Last week, Publishers Weekly launched "BXsellers," a private Facebook group where booksellers from all over can engage in meaningful conversations about the issues affecting the world of bookselling, network with one another, share tips, ideas and have access to PW's editors for book recommendations and more.
The group will be co-moderated by PW; BrocheAroe Fabian, publicity assistant and bookseller at Quail Ridge Books in Raleigh, NC; and Noelle Santos, owner of The Lit. Bar, which is opening soon in Bronx, NY.
"In this industry, we all read a lot, and we probably write a fair amount," says Fabian, "but true communication is still a rare thing. That's what I hope we can all make happen in this group: voicing opinions, listening to input, exploring options for positive change, and celebrating wins."
When it opens, Santos' Lit. Bar will be the only bookstore serving the Bronx which is home to a diverse population of over 1.4 million people.She sees the group as an opportunity for "accessibility to other owners experiencing the loneliness of entrepreneurship, accessibility to PW editors, and accessibility to conversations many booksellers, particularly from diverse groups, are left out of because they're unable to invest in industry events."
Entry to the group is limited to bookstore employees and those who are hoping to break into the field, and conversation is meant to be organic and community-led. Marian Amo, PW's audience development coordinator and representative moderator in the group, will contribute prompts and an inlet to PW's editors on a weekly basis, but all conversation between group members will be kept off the record. "We want to use the platform to build meaningful and ongoing connections among booksellers," says Amo. "The group gives us the ability to create a virtual community where ideas, resources and support can be exchanged."
Since its launch, the conversation in the group has varied, covering topics like the rollout of the John Oliver book, to seeking advice for books, and ideas for promotion. Booksellers can join the group here.