Lucky for all of you indie authors, small independent bookstores seem happy to work with you.

It always helps to make a personal visit, especially if you’re a local author. With book and promotional materials in hand (e.g., business cards, flyers, sell sheets) take a casual stroll through the store, look carefully at other merchandise to see if your book might be a good fit, and ask to speak with the store manager.

Have your two-sentence “elevator pitch” ready: “My book is about _______ and it looks like it would fit really well with your store’s other books and products.”

If you were unable to speak directly with the manager, or if the manager seemed hesitant, don’t hesitate to visit again. Be sure to point out if the book received new awards, reviews, endorsements and mention where the book is selling in other stores. Call ahead to make an appointment at the manager’s convenience, to ensure ample time for further discussion.

A great resource is the IndieBound Community, “helping people across the United States share and find independently-owned businesses.” IndieBound offers a comprehensive listing of independently owned bookstores searchable by name, type and/or location at the IndieBound.org website.

Don’t have time to visit all the indie stores or do the research, I would gladly help you with anything you need.