Porter Square Books

Events Manager

25 White St., Cambridge, MA, United States, 02140

Position: Full-Time

We are looking for a full-time events manager, starting early 2019, for Porter Square Books in Cambridge, MA. Salary is competitive, and benefits include health insurance.

About PSB
At Porter Square Books, our mission is to foster intellectual curiosity and exploration, offer a forum for the exchange of ideas, provide advice and guidance to our customers, and serve as a gathering place and a refuge for all within our extended community who find their way through our doors. We are in our fifteenth year of business, serving Cambridge/Somerville and all their surrounding communities, and have developed a robust presence in the online world as well. We are the fourth largest bookstore in New England, measured by sales.

Author events are a critical aspect of our personality and our reputation. While we often host authors of national stature, we have also become a premier venue for local authors, many of whom launch their books at PSB. We value a mix of better- and lesser-known authors, a wide gamut of topics and genres, in-store and off-site events, and audiences ranging in size from a dozen to hundreds.

The people
Our 28 employees include buyers and booksellers, as well as individuals responsible for marketing, sidelines, bookfairs, receiving, and inventory. Many of us have been with the store since it opened – we range in age from 20s to 60s, some very local (across the street) and others from the distant suburbs, and expertise in just about every genre and category within our inventory (although we no longer have a knitting maven). Our management group – of which the Events Manager would be a part – works cooperatively to plan and execute business strategy, respond to challenges and opportunities, and innovate new approaches to marketing, sales, and management. You will have the opportunity to participate in the ongoing shaping of our vision, our philosophy and our role in the community.

Your impact and opportunities
As Events Manager, your influence and input will affect much of what we do, and will have a significant impact on the store’s profile and visibility. You will have a very full plate – your responsibilities will include:

  • Booking author events for the bookstore, including:
    • Submitting grid requests and proposals
    • Going through catalogues for other event possibilities not in the grids and reaching out to authors/publicists
    • Answering emails from publicists and authors; deciding which events to say yes to, and (where appropriate) saying no in a nice way
    • Conveying and managing expectations for authors (and their publicists)
  • Coordinating events, including working with authors and publicists, as well as staff hosts (when other than yourself) on all details of the event:
    • Ordering books
    • Attending and hosting ~2 events per week
    • Arranging hosting for events you will not attend
    • Reporting internally on the event the next day
    • Coordinating logistics of out-of-store events, including securing venues
  • Promoting and marketing events:
    • Press releases
    • Media contacts
    • Social media
    • “Cheerleading” for events
  • Contributing to the store’s social media
  • Maintaining event listings on the website and the internal master calendar
  • Creating the event brochure (paper version)
  • Attending BEA and NEIBA trade shows, and reaching out to publicists and authors at those events
  • Spending one shift per week on the floor as a bookseller
  • Being involved in other, non-author events (reader prom, all-night readathon, etc.)
  • Collaborating and coordinating with your colleagues on all of the above

You bring

  • At least three years’ experience in the book world (at a bookstore and/or publisher)
  • A broad awareness of current publishing, including comfort and knowledge in different genres
  • Excellent communications skills, both writing and speaking
  • Outstanding organizational abilities, an orientation to detail (there are lots of moving parts here), and a commitment to following through
  • Enthusiasm and hustle
  • An outgoing personality, desire to network, and willingness (when appropriate) to be a bit of a pain


  • Experience in planning events
  • Contacts in the publishing world
  • Understanding of and familiarity with our community

We look forward to hearing from you – please send a resume to dina@portersquarebooks.com.

Porter Square Books is an Equal Employment Opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, genetics and/or veteran status.

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