Why Librarians Don’t Want to Buy Your Self-Published Book

An interesting article.

wrapped up in books

When a self-published author contacts someone in the collection development department at my library, we let out a collective groan. Inevitably, our answer to the request to add their book to our collection will feel personal, which is awkward. It will definitely mean more work for us no matter what, and for acquisitions and cataloging staff as well if we do accept the book as a donation or decide to purchase it.

Librarians don’t want to buy your self-published book, but not for the reasons you think. 

I’ve been thinking about self-published books and their place in libraries a lot recently, as my library has been updating our collection development policy and brainstorming ways to streamline how we deal with requests from authors to include their self-published materials in our collection and how our collection development work complements our strategic goal of supporting content creation in our community.

Then, this weekend…

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Book review: Cheryl: My Story by Cheryl Cole


Goodreads synopsis
For the first time Cheryl tells her full story, her way. Revealing the truth behind the headlines, this is the only official autobiography, giving the fans the true story they’ve been waiting for. Includes exclusive, personal photos.

The nation’s sweetheart, Cheryl has achieved unrivalled success with Girls Aloud, as a solo artist, a judge on the X Factor, a fashion icon and as the face of L’Oreal. However, the path to fame is rarely easy and for Cheryl it has been a colourful journey.

From happy but humble beginnings growing up on a tough Newcastle estate, Cheryl saw firsthand the damage that drugs and alcohol can do. But this feisty Geordie never gave up on her dreams of being on stage.

With success came a level of fame no one could prepare for. As Cheryl’s career went from strength to strength her personal heartache was played out in the national media. From her divorce to her battles with malaria, Cheryl’s every move was captured by paparazzi. There was nowhere for Cheryl to hide. However, a true fighter, Cheryl emerged from every challenge stronger.

Now it’s Cheryl’s turn to set the record straight. In this heartfelt account, she opens up about all of the incredible ups and downs of her life. Told with searing honesty this is Cheryl as you’ve never seen her before.

My verdict: this is the review submitted on the Goodreads website
I’ve been a big fan of Cheryl’s since she auditioned for Popstars: The Rivals in 2002. I voted for her each week, and I was so excited when she won a place in Girls Aloud. I’ve seen Girls Aloud live in concert and I loved her on the X Factor, so I couldn’t wait to read her book, My Story. I wasn’t disappointed! I loved hearing her side of the story on so many subjects: her marriage to Ashley, what happened in that nightclub toilet when she was accused of assault, when she was ‘fired’ from the X Factor US; when she had malaria, all of it. I liked her even more after I’d read the book, as the media had spun so many things in their favour against her and I hadn’t realised just how stressful her life has been. I would recommend this to any Cheryl fan, it was a really interesting and eye-opening read.

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

The last 5 books I added to my Goodreads ‘to read’ list

One of the most excellent things about blogs and the internet is finding out about books that are out there that I haven’t read yet. These are the last five books I added to my ever expanding ‘to read’ list on Goodreads!

Click on the book cover to go directly to the Goodreads page. Each synopsis is taken from the relevant Goodreads page. Enjoy!

Boy Band by Jacqueline E. Smith
Sam Morneau is Melissa Parker’s best friend. He’s also a member of The Kind of September, basically the hottest boy band on the planet.

After two and a half years, Mel is all too familiar with the day-to-day occurrences that come with being a member of the band’s inner circle, including hectic schedules, passionate fans, and gossip-mongering celebrity girlfriends.

Now, with the release of the group’s third album just weeks away, their lives have never been crazier and Mel is doing everything she can to keep up, all the while trying to cope with the ridiculous rumors that follow the band everywhere they go and pretending that she isn’t harboring a secret and hopeless crush on Sam.

It’s weird enough being in love with your best friend. It’s even weirder when the rest of the world is in love with him, too.
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The Story of My Tits by Jennifer Hayden
A landmark work of graphic memoir and a cancer narrative that pulls no punches.

When Jennifer Hayden was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 43, she realized that her tits told a story. Across a lifetime, they’d held so many meanings: hope and fear, pride and embarrassment, life and death. And then they were gone. Now, their story has become a way of understanding her story. Growing up flat-chested and highly aware of her inadequacies… heading off to college, where she “bloomed” in more ways than one… navigating adulthood between her mother’s mastectomy, her father’s mistress, and her musician boyfriend’s problems of his own—not to mention his sprawling family. Then the kids come along… As cancer strikes three different lives, some relationships crumble while others emerge even stronger, and this sarcastic child of the ‘70s finally finds a goddess she can believe in.

For everyone who’s faced cancer personally, or watched a loved one fight that battle, Hayden’s story is a much-needed breath of fresh air, an irresistible blend of sweetness and skepticism. Rich with both symbolism & humor, The Story of My Tits will leave you laughing, weeping, and feeling grateful for every day.
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Waterski Girl Wonder by Shellie Blum
Escaping instantaneous death and paralysis from a hangman’s broken neck, and shattered right jaw endured in a horrific watersking accident is only part of this unbelievable life story.

Follow Shellie on her journey from the Ozarks to Egypt and even the back alleys of Hollywood streets as she perseveres through more than her share of grueling set backs.

You don’t have to be a waterskier to enjoy this inspiring true story told by the first female freestyle waterskier ramp jumper in the world!
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Delayed by Daniela Reyes
One delayed flight can change everything.

Olivia doesn’t like airports. To make matters worse, she’s forced to spend her forgotten birthday waiting for a flight that will whisk her away to the start of a miserable summer. Everything seems to be going to schedule, until she runs into a crying boy at her gate.

Nick thought he would spend one of the saddest days of his life alone in an airport, waiting for a flight he never wants to board. Then he crosses paths with a strange girl named Olivia.

A delayed flight brings them together for a day, and the two teens find solace in one another. They go their separate ways, thinking they’ll never see each other. Until, two years later, a delayed flight brings them together again. And the randomness of their first meeting, unravels into something much greater than either one of them could ever imagine.

Set over the course of ten years, this is the story of two strangers falling in love, and the journey they face in trying to find their way back to each other.
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The KD Shindig by Philip Musson
The novel opens with the wedding of Kristin Nicol and Darren Maundeville in a small, historic cathedral in Northern Ireland. The guests returning to England, the author follows this toxic soup of friends and relatives for a year, opening a window onto the peaks and troughs of their lives: Maggie and Richard Dearlove, a reasonably happily married couple; Joanna Centofani, a self-adoring actress; the green-eyed Rosemary Icthus; the steely Mr. Cameron Scattergood and his antithetic wife, Ruth; the love-loathe duo Johnny Nicol and Charity B. as well as various other interrelated characters. The reader will sympathise, agonise and be antagonised!

The dark humour is evident throughout the novel – and although there are some characters who have only one scene within the book, sometimes these are drawn with more verve and wit than many of the others. The timescale is not linear either, sometimes jumping back and dealing with different characters to keep the reader’s interest. Plus the underlying story of spying, double-dealing and outright underhandedness definitely makes this story worth a second read.

The Bare Minimum – a Small Business Perspective on $15 Per Hour

An excellent article, everyone should read this!

jareksteele

I don’t pay my employees enough.  That’s hard to admit.

I mean, I don’t cross picket lines, I’m a patient driver, I garden vegetables and work in my wood shop, I love animals and people, and I can get along with just about anyone.  I’m a good guy.  And my staff are not just employees to me. I see their talents, their struggles, their hopes and dreams – their lives mean something to me.  They are my friends.

They’re no slouches, either. Among us we have published writers, artists, aspiring lawyers, career booksellers, political activists, bartenders, actors and photographers.  My store is not a place one goes to wash out – it’s a place one goes to click in.

Still, I know they (we) struggle. I’ve only managed to bring the starting salary about .75 above minimum plus free health insurance, book credit, bonuses at the end of the year…

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Book review: Another Man’s War: The Story of a Burma Boy in Britain’s Forgotten African Army by Barnaby Phillips

Goodreads Synopsis
At age 16 Isaac Fadoyebo ran away from his West African village to join the British Army. The Second World War was raging, and Nigeria’s colonial masters were desperate to find men to defend India and the Empire. He was taking breakfast deep in the Burmese jungle when the Japanese ambushed his unit and left him for dead. With the help of a Muslim family he survived, but in every other way Isaac was forgotten, all the more so as Nigeria struggled to come to terms with its newfound independence. Yet Isaac could not forget the debt he owed to the Burmese family, now trapped in a simmering sectarian conflict. In Another Man’s War, veteran foreign correspondent Barnaby Phillips shares the gripping, unforgettable story of a Burma Boy in the Second World War and the legacy of colonial rule.

My verdict: this is the review submitted on the Goodreads website
I received the book for free through Goodreads First Reads.

I entered this giveaway on behalf of my husband Michael, and I was lucky enough to win. The below review has come from Michael:

I, like so many people in Britain, know very little (if anything at all) about the situations of Burma/Myanmar and Nigeria in the second world war and post-war period. This book certainly goes some way to begin filling in those gaps in knowledge. Quite some time ago, I had gotten to a stage where watching historical films and documentaries, and even reading books about the second world war, had ceased to tell me anything that I didn’t already know something about, but this book gave me much information that I had previously had no idea of at all. More than the story of one soldier, or even the West African divisions that fought for Britain in the Indian theatre of the war (something totally glossed over by many of the mainstream histories of the period), this book goes some way to describe the post-war realities of the places that it mentions.

Exceedingly well written and even in the slow parts, never dull, I would say that this book is a must-read for anybody interested in the British Empire, West Africa, Nigeria, India, Burma/Myanmar and the second world war. I had originally intended to give this book a 4 out of 5 stars rating, as it left so many more questions than it had answers for, but then I remembered that it’s not one author’s job to spoonfeed me information. This book is a 5 star book, and anything less would be an insult.

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Reading 30 Minutes a Week Can Make You Happier and Healthier

I’ve just spotted this interesting article, which I saw shared on Facebook, written by Jessica Stillman.

http://www.inc.com/jessica-stillman/30-minutes-a-week-can-make-you-happier-and-healthier.html

She says, “Folks who read at least 30 minutes a week are 20 percent more likely to report greater life satisfaction and 11 percent more likely to feel creative. They’re also 28 percent less likely to suffer from depression and 18 percent more likely to report high self-esteem.”

I think that’s true. I love reading, it really gives me the opportunity to escape the craziness of day-to-day life and peek into the world of other people. I know lots of people like to watch soaps, but I love to read 🙂

New webshop on its way!

New webshop coming soon!
I currently have the week off work, which enables me to catch up with my admin surrounding our books. Yesterday, I had the fun task of completing our tax return for 2014/2015, but I’m glad that it’s done now. I know that it’s not due until January 2016, but I like to tick tasks off lists 😀

This week I have also been working on a new webshop to enable people to buy the paperback books. We’ve tried various webshops in the past, with varying degrees of success, but I really like the one I’m building now, and it seems really easy to use. I will let you all know when it’s live, so that you can marvel over my handiwork, and buy books if you like 😀

I’ve never been so emotional about a book delivery before!

While doing some research for an upcoming blog post, I remembered the name Richard Scarry. Richard was an American illustrator and did the illustrations on a book I loved when I was a child, over 25 years ago:


I’ve just located it online and I bought it straight away. I am beyond excited! I can’t wait for it to come 🙂

Top 100 bestselling books: how many have you read?

With all of this talk recently of Grey: Fifty Shades of Grey as Told by Christian by E. L. James, it got me to thinking, ‘just what books are in the topsellers list?’ After having a nosey around online, I found this list from The Guardian from 2012: “The top 100 bestselling books of all time: how does Fifty Shades of Grey compare?

Having looked through the list, I have to admit that I have read only 13 so I think I need to up my game!