Friday, November 12, 2010

Changing the bulletin board

I've had an idea cooking in my head to change up the bulletin board in the teen area, and this week I was finally able to pull everything together.

After a couple of high school teachers mentioned how hard it was to get the kids to read, both citing not being exposed to much or knowing how to pick something good (one mentioning that discussing book covers is something she thinks is effective), I decided to put MY passion on display: The Cybils.

Long view

It's a long and narrow board, and I decided to line the sides and the bottom with some of this year's nominees, both in YA Fiction and in YA Science Fiction / Fantasy.

who what where when

The middle of the board has the title in a huge font (it's 700 point) and the sign in the middle: "Awards Books that Don't Suck." I have to thank the panel organizer, Jackie, for that little gem. I went back and forth on using it -- the word suck, that is -- but ultimately decided that that is EXACTLY how kids would want a book sold to them.

I printed out "Who," "What," "When," and "Where" labels, and beneath each, I put a small bit about the awards. I took the logo from the site. On my "Where" sign, I've made small pull tabs that the teens can take with them and it will get them on the website.

On either side of the middle and the frame of nominees, I've put up the finalists and winners of years past:

2007 books

2008 nominees

better photo of 2009

I've saved all of the book covers and the signage into a publisher file, and if anyone is interested in getting a copy, let me know! I'm happy to share since it means getting the word out.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Books Talk: Say Something

If you are a teen librarian, and you aren't book talking, you are missing out on the single most impressionable thing you can do for your patrons: showing them people read.

I've been making the rounds in our local 9th grade classrooms and talking books. The kids have loved these titles, begging to take them from me. Because of tricky card issues, it hasn't happened as much as I'd like yet, but you better believe I'm planning a way for all the kids interested -- even those without cards -- to take what they want to home.

Here's my powerpoint and my titles. Each has had a wide appeal, but top picks have been Love Drugged, Confessions of the Sullivan Sisters, and Half Brother. We start each presentation talking covers, too, so I can guide the kids through making selections.

Most appealing cover for the teens? Not That Kind of Girl. The girls say audible that it looks like an awesome book.

Don't be afraid to not talk, too. As you'll see, a title here has nothing but the cover. I pull up the best trailer on youtube -- usually the publisher's own -- and play it. I emphasize using this sparingly and only with exceptionally enticing trailers.

I won't talk too much more about my methods of book talking because (drum roll) you can read it in the December 2010 issue of VOYA.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

My teen space

I've got a very unique teen space to share. I haven't photographed our huge bulletin board, since that'll be for another post shortly, but I thought I'd give you a glimpse into creative space.

This is the "entrance" to the teen space. It's shaped like an L, which this part being the bottom part of the L. The shelving you're looking at is our new books. They're only things published 2009 or sooner and acquired in the last three months. I go up there every day to face out new titles and spruce it up a bit. The shelf on wheels next to it houses our magazine collection.

Rounding the corner:

Our top shelves on the left have our popular teen non-fiction, as well as a suggestion box and a huge box of bookmarks. I don't believe it keeping bookmarks in my office; I like putting them out for any time. I've had a couple fabulous authors send me bookmarks, too, which get to live there, too (and I always pop one in the book, too). I have a love/hate relationship with that water poster, too. It might not last too much longer there. And the closet you see is a storage closet for our cleaning crew, so nothing exciting.

A little more face-on:

We have a chair and rug to brighten the space up. Above this photo, which you can't see, is the Jacob READ poster, hanging from the ceiling (you can see it in the very first photo). Above the chair is an awesome poster with the actors in Simone Elkeles's Perfect Chemistry book trailer. We serve a huge hispanic population, so having a poster with very attractive Latino guys was a must have, in my book.

As far as shelving, I like to keep it mixed up a bit. Some are shelved left and some right, and some are actually just stacked. It gives the shelving a little more personality. On the very bottom is the embarrassingly small audiobook collection for teens. I've recently purchased about 50 new audiobooks and 20 playaways for teens, so you can bet this will change!

Then, there's this entire back wall of shelving, too, which makes up the long part of the L shape:

We have the entire back wall for teen books, too. The shelving is built into the walls, so there's not too much flexibility in terms of shelving. You can see in the middle my heating unit and the small shelf above it where I put up my displays. I face out books on each shelf in different places for the teen appeal factor.

And the big black corkboard I plan on taking advantage of. Right now, my coworker's daughter made a display which impresses the heck out of me: she drew characters out of a number of popular teen fiction and has a "Guess who I am?" going on with it. Characters included Katniss, Katsa, Bella, Harry Potter, and a bunch of others. I think my next display up there will be all about the Cybils. It's just finding the time.

I don't have too much more room to grow, but grow I will. I'm just going to have to get creative.

Do you have photos of your teen spaces? I'd love to see realistic spaces -- not the kind that get featured in books or journals. I want the kind that happen when you don't have money to spend on new furniture, shelves, or other gadgets.