Independent Authors

Dear Author,

Thank you for your interest in partnering with The Raven Book Store. We are a small store and we operate on a narrow margin, so we can't carry every book for which we receive requests. Still, we're happy to evaluate your book for inclusion in our inventory. Here's how that process works.

Carrying Your Book
1. Your book needs to be available from Ingram at a regular discount. This is a requirement for all books we carry, independent author or not. Every week our book buyer is working with 20+ vendors, so ordering small quantities of individual titles direct from authors simply isn’t feasible.

2. To be considered, you must submit a business card and a paper copy of your book to our Independent Author Buyer so they can evaluate whether we can carry it. We cannot return this copy of the book. The Independent Author Buyer will evaluate your book for: fit in the store, literary quality, shelf appeal, and readiness to market and promote. The most common reasons we don’t carry books are:

  • Not available through Ingram and/or not available at a standard discount
  • Author name/title not listed on the spine
  • Design and/or production standards don’t match our expectations for stock
  • Book doesn’t match curatorial needs

Do note that the Independent Author Buyer is not required to provide feedback on their decision. As much as we’d love to offer an independent author consulting service, we’re kept pretty busy with our regular bookselling duties.

3. We understand the important role that Amazon and its affiliates play in the independent author marketplace. That being said, we have taken a public stance against Amazon and we don’t spend any money with any Amazon companies. This includes Createspace. While we have many issues with the way Amazon does things, our refusal to spend money there is born out of the fact that, if it were up to Amazon, we’d be out of business. No business should be asked to write checks to their biggest competitor. You wouldn’t expect Free State Brewing Company to buy a bunch of Bud Lite Beer, then promote it, or hold events celebrating it.

4. We ask that, if we carry your book, you promote your book using The Raven’s website or Indiebound. We get very discouraged when we agree to support someone’s book, and then we see that person explaining that people should by their book through Amazon. Built in to our agreement to support you should be your agreement to support us.

A Note on Author Events
Our author events have a very high overhead cost which comes from chair rental, extra employees, promotion, and refreshments. Our curated events schedule is composed of events we expect to break even based on pricing, demand, and the book's built-in marketing potential. Because of this, we cannot accommodate all requests to host in-store events.
Full guidelines are explained in a separate letter.

Please let us know if you have any questions by emailing

Danny Caine

, Raven Book Store