Thursday, January 21, 2010

Call for Essays: Patron Challenges to Remove Materials from Library Collections

Call for Essays: Patron Challenges to Remove Materials from Library Collections

Seeking essays by and about librarians in public, school, and academic libraries who have experienced challenges to remove material from library collections.
These essays should be no more than 2500 words in length, and should provide details of a full challenge experience, from initial contact through ultimate resolution. Essays can be a first person narrative or a case study description. We will also welcome short descriptions of interactions that may not have ended in a formal challenge or request for reconsideration. These anecdotes should reflect the concerns of either the patron or the librarian or both. Sad, funny, scary, confusing, misunderstood, groundless, highly-charged, low-key – somehow, the reader should be able to identify with the event.

Tips on writing: Explain the situation and how you were involved. How was the issue resolved? What lessons were learned? If you experienced this situation again, what would you do differently? What resources did you draw upon (don’t list resources; tell us about the resources and why they were helpful)? Had you received any training on handling challenges prior to the situation you describe? Have you received any since? Did your library have a procedure in place? If not, does it have one now?

Writers should include the facts of the challenge. If this is information based on a personal experience, please share your thoughts and feelings about the confrontation, dealing with administrators, and dealing with the public.

Email submissions to:

Your submissions should be submitted with the following information:

1. Title your essay.

2. Include a 100 word biographical statement.

Your submissions should follow these formatting rules:

1. Text should be attached as a .doc or .rtf (please do not send .docx documents).

2. Your Name should be the document label (example JaneSmith.doc)

3. If you have questions about style, please consult The Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, as your general guide to punctuation, capitalization, quotation, abbreviation, source citation, use of italic, etc.

Submitting an essay does not guarantee publication. If you have questions about your essay and/or topic, please contact us.

Contributors will be asked to sign an ALA Writer Agreement before publication. Compensation: a complimentary copy of the final publication and a discount on additional copies.

Deadline for submissions: March 31, 2010.

Val Nye & Kathy Barco