Please welcome Debbie Burleson, our new Retail Territory Manager who joins Charles Greiner in serving booksellers in the South.

Debbie began her career with Baker & Taylor as a Marketing Brand Manager, managing independent studios and placing independent product into the Retail, CDF and Library markets until her departure in 2005. Debbie has since been an account executive with Ingram Digital Group, where she sold ebooks and electronic content into the higher academic market, before rejoining Baker & Taylor in the capacity of Retail Territory Manager.

Debbie will provide sales support to bookstores in Alabama, Arizona, DC, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia.

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PH: 800-775-7930, ext. 3168

Tell me why you wrote this book—in 140 characters

A Twitter-inspired ceremony for the 2008 SIBA Book Awards

Columbia, SC - August 11, 2008 - The 2008 SIBA Book Award Ceremony will be one of the highlights of the upcoming Decatur Book Festival on August 29 – 31st. The ceremony, honoring the best Southern books of the year as chosen by southern independent booksellers, will be held on Saturday, August 30th on the City Hall Stage at 5:30 pm. Both winners and award finalists will be honored and nine of the twenty authors will be in attendance to speak and sign books after the ceremony.

But don’t be daunted. Despite the large number of speakers, the ceremony promises to be a snappy and entertaining event – partly because of its unusual format: an extended question and answer session where the authors will be limited to responses of 140 characters.

The media-savvy will recognize that number to be the upper limit allowed for messages posted to Twitter, the popular social networking site that has turned the text message into something of an art form. Wanda Jewell, Executive Director of the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance (SIBA), the organization which sponsors the Awards, said that she came up with the idea of a “Twitter-inspired” ceremony when she was faced with the logistics of orchestrating an event with a large number of speakers. “This isn’t the Oscars,” she noted, “We don’t want to keep people in their seats for hours. But these are writers we are honoring. . .we already know they are good with words.”

As the master of ceremonies, Jewell will introduce each author and ask several questions about their books, their writing careers, and what they are working on currently. The authors will attempt to respond in the Twitter-standard limit of 140 characters. Jewell is inviting readers to submit questions they would like to ask ahead of time. Somewhat unfairly, although the authors will be limited to 140 character answers, submitted questions can be any length.

Anyone interested in submitting a question to one of the authors can do so either by e-mailing Wanda Jewell at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or by “tweeting” her via SIBA’s own Twitter handle, “rubyjewell.”

Authors in attendance include:

David Kirby – Winner, Poetry The House on Boulevard Street
Sarah Addison Allen – Winner, Fiction Garden Spells
Donna Bateman – Winner, Children’s Deep in the Swamp
Sue Walker – Finalist, Poetry What Remembers Us
Deborah Wiles – Finalist, Children’s Aurora County All-Stars
Kerry Madden –Finalist, Children’s Louisiana’s Song
Alan Gratz – Finalist, Children’s Something Rotten
Robert Olmstead – Finalist, Fiction Coal Black Horse
Chef Rodney Freidank – Finalist, Cooking Soby’s New South Cuisine

A complete list of the winners and finalists in the 2008 SIBA Book Award can be found at SIBA’s website for Southern Literature, Authors ‘Round the South:

For more information on SIBA and the SIBA Book Awards, visit the SIBA website at

[From Shelf-Awareness]

This summer children are enjoying a global odyssey at Fireside Books and Gifts in Forest City, N.C. Three Saturdays per month in June, July, and August the store is hosting "Around the World with Fireside Books." Each event focuses on a different country and includes activities inspired by that particular land: story time, crafts, music, food and appearances by authors and other special guests.

The idea came about when store owner Linda Parks, manager Valerie Jones and media specialist Suzanne Ledford were brainstorming for a summer program centered on a theme. "We wanted something that was fun but also educational," said Jones. "We decided it would be interesting and beneficial to expose children to other cultures and show them things about places they might not ever get to visit."

2008 SIBA Book Award Winners Announced
The best in Southern Literature as chosen by the people who would know. . .Southern Independent Booksellers

Columbia, SC - July 7, 2008 -
The Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance (SIBA) is pleased to announce the winners of the 2008 SIBA Book Award, celebrating the best of southern literature, as chosen by the people who would know. . .independent booksellers throughout the South.

ABA CEO Avin Mark Domnitz announces the launch of IndieBound.
In the spirit of the Boston Tea Party, booksellers declared a new era of Independents at Thursday night's Celebration of Bookselling, sponsored by Ingram Book Company/Ingram Publisher Services. The American Booksellers Association -- building on a rising tide of localism -- launched its new program, IndieBound, to enthusiastic applause in an SRO ballroom. The program is designed to unite booksellers, readers, indie retailers, local business alliances, and others in support of local activism and local economies and to lead an Independent Revolution.

ABA CEO Avin Mark Domnitz told the hundreds of attendees that "the times -- they are a-changin'" and the moment is right for a program centered on localism. "America has clearly reached a tipping point -- the big store on the highway doesn't do it anymore ... as [shoppers] are turning to the people in their communities -- they are turning to people who believe the same things they believe in."