Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Collection development

Librarian post ahead.

So one of the main parts of my job is ordering books and other materials for my library. Specifically, since I am a children's librarian, for people ages 0-12. This is really really hard.

Why? Because I used to be a teen librarian. I know what is appropriate for teens. I know what they like. I know what's new, which authors are cool, which one's teachers like (and assign!) and what is so last week. Kids? Not so much. Library school (and general library work) have given me a pretty decent clue about picture books and a few chapter books, but most of the time I am adrift, trying to learn a whole new age group.

It's good. It's broadening my horizons.

It makes me take FOREVER to complete one stupid order. After the fifth inquiry about when I would have an order list completed, I finally broke down and confessed to our collections librarian today. It went something like this:

"C, I have to look up every book to read reviews,"

"What? You mean to check if we have it already? The system will auto-notify you!"

"No. Because I have no idea what these books are about. I look up review for every single one."

It was hard. It was ugly. But it bought me a few days on my order. (Also C wasn't mad, just amused that I hadn't confessed earlier.)

Also, spending tens of thousands of dollars on books makes me want to go to the bookstore for myself really, really badly. Since, you know, it is definitely NOT ethical to sneak my own book wants into a purchase order.

1 comment:

Tressa said...

So, what kind of books do the kids like where you are? My library can't seem to keep any "Skippy Jon Jones" on the shelf.