AmibaIn response to the growing interest and popularity among its members for independent business alliances and “buy local” campaigns, SIBA has entered into a partnership with the American Independent Business Alliance (AMIBA) to provide reduced AMIBA affiliate rates for its core member bookstores. Under the new agreement, any SIBA member store who wants to start an Independent Business Alliance in its community can become an AMIBA affiliate for $350 (a $600 discount!). The fee covers all the AMIBA new-member benefits, including start-up kits for creating your own independent business alliance, templates for key documents and marketing materials, free window decals and bumper stickers, discounts
on AMIBA presentations and workshops, and access to AMIBA staff and resources. If you have been tossing around the idea of creating your own local business alliance, now is the time to make it happen.

SIBA will use some of the AMIBA resources on behalf of its members. Included among the benefits negotiated are AMIBA workshops or presentations at any SIBA event at significantly reduced costs. AMIBA also will offer this discount to all SIBA members if two or more workshops or presentations are scheduled within a three-day period, and the organization has already reserved at least two weeks in the upcoming year for potential workshops.

AMIBA will provide a “We are a locally-owned independent business” window decal and “Put Your Money Where Your House Is!” bumper sticker for any current SIBA member desiring one. Additional copies will be available at wholesale price to SIBA members wishing to sell them in their store.

SIBA also has the license to use AMIBA service-marked names and slogans, and access to AMIBA guidance and resources.

What is AMIBA?

The American Independent Business Alliance has its beginnings in the independent bookselling community. In 1997, two members of the Boulder, Colorado community—one a local independent bookstore owner, the other an activist and organizer—recognized the multi-faceted threat to communities posed by absentee-owned national and global chains evidenced, in part, by the displacement of locally-owned independent businesses to them. They put their heads together to devise a concrete, proactive means for helping the community preserve its character and ability to help its inhabitants. The first Independent Business Alliance was born.

That initial model was quickly adopted and imitated by other communities anxious to preserve their own local character in the face of relentless pressure from national corportations. The result has been one of the strongest grass-roots civic and cultural campaigns to sweep the country.

AMIBA’s success comes from its ability to help businesses within a community network with each other to devise marketing campaigns that are relevent to their neighborhoods and their customers. Recognizing that independent business owners have a lot of energy for vry little time, AMIBA makes it possible to create an Independent Business Alliance without re-inventing the wheel. AMIBA-provided sample templates, bylows, logos and documents saves its members literally hundred of hours of time and thousands of dollars in development costs.

For more information on how you can be a part of this special offer, contact Wanda Jewell at \n This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it . You can find out more information about AMIBA at their website:

MySpace as Book Space: Visit Hip, Independent Southern Bookstores at SIBA's MySpace Group

Columbia, SC - May 9, 2007 -The Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance has created an online community of independent bookstores and invites interested parties to join this community. Simply search for siba under the groups heading. As more and more bookstores look to the internet, MySpace is proving to be a great place to notify readers about upcoming events and reach younger readers.
"I'm excited about getting the Authors 'Round The South site ( and the SIBA blogs intersected with our MySpace group. I'll need to find a sixteen year old to help me with that.", Wanda Jewell, SIBA Executive Director exclaims.
The MySpace group counts among its members Books & Books, Inkwood Books, and Windows a bookshop. We invite southern writers and readers and booksellers to join our myspace group. The MySpace SIBA Group url is:
2007 SIBA Book Award Finalists Announced

(Columbia, SC)—The votes are in! The Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance has released the finalists for the 2007 SIBA Book Award, honoring great Southern literature as chosen by Southern independent booksellers. The finalists are:


The Giraffe Who Was Afraid of Heights by David A. Ufer and Kirsten Carlson
(Sylvan Dell Publishing)
Alabama Moon by Watt Key (Farrar Straus Giroux)

The Christmas Bus by Robert Inman (Novello Festival Press)


I Like You: Hospitality Under the Influence by Amy Sedaris (Warner Books)

Nathalie Dupree's Shrimp and Grits Cookbook by Nathalie Dupree (Wyrick and Company)

The Boathouse: Tales and Recipes from a Southern Kitchen by Douglas W. Bostick and Jason Davidson (Joggling Board Press)

Deep South Parties: Or, How to Survive the Southern Cocktail Hour Without a Box of French-Onion Soup Mix, a Block of Processed Cheese, or a Cocktail Weenie by Robert St. John (Hyperion Books)


Keep and Give Away by Susan Meyers (University of South Carolina Press)

Path, Crooked Path by John Balaban (Copper Canyon Press)

Umpteen Ways of Looking at a Possum by Grace Bauer and Julie Kane (Xavier Review Press)


Thirteen Moons by Charles Frazier (Random House Trade)

On Agate Hill by Lee Smith (Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill)

Plum Wine by Angela Davis-Gardner (University of Wisconsin Press)

The King of Lies by John Hart (St. Martin's Minotaur)

Smonk or Widow Town by Tom Franklin (William Morrow & Company)


Mockingbird: A Portrait of Harper Lee by Charles J. Shields (Henry Holt & Company)

Blood and Thunder: An Epic of the American West by Hampton Sides (Doubleday Books)

Miss American Pie: A Diary of Love, Secrets and Growing Up in the 1970s by Margaret Sartor (Bloomsbury Publishing)

Blue Ridge Nature Journal: Reflections on the Appalachian Mountains in Essays and Art by George Ellison (The History Press)

Final ballots have been sent to SIBA-member bookstores, and the winners will be announced in June. The awards will be presented at SIBA’s Fall Trade Show in Atlanta during the Book Award Lunch on Friday, September 28th, sponsored by Inkreadible! Sponsor Baker & Taylor.

About the SIBA Book Award:

Each year, hundreds of booksellers across the South vote on their favorite hand-sell books of the year. These are the Southern books they have most enjoyed selling to customers; the ones that they couldn't stop talking about; the ones most often pushed into a customer’s hands with the words “You have got to read this!” The SIBA Book Award was created to recognize great books of Southern origin, as determined by people whose business it is to know great books—the independent booksellers of the South.

Books are nominated in several categories, including fiction, nonfiction, poetry, cooking and children's. For a book to be eligible, it must be set in the South, and it must have been published within the calendar year. In order to promote diversity in the award, no author can win the award in the same category twice. Only SIBA-member booksellers can submit nominations, and only SIBA booksellers can vote on the finalists and winners of the award. Finalists are drawn from those titles which receive enough votes and whose authors are able to attend the awards ceremony.

For more information about the award, please visit SIBA’s website for southern literature:, or contact Executive Director Wanda Jewell at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
(Columbia, SC)—The Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance (SIBA) has been awarded a grant of $5000 as part of the James Patterson Pageturner Awards, which distributes $500,000 in cash prizes each year to “. . . libraries, schools, bookstores, and innovative individuals and organizations that go to extraordinary lengths to spread the joy of books and reading across the country.” SIBA is one of 39 recipients to receive recognition this year.
Richmond, Virginia January 22, 2008 Kelly Justice, manager of the Fountain Bookstore since 2000 and independent bookseller since 1989, purchased Fountain Bookstore, Inc. from Louise "Boo" Smythe and Jim Smythe earlier this month. Justice and the Smythes are available for interviews about this transfer of a Richmond institution and its future. (Look folks, this is just far too big a story to put in a press release, so if you want to talk to me about why I feel so passionately about this business that I made the ultimate commitment, send me an email. -k)