Marginalia

Postage Rates to Increase

Last year, the Postal Regulatory Commission approved a proposal by the United States Postal Service to increase rates. On Sunday, January 21, 2018, be prepared for these changes:

  • First Class Mail Letters (1 oz.) rates will increase from $0.49 to $0.50. Each additional ounce will cost $0.21.
  • The discounted “Metered Mail” category for First Class Mail Letters (1 oz.), which includes online postage providers and postage meters, will increase from $0.46 to $0.47. Each additional ounce will cost $0.21.
  • First Class Mail Flats (1 oz.) will increase from $0.98 to $1.00. Each additional ounce will cost $0.21.
  • Postcard rates will increase one cent to $0.35.
  • Priority Mail Express, Priority Mail, First Class Package Service, and Media Mail will all see an average rate increase of 3.9%. Media Mail rates will start at $2.66 (previously $2.63) and Library Mail will start at $2.53 (previously $2.50).

If you need to make any changes to the shipping component of your eCommerce site, you should plan on performing an update on Saturday evening, January 20. And if you’re a Forever® Stamp kind of epistolarian, you have about a week to stock up.

2018 Binc Foundation Scholarship Program

The Binc Foundation announced today that it will be accepting applications from January 14, 2018 until March 5, 2018 for the 2018 Binc Foundation Scholarship Program. The program will offer up to 27 higher education awards totaling $109,000 to eligible current bookstore employees/owners and their dependents as well as eligible former Borders Group employees and their dependents. As part of the scholarship program, awards may be used for tuition, fees, books, supplies, and room and board.

Awards will be given as follows:

  • Twenty-Four awards of $3,500 each.
  • Two awards of $10,000 each to the top two candidates overall. At least one (1) of the $10,000 awards will be granted to an Industry affiliated applicant.
  • One Karl Pohrt Tribute Award of $5,000 will be awarded to a independent bookseller who has overcome learning adversity or is a non-traditional student.

For more information or to apply, visit the Binc Foundation website here.

And more whatnot.

Looking for sharable whatnot?

Last week PBS NewsHour and the New York Times announced their joint bookclub, “Now Read This.” Today they published a list of discussion questions for bookclub participants to consider as they read the January selection, Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward.

Yesterday The Millions published “Most Anticipated: The Great 2018 Book Preview.”

“I’d like to start a book club/support group for folks who dog-ear their pages.” – Tweet from Rebecca Lang, publicity manager at St. Martin’s Press.

Atlas Obscura published this piece about the village of Hobart, NY, population 403: “A Tiny New York Town With Not One, But 5 Indie Bookstores

And finally, Jacqueline Woodson officially became the 6th National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature today. NPR’s Lynn Neary took a look at the current state of young people’s literature, and where Woodson would like to see it 2018.

Do you have enough business cards for Memphis?

Are you heading to Memphis in a couple of weeks? You should probably check your stock of business cards right now. Even though it probably will not take 2 weeks to produce more, it’s not a bad idea to allow the extra time.

If you do need a reprint, now’s the time to check if any of the information has changed. Here are some of the components to keep in mind when designing a business card:

  • Personalization: your name, followed by what you do.
  • The name of the store, either in text or through your logo, should be prominently placed. If your logo is your brand, use it.
  • All of your locations: the address of your brick-and-mortar store and the address of your online store.
  • Other ways you can be reached, like phone numbers (include your mobile number if you want to be reachable) and email addresses. If you depend on faxes, go ahead and list that number.
  • If you’re active on Twitter, you might consider adding your handle. Otherwise, other social media locators can be found through your website.
  • Do you find yourself continually writing missing information on the back? Consider adding that to your card.
  • And speaking of writing on the card, be sure to leave plenty of white space on the front or back. White space is not only aesthetically pleasing, but it’s necessary for those who want to write notes on the card. Even if you’re not a “card writer,” the recipient of your card might be.
  • One final thing before you send them off to the printer: Proofread it. Call the numbers listed, email the address you provide, and have another set of eyes make sure you didn’t miss a “dot” in your email or accidentally provide your home phone number (if you still have one of those).

If you’ve been putting off reprinting cards because of some changes expected in a few months, it’s still a good idea to print a small batch for the conference. Then send the large order to the printer when you get back in town.

Say As I Do: Chloe Benjamin

Say As I Do: Chloe Benjamin

I interviewed Chloe Benjamin last Friday for an upcoming Marginalia episode. The podcast is still in production, but you can be prepared for The Immortalists publication day armed with the knowledge of how she says her name: