Bookselling in the 21st Century

Moderated by:
Kassia Krozser (
Lori James (All Romance/OmniLit/ARe Cafe), Jenn Northington (WORD), Kevin Smokler (Kevin Smokler enterprises), Jessica Stockton-Bagnulo (Greenlight Bookstore), Malle Vallik (Harlequin Enterprises Ltd)
General New York East
Average rating: ****.
(4.00, 13 ratings)

The front lines of change of publishing are populated by booksellers. Faced with challenges from mega-stores, online selection, and consumer shifts to digital reading, booksellers are sometimes seen as old-fashioned and marginalized. That image couldn’t be further from the truth. This panel:

  • Features three booksellers: an events manager from a traditional bookstore, a bookseller who recently fulfilled her dream of opening her own bricks-and-mortar store, and a digital bookseller whose focus on niche generated positive word-of-mouth.
  • Focuses on the role of booksellers in today’s online world, and how that roles is evolving to remain relevant to readers.
  • Discusses the importance of working within the community to build customer loyalty.
  • Explores the idea of reaching beyond traditional bookstore geographic boundaries to find new customers and build name recognition.
  • Examines the state of digital books for traditional booksellers and digital-only booksellers.
  • Examines the challenges booksellers face as readers adopt digital reading, from formats to devices to a new kind of customer service.
  • Considers marketing bookstores on a budget, from traditional means to social media.
  • Looks at how today’s booksellers are forming their own networks for brainstorming, sharing ideas, and community-building.
Photo of Kassia Krozser

Kassia Krozser

Kassia Krozser, publisher of, covers the intersection of technology and publishing. She serves on advisory boards for several publishing start-ups, presents at conferences such as Tools of Change for Publishing, Digital Book World, and South by Southwest, has appeared on NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, and contributes to various industry publications.

Photo of Lori James

Lori James

All Romance/OmniLit/ARe Cafe

Lori James is a founding partner and Chief Operating Officer of All Romance eBooks (ARe). The company owns, which specializes in the sale of romance eBooks,, which sells both fiction and non-fiction eBooks, and, a rich community-based social networking platform for passionate bibliophiles.

Jenn Northington


Jenn Northington lives in Brooklyn, NY. By day (and sometimes at night), she can be found at WORD, where she is the events manager. By night (and also sometimes during the day), she masquerades as a freelance writer. In between, she reads (a lot of) books, watches (kind of a lot of) movies and tv on disc, and occasionally interacts with people (online and in person).

Photo of Kevin Smokler

Kevin Smokler

Kevin Smokler enterprises

Called “A publishing visionary” by The Huffington Post and Mashable, Kevin Smokler is the author of forthcoming essay collection “Practical Classics: 50 Reasons the Reread 50 Books you Haven’t Touched Since High School” (Prometheus Books, Feb. 2013) and the editor of “Bookmark Now: Writing in Unreaderly Times,” A San Francisco Chronicle Notable Book of 2005. His work has appeared in the LA Times, Fast Company, Paid Content, The San Francisco Chronicle, Publishers Weekly and National Public Radio.

Kevin Smokler sits on the advisory boards of SXSW Interactive, Salon97 and Symbolia Magazine and speaks on the future of media and culture at companies (AOL), conferences (SXSW, The Idea Festival) and universities (M.I.T, Stanford, University of Michigan) throughout North America.

Jessica Stockton-Bagnulo

Greenlight Bookstore

Jessica Stockton Bagnulo is the co-owner of Greenlight Bookstore in Fort Greene, Brooklyn, which opened in October 2009. She has worked in the book industry for over 10 years, and serves on the board of the New Atlantic Booksellers Association and the Council of Literary Magazines and Presses. She writes occasionally for the industry newsletter Shelf Awareness and blogs about books at The Written Nerd.

Malle Vallik

Harlequin Enterprises Ltd

Malle Vallik is the Director of Digital Content & Social Media for Harlequin Enterprises Ltd. Her current focus is on establishing Harlequin as a leader in digital publishing for women. Her responsibilities include ebooks and downloadable audio. Harlequin leads the publishing industry by publishing its entire frontlist as ebooks as well as offering original editorial in programs like Spice Briefs, Silhouette Nocture Bites and Harlequin Historical Undone, enriched editions and prequels to many NYT bestsellers. Malle also concentrates on building Harlequin’s strong relationship with its consumer via social media like Myspace, Twitter, videos, podcasts, blogs and’s flourishing community.

Previous positions include editorial, sales and public relations. Malle is also the author of seven romance novels published under the pseudonym Molly Liholm. She is currently on the board of directors of the International Digital Publishing Forum and the National Association of College Textbook Stores New Media Solutions. She was selected “One of the Top 50 Women in Publishing” by BookBusiness Magazine, 2009.

  • Ingram Content Group
  • Qualcomm
  • codeMantra
  • Impelsys Inc.
  • Aptara
  • Bowker
  • Connotate
  • HP
  • Jouve North America
  • LibreDigital
  • Malloy
  • MarkLogic
  • Random House, Inc.
  • SPi Global
  • Sterling Commerce
  • Baker & Taylor
  • The BookMasters Group
  • Constellation
  • Jacquette Consulting
  • Mashery
  • Silverchair
  • Wolfram
  • Smashwords, Inc.

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