature
26 15 Wonder Boy: The Story of Carl Scheib Lawrence Knorr Biography
27 20 The Sign of the Eagle Jess Steven Hughes Historical Fiction
28 Murder in Tuxedo Park William Lemanski Thriller Fiction
29 Adventures in Distant and Remote Places William Lemanski Travel Memoir
30 The Bookseller’s Secret Catherine Jordan Thriller Fiction
31 25 That Night at Surigao Ernie Marshall History
32 36 Tories, Terror, and Tea John L Moore History
33 26 Tigers by the River Wylie McLallen Sports History
34 34 Dead of Summer Sherry Knowlton Thriller Fiction
35 19 Prohibition’s Prince Guy Graybill Local History
36 Hidden Dangers Robert Stout Current Events
37 18 Dead of Autumn Sherry Knowlton Thriller Fiction
38 The Segregated Georgia School for the Deaf Ron Knorr and Clemmie Whatley History
39 31 Keystone Corruption Continues Brad Bumsted History
40 32 Messages from Beyond Michele Livingston Spirituality
41 40 Bows, Bullets, and Bears John L Moore History
42 The Ripper’s Haunts Michael Hawley True Crime
43 Seeking Samiel Catherine Jordan Thriller Fiction
44 Prince and the Paupers Guy Graybill History
45 Emeralds of the Alhambra John Cressler Historical Fiction
46 Beagle Tales Bob Ford Pets / Humor
47 Rivers, Raiders, and Renegades John L Moore History
48 Cast Iron Signs of Pennsylvania Towns and Other Landmarks Clair Clawser History
49 General John Fulton Reynolds: His Biography, Words and Relations Lawrence Knorr, et al Biography
50 48 A Second Revolution C James Gilbert Historical Fiction

Doug Beed’s Vietnam memoir Chasing Understanding in the Jungles of Vietnam, was #1 due to brisk sales, especially on the Kindle platform. It has been in the top four on Amazon in its category. Marie Sontag’s The Bonze Dagger took #2 due to a large sale to public schools in California. Sherry Knowlton’s Dead of Spring repeated at #3 thanks to strong bookstore sales following her promotional activities. American Berserk by Bill Morris grabbed #4 due to strong bookstore sales. Mike Campbell’s Amelia Earhart: The Truth at Last continues to sell steadily, coming it at #5.

The company released two new titles in May:

SUNBURY PRESS – New Releases for May, 2017
Had a Dying Fall J. M. West Thriller Fiction
Auto Travel in the 1920s William Cook History
Mystery of the lost island of Christopher Columbus is solved!

Mystery of the lost island of Christopher Columbus is solved!

MECHANICSBURG, Pa.June 6, 2017PRLog — Sunbury Press has released The Lost Island of Columbus: Solving the Mystery of Guanahani, Keith A. Pickering’s well-researched history of the place of Columbus’s landfall in 1492.

About the Book:
On October 12, 1492, Christopher Columbus set foot on the shore of a new island in a New World, the first part of America seen by any European since the time of the Vikings. Columbus named that island San Salvador, but the gentle Lucayan people who lived there called it Guanahani. Less than three days later, Columbus sailed away from Guanahaní, never to return. The events of those days, on that island, forever altered the course of human history in ways that we are still feeling today. But as Columbus’s three ships disappeared over the horizon, the island of Guanahani itself faded into the mists of time.

For five hundred years, the location and identity of Guanahani remained a mystery. For the last two hundred years, the actual site of Guanahani, Columbus’s first landfall, has been the subject of controversy. Dozens of historians, geographers, and mariners have claimed to know the answer – or claimed that the answer was unknowable. And though all agree that it was somewhere in the Bahamas, ten different islands have been proposed as Guanahaní at various times by various theorists.

The range of subjects bearing on this mystery is extraordinarily broad: anthropology, astronomy, botany, cartography, metrology, geomagnetism, oceanography, and seamanship are just some of the topics that a serious student of the problem must be prepared to grapple with. Most of the historical evidence rests on a foundation of documents in handwritten sixteenth century Spanish, plus a few place names in the lost language of the Lucayans.

This book is the story of that mystery and of those who tried to solve it. It is the story of how the scientific method can be successfully applied to historical problems. And in a small way it is also the author’s story, because he was one of the detectives who cracked the case.

About the Author:
KEITH A. PICKERING is a retired systems analyst and software engineer living in Watertown, Minnesota. He has published academic works in astrophysics, the history of astronomy, navigation, and exploration, and is co-author of First to the Pole, the story of the Plaisted North Pole expedition of 1968. He is also a former editor of DIO: The International Journal of Scientific History.

Between 1992 and its demise in 1996, Pickering was a member of the Columbus Landfall Round Robin, a committee of correspondence that tasked itself with discovering the true first landfall of Christopher Columbus in the New World. Pickering was a featured interviewee on the History Channel’s 2007 documentary Columbus: The Lost Voyage. He lives in Watertown, Minnesota.

The Lost Island of Columbus: Solving the Mystery of Guanahani
Written by Keith A. Pickering
List Price: $19.95
6″ x 9″   (15.24 x 22.86 cm)
Black & White on Cream paper
204 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-10: 1620067126
ISBN-13: 978-1-62006-712-3
HISTORY : Caribbean & West Indies – General
HISTORY : Americas (North Central South West Indies)
HISTORY : Civilization

For more information, please see:…