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Upcoming APSS Webinars

July 24: 6:00 pm ET: "Turn Your How-to Tips into a Tips Booklet," by Paulette Ensign is

The link to the recording of "How to Sell More Fiction Books" is

The link to the recording of "Bowker's Tips for Selling More Books" is

The link to the recording of "How to Use Virtual Author Assistants to Increase Your Sales" is

The link to the recording of “Speaking On Your Book," is


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Executive Director's Blog

APSS One-Day Consulting Programs -- coming soon near you

Are you getting your share of book sales in the $16 billion non-bookstore market? Now you can, with personal coaching customized to your books. Our next one-day events will be in Atlanta (Sept 13) and Chicago (Oct 4).

APSS can help you  find new ways to sell more of your books to schools, associations, corporations, military buyers and government agencies that need books just like yours. You will discover opportunities in new market niches, how to contact interested buyers and…

2014 APSS Book-Selling University -- Speaker Highlight

October 24-25 in Philadelphia --  sponsored by Bowker

Keynote speaker: John Groton, former Vice President, Special Markets, Random House

John began his publishing career at Simon & Schuster in 1980. His focus then, and throughout his career, has been on non-traditional channels, and distribution. From 1990-2007, he worked for Random House where he was Vice President, Special Markets, Vice President, Sales Director of the RH Trade Group, and Vice President of Business Development for their Publisher Services Division.

 Since 2008, John has worked for Globe Pequot Press, National Book Network, Innodata and most recently, Quarto Publishing Group USA. All of his positions have involved sales, sales management, distribution, and business development.

See the agenda and more information at

Register by August 1 and save an additional $100

Top 10 Tips for Selling More Books -- If it’s not broken, break it.

Some habits are good, some not so good. How can you tell if a habit is good or bad? Good habits are hard to make and easy to break. Bad habits are easy to make and hard to break. Many publishers are in the easy-to-make habit of selling only through bookstores. They market each new title in the same way they did all previous books. While that habit is not inherently bad, it could limit your sales, revenue and profits. Evaluate your habits and seek a different way to increase your sales. Here are Ten Tips For Making Good Marketing Habits

  1. You cannot force your employees to change, but you can help them want to change.
  2. The decision to change your company’s culture -- of doing things as they have always been done -- should come from the top. However, decisions by themselves are neither good nor bad. It is the action following the decision that creates a positive or negative result.
  3. Use the principles of 12-step programs to help changes habits. They use incentives, celebration, mentoring, peer pressure and support to adopt a new habit.
  4. The feeling that you should not rock the boat if nothing appears to be going wrong will trap you in the status quo, limiting your company’s growth potential.
  5. Replace old, bad habits with good, new ones. Plan your new marketing actions with “buy in” from employees.
  6. Radical change is usually not welcome – or necessary. Instead of selling only through bookstores, consider selling through (and to) both bookstore and non-bookstore buyers.
  7. A result is a temporary condition – either good or bad. Change the actions that lead to bad results and reinforce the cause of good outcomes. The goal is progress, not perfection.
  8. Instead of simply comparing the change in sales figures from one period to another, look for the reasons behind the change.
  9. Reinforce the positive actions employees have taken to cause change and celebrate short-term wins.
  10. Increases in the bottom line come from increasing the top-line revenue or cutting costs. Which do you think will result in greater long-term growth?

In the Special-Sales Spotlight

This column regularly features a different special-sales (non-bookstore) topic. The current Spotlight is on information to help you sell children's books to non-bookstore buyers.

Here you will find instructions for creating a marketing plan for a children's book. 

Click on the spotlight and sign in to get all this information.

Special-Sales Tip of the Day, July 23, 2014

Company strategy prepares your overall game. Marketing strategy allocates money and resources. Spend where you get the greatest return. Plan at both levels.

Read it and Reap

In The Power of Habit, Pulitzer Prize-winning business reporter Charles Duhigg takes us to the thrilling edge of scientific discoveries that explain why habits exist and how they can be changed. Distilling vast amounts of information into engrossing narratives that take us from the boardrooms of Procter & Gamble to the sidelines of the NFL to the front lines of the civil rights movement, Duhigg presents a whole new understanding of human nature and its potential. At its core, The Power of Habit contains an exhilarating argument: The key to exercising regularly, losing weight, being more productive, selling to non-bookstore buyers, and achieving success is understanding how habits work. As Duhigg shows, by harnessing this new science, we can transform our businesses, our communities, and our lives.

You Said It

"A dynamic conference with dynamic, knowledgeable speakers. It was more than advantageous to be there, it was an enlightening eye-opener. I never realized there were so many different ways to approach book selling."

               Jeanne Rogers, 2013 APSS conference attendee

See the agenda for the 2014  APSS Book-Selling University at


They Said It

“Who is the best book-marketer in the world? It is the one having the most fun.”


Get Unstuck -- See yourself creative

The philosopher Epictetus remarked, "What concerns me is not the way things are, but rather the way people think things are." If you think you are creative, you will act that way -- and vice versa. It's a self-fulfilling prophecy. As you think, so you are. Are you creative?

Novel Ideas -- Helpful Tips for Marketing Fiction, by Cynthia Frank

This information is an excerpt from the boilerplate letter I often send to new poets who’ve submitted their work to us for royalty publication. By new, I mean they’re usually unpublished, at least in recognized, non-vanity publications, and novices when it comes to knowing how to submit their work. We only publish one poetry title per year, though I receive more than five submissions each week. So, here’s another view from my soapbox:

Poets use punctuation and the shape of the poem on the page to help the reader. Be careful not to use a device unconsciously, just to “look like a poem.” Your concentrated, imaginative and challenging use of language should tell the reader that it’s a poem. When you write about important, powerful events in your life let the power of the moment shine through without resorting to something contrived. Decide how you want the poem to look on the page. Will you capitalize only when you begin a new thought or breath, or will the first letter of each line be capitalized? Line endings, stanza endings and punctuation are like musical notation (allegro, andante, staccato, etc.), they tell the reader how fast, how slow, how loud, what mood, etc. Use all the many writer’s tools you have available to you.

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