From Columbia to…Columbia!

Reading Reality is going on the road again. On September 13 and September 14 I will be at the South Carolina Collection Development Conference taking place in Columbia, South Carolina.

The entire day tomorrow is devoted to adult collection development. There will be talk tables and a keynote speech in the morning. I’m the afternoon speaker. My topic: “The Brave New World of Genre Fiction Selection, the Rap Sheet on the Fiction Vixen, or what the Locus are all these book blogs about?” I’m going to be encouraging collection development librarians to use book blogs as sources for not just reviews, but as trend spotters, to help them find what readers are looking for. I’ve got a whole list of my favorites. I’ve also got a whole lot of slides to show, not just the increasing importance of genre, but what some of those genres are. Steampunk is just so much cooler when you have a picture!

On Wednesday I’ll be leading one of the table talks. Wednesday is the children’s and teens CD day. A lot of YA literature these days is genre fiction, particularly of the creepy-crawly variety. And that’s where I come in. I’ll be leading a table talk on the “creature features” of YA fiction, titled “V is for Vampire, W is for Werewolf, Z is for Zombie: the continued trend of the dark, weird and scary in teen literature”. It should be a scream.

The official title of the conference is “Collection Development for South Carolina Libraries”, and it is presented and sponsored by the South Carolina State Library. I was incredibly excited when Kathy Sheppard from the SC State Library emailed me last month, right after I got back from Missouri State Library Summer Institute in Columbia, Missouri. The happy coincidence makes for a good omen. And I’m looking forward to thanking Kathy in person for inviting me.

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