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Info for Authors

Book Review Policy | Bookstore Consignment Contract | Event Hosting

Are you a newly published author?

Would you like to River Lights Bookstore to carry your book?

We have developed a written explanation of our policies to save time and avoid misunderstanding. Please read this letter carefully and consider the following:

  • A book sells best when it conforms to customer and industry expectations for finished books.
  • Books should be professionally published, have a bound and printed spine, display a bar code with an International Standard Book Number (ISBN), and have a suggested retail price printed on its exterior.
  • It should be priced comparably to others books of its type.

Unfortunately, no bookstore can carry every published title, whether from a major publisher or self-published by a local author, and many factors influence our decisions. The most important is whether the book will sell at this store and to our customers. If after reading this, you would like us to consider your book, please leave a non-returnable review copy along with your contact information at the store. Please allow one month for examination (reviews may take longer during November and December). If you wish to talk to one of our buyers you must make an appointment by email.

Due to the economics of carrying and selling books by independently published authors, it is our policy to take such books on consignment only. If we decide to carry your book, we will ask you to sign a consignment contract which you can preview below.

River Lights Bookstore Book Review Policy

We appreciate the opportunity to review your book. It will take a minimum of two weeks to complete the review. If you do not hear from us within one month, you may assume we have declined to stock your book. Because of the increasing number of books we are asked to consider, we cannot take responsibility for returning books. By submitting your book for our review, you are agreeing that all books and/or other items become the property of River Lights Bookstore.



Suggested retail price: $                               
City, State, Zip:                                  


River Lights Bookstore Consignment Contract

We will pay the consignee 60% of the retail price and retain 40% of each book sold. We do not pay shipping or handling charges for consignment titles. If we stock your book, your promotional materials should direct buyers to River Lights for purchasing, and your website should direct orders to our store or to

If we carry your book on consignment, we would like Sales Exclusivity, asking that we be the only place in Dubuque to sell your book.

Books may be left at River Lights Bookstore on consignment for a period of up to six months. During these six months, the author may contact River Lights by email to check stock status. If the book sells steadily, the author will be given the opportunity to sign a new contract with River Lights. If the book has not sold well, we will request the author pick up unsold copies. Copies that are not picked up within one month from the notification date will be donated to the Carnegie Stout Public Library for fundraising purposes. If the author fails to contact us within six months, the books become the property of River Lights Bookstore and we will donate any unsold copies at our discretion.

Failure on the author’s part to comply with the above stipulations will terminate the agreement and the books will become the property of River Lights Bookstore.



River Lights Bookstore Event Hosting Policy

If you are interested in having River Lights Bookstore host an event to promote your book, please read following carefully.

River Lights will:

  • Design 8 1/2 x 11 posters and 4x6 postcards
  • Send notification to local media outlets, including print, radio and TV
  • Post your event on our store webpage and facebook page
  • Include your event in our store newsletter if it comes out near the time of the event

You will:

  • Supply the books for the event if they are not available from (and returnable to) a major publishing house. We will keep 40% of the sales during the event.
  • Print and mail postcards to friends and relatives and other interested tri-state residents 
  • Send a preview copy to the above media
  • Print and distribute promotional pieces to local venues
  • Promote the event via the internet; i.e. your own web page, facebook, blogs

River Lights Bookstore requires Event Exclusivity, asking that the author appear at no other local venue (w/in 30 miles) for 60 days before or after the RLB event.