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Diversifying the culture of reading by building bridges between the American book world and the international book community.
Diversifying the culture of reading by building bridges between the American book world and the international book community.
Diversifying the culture of reading by building bridges between the American book world and the international book community.
270 backers pledged $31,441 to help bring this project to life.

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Bookselling Without Borders

$31,441

270

Why Bookselling Without Borders?

How do we create a culture of reading that is inclusive and diverse, curated but broad, and open?

By empowering one of our of greatest cultural assets: independent bookstores and the booksellers that run them.

Bookstores are places of discovery, plurality, learning, and reading. They are oases, community gathering places, and hangouts essential to our culture and to our individual sense of self. And behind the bookstore is the bookseller: selecting the titles, stocking the shelves, and talking to you about what book you absolutely must read next.

Booksellers are key in building a readership for any book, and that is doubly true for international literature.

We want to help American booksellers be better advocates for international writing, and to help them enrich their communities of readers with a diverse array of voices from beyond our borders. And we need your help to make this happen!

How can we do this?

Every year, at international book fairs the world over, authors, publishers, literary agents, movie producers, and editors get together to talk about books. Books that haven’t been written yet; books that have been written but don’t have a publisher; books that have been published in their home country but haven’t yet been translated and published abroad; books that are being made into movies; books that one day may end up on your shelves.

But one essential figure in the book world has been excluded from these bookish gatherings: the American bookseller!

To change this, we launched Bookselling Without Borders.

What is Bookselling Without Borders?

In 2016 indie publisher Europa Editions took Ariana Paliobagis, a bookseller and bookstore owner from Montana, to the industry’s biggest book fair in Frankfurt, Germany. There she met with publishers and authors, spoke on panels, and met with representatives from bookseller associations from around the world. 

Ariana Paliobagis of the Country Bookshelf (right), in action at the 2016 Frankfurt International Book Fair
Ariana Paliobagis of the Country Bookshelf (right), in action at the 2016 Frankfurt International Book Fair

 

 
Click here to read Ariana's post in LitHub
Click here to read Ariana's post in LitHub

The experience was so positive and the experiment so successful that this May Europa teamed up with another independent publisher in New York, Other Press, to take three American booksellers to the Turin Book Fair in Italy. This too was a resounding success.

The connections made in Turin helped US booksellers understand more about the local context from which great literature emerges, and the entire experience is already making each bookseller better equipped to get this literature into the hands of readers.

Click here for Jenn's insights and illustrations on LitHub
Click here for Jenn's insights and illustrations on LitHub

 

 

An American bookseller reports from the glamorous Turin bookfair!
An American bookseller reports from the glamorous Turin bookfair!
 

 The Bookselling Without Borders scholarship empowers, enfranchises, and emboldens booksellers to be better advocates for international literature in a way that directly enriches their community of readers.

Click here to read Camilla's post on Shelf Awareness
Click here to read Camilla's post on Shelf Awareness

What’s next for Bookselling Without Borders?

A permanent fund that will allow American booksellers to attend international book fairs for years to come.

This scholarship fund will give dozens of US booksellers the chance to meet their colleagues in the bookselling world: authors, publishers, editors, reviewers, bloggers, and more. They’ll also speak on panels about bookselling, reading, and publishing in the US, so that international audiences can know more about what’s happening here.

In 2018, we will take three separate delegations, each of 4-5 booksellers from all over the country, to three book fairs: the Frankfurt Book Fair, the Turin Book Fair in Italy, and the Guadalajara Book Fair in Mexico.

To do this, we need your help!

Rewards

Apart from our eternal gratitude, we have a whole store of goodies to offer in exchange for your incredible support. These range from curated reading lists and swag bags from our partner presses, to first dibs on some of our newest acquisitions and the chance to get wined and dined by one of your favorite authors. Oh, and loads of free books, of course!

Here are some of our favorites:

Blind Date Book Package

Get set up with a title of our choice—after all, who knows you better than a group of publishing employees you’ve never met? Let us find you your book soul mate. Just tell us three things about yourself: your favorite book, your favorite vacation spot, and your zodiac sign. We’ll take it from there!

*A survey gathering this information will be sent to each backer at the end of the campaign*

 If you don‘t just want to read books...

We get it, sometimes books aren’t enough. Sometimes you need more. Sometimes you need magazines about books. Sign up today for a subscription to one of the best cultural magazines out there! Choose between The Paris Review or n+1!

 I’d recommend...

There’s no better way to decide what to read next than to talk to a bookseller. We’ll put you in contact with some of our favorites! This reward includes a 20 minute phone conversation with Jenn Witte from Skylight Books, Camilla Orr  from Changing Hands Bookstore, or David Sandberg from Porter Square Book. All just as delightful as they are knowledgable!

Receive a bound manuscript or galley

Be truly ahead of the curve and receive a bound manuscript or galley of one our partner presses’ most recent acquisitions. Read the next great book years before anyone else can!

Bring an editor to your book club

Bring someone to your next book club meeting who loves talking about books as much you do: an editor from one of our partner presses! Hear about the author, the writing process, and much, much more!

*A partner press editor will Skype into your book club*

Skype with an author

Ever finished a book and wished you could call up an author because, after two-hundred-or-so pages of emotional torment, you feel like you're old pals? Well, we'll do you one better! This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to get to know your favorite author personally.

 

Literary agent evaluation

You’ve written the novel—now let an agent read it. A literary agent will read your full manuscript and offer feedback. Who knows, you might just have the next great *international* novel!

Deluxe Swag Bags

Not just any swag bag—the deluxe swag bag. Includes a tote bag from the press of your choice, a fall 2017/spring 2018 book from each of our partner presses, bookmarks, and a Reach Out and Read the World notebook. Show off your love for independent presses—they love you!

 

Build a library

You have space to fill on your shelves, and we have a solution: every single 2018 title from every one of our partner presses. Check out our catalogs here: Graywolf Press, Europa Editions, Other Press, The New Press, and Catapult

Who are we?

Bookselling Without Borders is a collaboration involving five American independent presses: Europa Editions, Graywolf Press, Other Press, The New Press, and Catapult. Each of us has strong ties to the bookselling community as well as the world of international literature, and is eager to bring these worlds closer together in ways that benefit American readers, writers, and the culture at large.

Europa Editions

Europa Editions is an independent publisher of quality fiction, noir, and nonfiction. The Europa catalog is eclectic, reflecting the founders’ belief that dialogue between nations and cultures is of vital importance and that this exchange is facilitated by literature chosen not only for its ability to entertain and fascinate but also to inform and enlighten. Notable books include Muriel Barbery’s The Elegance of the Hedgehog, Elena Ferrante's Neapolitan novels, and Jane Gardam's Old Filth.

Graywolf Press

Graywolf Press is a leading independent publisher committed to the discovery and energetic publication of twenty-first century American and international literature. Graywolf champions outstanding writers at all stages of their careers to ensure that adventurous readers can find underrepresented and diverse voices in a crowded marketplace. They believe works of literature nourish the reader’s spirit and enrich the broader culture, and that they must be supported by attentive edition, compelling design, and creative promotion. Notable recent books include The Empathy Exams by Leslie Jamison, WHEREAS by Layli Long Soldier, The Argonauts by Maggie Nelson, Grief Is the Thing With Feathers by Max Porter, Citizen by Claudia Rankine, Look by Solmaz Sharif, Don’t Call Us Dead by Danez Smith, Life on Mars by Tracy K. Smith, and All That Man Is by David Szalay.

Other Press

Other Press publishes novels, short stories, poetry, and essays from America and around the world that represent literature at its best. Their nonfiction books–should they be history, current events, popular culture or memoir–explore how psychic, cultural, historical, and literary shifts inform our vision of the world and of each other. Notable books include Hurry Down Sunshine by Michael Greenberg, The Glass Room by Simon Mawer, and The Unit by Ninni Holmqvist.

The New Press

The New Press publishes books that promote and enrich public discussion and understanding of the issues vital to our democracy and to a more equitable world. The New Press is very much an activist press; it seeks to identify areas in which new books and materials are most needed, and to commission books to fill those needs. Notable books include The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander and Lies My Teacher Told Me by James W. Loewen.

Catapult

Catapult publishes books of the highest literary caliber, offers writing classes taught by acclaimed emerging and established writers, produces an award-winning daily online magazine of narrative nonfiction and fiction, and hosts an open online platform where writers can showcase their own writing, find resources, and get inspired. Catapult believes that the very best stories carry us into territories that might seem exotic, or demented, relative to our personal point of view, but return us as refreshed, bewildered, and changed. Notable books include Montpelier Parade by Karl Geary and Beyond the High Blue Air by Lu Spinney.

Why do we need your support?

Five American independent publishers have committed to providing seed money for this scholarship. Other Press, Europa Editions, The New Press, Graywolf Press, and Catapult have committed a total of $15,000 to get this project up and running. To make it happen we need another $30,000.

We are committed to making sure the scholarship remains just that—a scholarship, equally accessible to all participating booksellers. Your pledges will go toward:

Travel, accommodation, and per diem expenses for booksellers.

A scholarship coordinator charged with making sure all arrangements go smoothly.

Outreach intended to guarantee that all interested booksellers know about the program and can apply.

Thank you so much for your support! Empowering American booksellers to become better advocates for international voices will not only directly benefit their communities of readers, but the culture of reading in the U.S. as a whole.

Risks and challenges

Thanks to you, our incredible backers, Bookselling Without Borders is confident that we'll be able to accomplish our goal and send our wonderful booksellers on a trip that will benefit us all as readers!

That being said, Bookselling Without Borders is committed to transparency—we'll let you know if any changes occur that could potentially cause delays in our production plan. Please understand that this project is a work in progress, and that we've thought through all of the possible outcomes.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    Thank You!

    You have our eternal gratitude! We’ll acknowledge you as a BWB sponsor on our website and on Twitter.

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    We <3 International Literature

    Thank you for your contribution! You’ll receive an exclusive reading list of contemporary international literature compiled by the editors of our partner presses. Plus, a Ferrante Fever button (in snazzy neon lettering), so the whole world can know of your love.

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    Blind Date Book Package—Digital Edition

    Let us play matchmaker and set you up with one of our titles. Your choice between a Europa, Other Press, or Catapult title. No swiping necessary.

    Just tell us three things about yourself: your favorite book, your favorite vacation spot, and your zodiac sign. We’ll do the rest.

    *An emailed survey collecting this information will be sent to each back*

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    Signed Copies!

    Get a signed copy of one of the following:

    AS LIE IS TO GRIN by Simeon Marsalis

    SLEEPING ON JUPITER by Anuradha Roy

    ART OF WAITING by Belle Boggs

    THE ACCORDIONIST'S SON by Bernardo Atxaga

    THE LAST BROTHER by Nathacha Appanah

    ON SAL MAL LANE by Ru Freeman

    ALL THAT MAN IS by David Szalay

    TWENTY POEMS THAT COULD SAVE AMERICA by Tony Hoagland

    CONFESSIONS OF A RECOVERING ENVIRONMENTALIST by Paul Kingsnorth

    300 ARGUMENTS by Sarah Manguso

    THE KNOW-IT-ALLS: The Rise of Silicon Valley as a Political Powerhouse and Social Wrecking Ball by Noam Cohen

    (A survey will be sent at the conclusion of our campaign to record your choice!)

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    Reach Out and Read the World Poster

    You know you love international literature—but does the world know? Do your roommates? Show them with this beautiful, eye-catching poster, featuring quotes from booksellers across America.

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    Take Your Pick

    Pick a book! Any book!

    Choose a book from one of our partner presses, and we will send it to you. Easy as pie. Includes a reading list for further inspiration.

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    Signed, First Editions!

    We're giving away signed, first editions of our most popular books!

    Take your pick of the following:

    DON'T CALL US DEAD by Danez Smith, a finalist for the National Book Award for Poetry in 2017

    WHEREAS by Layli Long Soldier, a finalist for the National Book Award for Poetry in 2017

    RESERVOIR 13 by Jon McGregor, Long-Listed for the Man Booker Prize 2017

    A LOVING, FAITHFUL ANIMAL by Josephine Rowe, which received a raving review from The New York Times Book Review

    AT THE EXISTENTIALIST CAFE by Sarah Bakewell, named one of the Ten Best Books of 2016 by the New York Times

    THE ART OF HEARING HEARTBEATS by Jan-Philipp Sendker, hailed as "an epic narrative" by Publishers Weekly

    INHERITANCE FROM MOTHER by award-winning novelist Minae Mizumura

    YOU DESERVE NOTHING by Alexander Maksik, a New York Times Book Review Notable Book

    *Limit 5 copies of each title available*

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    Indie Bookstore Gift Certificate

    Read globally, shop locally. Get a gift certificate for $30 from one of the best indie bookstores in the country:

    Skylight Books (Los Angeles, CA)
    Changing Hands Bookstore (Phoenix, AZ)
    Porter Square Books (Boston, MA)

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    Blind Date Book Package—Print Edition

    Get set up with a title of our choice—let us find you your book soul mate!

    Just tell us three things about yourself: your favorite book, your favorite vacation spot, and your zodiac sign. We’ll take it from there!

    *An emailed survey collecting this information will be sent to each backer*

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    Advanced Reading Copy

    Can’t wait to read one of the titles we have coming out next season? Don’t.

    Get your hands on that book you’ve been dying to read before it comes out—what we call Advance Reading Copies (ARCs). Pick one from the list below and brag to all your friends about the insider scoop.

    Freya by Anthony Quinn
    Faith Fox by Jane Gardam
    The Athenian Women by Alessandro Barbero
    Neon in Daylight by Hermione Hoby
    Go Tell the Crocodiles: Chasing Prosperity in Mozambique by Rowan Moore Gerety

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    If you don't just want to read books...

    We get it, sometimes books aren’t enough. Sometimes you need more. Sometimes you need magazines about books.

    Sign up today for a subscription to one of the best cultural magazines out there! Choose between The Paris Review and n+1.

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    I'd recommend...

    There’s no better way to decide what to read next than to talk to a bookseller. We’ll put you in contact with some of our favorites! This reward includes a 20 min phone conversation with one of the below:

    Jenn Witte (Skylight Books, LA)
    Camilla Orr (Changing Hands Bookstore, AZ)
    David Sandberg (Porter Square Books, MA)

    Get all the recommendations you need!

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    Swag Bag

    Your pick of swag bag from one of our partner presses. Show off your love for independent presses—they love you!

    Each swag bag includes:
    • A tote bag
    • A fall 2017/spring 2018 book
    • Bookmarks
    • Reach Out and Read the World notebook

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    Receive a bound manuscript or galley

    An ARC not enough? Be truly ahead of the curve and receive a bound manuscript or galley of one our partner presses’ most recent acquisitions.

    Read the next great book years before anyone else can!

    Includes:
    Disoriental by Negar Djavadi
    Weeping Waters by Karin Brynard
    Bloody January by Alan Parks

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    Four books from the press of your choice

    Too many books? No such thing. Receive a selection of four 2017/2018 books from the partner press of your choice, and a tote bag to carry them in.

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    The Book Club Special

    The special includes 5-8 print copies of one of the following perfect-for-book-club titles, discussion guides and a published Q&A with the author, and a Skype session with the editor of the book you choose—all for the use of your book club!

    Be the ultimate host and take your pick of the following:

    ALL THAT MAN IS by David Szalay, a Man Booker Prize finalist

    THE UNIT by Ninni Holmquist, praised by Margaret Atwood and named one of the Best Novels of 2009 by the Wall Street Journal

    RESERVOIR 13 by Jon McGregor, long-listed for the Man Booker Prize 2017 and short-listed for the Goldsmiths Prize 2017

    THE LIVING INFINITE by Chantel Acevedo, Starred Review in Kirkus

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    Themed Book Package

    Looking for a deeper dive into a subject of your choosing? We have reading lists on a host of different topics and six books to go along with them.

    Tell us which subject below interests you, and we’ll send all the books you need! Plus, a tote bag from the partner press of your choice.

    Choose from:

    Women in translation
    Experimental international lit
    Contemporary italian lit
    Voices from south america
    New literature from Asia
    Crime Fiction from Around the World

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    Bring an editor to your book club

    Bring someone to your next book club meeting who loves talking about books as much you do: an editor from one of our partner presses! And don't worry—if you don't find yourself in the same cities as some of our editors, we'll arrange a meeting via Skype!

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    A year's worth of Catapult titles

    Receive every single book off Catapult's 2017 list (in print format)! Make sure your shelves are housing books of the highest literary caliber.

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    Skype with an author!

    Ever finished a book and wished you could call up an author because, after two-hundred-or-so pages of emotional torment, you feel like you're old pals? Well, we'll do you one better! Get to know one of the master storytellers below, face-to-face:

    Seth Greenland, author of I REGRET EVERYTHING (Europa 2015) and THE ANGRY BUDDHIST (Europa 2012)

    Nick Arvin, author of THE RECONSTRUCTIONIST (Harper Collins 2012)

    Sarah Swong, co-editor of HOW DO I EXPLAIN THIS TO MY KIDS: PARENTING IN THE AGE OF TRUMP (The New Press 2017)

    Chantel Acevedo, author of THE LIVING INFINITE (Europa 2017) and THE DISTANT MARVELS (Europa 2015)

    Amara Lakhous, author of CLASH OF CIVILIZATIONS OVER AN ELEVATOR IN PIAZZO VITTORIO (Europa 2008) and THE PRANK OF THE GOOD LITTLE VIRGIN OF VIA ORMEA (Europa 2016)

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    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    NEW FERRANTE NOVEL

    That's right—receive an Advanced Readers Copy of Elena Ferrante's forthcoming novel, due out in 2019! Read the latest Ferrante before anyone else can!

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    Visit our offices

    Don’t be a stranger. Come have a coffee at one of our partner presses’ offices and chat with us about books, publishing, and more. We want to meet you!

    [note: transportation to our offices not included]

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    Complete Ferrante Audio Book Editions

    Get the complete audio book package of Ferrante's Neapolitan novels, The Beach at Night (read by Natalie Portman) and Frantumaglia!

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    A year’s worth of digital titles

    ...from Europa, Other Press, or Catapult! Pick a subscription to one of our partner presses and receive an ebook of every single one of their 2017 books.

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    It's a date!

    We want to get to know you. Let the publishers masterminding BWB take you out to lunch.

    [Note: must take place in publisher’s location. Travel not included].

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    Literary agent evaluation

    Hey, aspiring writers! Don’t miss the opportunity to have a literary agent read a portion of your manuscript or short story and offer feedback.

    [note: this does not ensure you will receive representation]

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    A year’s worth of print titles

    ...from the partner press of your choice, this time in hard copy! Pick a subscription to one of our partner presses and receive every single one of their 2017 books.

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    A year's worth of Europa titles

    Can't get enough of those French flaps? Receive every single book off Europa’s 2017 list (in print format) and add a bit more class to your book shelves.

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    A year's worth of The New Press titles

    Receive every single book off The New Press' 2017 list (in print format)! The New Press publishes books that promote and enrich public discussion and understanding of the issues vital to our democracy and to a more equitable world—this list is essential reading.

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    Pledge $545 or more About $545

    A year's worth of Graywolf titles

    In need of some literary nourishment? Receive every single book on Graywolf's 2017 list (in print format) and satisfy your culture craving.

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    A year's worth of Other Press titles

    Receive every single book off Other Press's 2017 list (in print format)! Trust us, you'll want to make the stack by your bed that much taller.

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  32. Select this reward

    Pledge $650 or more About $650

    Literary agent evaluation

    You’ve written the novel—now let an agent read it. A literary agent will read your full manuscript and offer feedback.

    [note: this does not ensure you will receive representation]

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    Pledge $3,000 or more About $3,000

    A year's worth of titles (print edition)

    ...from every one of our partner presses!

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  34. Select this reward

    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    Come with us!

    Let us whisk you away. Travel with us to the marvelous world of international book fairs!

    Limit one guest per fair. Hotels and transport not included.

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Funding period

- (45 days)