California Bookstore Day 2015:  Call for Ideas

We are happy to announce that after the huge success of California Bookstore Day 2014, we are at it again. CBD 2015 will take place on May 2, 2015.  This year, independent bookstores from other regions will be participating and creating their own Bookstore Days. CBD and the NCIBA will be curating and coordinating all the books and items for national distribution so that publishers do not have to coordinate with multiple regionals and stores at the same time.

We are again looking to harness the creative power of authors, publishers, and booksellers to drive readers to brick and mortar bookstores. For one day, a number of very limited edition, unique, word-based items and books will be available in independent bookstores across the country. These aren’t your run-of-the-mill signed first editions—although anything signed and numbered is encouraged--these are literature-based art projects, original books, and collector’s items created for this event only.

Last year’s print runs were between 375-1500. We anticipate larger print runs this year as more regions and individual stores will be participating--as many as 500 stores nationally. We are looking for a wide range of price points, from $10-$75.

A curating committee of booksellers and other bookish types will choose 5-10 items from publisher submissions. We need all submissions and ideas by September 1, 2014, but we are more than happy to get them earlier or discuss ideas at any time.

The types of things we are hoping for are much the same as last year (see the 2014 catalog here:, but less California-specific, and with more diversity. Original work by a big name author is ideal, but there are lots of other possibilities. As before, our guiding question is, is it worth lining up for?

A few suggestions to get the creative juices flowing:

• An original essay or story by the likes of David Sedaris, Neil Gaiman, Stephen King, Junot Diaz, or Mary Roach bound into signed and numbered hardcover book.

• A beautifully designed anthology of previously unpublished or uncollected stories or essays with a few crowd-drawing names. This would also give authors without huge name recognition a chance to participate and promote forthcoming work. If they can be signed and/or numbered, all the better.

• An annotated manuscript from a major author with editor’s notes bound and printed as a book. An anthology of this type would also be wonderful.

• A reissue of a classic in an amazing and collectible new package. This idea for Fahrenheit 451 is exactly the type of thing we think would sell like crazy.

 • Surprising non-book items with essays, poems, or stories on them like this Dave Eggers shower curtain or these glasses by Jonathan Lethem, both from The Thing Quarterly.

• For kids: children’s character action figures, a collection of letters from authors or characters to their readers, a set of collectible trading cards with character pictures on the front & stats (birthday, orphaned or not, age, magical powers, best friends, arch enemies, secret no one should know, etc.) on the back.

Thank you so much for your consideration, participation and continued support. We are constantly amazed by the creativity and generosity coming from authors and publishers on behalf of Bookstore Day.

Again, if you want to run ideas by me ahead of the deadline, please reach out at any time.

All best,




 • September 1: Publishers submit finished ideas with as much detail as possible (including format, description, and price).

 • September 26: Our curating committee of booksellers decides on the 5-10 books and items that are going to sell the best and create the most buzz. The publishing agreement is that each item is for CBD only and will not be produced in the future. However, we do understand that recipes, excerpts and illustrations may appear in different formats in future publications.

 • January 5: All final details (ISNB, trim size, etc.) and preliminary art is due from publishers.

 February 1: Participating bookstores across the country submit their orders for to CBD so we can give publishers exact numbers.

 • February 15: CBD gives publishers final order numbers to help determine print runs.

 • April 1: All books and items arrive at distributor



 • Publishers set the retail price as usual (after initial discussion with CBD) and sell them to the bookstores at their usual discounts (in some cases publishers are donating the items).  All items are non-returnable.

• In most cases distribution will happen through Ingram. In some cases entire orders will be sent from the publisher to the NCIBA or other regional offices for distribution from there.


 Any questions? Please contact Samantha Schoech at or 415-846-6131