A Letter to SIBA's friends from Wanda Jewell, Executive Director
I am heartbroken. As is Matt Bibb’s family. Matt Bibb passed away on Thanksgiving morning. He had apparently been ill with what was thought to be a flu, but it turned out to be more serious than that. Since I learned, I have been thanking my lucky stars to have known this fellow. Matt and I were an unlikely but dynamic duo.
I believe I first met Matt in 2002. The SIBA show was to be held in Atlanta and I trained a dozen Chapter Eleven booksellers to work that show’s registration over the weekend. One stood out, and that was Matt. You couldn’t help but notice him. Well over six feet tall, a bear of a guy with a long dark ponytail and a beard to match. And he stood out in other ways as well. He could not have been more amenable and hard-working and he has been behind the registration desk at every SIBA since. I’m so glad he was at the New Orleans show. Matt had an affinity for New Orleans. It was his kind of town. I cannot imagine a SIBA Show without him.
He is the only person who called me “boss”, and he used it like it was my name, and I loved it. He has met and won the heart of each member of my family and actually stopped by our house for an afternoon last July and we had a long visit, and then we had our regular time in New Orleans. Matt always brought me a gift when he came to the SIBA show and this year was no different. I have three horseshoes he brought this year, and from previous years, I have a brass book necklace, little toys that I think are from anima?? (Matt loved sci-fi and fantasy), and a pair of house shoes that look like some octopus type creature and so many funny little items that are scattered across my home. I never see them without remembering him. He was a voracious reader and a gifted storyteller.
Matt was living on his mom’s farm. He shared many stories about the chickens and the cows, and the dogs, and the people that resided and visited there. Matt texted me some time back would I be offended if he named one of his cows after me as she had my eyes. I was delighted and even more so now that there is a cow called Wanda. Here is what Matt’s mom shared with me yesterday about Wanda the cow:
“I have to tell you that your cow is a pain in the butt, she wanders in and out of the fence at will, stops the school bus in the road because she won't move. Just kinda does as she pleases and we all just have to adjust.”
He loved us well. I felt as though Matt would do anything I asked. I will miss him more than I can say.
Here is what I know:
Anne Bibb Ruble is Matt’s mom. Her number is 770 316 9044. She is only up for texts right now but would love to hear from folks who knew and loved Matt. Her snail mail is 2173 Foster Sprouse Rd., Thomson, GA 30824. Her facebook is: https://www.facebook.com/anne.bibbruble and Matt’s facebook is: https://www.facebook.com/matthew.bibb.3?fref=ts
Matt hated funerals. His mom has asked his friends to get together and have a few drinks and tell Matt stories. I am asking that you share your Matt stories on one of their facebook pages or at SIBA’s: https://www.facebook.com/SouthernIndependentBooksellersAlliance
I want Matt’s mom to enjoy and see our stories and if we share on facebook she will be able to see them.
And finally, Matt’s mom wanted yall to know:
“Matt lived for SIBA. It’s what made the whole year worthwhile. Please let them know Matt has died and he truly loved all of them.”
- Category: SIBA News
Lady Banks’ Bookshelf will be heavy with the holiday (catalog).
The SIBA Holiday Catalog is a huge gift to booksellers from publishers and assists in underwriting many of SIBA’s programs. This year SIBA, along with Lady Banks, will give a little back by using the month of December to promote the catalog and her titles. We want to show our appreciation in a big way by doing something that expresses our gratitude to the supporting publishers and the titles they place in the catalog.
For the entire month we will transform “Lady Banks Bookshelf” -- SIBA’s high-visibility, direct-to-consumer book promotion venue -- into a showcase for the holiday catalog. The Authors Round the South Facebook page cover image will be dedicated to the holiday catalog, and a pinned post will promote a link to the catalog on AuthorsRoundTheSouth.com, where the titles will be linked to a rotating selection of SIBA’s indie bookstore members. SIBA also plans on paid Facebook promotions of the post throughout the month of December.
Instead of Happy Holidays, SIBA says Thank You!
- Category: SIBA News
SIBA and frindies launch radical underground movement for the good of the printed book!
Columbia, SC - November 6, 2103 –In support of (print) books and indie bookstores, a group of authors gathered together in New Orleans earlier this fall to make a video where they all read aloud from Lane Smith’s It’s a Book. The project was devised by the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance (SIBA) and once it was confirmed that Lane Smith and the book’s publisher Macmillan supported the project, the taping began. Authors graciously (and often gleefully) stepped into a makeshift studio to read their lines with little notion of what the final outcome would look like, but nevertheless believing in the good cause the project was designed to highlight: the benefit of print books and indie bookstores. The result has been everything they and SIBA and her member booksellers could hope for: a wonderful read-aloud of Lane Smith’s It’s a Book!
Each author reads, with the helpful inset illustrations of “monkey” and “jackass”, to cue viewers as to who is speaking. Viewers can see authors with their own print book as they read from Lane Smith’s. Sandra Brown, Michael Buckley, Karen White, George Bishop, Susan Crandall, Walter Jury, Jenny Han, John Milliken Thompson and Gigi Amateau are just a few of the approximately three dozen authors you will see in this two-minute video. The closing line is read by Amy Tan (and her dog). (There are more surprises in the credits.)
In order to raise awareness and enthusiasm about the video, print books, and indie bookstores, SIBA reached out to its author “Frindies” (“Friends of Indies”) to help spread the word via social networking and embedding the video on their websites. The response from authors was immediate and radically gratifying.
The following writers have agreed to participate in this radical movement: Tony Abbott, Kaye Barley, Betty Bolte, Kathryn Stripling Byer, Malcolm Campbell, Julie Cantrell, Cindi Carver-Futch, Walter Culpepper, Anna Dewdney, Nell Dickerson, Patti Digh, Stephen Doster, Elizabeth O. Dulemba, JT Ellison, Beth Finke, Dorothea Benton Frank, Mark Hainds, Tommy Hays, Jennie Helderman, Kaye Hinckley, Ann Hite, Amalie Howard, Joshilyn Jackson, Charles Jacobs, Jessica James, Deborah Johnson, Dianne Johnson, Cassandra King, Irene Latham, Christopher Loren, Kelly Lyons, Charles McNair, Laura McNeal, Adrian Miller, Jim Minick, Mary Alice Monroe, Robert Morgan, Bryan Powell, Sharman Ramsey, Aaron Reynolds, Bryan Robinson, Karen Spears Zacharias, Martha Stiles, John Thompson, Carol Wall, Robin Wasserman, Millie West, Laura Wharton, Deborah Wiles, Jessica Young.
SIBA is looking for more people -- authors, bloggers, booksellers, book lovers -- to join their “radical underground movement for good” by sharing and linking to the “It’s a book!” video, in the hopes that this “underground” print and indie partnership will erupt nationwide.
Many thanks to our 2013 Inkreadible Sponsors below:
The Reba and Dave Williams Foundation
for Literature and the Arts
- Category: SIBA News
Believing that nothing is so valuable to a small business owner than the opportunity to confer face to face with their colleagues in the industry, the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance (SIBA) quietly launched a new scholarship program for booksellers in conjunction with this years’ trade show in New Orleans, inviting exhibitors to donate to the SIBA Scholarship Fund when they register for the show. But the fund got a surprising, much-needed, and even more-appreciated five-figure infusion from The Reba and Dave Williams Foundation for Literature and the Arts.
Written by Reba White Williams, Restrike is the first in a new mystery series featuring Southern cousins Coleman and Dinah Greene. Dave Williams is the author of Small Victories, which recounts his and Reba’s forty years of fine art print collecting. Restrike is set in this part of the art world, the title of the novel coming from the term for an art print made after than the first edition, often after the death of the artist, and usually of inferior quality.
Dave and Reba Williams are the founders and sponsors of the annual Willie Morris Award for Southern Fiction, which has just completed its sixth year, awarding the 2012 prize to Terry Roberts for his A Short Time to Stay Here, published by Ingalls Publishing Group of Banner Elk, North Carolina., and see SIBA’s Scholarship Fund is the best way to help ensure a strong “next generation” of booksellers.
The SIBA Scholarship Fund has also received generous donations from the Book Industry Charitable Foundation (BINC) and Quercus. SIBA is including in this fund the Kelly Justice Frontline Bookseller Scholarship, which allows for a store owner to nominate a frontline bookseller to attend the show on SIBA’s dime.
- Category: SIBA News
(Columbia, SC) -- A new movement is afoot. Now that sentence should be read aloud. And Parapalooza is just the place to do it. When was the last time you read something so good you wanted to read it aloud to the person sitting next to you just to share it? The Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance (SIBA) wants to encourage that impulse, because they think that in a world of Vine, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook, a great paragraph may be the quickest entry into a good book.
SIBA Executive Director Wanda Jewell first conceived of the idea for Parapalooza! when she was reading the new Stephen King novel, Joyland, and liked it so much she had to interrupt her husband to read him different parts. “I suddenly thought it be great if readers had a way to share that impulse,” Jewell said. “It takes the ‘You’ve got to read this!’ feeling to the next level.”
With the advent of easy distribution via social media sites like Vine and Youtube, and the fact that anyone with a smart phone can record a video and share it with the touch of a button, sharing brief moments of readerly enthusiasm seems like a natural way to bring readers together around their favorite books. “The only requirement,” Jewell stated, “is that selections are read aloud with meaning, enthusiasm, and feeling.”
For more information, visit authorsroundthesouth.com/read-this/parapalooza
- Category: SIBA News