Fall is back-to-school time for booksellers, who, starting next month, will once again roll into the regional trade shows for a chance to get educated, socialize with friends they haven't seen for a while and be wooed by authors and publishers.

Among the writers showing up to charm booksellers during one or more of the 10 shows will be established names such as Alice Hoffman (The Foretelling), Scott Turow (Ordinary Heroes) and Thomas Lynch (Booking Passage), as well as debut authors, including Elizabeth Kostova (The Historian), Stephanie Kallos (Broken for You) and J.R. Moehringer (The Tender Bar). On the educational side, retailers will look to their colleagues for new ways of tackling perennial issues, attending workshops on topics such as managing payroll and attracting publicity for in-store events. While each fall brings a different crop of books, the challenge for booksellers—how to profit from a notoriously low-margin business—remains constant.

Great Lakes Booksellers Association

Fri., Sept. 30—Sun., Oct. 2, at the Crowne Plaza/Chicago O'Hare, Rosemont, Ill.

Highlights: For the first time since 1994, Chicago hosts the GLBA trade show.

Educational Programming: The theme of this year's educational programming is Making Book Cents, sponsored by Random House. Classes run Friday and Sunday, starting with the ABA's "The 2% Solution." Booksellers share their best ideas at "Ideas That Work" (9:30—10:20 a.m.). Sessions continue with a three-part version of pick of the lists for children's, adult and buzz books at 10:30 a.m., 1 p.m. and 2 p.m., respectively. New this year is a series of publisher roundtables for booksellers and sales reps (1—1:50 p.m.). A two-part workshop on increasing margin follows (2—2:50 p.m., 3—3:50 p.m.). Other workshops deal with sidelines, preparing publicity packets, working with publicists, and the mystery genre. The day ends with a children's poetry program (4—5:20 p.m.) led by Jack Prelutsky (The Frogs Wore Red Suspenders) and editor Elise Paschen (Poetry Speaks to Children). Sunday's programs include "Writers of the Heartland," "Bookselling and Business Alliances" and a common session on outside sales.

Trade Show Details: Exhibit hours are 9:30 a.m.—5 p.m., Saturday. The official regional authors booth is open 10 a.m.—5 p.m. that day. Autographing sessions are held on Friday (5:30—6:10 p.m.) and Sunday (12:40—2 p.m.). The show concludes on Sunday at 2 p.m.

Authors, Authors: The best of regional writing is celebrated at Friday's Great Lakes Book Awards Luncheon (11:30 a.m.—12:50 p.m.). Scott Turow (Ordinary Heroes) is keynote speaker at Friday's Authors Feast (7:30 p.m.), with more than 30 other authors attending. Elizabeth Kostova (The Historian), Thomas Lynch (Booking Passage) and James McManus (Physical) are confirmed for Saturday's Booksellers Banquet (7:30—9:30 p.m.) sponsored by S&S. Reading Room: New Voices (6:15—7:15 p.m.) precedes the banquet, hosted by Carol Rueger of Wooster Book Co., in Wooster, Ohio, and featuring Nuala O'Faolain (The Story of Chicago May). Sunday's Children's Book and Author and Illustrator Breakfast (7:45—9:30 a.m.) features Tamora Pierce (The Will of the Empress), Eric Rohmann (Clara and Asha), Robert Sabuda (Winter's Tale) and Mo Willems (Leonardo, the Terrible Monster).

Other Items of Interest: A silent auction is held on Saturday afternoon (3—4 p.m.). The popular Quiz Bowl and Literacy Raffle take place that evening after the banquet; both events emceed by Carol Besse of Carmichael's Bookstore, in Louisville, Ky.

Contact: Jim Dana, (800) 745-2460 or (616) 847-2460; glba@books-glba.org; www.books-glba.org; www.books-n-authors.com.

Midwest Booksellers Association

Fri., Sept. 23—Sun., Sept. 25, at the RiverCentre,St. Paul, Minn.

Highlights: Formerly known as UMBA, MBA celebrates its 25th anniversary with a new name, a renovated convention center and updated programming. In lieu of the usual Friday night reception, booksellers are invited to the Midwest Booksellers' Choice Awards Reception. Winners and honorable-mention recipients gather over drinks and hors d'oeuvres.

Educational Programming: Friday's all-day bookseller school is free to all (11 a.m.—5 p.m.). The perennial favorite pick of the lists now runs five hours. "Getting on the Radar" is a panel for booksellers, publishers and vendors wanting to profit from good working relations. Other presentations cover e-newsletters, business-to-business sales, audiobooks and travel books. The afternoon wraps up with a quartet of popular Minnesota mystery writers known as the Crime Wave (Ellen Hart, Carl Brookins, Deborah Woodworth and William Kent Krueger), who will come costumed and talk about their craft.

Trade Show Details: Exhibit hours are 10:30 a.m.—5 p.m. on Saturday and 9 a.m.—1 p.m. on Sunday. Autographing sessions are held on Saturday afternoon (1—4 p.m.) and Sunday morning (10 a.m.—noon).

Authors, Authors: Confirmed authors at Saturday's breakfast (7:30—9 a.m.) are Charlene Ann Baumbich (Dearest Dorothy,Who Would Have Ever Thought?), Jean Shinoda Bolen (Urgent Message from Mother), Thomas Lynch (Booking Passage) and Timothy Schaffert (The Singing and Dancing Daughters of God). At Saturday's dinner (7:15—9:30 p.m.): Octavia Butler (Fledging), Stephanie Kallos (Broken for You) and James McManus (Physical). At the Sunday children's breakfast (7:30—9 a.m.): Alice Hoffman (The Foretelling), Ridley Pearson (The Kingdom Keepers), Pam Muñoz Ryan (Nacho and Lolita) and Ed Young (Beyond the Great Mountains). Sunday's lunch (1—2:30 p.m.) is a moveable feast, with authors shifting from table to table to meet booksellers. More than two dozen authors are confirmed so far, including Kate Benson, Lily King, Judith Lindbergh, Sujata Massey, Michael Schumacher, Cheryl Strayed and Annie Wilder, Betsy Bowen, Warren Hanson, Cheryl Harness and Barbara Joosse. Faith Sullivan, author of the forthcoming Gardenias, is the keynote speaker. Lunch concludes the weekend's activities.

Other Items of Interest: Though plans are not complete, attendees already have more options to choose from, such as a first-timer orientation, the ABA-sponsored "2% Solution" and a discussion of the benefits of community connections.

Contact: Susan Walker, (800) 784-7522 or (612) 926-5868; MBAoffice SW@aol.com; www.midwestbooksellers.org.

Mountains & Plains Booksellers Association

Thurs., Sept. 22—Sun., Sept. 25, at the MarriottDenver Tech Center, Denver, Colo.

Highlights: MPBA welcomes new bookseller members from Oklahoma and Texas. Show organizers claim "a special effort has been made to find authors and books from the region so that our folks feel at home."

Educational Programming: Thursday and Friday are packed with panels and workshops. ABA's Avin Domnitz leads with two sessions on Thursday: "ABACUS 2005 Report" (8—9:30 a.m.) and "Basic Budgeting" (9:45 a.m.—12:15 p.m.). Tattered Cover's Linda Milleman conducts a concurrent session on customer service. At 2 p.m., Donna Fenn (Alpha Dogs) and Tony Weller of Sam Weller's Books, in Salt Lake City, moderate a two-part panel discussion on strategies for independent business success. At 3:15 p.m., MPBA president Kathy Westover covers co-op. A 5:30 p.m. cocktail hour concludes the day. Friday begins with Domnitz's class on payroll (9:15—11:45 a.m.), with Domnitz returning at 1 p.m. for a two-hour seminar on increasing sales, while Neil Strandberg moderates a panel on the future of reading, citing results from a teen survey conducted by Tattered Cover. BookPeople's Mark Finn and others address graphic novels and manga at 11:30 a.m. MPBA's pick of the list fills the midday break (12:30—3 p.m.). Gary Mex Glazner (How to Make a Living as a Poet) hosts an afternoon session on creativity.

Trade Show Details: Exhibit hours are 9:30 a.m.—5 p.m. on Saturday and 9 a.m.—1 p.m. on Sunday. Autographing sessions are held in conjunction with the Friday and Saturday author receptions (5:30—7:30 p.m. and 5—7 p.m., respectively).

Authors, Authors: Authors at Thursday's Brown Bag Lunch (12:30— 1:30 p.m.) include: Gail Caldwell (A Strong West Wind), Walter Kirn (Mission to America) and Benjamin Alire Sáenz (In Perfect Light). Friday's breakfast (8—9 a.m.) features special guest Philippa Gregory (The Virgin's Lover). That evening more than 20 writers attend an author reception, signing books and mingling with booksellers. At Saturday's breakfast (7:30—9:30 a.m.): Robert Hicks (The Widow of the South), J.R. Moehringer (The Tender Bar) and Bruce Babbitt (Cities in the Wilderness). Saturday evening's Author Reception includes the presentation of the bookseller and sales rep of the year awards. Sunday children's breakfast (7:30—9 a.m.) features Christopher Canyon (John Denver series) and Claudia Mills (Gus and Grandpa series, Ziggy's Blue-Ribbon Day).

Other Items of Interest: Publishers and vendors acting as corporate sponsors are vital to regional organizations' financial health. This year's sponsors include Baker & Taylor, Books West, HarperCollins, Hyperion, Partners/West, Random House and Warner Books.

Contact: Lisa D. Knudsen, (800) 752-0249 or (970) 484-5856; info@mountainsplains.org; www.mountainsplains.org.

New Atlantic Independent Booksellers Association

Sun., Oct. 16, and Mon., Oct. 17, at the Tropicana Casino and Resort , Atlantic City, N.J.

Highlights: This year's theme is Sea-Change by the Seashore. An altered author-event schedule on Sunday gives booksellers more time with regional favorites; modifications to Monday's educational programming give attendees more time with sales reps. Betsy Burton (The King's English) is keynote speaker at Sunday morning's continental breakfast/informal roundtable (9—10 a.m.). At Monday's breakfast (7:30—9 a.m.), officials present the NAIBA Book Awards and announce the recipient of the sales rep of the year award.

Educational Programming: Panels and workshops take place Sunday. NAIBA's pick of the lists is slated for 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Four concurrent sessions begin at 2 p.m.; another set at 3:15 p.m. Topics range from how to improve sales rep/bookseller relationships to merchandising books and gifts together. A two-part seminar on electronic marketing runs from 2—4:15 p.m.

Trade Show Details: Exhibit hours: 9 a.m.—3:30 p.m. on Monday. Autographing sessions are held that afternoon (1:30—3:30 p.m.). Show closes promptly at 3:30 p.m.

Authors, Authors: Jonathan Safran Foer and Suzanne Fisher Staples are confirmed for Sunday's luncheon (12:30—2 p.m.). Sunday's dinner is a moveable feast" (7:30—10 p.m.). Among roving authors are Kevin Baker, Robert Bausch, Buzz Bissinger, Patrick Carman, Kaye Gibbons, Star Lawrence, Laura Lippman, Laura Vaccaro Seeger, Don Silver, Jordan Sonnenblick, Brenda Thomas, Lisa Tucker and F. Paul Wilson. An opening reception and exhibit sneak preview rounds out the evening (6—7:30 p.m.). Post-feast attendees have a chance to try their luck in the win-win game room with Pete Fornatale and Ben Mezrich.

Other Items of Interest: Bookseller of the Year Essay Contest: employees of NAIBA-member bookstores enter to win a convention scholarship that includes two nights at the Tropicana during the show, a complete set of event tickets and reimbursements for travel. Submissions deadline is Sept. 2.

Contact: Eileen Dengler, (877) 866-2422; info@naiba.com; www.newatlanticbooks.com.

New England Booksellers Association

Fri., Sept. 16—Sun., Sept. 18, at the Rhode Island Convention Center, Providence, R.I.

Highlights: The Awards Luncheon at noon Friday launches the show. NEBA president Allan Schmid of Books, Etc., in Portland, Me., presents the Gilman Award for outstanding New England sales rep to Bill Palizzolo of Billbooks and Associates. Tracy Kidder accepts the New England Booksellers Association Award for lifetime contribution to arts and letters. Linda Ramsdell of Galaxy Bookshop, in Hardwick, Vt., hands out the 2005 New England Book Awards to Jane Brox, Chelsea Green, William Martin and Marc Simont.

Educational Programming: Friday's full day of programming includes Avin Domnitz conducting sessions on payroll (10 a.m.—noon) and increasing margins (2:30—5:30 p.m.). Saturday and Sunday are dedicated to several Random House—sponsored workshops and panels, including e-newsletters and buying and merchandising remainders. Saturday afternoon, there's a workshop on selling children's books. On Sunday morning, veteran book buyers and sales reps discuss their relationship and consider the impact of technology.

Trade Show Details: Exhibit hours: 9:30 a.m.—4:30 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m.—3 p.m. on Sunday. Autographing sessions are held on Saturday (11 a.m.—4 p.m.) and Sunday (11 a.m.—2 p.m.).

Authors, Authors: Confirmed authors at the Friday children's author/illustrator dinner (6 p.m.) include M.T. Anderson (Whales on Stilts!), Pam Muñoz Ryan (Nacho and Lolita), and Jacqueline Woodson and Hudson Talbott (Show Way). At Saturday's breakfast (8:30 a.m.): David Halberstam (The Education of a Coach), Gregory Maguire (Son of a Witch) and Garry Wills (Henry Adams and the Making of America). Saturday's moveable feast (7—10 p.m.) includes Howie Carr, Christopher Castellani, Burt Feintuch and David Waters, Nathaniel Fick, Ben Mezrich, J.R. Moehringer, George Parker, Cathie Pelletier, David Rakoff, Roger Rosenblatt, Martha Southgate and Julia Spencer-Fleming. Appearing at the Sunday breakfast (8:30 a.m.): Maureen Dowd , Chris Elliott and Scott Turow.

Other Items of Interest: NEBA's annual meeting begins at 4:45 p.m. on Saturday, where new board members will be inducted.

Contact: Rusty Dugan, (800) 466-8711 or (617) 576-3070; rusty@neba.org; www.newenglandbooks.org.

Northern California Independent Booksellers Association

Fri., Oct. 7—Sun., Oct. 9, at the Oakland Convention Center and Oakland City Center Marriott, Oakland, Calif.

Highlights: This trade show is an exciting mix of educational programming, celebrity author appearances, plenty of book time on the floor and super social activities.

Educational Programming: Friday morning (10—11:45 a.m.) begins with roundtable discussions between booksellers focusing on customer service. NCIBA's pick of the lists (noon—1:45 p.m.) is unique—each sales rep gets five minutes to pitch a favorite book from the winter/spring catalogues. Four afternoon sessions complete the day. Random House's Ruth Liebmann moderates a panel on how to make sales calls better, while Ken White from SFSU Bookstore leads a discussion on connecting and selling to 18- to 34-year-olds. Members of the San Francisco Locally Owned Merchant Alliance underscore the importance of business-to-business alliances. And Howard Seidel of Seidel Advertising shares tips on turning customers into "missionaries." The program ends at 5 p.m.

Trade Show Details: Exhibit hours: 10 a.m.—4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Autographing sessions are held on Saturday and Sunday (10 a.m.—3:30 p.m.).

Authors, Authors: At Friday's Welcome Reception (5—7 p.m.), Nuala O'Faolain addresses the audience. Confirmed authors at Saturday's breakfast (8—10 a.m.) are Garry Wills (Henry Adams and the Making of America) and Nancy Pearl (More Book Lust). Saturday's "moveable feast" (7—10 p.m.) will feed a dozen authors, including Rachel Manija Brown, David Carkeet, Kim Wong Keltner, Lily King, Laila Lalami, T. Jefferson Parker, Peter Phillips, Julie Powell, Mary Roach and Julia Scheeres. Authors at the Sunday Children's Author Breakfast (8—10 a.m.): Kate Klise and M. Sarah Klise (Regarding the Trees), Ridley Pearson (The Kingdom Keepers), and Jacqueline Woodson and Hudson Talbott (Show Way).

Other Items of Interest: At Sunday's Cookbook Celebration (1—2:30 p.m.), show survivors get a chance to sample morsels prepared from recipes taken from Daisy Martinez's Daisy Cooks!, Michael Recchiuti and Fran Gage's Chocolate Obsession, and Dee Dee Stovel's Pumpkin.

Contact: Hut Landon, (415) 561-7686; office@nciba.com; www.nciba.com.

Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association

Thurs., Sept. 8—Sat., Sept. 10, at the Oregon Convention Center, Portland, Ore.

Educational Programming: Thursday's educational programming takes place at the convention center, with more than a dozen workshops and panels geared toward booksellers, publishers and authors. Several concurrent sessions are offered in blocs at 9 a.m., 10:30 a.m., 1:15 p.m. and 3 p.m. First installment highlights are a session on basic bookstore finances with Chuck Robinson of Village Books in Bellingham, Wash., and one on writing, selling and promoting nonfiction with author Elizabeth Lyon. Second installment: "Becoming a BookSensible Employee," with publishing consultant Diana Wells, and "Building Successful Networks with Media and Bookstores," with pub rep Jennifer McCord. Third installment: "Basics of Customer Service" and "How to Attract Different Customers." Fourth installment is "Why Join a Pub Trade Organization Before and After Printing Your Book." Three pick of the lists presentations are wedged in between.

Trade Show Details: Exhibit hours: 9:30 a.m.—4:30 p.m. on Friday and 9:30 a.m.—2 p.m. on Saturday. Autographing sessions are held on Friday (10:30 a.m.—noon, 2—3:30 p.m.) and Saturday (10 a.m.—12:30 p.m.).

Authors, Authors: At Thursday's Celebration of Authors (3—5 p.m.), Paul Hanson introduces a roster of distinguished authors including Anjali Banerjee, Kristin Kaye, Laila Lalami, Jim Lynch, Heather Sharfeddin and Cheryl Strayed. This is followed by a Dessert and Autographing Party (8—10 p.m.) held at the Red Lion Hotel's Windows Skyroom. Confirmed authors at Friday's breakfast (8—9:15 a.m.) are Deb Caletti (Wild Roses), Tomi de Paola (Angels, Angels Everywhere) and Craig Lesley (Burning Fence). Friday evening, PNBA stages its Author Feast, beginning with dinner at 7 p.m. Confirmed authors include Arlene Blum, H.W. Brands, Michael Collins, Diane Duane, Karen Fisher, Clyde W. Ford, Anu Garg, April Henry, David Marusek, Marissa Moss, Laura Numeroff, Dan Price, R.L. Stine and Shirley Tallman. At Saturday's breakfast (8—9:15 a.m.): Libby Fischer Hellmann, J.R. Moehringer and Jerry Pinkney.

Other Items of Interest: On Friday, PNBA's general membership meeting is at 4:45 p.m.

Contact: Thom Chambliss, (541) 683-4363; info@pnba.org; www.pnba.org.

Southeast Booksellers Association

Fri., Sept. 16—Sun., Sept. 18, at the M.C. Benton Jr. Convention and Civic Center, Winston-Salem, N.C.

Highlights: This year, more than 300 vendors are expected to exhibit at this gathering of booksellers from across the South, typically one of the largest of the trade shows.

Educational Programming: On Thursday, before the actual trade show, is an all-day bookseller school headed by trainer Miriam Fleischmann. The bulk of the Random House—sponsored educational programming runs on Friday. At 10 a.m., ABA's Oren Teicher conducts a panel with representatives from several industries discussing the challenges and opportunities for independent retailers. The rest of the morning's sequence includes sessions on graphic novels and authorless events. After lunch, Book Sense guru Len Vlahos presents a workshop on payroll management. Another 2 p.m. workshop takes a look at business-to-business programs. Later that afternoon, panelists share personal observations on the writing process at three concurrent sessions.

Trade Show Details: Exhibit hours: 9:30 a.m.—noon and 1:30—5 p.m. on Saturday, and 9 a.m.—1 p.m. on Sunday. Autographing sessions are held on Saturday (2—5 p.m.) and Sunday (9 a.m.—1 p.m.).

Authors, Authors: An author extravaganza awaits booksellers. Nancy Pearl (More Book Lust) speaks at Friday's Breakfast with the Board (8—9 a.m.). Friday's author luncheon (noon—2 p.m.), sponsored by B&T, features SEBA's book-award winners: Ridley Pearson, Ron Rash, Celia Rivenbark and Frank Stitt. That evening's SEBA Supper will include Edmund White, Michael Connelly and Nikki Giovanni and Bryan Collier. Attending Saturday's A Taste of HarperCollins Breakfast: Sujata Massey, Joni Rodgers, Dixie Cash and Loraine Despres. At Saturday's lunch (noon—1:30 p.m.): Janet Stevens and Susan Stevens Crummel, Laura Numeroff , T.A. Barron and Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni. Saturday's Ingram-sponsored moveable feast includes Jodi Lynn Anderson, Heidi Boehringer, Art Chansky, Joanna Cotler, Quinn Dalton, Clyde Edgerton, Marcie Cohen Ferris, Haynes Johnson, Stephanie Meyer, Gwyn Hyman Rubio, Sarah Shaber, Bill Smith, Leah Stewart and Adrienne Yorinks. Authors at Sunday's breakfast (7:30—9 a.m.): Scott Ely, Karin Slaughter, Hal Crowther, Bobbie Ann Mason and Susan Reinhardt. The lineup at Saturday's Spoken Word Reading Room (9 a.m.—5 p.m.) includes James Applewhite, Gene Cheek, Mary Ellen Cooper, Dorothy Fletcher, Sarah Inman, Emyl Jenkins, Gail Carson Levine and Sheri Lynch.

Other Items of Interest: On Saturday and Sunday, booksellers have a chance to win cash prizes; trade-show floor drawings take place at 4:45 p.m. and 12:45 p.m., respectively.

Contact: Wanda Jewell, (803) 779-0118; info@sibaweb.org; www.sibaweb.org.

Southern California Booksellers Association

Sat., October 15, at the Renaissance Hotel, Long Beach, Calif.

Highlights: For the first time since 1980, SCBA is offering a trade show in conjunction with its traditional Authors Feast. The trade show opens at noon with a complimentary booksellers lunch.

Educational Programming: The morning features a pick of the lists and two ABA-sponsored panels: "The Bookstore as a Third Place: Making Your Store a Community Center Through Innovative Events" and "Understanding Co-op 201."

Trade Show Details: Exhibit hours: noon—5 p.m. and 6—7:30 p.m. More than 35 companies are slated to attend. The much-anticipated Authors Feast and SCBA Book Awards Reception takes place that evening. Baker & Taylor is the premiere event sponsor; Ingram Book Co. and Partners/West are feast sponsors.

Authors, Authors: Organizers expect more than 50 authors, among them the 15 SCBA Book Award finalists. A partial list includes Chris Abani, Bebe Moore Campbell, Yvon Chouinard, Bernard Cooper, Greg Crister, Chris Epting, Maria Amparo Escandón, Christopher Kennedy Lawford, Liza Palmer, Jane Purcell, Lisa See, Amber Tamblyn and Myron Uhlberg.

Contact: Jennifer Bigelow, (626) 793-8435; office@scbabooks.org; www.scbabooks.org.

Southern California Children's Booksellers Association

Sat., September 17, at the Atrium Hotel, Irvine, Calif.

Highlights: Organizers are still planning the annual dinner and award presentation. Proceedings start at 5 p.m. with a mini trade show. Dinner follows at 7 p.m. Acclaimed authors Bruce Hale (Chet Gecko Mystery series) and Suzanne Collins (Gregor the Overlander series) and three-time Caldecott-honor artist Jerry Pinkney are guest speakers. Afterward, the regional Golden Dolphin Award is bestowed on a well-deserving regional author or illustrator. Nikki Grimes, author of than a dozen books, including Bronx Masquerade and the forthcoming Dark Sons, is the 2005 award recipient. Past recipients include Deborah Nourse Lattimore (2004), Tony Johnston (2003), Sid Fleischman (2002), Eve Bunting (2001), Theodore Taylor (2000) and Bill Peet (1999). Recipients of the SCCBA's literacy grants will be announced. Attending booksellers are winners too, receiving gift bags filled with souvenirs.

Contact: Betty Takeuchi or Candace Moreno, San Marino Toy and Book Shoppe, (626) 309-0222; sccba@toysandbooks.com; www.socalkidsbooks.com.