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The IOBA Standard is the journal of the Independent Online Booksellers Association and covers the book world, with a special focus on the online used, out-of-print, and collectible bookselling markets.


From the Editor – Tim Doyle

Timothy Doyle

Welcome to the Spring 2016 issue of The Standard, the journal of the Independent Online Booksellers Association (IOBA).

One month ago, incoming IOBA President Joan White approached me about taking over as Editor, and re-booting The Standard. The journal was always intended to be a quarterly publication, not that one could tell based on the five issues published in the last six years. I was guest editor of the Summer 2013 issue (the last before the recent, lengthy hiatus) and have contributed some articles in the past. Some of you may also know me from a long series of articles I published over several years as the Science Fiction editor at Craig Stark’s BookThink site.

As part of preparing to take up this challenge, I have spent a good amount of time going through back issues of The Standard – an exercise I strongly recommend to anyone reading this. Serious, whimsical, erudite, unrefined, timeless, fleeting – we’ve covered a lot of territory over the years. I am going to try my best to live up to the standards set by my predecessors.

This issue includes a piece from incoming IOBA President Joan White, of White Unicorn Books, in which she lays out her short and long term vision for IOBA. Rachel Jagareski of Old Saratoga Books contributes a nice article on book blogging titled “Don’t Do What I Do“. I wax somewhat philosophical on “Serendipity in Bookselling”, and on the same topic we reprint an article from July 2008 by Joe Perlman, of Mostly Useful Fiction, titled “Embracing the Unexpected”.

And finally, I’m reviving a version of the solicitation that used to appear in issues of The Standard: We can always use interesting, well-written articles on subjects of interest to the bookselling trade – ideally ones not overtly solicited or strong-armed to begin with. Please query first, however, to The general guidelines: the material should be original, it is subject to editing, you retain copyright, and of course there is no payment other than the gratitude and satisfaction of your peers. You do not need to be a member of IOBA, except for the IOBA Bookseller Profiles, though we would surely like you to join. We are particularly interested in articles on the book trade outside of the United States.

Timothy Doyle Bayside Books of Maryland, IOBA Baltimore, Maryland



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